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RAILCAR GOLD Chapter 17 . . Production . . Part 2

RAILCAR GOLD    Chapter 17 . . . Production   add 2 blanks after GOLD
RAILCAR GOLD   Chapter 17 . . . Production

RAILCAR GOLD is a historically accurate multi-generational fictional tale of hidden treasure, primarily set in York County, Pennsylvania during the latter half of the Nineteenth Century.  This is Part 2 of Chapter 17 . . . Production.  A new part will be posted every Thursday.  Recent chapters stand alone, starting here; however new readers may want to start at the beginning.


CHAPTER  17  . . . PRODUCTION . . .  Part 2

David Small hosted the Journal reporter for a private one-on-one lunch at his home.  Afterwards everybody gathered for a short stroll along North Queen Street to the York Car Works.  George Billmeyer explained to the reporter, “Seeing the original Car Works, will give you a much greater appreciation of what you’ll observe at the Spring Garden Car Works.”

John Small led the group into the long narrow buildings paralleling North Street and nestled in the southwest corner of North Queen and North Streets.  As he guided the reporter through the building, David Small pointed out, “That is the area where we built the first Billmeyer & Small cars.  This building was only one-third this size 30-years-ago.  Back then the second floor contained the wood working shop.  The second floor has been used for finished lumber storage ever since we modernized a centralized wood working shop ten years ago.”

David Small continued, “ However, the flow of the work through the first floor has essentially remained unchanged for 30-years.  Next to the south facing windows, we erect the cars.  If you look out those windows, you’ll see the original blacksmith shop.  That is where the metal hardware, wheels and trucks are produced.”

John Small pointed out a car body being craned to the north side bay of the building, “The car is lowered onto the two trucks on a set of rails, completing the car; except for trim work and painting.  The exterior and interior trim is added in this area and within the west end of the building the cars are painted.  All cars exit this building heading westward.  This building is primarily used for producing standard gauge cars.”

As they exited the building, George Billmeyer noted to the reporter, “You’ve seen how Billmeyer & Small built cars 30-years ago, now lets take a look at the state-of-the-art car works from 10-years ago.  The long Narrow-Gauge Shops extend eastward from North Duke Street.  We primarily build narrow-gauge cars in these shops, however on occasions we have converted one of the lines to standard gauge production.”

John Small pointed out, “We no longer have to crane across building bays. On these two parallel and independent production lines, the cars are erected, the trucks are inserted, and the cars are painted in one continuous line.  The finished cars exit this building heading eastward.  If you guessed that could create traffic jams on the rails outside these facing car erection buildings, you’d be right!  We remedied that problem in the Spring Garden Car Works.”

David Small emphasized, “Look at all the room on either side of each production line.  Various sub-assemblies are built in those spaces to allow the production line to move faster.  However, even though we own this whole city block, cramped space restrictions do not allow us to efficiently feed material to all parts of the production line in a timely basis.  George and John came up with an ingenious design in the Spring Garden Car Works to prevent that problem from occurring in the new car works.”

George Billmeyer leads the group onto an unpainted narrow-gauge car and explains, “The Spring Garden Car Works has an extremely efficient painting operation.  We’ve done very little painting at the York Car Works for the past few months.  This car is following the route most York Car Works cars take now days.  To be finished at the Spring Garden Car Works.”

Go to Part 3