One of Chuck Hitchcock’s objectives on his Argentine Industrial District layout was to take the car cards out of the hands of the crew. To do this, he took all the car cards that used to be out on the railroad and consolidated them in one place so the crews did not have to handle them. By doing so, this eliminated the decision making process of car routing for the crews. This job was designated as the Chief Clerk. This project was orchestrated by Mike Porter who has worked for the Great Western and Union Pacific and also volunteered to be the first clerk.
One of the industrial jobs on the railroad is the Freight Depot job with its associated industries. One of the tools each switch crew has is called a Car Locator Inventory Control book, or for short, CLIC book. This is an indication of maps and instructions for the crew’s local job. For the freight house job there is a diagram of the railroad and includes instructions for the crews. The other part of the CLIC book that provides assistance is the description of the job which Chuck details.
Next he shows an example of a switch list as it’s been prepared from the car cards up in the racks. Chuck goes on to describe the job of the clerk. One of the tools the clerk uses to keep track of which cars are being held and which will go out is a blue marker. When the blue marker is set in front of bills, the cars are not going to be moved. Once the switch crew has completed their pulls, they have to transfer them to Fifth Street Yard. The first thing to do to prepare is to make up a new switch list as the train stands. For more Allen Keller videos, visit our Model Railroad Academy archives.