What does a Rail Car Repairer do?

Diagnose, adjust, repair, or overhaul railroad rolling stock, mine cars, or mass transit rail cars.

Jobs Roles

  • Repair or replace defective or worn parts such as bearings, pistons, and gears, using hand tools, torque wrenches, power tools, and welding equipment.
  • Test units for operability before and after repairs.
  • Record conditions of cars, and repair and maintenance work performed or to be performed.
  • Remove locomotives, car mechanical units, or other components, using pneumatic hoists and jacks, pinch bars, hand tools, and cutting torches.
  • Inspect components such as bearings, seals, gaskets, wheels, and coupler assemblies to determine if repairs are needed.
  • Inspect the interior and exterior of rail cars coming into rail yards to identify defects and to determine the extent of wear and damage.
  • Adjust repaired or replaced units as needed to ensure proper operation.
  • Perform scheduled maintenance, and clean units and components.
  • Repair, fabricate, and install steel or wood fittings, using blueprints, shop sketches, and instruction manuals.
  • Repair and maintain electrical and electronic controls for propulsion and braking systems.
  • Disassemble units such as water pumps, control valves, and compressors so that repairs can be made.
  • Measure diameters of axle wheel seats, using micrometers, and mark dimensions on axles so that wheels can be bored to specified dimensions.
  • Align car sides for installation of car ends and crossties, using width gauges, turnbuckles, and wrenches.
  • Replace defective wiring and insulation, and tighten electrical connections, using hand tools.
  • Test electrical systems of cars by operating systems and using testing equipment such as ammeters.
  • Install and repair interior flooring, fixtures, walls, plumbing, steps, and platforms.
  • Examine car roofs for wear and damage, and repair defective sections, using roofing material, cement, nails, and waterproof paint.
  • Paint car exteriors, interiors, and fixtures.
  • Repair car upholstery.
  • Repair window sash frames, attach weather stripping and channels to frames, and replace window glass, using hand tools.
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