Rail Equipment Types

It doesn’t take long looking at a freight train rolling by to notice there are many varieties of railcars. They’ve all been designed for a specific purpose, and they generally have different height and weight restrictions associated with their usage.

Not sure what type of railcar you need to ship your product? No problem, we’re here to help!

Below is a guide to many of the most common types of railcars you will need to meet your shipping needs.

Boxcars

For hauling: Paper, lumber, plywood, beer, wine, food commodities, general merchandise freight

Standard - For hauling paper, lumber, plywood, general merchandise freight

Placeholder image

Standard 50’ - Product load limit 204,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Standard 60’ - Product load limit 199,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

High Cube - For hauling paper, lumber, plywood, general merchandise freight

Placeholder image

50’ High Cube - Product load limit 220,000 lbs. - AAR Plate F (View spec sheet)

60’ High Cube - Product load limit 220,000 lbs. - AAR Plate F (View spec sheet)

Insulated - For hauling beer, wine, food commodities

Placeholder image

66’ Insulated - Product load limit 171,500 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)


Refrigerated Boxcars

For hauling: Temperature controlled and temperature protected food products, frozen food products

Standard Reefer

Placeholder image

72’ - Product load limit 183,375 lbs. - AAR Plate F (View spec sheet)

73’ - Product load limit 181,000 lbs. - AAR Plate F (View spec sheet)


Covered Hopper Cars

For hauling: Cement, sand, clay, non-metallic ores, fertilizers, sand, phosphates, bauxite, grain, grain products, alumina, plastics, flour, powdered food-grade products

Small Cube - For hauling cement, sand

Placeholder image

Product load limit 218,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Medium Cube - For hauling clay, non-metallic ores, fertilizers, sand, phosphates, bauxite

Placeholder image

Product load limit 213,800 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Jumbo - For hauling grain, grain products, fertilizer, alumina, plastics

Placeholder image

Product load limit 226,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Pressure Differential - For hauling flour, powdered food-grade products

Placeholder image

Product load limit 193,599 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)


Open Hopper Cars

For hauling: Sand, gravel, iron ore, colemanite ore, agricultural limestone, coal

Aggregate - For hauling sand, gravel, iron ore, colemanite ore, agricultural limestone

Placeholder image

Product load limit 222,299 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Coal - For hauling coal only

Placeholder image

Product load limit 241,999 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)


Flat Cars

For hauling: Machinery, steel products, utility poles, lumber, pipe, pulpwood, poles, wallboard, gypsum board, electric generating and transmission equipment, machinery boilers

Standard - For hauling machinery, steel products, utility poles

Placeholder image

Product load limit 199,999 lbs. - AAR plate Varies by Load (View spec sheet)

Bulkhead - For hauling lumber, pipe, pulpwood, poles, wallboard, steel products

Placeholder image

Product load limit 189,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Centerbeam - For hauling lumber, gypsum board

Placeholder image

Product load limit 221,999 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Depressed Center - For hauling electric generating and transmission equipment, machinery boilers

Placeholder image

Product load limit Up to 741,000 lbs. - AAR Plate Varies by Load (View spec sheet)


Coiled Steel Cars

For hauling: Coiled steel, aluminum sheets, unfinished steel coils (hot band), steel slabs

Covered - For hauling coiled steel and aluminum sheets

Placeholder image

Product load limit 224,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Open - For hauling unfinished steel coils (hot band), steel slabs

Placeholder image

Product load limit 207,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)


Gondolas

For hauling: Scrap metals, finished and semi-finished products, bulk products, contaminated soil, municipal solid waste, woodchips

Standard - For hauling scrap metals, finished and semi-finished (metal) products, bulk products, contaminated soil

Placeholder image

Standard 52’ - Product load limit 199,999 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Standard 65’ - Product load limit 191,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Municipal Solid Waste - For hauling municipal solid waste only

Placeholder image

Product load limit 200,000 lbs. - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Woodchip - For hauling woodchips only

Placeholder image

Product load limit 213,000 lbs. - AAR Plate F (View spec sheet)


Tank Cars

For hauling: Liquid and chemical products

Tank cars are designed to haul specific commodities unless otherwise stated

Placeholder image

Molten Sulfur - Product load limit 15,700 Gallons - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Phosphoric Acid - Product load limit 15,700 Gallons - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Chlorine - Product load limit 17,250+ Gallons - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Caustic Soda - Product load limit 17,700 Gallons - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Vegetable Oil and General Purpose - Product load limit 25,500 Gallons - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Crude Oil - Product load limit 28,400 Gallons - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

Ethanol - Product load limit 30,500 Gallons - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)

LP Gas and Anhydrous Ammonia (Pressurized)- Product load limit 33,700 Gallons - AAR Plate C (View spec sheet)


Still don’t see what you need? Please contact us to see what we can do to help!

Note: Schematics provided by the online publications of Norfolk Southern Corp., BNSF Railway Company, and The Greenbrier Companies.

 


System Map

View our railroad and our connections to see how we can start serving you!

Click here for an Interactive Map