Frito Lay Chip Plant
#1
Hello Big Blue! This is my first time posting here although I've been a follower for a couple of years now. I'm starting on a layout based on the BNSF Ward Industrial Spur that runs from Midlothian to Dallas, TX and at the end of the line in Dallas there is (although it closed a few years ago) a Frito Lay plant. I know it takes covered hopper cars but I'm not sure which kinds. The plant produced Baked Lays, Rold Gold pretzels and a few kinds of Cheeto's products. I'm assuming the plant took in corn but I don't know if the hoppers it would receive were regular three or four bay hoppers or pressurade centerflows. Would anyone care to guess which kind this type of plant would take? Below are google map links to this plant and the operating one in Arlington that is served by UP.

<!-- m --><a class="postlink" href="https://www.google.com/maps/place/Frito-Lay/@32.7032939,-96.9032774,309a,35y,90h/data=!3m1!1e3!4m5!3m4!1s0x864e900e82f56287:0xf6907230d8a56f08!8m2!3d32.7008642!4d-96.9049019">https://www.google.com/maps/place/Frito ... 96.9049019</a><!-- m -->

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Frito-...97.0509964
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#2
More structures on that roof than there are in a lot of small towns! 8-)
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#3
Always check bing maps as well, since their birds eye view can sometimes be superior to what you get with google. At the very least, its different pictures that reveal different details.

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Clicking 3D mode on google also "tilts" the view but it attempts to render the rail cars in 3D as well, which is a little messy.

My guess is that they are regular grain hoppers on the bottom, and not any special kind of "Pressuraide" or pneumatic hoppers. My main suspicion is driven by the "single covered" unloading point. My guess is that there is a pit or device between the rails that pulls from each gate of the hopper, rather than through any pipeline system (at least initially). Otherwise, you'd see hoses and connections to pipelines running along a spur, since such a set up wouldn't need and individual unloading point (in theory).

Now, body style for these hoppers doesn't matter, as along as the gates on the bottom match the unloading facilities. When picking out a railcar, read the fine print on the side at the hobby shop. At the very least, it will help you sort out cars that are clearly carrying chemicals/plastics rather than food/corn products. Even the length doesn't necessarily matter. While its most cost effective to ship the largest railroad car you can fill, in the bing map link of Arlington, you can see a shorter hopper, and that's fine too.

This photo right here makes me also fairly certain they use regular hoppers, considering it is lettered for the company, and probably even the specific plant we are looking at! There seems to be a similar hopper at the Arlington plant in the google link you posted.

[Image: 030908_FritoLay-hopper_DeButts.jpg]
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#4
Thanks for the help and I forgot all about that hopper car being out there! I thought at one point they were pressurade cars but you're right there are no pipes or hoses to speak of. Grain hopper cars it is :tada: :tada: Mountain Man you're right there is a lot of stuff on that roof Big Grin
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