Now Available! Magor 4948 'Big John' Covered Hoppers!

July 07, 2022 7 Comments

Now Available! Magor 4948 'Big John' Covered Hoppers!

The Southern “Big John” Covered Hopper took on the Supreme Court and changed the industry!

In the late 1950s, the Southern Railway believed that new methods would allow for a reduction in shipping rates for grain and feed traffic. The Southern proposed a strategy to create large, lightweight, 100-ton covered hoppers. At this time, railroads shipped grains in 50-ton boxcars. The Southern projected that this strategy would allow for a 60% rate reduction under boxcars.

However, the concept was met with resistance, and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) appealed with the ICC, who had approved of the Southern’s proposed rates. The TVA operated Alabama and Tennessee lock, dams and water transportation. They viewed the reduced rates as a threat to barge traffic. In the litigation that followed, the Supreme Court heard two cases, and Congress was encouraged to review rate regulation.

In addition to car rates, avoiding interchange fees was a strategic component of the Southern’s competitive strategy. As such, the Southern was strict about service routes. In the early years of Big John service, the cars remained on Southern system so to avoid interchange charges. Big Johns were primarily operated to gateway points in the Midwest. There, mid-western railroads and river barges would offload lading into elevators, and then, the Southern Railway would reload the same lading into Big Johns—all to keep cars on home rails. Additionally, there were virtually no single car movements—common for grain traffic in the early 1960s. Instead, the Southern moved these cars in large blocks—a notion well in advance of the unit train concept.

ExactRail’s Magor 4948 “Big John” Covered Hopper has been developed in close association with the Southern Railway Historical Society. The Southern Railway Historical Society gave ExactRail’s Magor 4948 “Big John” Covered Hopper the absolute highest praise! Thank you to the Southern Railway Historical Society for their help with this project!

The Magor 4948 “Big John” Covered Hopper includes:

• 7 paint schemes and undecorated kit!
• Extraordinarily accurate lettering styles and placement.
• ExactRail’s equalized 100 ton ASF Ride Control Trucks
• Machined metal wheel sets and axles
• Kadee ® #158 “scale” whisker couplers
• Narrow-style draft box, featuring: key detail, shank wedges, striker castings and full nut and bolt detail
• Wire coupler cut levers, grab irons, brake rods and lever hangers!

Undec Kit

Southern - 'Big John' Orange

3 Road Numbers

Southern - 'Big John' CNO&TP Orange

3 Road Numbers

Southern - 'Big John' NO&NE Orange

3 Road Numbers

Southern - 1974 Dark Sylvan Green Repaint

3 Road Numbers

Southern - 1974 CNO&TP Dark Sylvan Green Repaint

3 Road Numbers

Southern - 1974 NO&NE Dark Sylvan Green Repaint

3 Road Numbers

Santa Fe - 1962 'As Delivered'

2 Road Numbers





7 Responses

Eugene
Eugene

July 13, 2022

Please keep me update

Blane
Blane

July 13, 2022

Looking forward to this and hopefully this means another run of Southern waffle-side boxcars is also in the cards

Kevin
Kevin

July 13, 2022

Please do the Big John hoppers with trough hatches.

Tim Harkleroad
Tim Harkleroad

July 13, 2022

Quinn and how much? Will you be taking pre-orders?

Tom Savio
Tom Savio

July 13, 2022

Is the Santa Fe Big John pained in ATSF silver work train scheme prototypical?

John Teaby
John Teaby

July 13, 2022

About 55 years ago my father, Greg Teaby was contracted to build a model for Reynolds Metals, the aluminum covered hopper car “Big John”.
I believe they donated it to the Smithsonian, but I don’t know where it is now.
My father was contracted to build over a half a dozen different models that are in the Smithsonian.
It was a big part of my life watching my father make drawings from the pictures train cars and construct scratch built models.
Good times,
John Teaby

Garrett J. LeVan
Garrett J. LeVan

July 13, 2022

Would be interested in the SF “Big John” hopper from your company.

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