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Guest cracked ass

The Flipside Principle

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Guest cracked ass

Here's another obscure topic for the advanced freight geek.

You'd think that, once you piece a car, it has a 50% chance of facing the right way when it goes by someone benching, right? (Or, for the Murphy's Law cynics, that it's more like 10%, but you're only half serious.) Well, the news is, maybe not, especially if your car doesn't go far before coming back.

I painted a big percentage of my freights at a sweet spot which no longer exists. The vast majority were done on the same side of the line, and just a couple on the flipside, as it was far less chill there. Six hundred miles away, a regular bencher we knew of caught our stuff once in a while. It took me a long time to notice, after seeing flicks he took and bench lists he posted, that he caught almost exclusively the few we did on the flipside, and almost none of the ones we did on the chill side. I even saw a Ghouls piece in one of his flicks which looked familiar. I checked the car number and sure enough, I had one running on the other side of that car, painted at that spot, so that car was also facing the usual way. I have come to the conclusion that when he's at his benching spot, facing the trains, the westbounds are going to his left and the eastbounds to his right. (So he's looking within ninety degrees of north.)

The truth is, train cars don't turn around much. If you think about it, the most common situation for a railcar is to be shipped facing one way, spotted at a layup the same way (its orientation will not change whether it goes into the layup forward or backward), pulled from the customer the same way, and shipped back facing the same way. The only way for a car to turn around is to go through two legs of a triangle or "wye", forward through the first and backward through the second; or, if it takes a long route that is a loop. (And it must do these an odd number of times, as the second time will turn it back the original direction.) These happen less often than you might think.

There are a few minor implications of this. For those who bench regularly at the same spot, and get the same types of cars coming through a lot, bench the other side a few times. You might be surprised to see some people repping a lot harder on the flipside, just because train cars rarely turn around, and their favorite spot always makes their pieces face the wrong way for you. Second, try to hit the other side at your regular spots, you may be seen by heads who would have missed it otherwise. Also, you may hit the same type of car often, and the customer who gets those cars is situated such that they get turned around once on the trip, so if you don't remember your car numbers, and you don't check the other side before painting, you might hit the same car twice by accident.

For cars that get around to a lot of different customers, the chance of your piece facing a random viewer is 50%. For a locally based car, and a specific bencher not far away, the chance will either be much lower, or much higher.

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interesting thought. i know that where i am at, there is a part of the track that runs between a highway and i drive past the line and then turn and head past the other side to check which is better for when i beat it to the bench spot. we typically tell eachother what side to flik or film by which side of the bench spot they should sit at.

like, "gallery-side" or "mcdonald's side" for example. so i guess we're lucky to get to preview both sides.

as far as painting one side more often goes, i've never really thought of that. but it defenitely holds true. seems like most spots have an chill and a less chill side so i know that i typically never even look on the other side unless i am going back for day fliks or something.

this is good stuff to think about. thanks

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Guest mopius

i have thought about which side would get more spots, but didnt get as far as you have in my thinking...

 

i am always thinking when i bench of what im missing on the other sides

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Yo, i must be a complete dork because i've thought about this subject every time ive gone to the yards since i hit my first freight, and always wondered if nobodys ever seeing my shit caues im painting the wrong sides.

Just like cracked suggested i try and vary the sides i hit, but knowing my luck im sure all my more wack shit is facing everybody.

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good post cracked. but I think the lack of turning must be a local thing to your area. I know up here most of the stuff I hit will get dragged around on a local through a bunch of industrial spots and leave town with a 50/50 chance of my side showing at the benching spots. The path is predictable, and if I do somthing against the wall I know what side will be where once its moved. but when it gets picked up again by another local it goes through a wye and depending on the crew will take different ways through...

and I think its safe to say if somthing you do escapes to the nearest classification yard the law of averages is back on....

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ive always thought about this too, but at my spot/bench ive seen my stuff on both side as one side is a highway and i seen my train rolling after i painted it on the opposite side

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My cars from my old spot go through a "wye" like cracked said..... so them leaving town facing the same direction was 50/50...

Some even came back to the exact same layup flipped around the other way so the blank side faced me.......

One time I didn't walk the line to check the very end and I painted the other side of a car I had already painted like a week before.

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well i've deleted this question i think kabar answered me in the post on air brakes in the train safety thread. my question was concerning layups (double tracked) and yard entrances which are off the mainline but can be reached in both directions (one side of a diamond). when the trains get layed up, do they do a backing procedure to get back onto their line, or do they cut the power off, let the train come to a stop, and then attach a fred at the opposite end and reattach to the back to get going ever?

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theres a Y ay my bench. there always Ying off power, never seen any cars though. however ive seen dozens of - on and off line - cars return flipped, particularly those that head up canadian way.

the common bench over hereis great. 7 main lines..fairly steady traffic.

About 10% of the shit we see (graffitiwise) is a repeat ( thats not including the cars that are not painted that we dont really keep up with).

last year i saw the same cense thro-up on a grey ic box 3 times, it said other side. still never seen the damn thing though. great topic, it is one ive spent hours at the bench analyzing.

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i usally bench on the east bound side. so i always get only one side. i understand the probility thing and i think its really a matter of luck because it all depends on the bencher and the bench location.

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Amusing none the less

 

About two weeks ago I was heading to downtown San Diego from Oceanside. I saw the First side as I was waiting at the tracks for it to roll by. We get to the club and I roll out for a smoke, it just happens that this was the otherside of the train rolling by. I hurried over to peep it more closely. I was like "How often do you get to see both sides" that made my week. I saw a few pieces by the same cat on both sides, props to Czar for wrecking both sides.

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The Law of 50/50 ALWAYS applies due to the infinite number of uncertainties your car runs into after being painted.

But, to rest easy at night knowing that you didn't do a 'half-assed' job, a clean handstyle done on the reverse side with 'other side' in an out-of-the-way spot will ensure your presious 'ups'.

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Theres a Y at my bench. there always Ying off power. I see (on-and-off line cars) come back on the other side especially this particular spot that runs up canada way. We joke around at the bench and talk about putting up convex mirrors so we can see the other side...but were too lazy

Last Year i saw this cense piece..well i didnt really see the piece i just saw the other side. I saw it 3 times on a grey ic box. it never got flipped.

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every yard i have ever painted i guess i formed a system if its day ill walk the yard and bench all my trains both sides before i settle down to paint. if its night ill walk the yard and remember what i want to bench, then paint, then go shoot, flash etc.

 

just a tip. it gets you both sides. you can always talk your way out of walking through a yard if you have a camera and nothing else. always. i promise, just be smart.

 

hint: get some train paraphenalia clothing, jacket hat belt buckle... tell them you love trains your grandfather was a conductor and used to bring you to yards............ not to give out my secrets but most of you guys know the train relationship routine.

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Guest fr8lover
Originally posted by boxcarwilly

hint: get some train paraphenalia clothing, jacket hat belt buckle... tell them you love trains your grandfather was a conductor and used to bring you to yards............ not to give out my secrets but most of you guys know the train relationship routine.

 

nah...at one yard i always wore my old mesh union pacific system hat and once or twice workers still gave me the "its our ass" speech (which i do respect) and i had to leave...from my experience its who the workers are, maybe what theyve been through in the past, or just plain what kind of mood their in...do they want a civilian trampsing around their dangerous workspace today? what is it thats going on in the yard that particular day?

 

ive seen whole crews see guys catching out in hopper porches while switching cars and wave, and ive seen workers scream at kids for toying around in yards...its all relative.

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Originally posted by Vanity

i normally just do a throw on the other side saying 'look on the other side'

thats logical, but i think alot of what is spotted on this board is rolling.

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Guest dukeofyork

fuck playing the odds...

paint more.

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One bad thing about hitting the same side of local cars is that eventually somebody is going to notice that one side of the rolling stock is getting hit more often than the other, and wonder why, and start looking around for your chill spot. One of the best spots I've found faces undeveloped trees on one side and the back of several large buildings on the other. I suspect that the only reason the Yard hands give anybody any hassle is because they are being told in safety meetings "You are required to report any tresspasser you see." Their attitude is really not all that punitive, for the most part, they couldn't care less. BUT. If you do stuff that makes them have to work harder, or if you do something nasty (like taking a dump in a boxcar) that makes their work environment more unpleasant, or if you diss them and threaten them if they tell you to beat it, all you are doing is making the yard hotter and the railroad guys less hospitable. My general rule is "Never piss off a waitress or a busboy." Having worked in a restaurant, I know all too well what happens to the food of people who diss the help. Treat them with dignity and respect. If a switchman is older than you, address him as "sir." If you are dealing with a bull, keep in mind what Littlejohn calls "the attitude test." If you give him shit, you are going to County.

I always do my best to let the railworkers know that I respect them and their work, that I would never harm any railroad equipment, and that I believe in "Safety First," too. I think a graff writer would do well to not admit he is painting trains, and just play out that he is a railroad fan. If you get caught with the can in your hand (where are your look-outs?) try "We weren't hurting anything, just putting up mobile visual art for the Nation's appreciation," or "Hey, You got me clean, but I didn't paint over the car numbers, because I know that's fucked up. I wouldn't ever do that, I have too much respect for the railroad men." (Not the railroad itself, mind you, but the railroad MEN.)

Most of the time you can talk your way out of a simple tresspassing stop. ("I'll never come into this Yard again, honest.") If they suspect you were painting cars, but didn't catch you red-handed, try and talk them into a lesser charge if they won't let you walk. But the bottom line is that once in a while you are going to get popped. That's part of the choice, too. The trick is to NOT GET SPOTTED. Then you won't have to worry about getting out of a problem.

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