Custom MOW Wrecking Crane

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Well-Known Member
Anxious to see what you do with this.

I saw what you were working on in the caboose MOW thread and made me rethink tossing the "toy" Tyco, Bachmann and Lifelike cars I picked up at the auctions.


Active Member
Before you letter it "MOW", just recognize those cranes didn't belong to the "MOW" department.

MOW = maintenance of way, the engineering department that repairs the track. Wrecking cranes like that belonged to the Mechanical department, the same guys that run the car shops, RIP tracks and engine facilities. Traditionally there are 3 departments on a railroad: Operating/transportation (train crews, clerks), Engineering (track, bridge and signals), and Mechanical (cars and locomotives).
MOW did have cranes but they had conventional booms, generally lower capacity and were designed to do bridge and track maintenance/construction). Wrecking cranes are designed and equipped to pick up cars and locomotives. Occasionally the MOW department would borrow a wrecker to change out a bridge section or lay track panels, but the Mechanical department almost never borrowed a MOW crane to pick up a car and wouldn't have the capacity to pick up a locomotive.


Well-Known Member
This is going to be a fictitious work crane it doesn’t matter to me who used what or how correct this has to be. I’m not a Rivet counter or don’t care about the accuracy of this subject. All I’m striving for is a work train on my layout. Yes I still plan to use it for the MOW but thanks for the insight is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to - An online railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used railroad books. Railroad pictorials, railroad history, steam locomotives, passenger trains, modern railroading. Hundreds of titles available, most at discount prices! We also have a video and children's book section. - An online model railroad bookstore featuring a curated selection of new and used books. Layout design, track plans, scenery and structure building, wiring, DCC, Tinplate, Toy Trains, Price Guides and more.