Thursday, November 20, 2014

MoW: Herzog "Multi-Purpose Machine" Train

Update: these articulated gondolas plus self-contained excavators now seem to be called "slot machines." I came across a video of a Herzog in action. In this case it had a magnet attachment. Georgetown makes a competing slot train.

In September when I was checking out a parked mixed freight, I noticed a MoW train parked in the Downers Grove yard. When I was checking out a parked stacks and pigs train I noticed that the same type of train was again parked in the yard. But this time it was parked in a different place so that I could get pictures of the head end, and I learned that the train is a Herzog MPM. It can reach up to 27 feet from the track center and the "Roto-Tilt articulating head" can use a variety of quick-connect attachments to perform many types of maintenance activities.

20141119 0058

Steven J. Brown posted
Herzog 193 is apparently some sort of GP38-2. I was digging around trying to come up with an origin story but didn't get far. It is eastbound on the BNSF at LaVergne in Berwyn, Illinois - September 23, 2020.

Glenn Davis posted
Herzog maintenance train rolling through DG
Joseph Robert LeMay It appears they're using it to pick up all the trees they've been mowing down along the right of way. No more signals blocked by foliage this summer.
John Poshepny He was pulling into the Downers Grove yard around 1230. Not sure if he is still there.
Duane Ramanan posted, cropped
Might just start taking all these ties home and make my own railway
Doucette Aj Joseph Not even strapped down
Duane Ramanan Never see em strapped down on the scrap trains
Joe Dockrill Never tied down on Herzog drop and pick up the old ones after

It appears that Relco now makes a comparable train. Although this is the first time I've seen two excavators on top.
Midwest Railroad Photography posted
The sun decided to shine for a while this morning, so I gave chase to the UP MoW train. Here we see the crew easing down grade in Oskaloosa, IA after navigating downtown. This train will continue to work south towards Eddyville picking up ties that were left behind by the tie gang several weeks back.

Andre Tardif shared
Mo Tyner: Loved being in charge of the Herzog mpm.

Justin Spencer posted
Michael J Hermance Sr.: The ultimate work train. You can do many different tasks with it. Love it.

Justin Spencer posted two photos with the comment: "Here's a couple action shots of the new UP MoW train as it creeps around the bend just south of Beacon, IA. Was really nice to document this machine in action in my own area. Not sure what the employees think of it, but it gives them a little job security instead of calling Herzog."


I presume that these machines were invented after safety rules outlawed the use of the CarTopper.
Sean William posted
Where's all the old backhoe CarTopper cowboys. How sketchy was the first time you did this?
 Never did it, not that good an operator. Pretty damn sure it was scary first time and every time. You're at the limits of the machine.

Was Rick Corman the first one to do it back in 1974 or so. That’s how he impressed CSX and got started with a lot of their business.

 while working as a Forman on Penn Central .

 Rick Corman started RJ Corman back in 74. Instead of the guys throwing ties out of tie cars by hand he rode his backhoe up on top and impressed them all. CSX said we need this guy. That’s what I was told. We have pics of it. Started with a dump truck and a backhoe and grew the business. Now in 24 states.
He passed in 2013

 Clay Corman’s operators were doing this in the Early 70’s! I think he was Ricks Uncle.

 yes Clay is the uncle.

We had 2 guys on ATKs Philly subdivision Pat Oneil and Frank Harry that could top a hopper without ramps ...

 two of the best in the business.

Crystal sugar in North Dakota did this in the 70's to unload coal

I still remember the first time I saw this... Chicago Division Penn Central 1975... First try he slipped off the gon, scared the hell out of me.[The new facebook formatting I hit on May 19, 2020, kinda sucks.]

According to the comments, Herzog pioneered doing this with backhoes. But now they use MPMs. Some companies still do this with trackhoes (excavators).
Well, may not all have giving up being a cowboy: Scott Fox My friend does that for herzog.
Sean William commented on his post
No idea Sam but here they [Herzog] are in action. They quit doing this and brought in the MPM though.

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