Type Size A A A

Gravity Discharge Hopper Railcars

   These cars have so-called “gravity” gates,

   which consist of a sliding metal plate at the
   bottom of each hopper compartment that
   can be opened and closed horizontally.
   Dry bulk commodities flow out by means of
   gravity when the gates are opened. In some
   cases, such as with cars configured to haul sugar, the gravity gates may also be equipped with pneumatic outlets to accommodate different types of unloading systems. 
Sizes range from 2,700 to 6,500 cf and cars are offered in 263,000, 268,000, and 286,000 lb gross weights. Numerous hatch and interior coating options are available.


Car Capacities:

Under 4,000 cf

These railcars typically range from 2,700 to 3,500 cf capacity and generally are designed with two or three pockets, gravity gates and three to five circular hatches. Hopper cars this size are ideal for dense commodities including cement, roofing granules, sand, aggregates, fly ash and dry chemicals. These cars are not typically lined.


4,000 - 5,500 cf
Designed to efficiently move medium-density commodities, these railcars typically have three or four pockets and haul grain, sugar, fertilizer, potash, soda ash, bentonite, lime, bone meal and many other dry bulk commodities. They are sometimes lined and coating requirements vary by commodity.


Over 5,500 cf
These cars haul commodities such as kaolin, corn gluten meal and dry distillers grains, and they typically have four pockets.


To select the right railcar for your needs, answer these questions:

  • What is the product weight and density?
  • What gross rail limit is preferred: 263,000 or 286,000 lb?
  • What types of gates and/or hatches are required?
  • Does the cargo need an interior coating?