Bridge Work on the KC Sub

Discussion in 'Maintenance of Way' started by Karl, Mar 7, 2014.

  1. Karl

    Karl 2008 Engineer of the Year Supporter

    The Frisco’s Kansas City Subdivision wandered in and out the flood plains of the Marais Des Cygnes River and of the Little Osage River. This route required numerous bridges over these two rivers as well as crossings of abandoned meanders, sloughs, and tributaries. The Frisco bridged many these drainages with ballast-deck pile trestles, most of which were driven in the late 20’s through the mid 30’s. During the early 70’s, the Frisco, an innovator in many ways, opted to embark on a program, which would replace these aging structures with precast concrete beam and steel structures. Two bridge gangs and two bridge cranes worked the program, which renewed nearly 20 bridges.

    The process of renewing the bridges without building a shoo-fly or without closing the mainline for extended periods can be seen in the following images. The first bridge is at C-58.6, which was being rebuilt into a 14 span, pre-stressed concrete beam structure. Once the concrete piers and the abutment have been poured, the work to remove the ballast deck commenced. The CWR was cut and punched to allow its removal and and re-installation as the work progress. Once the gang had the dispatcher's authority the rail was unbolted and pulled back.
    DSC_5659.jpg DSC_5660.jpg

    Once the rail had been removed, the piles were cut, the the deck was chained, and the bridge crane lifted it, and dumped it into the ravine. The last image in this row shows the opened panel and the new concrete pier. The images also show that the deck was rebuilt in stages, and one can see the new bridge spans mixed with the old ballast deck.

    DSC_5661.jpg DSC_5662.jpg DSC_5663.jpg DSC_5664.jpg DSC_5666.jpg

    After the span was open, the bridge crane walked a prestressed concrete beam forward and set it into place. Once both beams were in place, new bridge ties were put into place, the rails temporarily re-spiked directly to the ties, and the still unfinished bridge was ready for traffic to flow.

    DSC_5671.jpg DSC_5672.jpg DSC_5673.jpg DSC_5674.jpg DSC_5675.jpg

    Bridge C49.3 was also being renewed. This bridge had 8, 27' steel-beam spans. Like bridge C-58.6, once the deck was removed, the steel beams were walked into place and set into place

    DSC_5667.jpg DSC_5668.jpg DSC_5669.jpg DSC_5670.jpg

    This image shows bridge C72.5, which has been completed. Several timber bents still need to be removed.

    Dad usually rode his territory every Friday, when he would make a KC-Ft Scott turn. Here is a shot from the rear of a northbound freight as it crosses one of the recently rebuilt bridges.

    This is the same inspection trip ; the train has just crossed the Maris Des Cygnes River...C66.7

    I believe that this is the north end of Henson. Both bridge cranes are in the clear for the weekend.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 8, 2014
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  2. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Supporter

    Really, really neat post, Karl. Thanks. It's always interesting to see how things were done. Also, someone modeling the 70's time frame could actually model one of these bridges in its transition from timber to concrete or steel thanks to the level of detail you have provided,
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  3. tmfrisco

    tmfrisco Member Supporter

    The Frisco did the same thing on the Cherokee and Creek subs in the same time frame that Karl mentioned. I imagine that they replaced the old wooden structures on main tracks across the system. In places where short wooden bridges needed replacing, large whistles and ballast were used. I was the engineer on a work train on one of these projects on the Avard Sub along Avery Drive between Tulsa and Sand Springs. Also on the AV one of those old wooden structures caught on fire, and the engineer couldn't get the train stopped in time before the train hit the bridge. Fortunately, the crew escaped without serious injury as I remember (maybe someone more knowledgeable of this incident can chime in here). This incident happened post Frisco, but it shows the wisdom of replacing the wood bridges with the steel/concrete/whistle structures. The burned out bridge was replaced with one of these, by the way.

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  4. Frisco1515

    Frisco1515 Frisco1515

    Karl, Are you from Ft. Scott? I grew up there; when were you there? I was there from 1932 to 1953. Fred Clem
  5. DanHyde

    DanHyde Member

    How much time did it take to do a replacement like this? Without shoo-flys, I imagine it had to be completed REALLY fast.

  6. William Jackson

    William Jackson Bill Jackson

    Great photo's I remembered the B&B Foreman's name "Farmer" Ha ! thought I seen him in a couple of the photo's.
    Noted the guy in the shirt and tie in one of the shots. Would like to know if you know who that was, Karl.
    That was a few years before I worked up in that area, I did a little of that stuff, south of their Miami and Quapaw area filling bridges in about 75 or 76. Thanks for the shots.
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  7. Karl

    Karl 2008 Engineer of the Year Supporter

    Fred, I never lived in Ft Scott, but have been there numerous times. Most of my trips were to retrieve my dad, if and when he couldn't catch a train back to KC within a reasonable time.

    Dan, One concrete span would replace two timber panels. Replacement would take 3-6 hours.

    William, I think the guy in the tie was Buterbaugh.
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  8. Clay Giddens

    Clay Giddens Member

    Terry, my dad was Ike Giddens from Fort Scott and later a General Foreman out of Tulsa. I worked as a summer laborer on a bridge gang. We replaced a bridge (about 22 spans) south of Okmulgee at Schulter during the summer of 1975. We drove 45-foot concrete piling and replaced the bridge with concrete caps and steel girders. We cut ties in the center of the bridge and used a crane and a hydraulic hammer to drive the piling below the deck all the while minimizing the effect to mainline traffic. It was an amazing feat!
  9. qaprr

    qaprr Member Supporter

    Awesome Photos!
    Mike L
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