I have about 500' of track with 2 switches that are an officially abandoned
siding on my property. The thought was to scrap it for cash. How much does
a foot weigh? What's the best way of removing it? Is it worth it? (LOTS of
IICR rail is weighed by the yard. For example 100lbs per yard would give
you the rail size. Siding rail would be smaller than main line rail.
Best way would be to chop off 36" and see what it weighs. There may also
be some indicator cast into the rail telling size.
"Tom Gardner" wrote: clip) How much does a foot weigh? (clip)
Go to an end, or a joint with a gap, and trace around it onto a piece of
cardboard. Then rule some squares on the tracing, to help you estimate the
area. Area x lengthx density equals weight.
You should check into donating the rail and possibly the ties if they are in
good enough condition to a railroad museum. You could write that off your taxes
and possibly the museum might even come remove it.
Where are you located??
Where do you live ? - e.g. are there any private trains near by ?
They might just come and get it for something. e.g. Mountain climbing trains,
wine route, logging type, just pretty route...
That stuff might be worth something that you can't get - e.g. they have it
for trade... Life trip ticket or that old junker furnace we bought last year -
..... Might be worth more in use than in scrap.
Scrap is better than on the ground, but I never minded it.
ONe issue you might run into - hasmat the ties ?! - that stuff is poison now.
In situ - in the ground with rail - grandfathers them. [ have them hauled
with the rails as a whole deal ]
Things to think about.
Post in all the local metalworking news magazines and on the internet
that you are selling railroad anvil material for $5 a foot, and they
have to remove it themselves.
It will be gone in about 2 weeks.
Is that 500 lineal feet? Or 2 250 foot lengths? A 1000 feet of
railroad track is a shitload of steel.
You may make more money selling it to a railroad collectors club.
Particularly with the switches, signals, ties and road equipment.
"To be civilized is to restrain the ability to commit mayhem.
To be incapable of committing mayhem is not the mark of the civilized,
merely the domesticated." - Trefor Thomas
You've received some great suggestions, but if it gets down to scrapping the
rail, the price is about as good as it gets right now. Steel is at, or near,
a record high, including scrap. Sell it off, so it will end up in China,
where they'll turn it into lathes and mills and sell them back to us.
I'd have to go look to get you an address - hold on a minute.
Ohio Brush Company, 2680 Lisbon Road, Cleveland, Ohio 44104
And judging from the Mapquest picture when you plug in the address,
he's right alongside a through rail line.
I would NOT rip the siding out or disconnect it from the mainline if
it's still serviceable - it would be prohibitive to put it back if you
suddenly had a need for it. As in shipping in or out lots of big
heavy stuff that's going to a customer who also has rail access.
A better option might be to see if someone in the region needs a
place to park a private railcar - you might be able to get some rent
income from the siding. Or call Conrail and make them the same offer,
siding space for lease, reasonable rates...
Tom: That steam engine above is one handy option if you want to
start a REALLY expensive hobby, but at least the one advertised above
is ready-to-go. Just bring your checkbook.
Welded boilers only - do NOT buy a riveted lap-seam boiler or an
engine that doesn't meet current FRA rules, you can't take it out on
the main lines and they have annoying habits like going
with or without warning. Which can ruin your day...
If you need motive power, it'll be a lot cheaper to buy an older
Diesel, like a yard switcher.
(Have a friend who's involved with Orange Empire Railroad Museum,
they have one engine under steam regularly and they're
rebuilding a few more. Not a fast or cheap proposition by any
While I can't say it has quadrupled, it sure as hell has gone up
considerably. I've not followed the scrap market closely, but the price of
any steel item has increased by double in the past six months, at least
where they stay current on prices. I know they're paying more for scrap,
but I don't know how much more as compared to six months ago. Currently
they're paying $85/ton average for steel. I can remember when scrap yards
wouldn't even accept light steel.
Here's a link if you're interested.
Don't know if anyone else has heard it, but my scrap dealer tells me
there's a fair amount of hassle in dealing with railroad iron. As in,
having documentation as to ownership, and he can't resell it except to
a recycling plant. No idea if this is state, federal or where the
rules come from, but it won't hurt to check.
Short chunks of it _do_ make nice things to pound on, though.
And a 5-in. section makes a great dolly for fast bodywork. I have one with a
thumb-hole that somebody torch-cut through the web. I polished it up good
with my 16-Amp Milwaukee grinder. When I use it with my basic body hammer --
a 2-lb. maul -- I can knock a fender into shape quick as a wink. If you
stand back about twenty feet, on a cloudy day, it looks damned good.
This is not a joke, BTW.
I have a friend that made a bumper for his pickup truck out of a section of
rail. He had it extended about a foot from the body with aluminum tread
plate on top. He rolled the sides of the tread plate over and made cutouts
to match the profile of the rail so you could see the ends of the rail.
Since his truck had been raised about a foot, he had a bumper sticker made
up that said: "If you can't stop, smile as you go under".
Weight, manufacturer, type of rail, etcetera.
We still have some Carnegie Steel Corporation rail, circa 1890s, here in
(Carnegie and Mellon were later merged to form U.S. Steel Corporation).
I've seen some Geneva (a WWII-era plant near SLC) rail around here.
Since 1936, rail has generally been Controlled Cooled, and CC is usually seen
as a type marking.
Pre-1936/non-controlled cooled rail is highly favored by Gillette Company, for
use in razor blades.