RR workwear: Discussed here!

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RR workwear: Discussed here!

Post by CSXWife »

I am talking about bags for on the job etc... He already has glasses, rain coat and boots etc..

He is 2 weeks into his otjt now. We have hopes that he will keep woking and not be furloughed but as they say, hope for the best and prepare for the worse.



Post by freshmeat »

Dear CSX Wife:

A lot depends on what kind of work your husband anticipates doing. For instance you will not need an overnight bag (grips in railroad lingo) if he will be working in the yard.

Here is what I recommend.

Yard service: A good hat or visor is about all the company will not supply. (or at least BNSF) Good boots, broken in. For the remainder, the company should supply lantern, batteries, gloves, safety glasses. BNSF provides insect spray but you may want to consider sun screen. Perhaps a chord to hang the microphone from his radio around his neck with if they those on their radios. I use an Arkansas Razorback key chain that hangs around the neck.

Two pair safety glasses. One clear the other dark.

You said he has a rain suit. Good. I buy mine at Cabellas or Bass Pro Shop. It is made of material that breathes and is not covered in rubber. It makes it a lot cooler and easier to wear for a long period of time. You can also find some that have reflective stripes on them. These are especially great for yard work as you always want to be seen. You can see some at www.AWDirect.com

Road service: A good overnight bag is made by Tuff Bag. Personally I like Western Pack bags. They have straps like a back pack. They also have wheels and handles like luggage. Some have a detachable bag that I put my rule book and PPE in. I take it and not the larger bag when I will not be away from home overnight. I prefer the back pack style bag because it distributes the weight evenly across my back and I have both hand free to get on and off equipment.

Shaving kit with eye drops. I used to work in very windy areas of the country and eye drops made the day go by a lot better after I had been out in the dust for several hours.

Cell phone charger.

Alarm clock. (personal preference)

CD player and/or paperback book.

Mink oil to waterproof boots with.

Have him get and carry a spare radio battery and KEEP IT CHARGED.

Small to medium ice chest with at least one tray in it for lunch. Food is a major concern while on the road. I know guys that keep MRE's from the military with them for emergencies. (Especially helpful if you get a lot of snow and you work where traffic moves slow. I used to work the Powder River Div. for BNSF and we loaded coal trains in Wyoming.) I always have at least one or two cans of tuna with me in case I get stuck for several hours beyond my normal trip. Some guys also carry enough food to not have to eat out at the away from home terminal (AFHT). He can carry snacks in sturdy containers in his grip for a quick pick-me-up. Peanuts, Pringles, beef jerky is good and it keeps. The key with these snacks is that you don't want to have them spread all over your grip and you want something that will keep for several days/weeks if you don't get around to eating it right away. Cans of soup, stew or chili are good also. They can be placed near the engine on the locomotive and heated up in a couple of hours.

Stainless steel thermos if he drinks coffee.

Waterless hand cleaner in case there are no crew packs with moist towellets on board. Available in small bottles at Wal-Mart for $.50 each.

Toilet paper in case there are no crew packs on board. (Experience will be a guide on this one.)

For Winter: Insulated bib overalls or full coveralls if it gets REALLY cold where you live. Carhart is about the best. They are almost $100 but will last a long time. Recommend the style that zip down the leg. They are easier to get on and off over boots and can be unzipped to cool down. Bibs can be worn with our without a jacket. A lot of guys wear a heavy sweatshirt with a hood an their bibs until it gets bitterly cold.

Have your husband look at what CSX offers for winter boots. BNSF will buy one set of pack boots (very heavy and warm boots) every 18 months. They look like Frankenstein boots but your feet will never get cold or wet in them.

Two cold weather jackets. One very heavy the other lighter. Any canvas type of outer layer like Carhart is good. Just make sure the waist band is good and will close off around the waist. This keeps wind from blowing up the jacket.

For extreme cold weather and blowing wind I wear a UnderArmor hood. This thing stops the cold wind and keeps my head very warm under it .

BNSF provides winter gloves that we can put cotton liners under.

Other gloves: BNSF does not provide us with water proof gloves. I have bought a cheap pair PVC coated cotton gloves. Like feet the drier your hands are the warmer you'll be. I also put the liners under them as well. They are very cheap and I bought mine at a farm supply store for about $4.00

This sounds weird, but I carry a small pillow with me. We dump coal trains at a power plant and it takes about 5 - 6 hours if everything goes well. They move the train with their equipment but we're required to stay on board. A small pillow makes sleeping a lot easier. (That is for down the road.)

Some guys carry an emergency repair kit with them. They go to an Army surplus store and buy a small canvas tool bag. They then put duct tape, bailing wire, hose gaskets, hose straps and a few tools in it to carry to the back of the train when they have a problem. A Leatherman or similar tool is nice to have on the road as well.

It sounds like a lot, but you've got to remember, there isn't any running to the car or store when you're on the road. In some yards, the company provides lockers to keep your stuff in. On the road you carry everything you'll need. You also wont need to buy it all at once like the overalls and winter coats. So that will make it easier on training wages. For the bag, he may be able to get by with a gym bag for his road trips if it looks like he'll be working the yard a lot a first.

The key here is to buy the best quality you can afford. A good bag will last you a lot longer than a cheap one and will not self destruct when you are trying to get on the locomotive in a hurry because of a downpour.

Good luck to you and your husband.




Very well said!

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Post by braves2905 »

that should be the unofficial new hire guide


Post by CSXWife »

Thank You again, that was very informative. DH is on the road right now, the job he is training on is all on the road. He is gone every other day. He mentioned having to take his books with him. They are heavy and cumbersome. Yesterday he took an old B.U.M bag I use for travelling to carry everything. The adjustment is definately HUGE but w are working around it. Thanks again.

jg greenwood

Post by jg greenwood »

I highly recommend Duofold insulated underwear. An inner cotton layer, a wool outer layer. A set of these bad-boys and there's no need for those bulky, 100lb. insulated bibs. A trainman needs all the mobility possible when climbing on, around, under cars. Gore-Tex is one of the brand names for the breathable rain-gear. High dollar, well worth the investment though.

CSX Conductor
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Post by CSX Conductor »

FreshMeat seems needs to carry less stuff with him, LOL.

When I am on the road the only thing extra I bring is change of clothes (and cell phone charger).

As for good quality bags and raingear, check out Galls Safety Supply. :wink:


Post by freshmeat »

First of all, I travel a lot lighter than some. However I am thinking of carrying just one bigger bag, my old Army duffle bag MIGHT be big enough. :-D

JG, thaks for the posting about the long handles. I will look them up and buy a pair for next winter. Is Duofold the brand name or is it the name of the material like Gore-Tex. They sound like a lot better alternative to the bibs.

Thanks for the web site CSX.

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Post by slchub »

I can vouch for Galls! They have been around for many years and have no problems returning or fixing a problem. I used them when I was an EMT back in the 80's. Awesome catalog of stuff. Mostly PD and Fire gear, but deff. can be used for RR as well.


Post by vf1s »

Love there Boot,Glove,and other products.

jg greenwood

Post by jg greenwood »

freshmeat wrote:First of all, I travel a lot lighter than some. However I am thinking of carrying just one bigger bag, my old Army duffle bag MIGHT be big enough. :-D

JG, thaks for the posting about the long handles. I will look them up and buy a pair for next winter. Is Duofold the brand name or is it the name of the material like Gore-Tex. They sound like a lot better alternative to the bibs.

Thanks for the web site CSX.
Duofold is the brand name. I ordered my last pair from L. L. Bean. IIRC, they're also available from Cabela's.

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Post by cifn2 »

I agree maybe this should be like a sticky... as required/suggested gear


Post by TuckertonRR »

(or anyone else)

Besides MRE's, are there any other good reccommendations for eating on the road?


Post by BigMike »

Im just curious and I have seen some of your other post, what or who is DH?? My dirty mind runs wild and Im thinking you are calling your hubby a d**k head................... :P

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Post by cifn2 »

Dumb Husband? Da** Husband?

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