45. MRH13-11-Nov2013-L - page 117

Freight car hand brakes - 8
Drop-shaft Hand Brakes
From the earliest use of hand brakes, the need to protect the
brake wheel on gondolas and flat cars was apparent. Both tilting-
handle and drop-shaft types were developed, with the latter
quickly emerging as the most practical and economical. Drop-
shaft hand brakes continue in use today. In the early versions
the chain was wrapped around a square sleeve through which
the brake shaft was able to slide vertically (31 and 32). Modern
drop-shaft hand brakes incorporate a geared mechanism such as
those manufactured by Superior (33) and Superior (34).
32. A Ureco “stem-
winder” drop-brake
shaft on a USRA flat car
from the late teens.
33. Superior drop-shaft
hand brakes from the
34. Universal geared
drop-shaft hand brakes in
use since the 1970s.
35. Barber tilting hand
brake staff.
Tilting Hand Brakes
Gondola cars with drop ends presented a special challenge to
manufacturers of hand brakes. Both the Barber type manufac-
tured by Standard Car Truck Co. (35) and the Feasible Flexible
model manufactured by U.S. Metal Co. (36) were promoted
prior to 1920, but may have survived on specialty equipment
for decades. The tilting hand brake illustrated in figure 37 was
MRH-Nov 2013
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