Union Tank Car Opens Marion Retrofiting Facility

Union Tank Car company has established a retrofitting facility in Marion near its existing Marion repair shop.

The company said on Tuesday that the new shop will retrofit existing DOT-111 and CPC-1232 specification railroad tank cars with new safety features that will enable them to attain a DOT 117R specification. That latter is needed for the cars to be used to carry flammable liquids.

Union Tank CarDuring the retrofitting, each car will receive top fittings protection, thermal insulation, an 11-gauge steel jacket, full ½-inch thick head shields, and a bottom outlet valve handle that disengages from the valve when the car is in transit.

The trucks of DOT-117R cars also will be reconditioned for 286,000-pound gross rail load service.

The retrofitting work will occur in a 125,000-square foot building that had been used for heavy manufacturing and is less than two miles from an existing Union Tank Car shop.

Union said that the retrofitting facility has more than 1,000 feet of in-grade standard gauge rail, heavy lift cranes, and a turntable with scale capability that is capable of rotating a 66-foot-long tank car inside the building.

A drum welder is used for fabrication of the tank jackets. Cars are moved through the plant by battery-powered cart caddies.

Cars entering the plant are cleaned, inspected, and qualified as “Marion 1” before being moved to the new “Marion 2” shop for the in-line conversion.

When the re-manufacturing work is finished, the car returns to Marion 1 for fittings reapplication, paint and stenciling.

Union’s re-manufacturing plant has Association of American Railroads certification and is currently conducting two DOT-117R conversions per day.

That number is expected to increase as Union trains and certifies more technicians.

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