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This 1927-built Industrial Works steam crane of 150 Ton capacity was parked on a CN siding in London, in pictures taken in 1991 and 1992. It is Conrail's CR 50125, ex- PC 50125, probably based in St Thomas before being retired from Conrail's southern Ontario operation. From left to right are CN 10650 Express Refrigerator built 1957 with ice hatches ("No Brakes" stencil), CN 60200 "The Pas Auxilliary Tie & Block Car", CR 50125 crane, and CN 56483 which is a wood sheathed flanger missing some boards.  All retired and awaiting scrapping - which might have been delayed because of asbestos insulation.  Caption rewritten based on information from the comments, thank you.
Copyright Notice: This image ©John Parnell photo, J.Pittman collection all rights reserved.



Caption: This 1927-built Industrial Works steam crane of 150 Ton capacity was parked on a CN siding in London, in pictures taken in 1991 and 1992. It is Conrail's CR 50125, ex- PC 50125, probably based in St Thomas before being retired from Conrail's southern Ontario operation.
From left to right are CN 10650 Express Refrigerator built 1957 with ice hatches ("No Brakes" stencil), CN 60200 "The Pas Auxilliary Tie & Block Car", CR 50125 crane, and CN 56483 which is a wood sheathed flanger missing some boards.
All retired and awaiting scrapping - which might have been delayed because of asbestos insulation.
Caption rewritten based on information from the comments, thank you.

Photographer:
John Parnell photo, J.Pittman collection [227] (more) (contact)
Date: 1992-04-28 (search)
Railway: Canadian National (search)
Reporting Marks: CR 50125 (search)
Train Symbol: Not Provided
Subdivision/SNS: CN London Yard (search)
City/Town: London (search)
Province: Ontario (search)
Share Link: http://www.railpictures.ca/?attachment_id=37175
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Photo ID: 35983

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9 Comments
  1. Thanks for your insights Paul. My first mistake was forgetting Conrail’s southern Ontario operations (that descend through PC, CASO and Michigan Central (NYC)) were the origin of this crane – leading to my misconception that it was a post-1976 import from USA (while US built import, that was probably long before Conrail). Looks to be in good condition, could have been a nice exhibit for the St Thomas museum, but there’s only so much space and budget.
    I trust Mr Parnell’s date stamps because he worked in the photo business, took many many rolls of film, and when dates can be checked they’ve been OK. (eg. new GMD locomotives)

  2. See what’s left of the Rectory St. Car Dept. yard here: https://earth.app.goo.gl/mmSWXx

  3. I have received some info from a former S&C Supervisor who worked the territory that the location is the Rectory Street Car Department Yard, and the signals in the background are at London Jct. on the Dundas Sub.

  4. I agree with MrDan that CN 56483 is a flanger as I have other photos of it and other similar CN flangers from back in the day. What appears to be a sliding door with some stacked wood inside the car is actually several pieces of the exterior wood sheathing missing and exposing some of the very poor insulation between the exterior and interior walls (clearly seen in other photos I have).
    PS My photos of the Conrail crane CR 50125 are also electronically date stamped as 91′ 4 16 (April 16, 1991), but back then, I may not have had the date feature set accurately. All in all, your photo is fabulous and brings back many great memories of my days at CN in the London area. Cheers.

  5. Wish I’d noticed Paul’s first comment, before commenting on the second! The information he provided looks good to me. However I would suggest that his image id=5865 shows the crane with significantly more peeling paint and is probably at least a year later than my images – which all have dates burnt into the negative by a date back (photoshopped out).
    Don’t know which London yard this was taken in.

  6. I am confident that the location is London.
    This appears to be a much higher tonnage crane than 35. Turns out PC had cranes in the 50000′s, and so were some of Conrail’s. CR began in 1976, so acquired after – perhaps to replace another steam crane in worse condition. The paintwork on the boom and hooks, and general condition look OK. But steam-power equipment was retired for good reasons, including operational complexity, explosion hazard, maintenance needs, time to raise steam, fuel consumption, and asbestos insulation.
    The car to the right looks like it has a sliding door partly open close to the crane, with a stack of stuff inside that could be firewood. The other side does not have a door. Perhaps a re-purposed old flanger ? Interesting stuff, a lot of guess-work.

  7. A CN crane with the same running number CN 50125 was a 35 ton crane (make & model not known) as recorded in a July 1960 CNR Crane Index I have in my files.

  8. Conrail 50125 is ex-Penn Central 50125, exx-Pere Marquette DK5 and was an Industrial Works 150 ton crane built in 1927. I captured it waiting to be scrapped at the CN Reclaimation Yard in London, ON in April 1991 (date subject to correction).
    http://www.railpictures.ca/?attachment_id=5865
    I have a few other photos of this crane if you are interested.

  9. 56483 appears to be a flanger car. I’d hazard a guess all this old equipment eventually made a one-way trip to the London Reclamation yard.

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