Why Railroaders Wear Bibs?

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Re: Why Railroaders Wear Bibs?

Postby Plate F » Tue Jun 23, 2009 10:25 pm

Haha nice. Well, yes, that would be considered tourist. On the freight side, one of the younger guys comes to mind who wears bibs regularly, although not always striped. But he is not a railfan in any respect, and everyone knows it. Nobody cares, really. Personally, I say if somebody wants to wear them, let them. So long as they are happy during their shift, cool. But if they are wearing bibs AND rabidly scrawling down locomotive #'s in a consist that happens to be passing by at the CSX interchange, THEN we could have some issues LOL.

Don't forget to wave, Mr. Gadfly ;)
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Re: Why Railroaders Wear Bibs?

Postby Gadfly » Wed Jun 24, 2009 9:57 am

Plate F wrote:Haha nice. Well, yes, that would be considered tourist. On the freight side, one of the younger guys comes to mind who wears bibs regularly, although not always striped. But he is not a railfan in any respect, and everyone knows it. Nobody cares, really. Personally, I say if somebody wants to wear them, let them. So long as they are happy during their shift, cool. But if they are wearing bibs AND rabidly scrawling down locomotive #'s in a consist that happens to be passing by at the CSX interchange, THEN we could have some issues LOL.

Don't forget to wave, Mr. Gadfly ;)


Trouble is. I'm NEVER out there! When I retired, I retired! Oh, I piddle around on a couple of message boards, but "watch" trains? Never go near 'em! :wink: Now you can find me out at the local airport most Sunday afternoons....................... :wink:

Gadfly
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Re: Why Railroaders Wear Bibs?

Postby Plate F » Wed Jun 24, 2009 7:44 pm

Gadfly wrote:
Plate F wrote:Haha nice. Well, yes, that would be considered tourist. On the freight side, one of the younger guys comes to mind who wears bibs regularly, although not always striped. But he is not a railfan in any respect, and everyone knows it. Nobody cares, really. Personally, I say if somebody wants to wear them, let them. So long as they are happy during their shift, cool. But if they are wearing bibs AND rabidly scrawling down locomotive #'s in a consist that happens to be passing by at the CSX interchange, THEN we could have some issues LOL.

Don't forget to wave, Mr. Gadfly ;)


Trouble is. I'm NEVER out there! When I retired, I retired! Oh, I piddle around on a couple of message boards, but "watch" trains? Never go near 'em! :wink: Now you can find me out at the local airport most Sunday afternoons....................... :wink:

Gadfly


Haha I didn't realize you were retired. Cool! Speaking of airplanes (and I am sorry that this is completely off topic), has Syracuse gotten rid of the F-16s yet? PM with a response if you want.
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Re: Re:

Postby The RR Authority » Tue Jul 08, 2014 7:13 pm

Gadfly wrote:
pennsy wrote:Hi All,

But to REALLY look the part, you need the Engineer's hat. And don't forget that red bandana. Whenever I visit the OERM, Orange Empire RR Museum, I have on the hat with a large PRR keystone on the front of it. That plus the heavy gloves and I fit right in.



Pffffttttt! :-D Try that bib overall, "engineers" (?)cap and red bandana, on Norfolk Southern and get laughed SLAM off the Right of Way! :-D :-D LMAO :wink:

Gadfly


So what is next, laughing at a soldier or sailor in uniform? At a doctor in a white coat? At an airline pilot in his uniform? Whether you guys get it or not, bibs, at least, and preferably teamed up with a striped hat is THE uniform of a railroader. And if you don't or can't wear it, find another job. I swear some of you guys would show up in flip flops or crocs and shorts and a T shirt if they let you.
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Re: Why Railroaders Wear Bibs?

Postby Freddy » Wed Jul 09, 2014 12:16 pm

I only wore overalls 1 time. No belt or belt loops to hang keys from and you had to completely disrobe to do your business. I only saw older section hands wear them back in the 70s and 80s and even then only occasionally.
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Re: Why Railroaders Wear Bibs?

Postby Desertdweller » Thu Jul 10, 2014 10:07 am

The reason railroaders wore bibs was so they could work in a dirty environment and still look like a human being afterwards.

Even though the engineer's job on a Diesel is a lot cleaner than on a steam locomotive, there are still a lot of situations that can get you really messy.
Like replacing brake shoes, adding lube oil (on short lines, the engineer is considered part of the loco maintenance crew), adding sand, raising the valve cover lids, etc.

I wore bibs a lot when I was an engineer. They were warm in the winter, but were hot in the summer. My favorite bibs were some I had gotten from a surplus outfit that were made for wear in the British prison system. They were dark blue and made of a lighter material than the traditional American ones. More comfortable in the heat ( short line locos are seldom air conditioned).

The funniest story about bibs I heard was from a former operations manager on the Santa Fe. He told me one hot day, a shapely female train crew member showed up wearing only bibs. He wound up giving her his shirt, because he was worried the other crew members were going to get hurt watching her instead of paying attention to what they were doing.

Bibs and a cap are not a uniform. A uniform would have to be all the same: uniform.

The caps are needed for the visors. Running a loco into the rising or setting sun pretty much requires them. The sun visors in the cab only help so much.

Les
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Re: Why Railroaders Wear Bibs?

Postby Gadfly » Fri Jul 18, 2014 12:54 pm

Desertdweller wrote:The reason railroaders wore bibs was so they could work in a dirty environment and still look like a human being afterwards.

Even though the engineer's job on a Diesel is a lot cleaner than on a steam locomotive, there are still a lot of situations that can get you really messy.
Like replacing brake shoes, adding lube oil (on short lines, the engineer is considered part of the loco maintenance crew), adding sand, raising the valve cover lids, etc.

I wore bibs a lot when I was an engineer. They were warm in the winter, but were hot in the summer. My favorite bibs were some I had gotten from a surplus outfit that were made for wear in the British prison system. They were dark blue and made of a lighter material than the traditional American ones. More comfortable in the heat ( short line locos are seldom air conditioned).

The funniest story about bibs I heard was from a former operations manager on the Santa Fe. He told me one hot day, a shapely female train crew member showed up wearing only bibs. He wound up giving her his shirt, because he was worried the other crew members were going to get hurt watching her instead of paying attention to what they were doing.

Bibs and a cap are not a uniform. A uniform would have to be all the same: uniform.

The caps are needed for the visors. Running a loco into the rising or setting sun pretty much requires them. The sun visors in the cab only help so much.

Les


They (who ever "they" is) say that, "Clothes make the man", and they often identify people, OR cause them to be judged wrongly. When I first started on the railroad, many of those who are fans would be highly disappointed at what I was doing because it was in a shop where I was the lowest of the low both in 'status" and seniority. I followed an old electric crane around the track material yard loading rail, unloading tie plates, switch plates and frogs. I handled old greasy, filthy parts like hydraulic cylinders, pumps & motors--any railroad machinery part imaginable. It was HOT, grimy, HARD labor, and I got filthy from head to toe!
Some days I worked on the "frog pile" where we tore down "spring frogs" and recycled the usable parts. The rest went into a scrap car. We stood 6 high and 3 deep on this pile of frogs, spaced over 2 X 4's, and again, in the summer it was miserably HOT and the sweat ran profusely down our faces and backs. By 3:30 PM, we were less than a pleasant sight--or smell, and by then, that 8 lb sledge we used to punch out the bolts and springs sure was heavy. On the plus side, we did get a bit of rest as we worked steadily and hard, then had to stop for about 15 minutes while the Blacksmith/Welder burned out these bolts and things, layer by layer, as we got rid of each rack of old frogs.

Getting clean wasn't easy, and took a bit of scrubbing. Still, I'm sure, until I went home and took a shower, I was pretty "ripe"! I wore coveralls to protect my "street" clothes, or sometimes JUST the coveralls in the summer because these, too, were hot, but necessary. I also rented the old-style blue trade man's shirt/pants combo with "Southern Railway" on one side, my name on the other. Even with the coveralls, I got filthy simply because of the nature of the job.

With this new job, despite my appearance as a lowly, low-intelligence (assumed by people on the street simply by the way I was dressed) blue collar worker, I was making more money than the Plant Manager at the small sheet metal/textiles supplier I had been laid off from AND the boss at the job I took later just prior to going to the railroad! I decided to get me a new car as my old one, tho a good 1968 Chevrolet, was old and would soon need some work. So I went down to the local Chevy dealer and inquired about buying one of the new Citations being introduced that year. My wife also worked for then Southern Bell Telephone, and we could certainly afford another car. Besides SHE wanted it, so Yes, Ma'am, gotta please the boss! ( A wonderful lady, btw).

This white-shirted fella looked down his nose at this "riff-raff" guy, kinda smelly and dirty, and did his best to be ere so polite, but explained that the Citation was in high demand, but he'd look out for me one. Long story short, I stopped by every now and again, and saw him where he continued to make idle promises while Citations were clearly going out the door, mysteriously appearing, but he kept telling me they were "sold". I got the idea after a couple weeks, and went down to the BUICK dealership where there were Buick Skylarks lined up in rows. NOT sold! Mr. Lytle, the owner of the company happened to be on the floor and asked me if he could help me. I told him I was interested in buying one of the Skylarks. He couldn't have been more helpful, offering me a test drive, telling me to take the car home to my wife, keep it for the rest of the day, bring it back in the morning! Next morning, I "marked off" for a half day (remember: shops are shift work), and made a deal I couldn't be happier with! Mr Lytle filled up my tank, shook hands (by now I was clean having showered and shaved yesterday), and I drove off--------straight to the Chevrolet dealer that had snubbed me for 2 weeks! :) I pulled up right in front of the door--right in front of a row of Chevy Citations freshly off the truck (you know, the ones I wasn't good enough to have!). The rather imperious salesman, the kind you picture in a little checked hat and cigar, met me at the front. "OH, I see you're trying out a Buick now.............", with a little smirk.

I said, "NO, fat man! I BOUGHT this car! I just came to tell you that you don't have to trouble yourself anymore with the likes of ME, because as long as YOU are here, I will never come back to buy a car ever again.

"OH NO", he cried, "You didn't make a deal, didja?.....I've got several Citations that just came in!"

"Don't bother, bud," I said, "You jerked me around for 2 weeks when I told you I had the money, and because I was dirty, you thought I couldn't afford a car! I WON'T be seein' ya around!"

And with that, I hopped in my new Buick with the plastic cover still on the steering wheel, and ERRRRRRRK! I peeled out the drive and left him standing there!

Clothes DON'T necessarily "make" the man, nor do they indicate exactly what you do!
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