Fatjack's - Diesel Smoke & Dreams

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Technical Info

The photo album is in PDF format and Adobe Acrobat Reader Version 5 or newer is required (Acrobat Reader is a free download from Adobe). The CD will run on operating systems as old as Windows 95, but will not read on earlier versions of Acrobat Reader.

Coal Cars
Photographer, Author, and Editor: David A. Bontrager
Publisher: DABble Publishing & Imaging

  • A Train Photographer’s Diary, Vol. 104–Coal Cars, is a CD photo album featuring photos of coal cars taken mostly in the 1990s.  All photos are from the personal collection of David A. Bontrager.  Most of the photos were taken by Dave.
  • First, let me say that my love affair with unit coal trains began back in the early-1970s when we would vacation in Colorado and New Mexico visiting my wife’s family.  I watched BN coal trains bound for Texas in Southern Colorado and the Rio Grande on the Colorado Joint Line.  I was intrigued by the symmetrical appearance of the long coal trains, and my life-long fascination of unit coal trains was born.
  • Anyone who likes coal trains as much as I do needs to visit the Powder River Basin in Wyoming.  Other hot spots are the Colorado Joint Line and South Morrill, Nebraska.
  • This photo album features mostly color photographs along with some black and whites.  Most were taken in the 1990s with just a few taken in the early-1980s and a few taken in the 2000s.
  • During the 1990s there was a massive transformation taking place from steel cars to aluminum cars.  Both steel and aluminum cars are well represented in this album.  The album is sorted by reporting marks in alphabetical order.  I certainly don’t have all reporting marks, but I do have a very good cross section.
  • Also included in the photo album are numerous photos of coal trains taken in Wyoming, Nebraska, and Colorado.
  • This is a huge photo album and is a great archive of coal cars and coal trains.

About The Photographer and Author

  • Dave has photographed trains for many years, but didn’t get serious about it until the 1980s when he lived in Colorado.  During the 1980s thru the 1990s he was a prolific railroad photographer.  Other than motive power, his favorite railroad subjects were and still are coal trains and intermodal.  His interest in trains continues today. He is now retired and lives with his wife Anna near Elnora, Indiana.

Technical Information and Legalities

  • Acrobat Reader 5.0 or newer is required for reading the photo album.  Acrobat Reader is installed on most new computers, or you can download it free at: www.adobe.com
  • The photo album is an automated slideshow and can also be viewed manually.  Instructions are included.
  • No part of this CD photo album, in whole or in part, or the photos contained herein, in whole or in part, may be reproduced, transmitted, scanned or distributed by any manual, mechanical or electronic means or devices without express written permission from the author and publisher.
  • Neither the CD nor the contents are public shareware.  Copyright laws apply.

Custom Enlargements and Posters

  • Custom enlargements and posters of photos in the CD are available directly from the publisher.  All custom enlargements and posters are professionally printed on heavy weight photo paper, not light weight poster paper.  Contact us for details at: dabontrager@yahoo.com  or  sales@fatjacksplace.com  You can also call us at: 812-887-6749


  • FREE Shipping in the USA, including Continental U.S., Alaska, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico.
  • International buyers are welcomed.  International buyers note that 6 CDs can be shipped for the same price as 1 CD.  Email us for a shipping quote to your country.