f. Draft Gear and Draft Gear Pocket. Each car has some form of draft gear for
cushioning the coupler and for absorbing and transferring forces from one car to the next. Draft
g. Trucks. Freight cars have a pair of trucks to transfer the weight of the car to the track
and provide a method of guidance. Although trucks may vary from two to four axles, friction or
roller bearing, car-mounted or truck-mounted brakes, they all have the same basic components:
wheels, axles, journals, side frames, bolster, center plate, side bearings and various brake
components including rods, beams, hangers, and shoes. See Figure 2-3 for a description of truck
h. Center Sill Cover Plate. A flat plate riveted or welded across steel center sills, either
above or below or both, to give additional strength.
i. Floor Stringers. A term sometimes applied to a floor nailing strip or a steel member
that acts as a support for a nailing strip.
j. Diagonal Brace. A horizontal brace extending diagonally from the end sill back to or
beyond the bolster.
k. Stake Pocket. A metal receptacle or collar, attached to the side and end sills to
receive the end of a stake which supports the side or confines the load.
l. Car Brake Systems. Railroad cars have two braking systems: hand brakes and air
brakes. Air brakes are the primary means by which railroad cars are slowed and stopped.
Figure 2-4A. Coupler components.