Glass Ball

 
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Member: bubbalinn
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Have you ever been walking along a railroad track and found some glass balls? These balls are the raw materials used in the making of fiberglass. They were carried in open box cars, so they tend to bounce out. When the freight car reaches the plant, the balls are unloaded then melted. Making the glass into balls made it easy to load and unload the glass.

So for my photo I set one of the (glass balls) on the edge of my birdbath and the sun was hitting it just right to make the sun flare look on the top. On our trips from Arizona to Barstow California we would always stop for a break along the tracks and pick up some of the balls. The grandkids like playing with them so now they are all around the outside of our house and in my shop, there everywhere LOL.. The glass balls are a little larger than the large marbles that we use to call shooters. The glass balls are roughly made and not perfectly round or smooth.

Comments

GLASS BALLS

Sparky - Mar 01, 2018 05:58 AM EDT
I use to pick these balls up along the train tracks in Oklahoma . Around 1985

cheer2012 / Davi

Georgia - Oct 13, 2015 03:27 PM EDT
cheer2012 / David, i actually have Crohn’s Disease. i’m 17 and have had it for 2 years. i have a recdiame infusion every other month and it sucks cuz i gotta sit there for 2 hours while it goes into my system plus i HATE needles so its like adding insult to injury for me. i don’t know if your sis has to have an infusion but i found that midol actually helps the inflamation go down a lot, and it might help her. also if i eat spicy food it irritates my stomach so i dont eat anything spicy, i dont like spicy food anyways but i do like somewhat mildly spicy but i find that even the smallest of spicyness hurts and can cause an attack. the pain gets pretty bad that i have to miss school sometimes. a lotta people think i fake it when i get these attacks. there are different types of ways Crohn’s can affect. there are the “can’t go often type” and there is the normal of “going often type”. So on a nicer image i think its so cool that ur being a concerened bro to ur sis, i can tell u love ur fam. u and ur fam will be in my prayers more often than u have. u r an inspiration to me, i’m hard-of-hearing and i love ur music and hope there is another album on the way cuz i would like some more music to memorize how to sign!! i hope that there r more tours soon:D <3 u David and hope to meet u again!! (i met u like twice, i wouldnt expect u to remember haha:) and ive been to 3 concets too!!) i was the girl that signed to u at the christmas concert of urs in stroudsburg when asking u a question. :) God Bless!!<3 Nicole:)

Not sure

DD - Jul 06, 2015 11:36 AM EDT
We have found these marbles along the tracks north of OKC along a big curve. We were told they were used to clean out the boxcars. Not sure what they are. Several railroad employee did not know what they were.

Never Knew

Don - May 14, 2015 08:31 AM EDT
I used to find them along the Reading Railroad tracks near Pottstown PA.

Glass railroad balls

dsrtrat - Jan 31, 2015 05:24 PM EDT
For more information about these balls try this link. This if the first I've heard about making fiberglass out of them. http://www.railroadiana.org/hw/pgMarbles.php
bubbalinn - Nov 02, 2008 01:50 AM EDT
Thanks for the congrats Mary :) Glad you enjoyed my photo.. It sure is fun how you can make simple things look so different.
marysham - Nov 01, 2008 03:20 PM EDT
Congratulations on your win Alan. If I had railroad track near me I'd be out looking for them to have a collection. Well done image.
bubbalinn - Oct 29, 2008 12:45 PM EDT
I just wanted to say "Thanks" to everyone who thought my photo was worth your vote :)
bubbalinn - Oct 24, 2008 03:58 PM EDT
Hi Tanya, Thanks :) Glad you liked my photo.. It's getting harder to find the glass balls. Hey winter is coming you might need to collect some coal to keep warm LOL..
Tanya - Oct 23, 2008 03:40 PM EDT
Great shot. Our trains carry strictly coal, so nothing as fun as glass balls lying by the track. I guess we could always build a fire!
bubbalinn - Oct 18, 2008 12:46 AM EDT
Thanks :) Beverly... I guess I should add into the description what it is now that the contest is over. These glass balls are the raw materials used in the making of fiberglass. They were carried in open railroad box cars, so they tend to bounce out. When the freight car reaches the plant, the balls are unloaded then melted. Making the glass into balls made it easy to load and unload.
talsi - Oct 16, 2008 08:43 AM EDT
Nice shot - whatever it is.
bubbalinn - Oct 08, 2008 09:43 PM EDT
Thanks very much Ann and Lulu :) I never thought when I was playing around taking this photo that it would be enjoyed so much...
Lulu - Oct 08, 2008 06:23 PM EDT
Congratulations Alan. As stated, it says that in case of a tie then the photo with the highest score wins. I guess that was yours and well deserved it was too.
A.Lovely - Oct 08, 2008 12:04 PM EDT
Congratulations Alan on your win of the "What is it" contest. I thought it was a great photograph as well as mystery capture.
bubbalinn - Oct 08, 2008 11:44 AM EDT
Thanks very much Chriss, Ikka, Alandra, and Carol for all of your nice congrats... Wow what a nice surprise and a great way to start the day :) It is fun Ikka at all of the things we learn and get to do through photography. I'm also sure that my camera is keeping me healthy by making me walk everyday...
shutterbug - Oct 08, 2008 11:07 AM EDT
Congrats on the winning photo! Carol
alandrapal - Oct 08, 2008 05:31 AM EDT
Congrats, Alan. very nice image and interesting too.
chriss35 - Oct 08, 2008 03:58 AM EDT
Congratulations Alan, on your contest win a very nice image well done. Chriss:)
bubbalinn - Sep 26, 2008 08:43 AM EDT
Hi Alex, I guess they only hauled the glass balls down certain tracks. We found them years and years ago, they worked on the track bed and now they are hard to find. Now you have to look for them a ways away from the tracks. Thanks very much Karen and Alandra for your nice thoughts about my photo. The grandkids did have a blast looking for them and would yell out every time they found one. I think if you do a search for glass balls railroad you might find more about them.
alandrapal - Sep 26, 2008 05:59 AM EDT
very nice image, as Karen wrote. Have never heard of these glass balls along the railroad tracks. Can see how kids would like to collect them.
Karen Moen - Sep 25, 2008 08:17 PM EDT
Even after reading your description, this is a lovely photo on its own. I had no idea other than a glass sphere.
whittler113 - Sep 25, 2008 02:42 PM EDT
I never would have guessed it,I have never seen those along the tracks in our area.
bubbalinn - Sep 25, 2008 10:23 AM EDT
Well I think it's time to reveal what my photo is. Have you ever been walking along a railroad track and found some glass balls? These balls are the raw materials used in the making of fiberglass. They were carried in open box cars, so they tend to bounce out. When the freight car reaches the plant, the balls are unloaded then melted. Making the glass into balls made it easy to load and unload the glass. So for my photo I set one of the (glass balls) on the edge of my birdbath and the sun was hitting it just right. On our trips from Arizona to Barstow California we would always stop for a break along the tracks and pick up some of the balls. The grandkids like playing with them so now they are all around the outside of our house and in my shop LOL.. The glass balls are a little larger than the large marbles that we use to call shooters. The glass balls are roughly made and not perfectly round or smooth.
bubbalinn - Sep 25, 2008 09:53 AM EDT
Hi Bruce, nope it not a glass insulator. Hi Chriss nope it's not a reflection disc.
chriss35 - Sep 25, 2008 03:10 AM EDT
Alan, Is this an indicator reflection disc to identify the name, number of the railway track line?
Alfresco - Sep 25, 2008 12:45 AM EDT
The top of a telegraph pole glass insulator?
bubbalinn - Sep 24, 2008 09:27 PM EDT
Well Brian, nope it's not a pearl or bead, and sorry Alex it's not a button with a train on it LOL... Ok here is another hint.. You can find these on the ground along railroad tracks.
whittler113 - Sep 24, 2008 02:31 PM EDT
Is it a button with a train on it?
BRIANPADDOCK - Sep 24, 2008 01:52 PM EDT
thank you Allan,my brother was late as well.If its not a pebble is it a pearl or a bead
bubbalinn - Sep 24, 2008 12:47 PM EDT
Hi Brian, Hey Happy Un-Birthday, I'm a little late as usual LOL.. Sorry but it's not a pebble :(
BRIANPADDOCK - Sep 24, 2008 12:43 PM EDT
Is it a glossy pebble
bubbalinn - Sep 24, 2008 12:32 PM EDT
Well I'm sorry Lisa, Alex, and Ikka.. It's not a spike, coin, or light.
whittler113 - Sep 24, 2008 09:31 AM EDT
Is that a coin that was run over by a train?
lisaleedee - Sep 24, 2008 03:26 AM EDT
a spike for a railroad tie.
bubbalinn - Sep 23, 2008 11:57 PM EDT
Forgot to mention, I added a hint in the description.
bubbalinn - Sep 23, 2008 11:18 PM EDT
Nope not a paper weight or a marble. A marble is close but it's not smooth or perfectly round like a marble.
azkul - Sep 23, 2008 10:32 PM EDT
A marble?
lorraine - Sep 23, 2008 03:06 PM EDT
I also think it could be a glass paper weight.
A.Lovely - Sep 23, 2008 12:03 PM EDT
A glass paperweight?

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