Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

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Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby SST » Fri Jan 04, 2019 6:26 pm

This could have been posted in many different places but as usual, I picked NYS....after all, the rail in question was in the Frontier Yard. Make a copy into CSX if you wish.....

Rail in question:
https://i.postimg.cc/cL0Bq8jh/IMG-1173.jpg

I took a few moments to check out the Frontier Yard today, and with no traffic yet, I started scanning the area with my lower grade binoculars. I looked at the rails nearest me [Old Broadway] and saw one rail dated 1943 [Not mainline rail]. Then I spotted the rail in question, NIPPON. To me that mean Japan.

Do we really import foreign rails? We can't even make our own rails anymore? I guess that shouldn't surprise me. Years ago, I needed thumbtacks. Made in China. I was disgusted.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby nydepot » Fri Jan 04, 2019 7:07 pm

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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby BR&P » Fri Jan 04, 2019 7:15 pm

Union Pacific evaluated many options for the 480-foot rail sections, including U.S. manufacturers. The company selected the only supplier who met all the necessary requirements for length, strength and weight, which are essential in providing safe, reliable rail


Sad! :(
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby SST » Sat Jan 05, 2019 12:17 pm

Well that was a surprise. Thanks for the article. Goes straight to answering my question. haha

While I can understand implementing this new rail, what bothers me is that we are not mfr'g this in our own country.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby nydepot » Sat Jan 05, 2019 2:45 pm

Nothing new, if you think about it. We've manufactured very little in the US for decades.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby D Alex » Sat Jan 05, 2019 3:09 pm

Not too surprising. The old steel mills that made that 1943 rail have long since become antiquated and have been demolished. At around that time, many foreign steel mills had been updated, and were producing superior steels. Also, take into account that UP, being a west-coast railroad, shipping from Asia isn't a big expense. For 30-40 years, US railroads were shrinking and deferring maintenance; today things are starting to change, so let's hope domestic steel manufacturers will start catering to the rail industry better.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby BR&P » Sat Jan 05, 2019 5:01 pm

D Alex wrote: For 30-40 years, US railroads were shrinking and deferring maintenance;


Really? I'm not sure where you would get that idea.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby henry2018 » Sat Jan 05, 2019 6:26 pm

BR&P wrote:
D Alex wrote: For 30-40 years, US railroads were shrinking and deferring maintenance;


Really? I'm not sure where you would get that idea.


That is exactly what happened.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby Ken W2KB » Sun Jan 06, 2019 1:45 pm

SST wrote:Well that was a surprise. Thanks for the article. Goes straight to answering my question. haha

While I can understand implementing this new rail, what bothers me is that we are not mfr'g this in our own country.


Same can be said for large utility industry generation and transmission class transformers which are now manufactured overseas.
~Ken :: Fairmont ex-UP/MP C436 MT-14M1 ::
Black River Railroad Historical Trust :: [/url]
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby pumpers » Sun Jan 06, 2019 7:00 pm

I'm not surprised. For my job (not related to RR's) I have visited Japan quite a few times, including some high-tech factories Their attention to painstaking detail on all levels in all aspects is hard to believe. With respect to trains, all of them from subways to the bullet trains are on time to the minute and spotless, with everyone sweating and hustling at all times to get it right - they put even the Swiss to shame. So if there is a difficult step to control in mass production, they will get it right.
On the other hand, once they have something set, they change very slowly, even if sometimes for business reasons changing faster would be better.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby BandA » Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:13 am

1943 was wartime. Perhaps after the war, damaged rail lines were wholesale replaced in Japan, and the old rail piled up then picked over by Japanese who needed work & shipped the straight pieces to the US for use in branch lines or yards. This is a total guess.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby lvrr325 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:41 am

BandA wrote:1943 was wartime. Perhaps after the war, damaged rail lines were wholesale replaced in Japan, and the old rail piled up then picked over by Japanese who needed work & shipped the straight pieces to the US for use in branch lines or yards. This is a total guess.


lol no


Today Japan has trains that travel at speeds approaching 200 MPH so I would expect if anyone knows how to make rail they do.

Perhaps the tariffs on cheap steel that have led to US plant reopenings will lead to more rail made in the US.
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby pumpers » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:09 am

BandA wrote:1943 was wartime. Perhaps after the war, damaged rail lines were wholesale replaced in Japan, and the old rail piled up then picked over by Japanese who needed work & shipped the straight pieces to the US for use in branch lines or yards. This is a total guess.

The lettering is in the Roman alphabet, not in Japanese characters. Clearly made for export if made in Japan.
And I am sure the rail, if from Japan, was not made in 1943!
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby SST » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:23 am

My comment on the 1943 rail was a "yard rail." The NIPPON rail was a mainline rail. Different sections of track.

Wouldn't that be crazy to have a 1943 Japanese rail here? hahaha
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Re: Do we have Japanese rails here in the USA?

Postby Matt Langworthy » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:32 am

lvrr325 wrote:Perhaps the tariffs on cheap steel that have led to US plant reopenings will lead to more rail made in the US.


The tariffs are on Chinese steel only. Japanese and European steel are not effected.
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