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CN used it on their northern branch lines that have lighter rail. The third set of trucks helps to distibute the weight better. It allowed cars to be loaded to 268,000 lbs - which is the standard load limit, however, most hoppers can handle 286,000 tons, which we call a "heavy", clever ain't it!

I also know those cars were used to haul grain up to Hudson Bay as an experimental thing - I just don't know if the whole thing ever really caught on.
No, they never did catch on. I remember doing research on them about three years ago when I took this photo - there's only been two, the other one is an identical twin used for potash. This one was stored at the Pas for many years do to its "weirdness", however when HBR took over, they wanted it out, so CN put it back in the fleet. This is the only time I've seen it, wish I made a better picture, then again I never expected it to be articulated, hence the poor framing. When I have time I should re-edit and post a better version, but then there's the trade-off of posting new material instead. I remember when I first posted it on the forums as part of a trip report - sone member's thought it was a Photoshop job, since it looked too strange to be real.
It was nearly a year ago, but the over town yard brought the second car of this type into Sutherland... I have a feeling it was used in potash service. I am having a hard time trying to recall if it was painted that light grey with the wet noodle in black. I really can't remember though.

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