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Appendix C


A. G. Holt, Chairman;



The Committee was instructed to make final report if practicable on the subject of Ballast Tools.

Ballast Shovel

The report of the Committee presented to the 1921 Convention included a suggested design for a track shovel. The sub-committee has during the past year investigated the matter of handle design with special reference to the “D.” It is found that the old style wooden “D” handle requires in its manufacture a large waste of material and also is very apt to be broken in use, thereby resulting in the loss of the entire shovel unless some other form of “D,” which can be applied to a handle with a broken "D," is available. The malleable iron “D” as furnished in the past has not been altogether satisfactory, largely, it is felt, because of the metal spool or hand hold.

With a view to developing the utility and practicability of “D's” which can be applied to handles without "D's” the Committee has prepared the designs which are shown herewith. It is hoped that the types of handles shown will be tried out and the Committee will be able to secure information which will enable it to recommend a definite design.

Specifications for ballast shovels have been prepared and are presented herewith. The Committee recommends the adoption of these specifications as recommended practice.

Spot Board

The sub-committee has also prepared a design for a spot board with the necessary holders and raising blocks. This follows the design which is quite generally used on various railroads and is recommended for adoption as recommended practice and inclusion in the Manual.



1. These specifications cover ballast shovels. Material.

2. Blades shall be open hearth, crucible or alloy steel. 3. Straps shall be of softer steel than blades.

4. 'Handles shall be smooth and properly seasoned of the best grade straight, grained, commercial XX second growth, northern ash.

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5. The dimensions of shovels shall conform to plans which are made a part of these specifications.

6. Carbon steel blades shall be not less than No. 13 gauge and alloy blades shall be not less than 14 gauge U. S. standard.

7. The straps shall be one gauge heavier than the blade and rolled down to one gauge lighter at the extreme and farthest end and shall be welded or riveted to the blade.

8. The straps shall be pressed flush with the handle. All the rough edges pressed down to uniform surface with the other parts of the handle and fastened to the handle by three rivets, the edges of which shall be pressed down flush with the surface of the straps. Physical Properties.

9. Shovels shall be made in a workmanlike manner and free from all defects. The handles shall be bent to shape and free from knots, shake, wane or worm holes.

10. The blades shall be of natural color and coated with a high proof rust preventative and the entire strap shall be polished. 11. Blades shall show a Brinell hardness not less

nan 300, readings to be taken anywhere on the blade and the Brinell readings shall not show greater than 400 in a carbon blade or 470 in an alloy blade.

12. The shovel as a whole shall not be deformed permanently more than 1/2 inch of its lift after six 2-minute applications made at 2-minute intervals of the following test:

The point of the blade shall rest on a support; at a point 10% inches from the edge of the blade, a chain shall be passed over the heel of the blade and drawn up and blocked with no slack and to be fastened to an I-bolt in the floor; a ratchet jack standing on a platform scale shall be placed under the “D” of the handle and the jack pumped until 175 lb. (plus the weight of the jack and the paraphernalia used in making the test) is registered on the beam of the scale.

13. The manufacturer's name, quality of the steel and the date of manufacture shall be stamped plainly on the back strap and the name of the railroad shall be stamped on the front strap of each shovel. Inspection.

14. For the Brinell test and the test of strength, the inspector shall select at random one shovel from every ten dozen of each type purchased and should this shovel fail to meet the requirements in paragraphs 11 and 12, two more shovels shall be selected from the ten dozen and both must meet the specification requirements.

15. Inspection of tools shall ordinarily be made at the place of manufacture. The manufacturer shall notify.. of the railroad company at least...... days in advance when shovels will be ready for shipment.

16. The manufacturer shall allow the railroad company's inspectors such access to the work as may be necessary to satisfy them that the provisions of these specifications are carried out.

17. The manufacturer shall furnish, without charge, all necessary facilities, and assistants, for making thorough inspection and tests at the works.


18. Individual tools, defective in any respect, and lots of tools not meeting the above requirements, shall be rejected.

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Weight approx. 52 lbs.
Name of manufacturer with month and year made to be stamped on strap.
The following variations in dimensions shown on plan will be permitted:-
Length of handle !".
blade "".

Width of blade la" less.



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