Author Topic: Prototype MU diesels from different builders  (Read 430 times)

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brokemoto

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Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« on: January 07, 2020, 10:54:10 PM »
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I searched this in the search function before asking.  I got no answers.

As I understand it, by the early 1950s, the various diesel builders had agreed on a standard arrangement for MU lines so that locomotives from different builders could be run in MU consists.

Despite this, most of the photographs that I have seen of locomotives from different builders that were running in MU were taken in the mid-1960s or later.  It is not often that I have seen one from the 1950s.  Most of those that I have seen from the 1950s showed locomotives that had been re-engined running with a locomotive built by whoever re-engined the off-brand.  I have seen NYCS photographs or re-engined FMs that were running with EMDs.  I am also aware that one of the Chicago transfer roads had EMD SWs and Baldwin switchers as well as B units of both kinds of switchers that regullarly ran in MU.  This required buying adaptors so that the Baldwin pneumatic throttles could be slaved to the EMDs or the EMD B-units could be slaved to the Baldwin pneumatic throttles.  I am aware that the Baldwins did require an adapter to run with the power from other manufacturers, but most railroads did not buy the adapters.

I am aware of one or two common use of mixed manufacturers, such as SP's using an E-7B with PAs, but judging solely from the photographs that I have seen, mixed manufacturers in motive power consists were not all that common until the mid 1960s.

Does anyone know how common mixing manufacturers in motive power consists was in the early days of the diesels?  Were some builders' units more "cooperative" in mixed builders motive power consists than others?  Did EMDs do allright with ALCo s but not that well with FMs?  Did FMs do allright with ALCo s but not with Limas?

Thank you in advance./

Chris333

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2020, 01:07:24 AM »
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I'd just copy whatever the prototype did:


Alco  Alco   EMD   Baldwin

nkalanaga

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2020, 02:02:15 AM »
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In the 50s, when the diesel was relatively new, most roads bought them as sets, either drawbar connected, or separate units intended to run together.  By the 1960s, as assignments changed, and sets were broken up for maintenance or operating needs, mixed consists became more common.

One of my favorites was from the BN in Pasco, WA, in 1977 or 78.  At that time, BN's Alcos and EMD Fs, as well as 40 foot boxcars for grain service, were concentrated in Washington and Oregon, so Pasco often looked like the 50s, in Cascade Green.  I don't remember what specific model they were, and after repairs and rebuilding, it wasn't easy to tell anyway.  But it was a nice set of four Fs - with an addition.  A-B-C415-B-A.  Try that one on a model railroad!

Matched sets of Fs were common in the late 70s.  The biggest I ever saw was 7 units.  A-B-B-B-B-B-A, all in reasonably clean BN Green, which didn't look bad on first generation power.  We moved to Kentucky in 1978, so I missed the mass retirement when new power showed up about 1980.
N Kalanaga
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Missaberoad

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2020, 08:47:06 AM »
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It depends on the railroad and the locomotive.

Best bet would be to do some research on your specific prototype.

Originally there were a number of different electrical connections for MU that were not interchangeable...
By the 1960s everything pretty much standardized, but some minority builders still didn't play well with others...

Photos can be deceiving aswell, units that don't MU can be hauled dead in tow behind a consist. Or there were situations with double headers even in the diesel Era...
Ryan in Alberta

CNR5529

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2020, 12:50:43 PM »
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Cant say much about EMD, ALCO and FM... GMD, MLW and CLC on the other hand:  :D



Basically this:

It depends on the railroad and the locomotive.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2020, 12:52:27 PM by CNR5529 »
Because why not...

nickelplate759

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2020, 01:01:50 PM »
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There are plenty of photos of New Haven passenger trains with one C-liner and one PA on them.  Usually the C-liner is in the lead, I've no idea why.
George
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I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.

brokemoto

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2020, 09:59:25 AM »
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Thank you for the replies.

Erie must have bought the adapters, as there is the Baldwin in the photograph from Erie Chris ................or was that particular Baldwin road switcher  available with an electric throttle, as some Baldwin power was?

I can not tell at all what the MLW is in the photograph of the Canadian power.  The GMD appears to be a GP-7  or -9, but I can not tell for certain.  It does, however, demonstrate that power from even three different builders could run in a motive power consist.

Someone mentioned the FM C-Liner and a PA on the NYNH&H.  I am assuming that it is the five axle C-Liner, as there were no four axle passenger C-Liners on US roads......while on the subject of one type of unit's running first...............................

From what I have read, Western Maryland had a rule that if a BL-2 was part of a motive power consist, it had to run first.  Supposedly this was due to that locomotive's frequently showing stress cracks after being run in MU.  What is funny is that I have read about that stress crack problem only in regard to WM's pair.  Never have I read about it on C&O's or BAR's.  I have not read about it on the other roads that had them, although I do not know how many, if any, of the other roads' BL-2s had MU fittings.  I am aware that B&M's had no MU fittings and that the railroad never added any. I do not k now if those of the CRI&P, C&EI, CIL, FEC or MoPac ever had MU fittings

Does anyone out there know if the stress crack problem was real on the BL-2?

I am asking these questions because I am trying to figure out what pair of diesels I should operate on my non-historic railroad.  I have several individual units painted for it, but, no railroad that size would keep all that power or pay for it, either.  These models represent different prototypes from different manufacturers, and not all of them run well together.  All of the models from the different manufacturers that will run well together represent prototypes from different builders.  One such pair that runs well together is a metal frame LL FA-1 and a metal frame LL BL-2.  Thus, I want to know if I  need to turn the whole consist at the junction so that the BL-2 can always run first.  I actually am planning to use a Kato RS-2 and Atlas FM road switcher as the main power, but, if one of those has to be taken apart, I can change the roster from FM/ALCo to EMD/(different)ALCo.  The nature of this road is such that I can really justify keeping only two diesels on the roster to handle the freight traffic (steam and gas-electric still do the passenger work.).

In reality, the pair of Kato NW-2s would be more appropriate for the freight, but, the two that I have do not "play well together".  They are great individually, but in a consist, no.  Usually, freight traffic requires only one locomotive, but, at least once weekly, there is such traffic that requires two.  The steam power on this non-historic is too small to handle the once weekly longer train.

Thank you , everyone, for your replies.

Lenny53

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2020, 10:06:40 AM »
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I can not tell at all what the MLW is in the photograph of the Canadian power. 



Either a RS10 or a RS18
« Last Edit: January 09, 2020, 04:28:37 PM by Lenny53 »

Missaberoad

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2020, 10:12:05 AM »
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Curious what you mean by non historic?
What is the Era your road represents?

Interested and trying to get a better understanding...
Ryan in Alberta

brokemoto

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #9 on: January 09, 2020, 11:08:24 AM »
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Curious what you mean by non historic?  What is the Era your road represents?


Some people use "private road name" or "free-lance", but I never liked either of those terms.  I have read "non-historic" in several places and like it better than anything.

The era is mid-1950s.  The non-historic is still running steam, but, as its steam power is old and was beat up handling the war time traffic, it must be replaced.  The freight power has been replaced, but ten wheelers and an eight wheeler are still working the passenger trains.

nickelplate759

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #10 on: January 09, 2020, 11:24:17 AM »
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Yep, the New Haven C-Liners were 5-axle passenger units.
George
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I'm sorry Dave, I'm afraid I can't do that.

Missaberoad

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2020, 11:51:35 AM »
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Some people use "private road name" or "free-lance", but I never liked either of those terms.  I have read "non-historic" in several places and like it better than anything.

The era is mid-1950s.  The non-historic is still running steam, but, as its steam power is old and was beat up handling the war time traffic, it must be replaced.  The freight power has been replaced, but ten wheelers and an eight wheeler are still working the passenger trains.

Okay, I'm on the same page now, totally understand the preference in terms proto-freelanced or home road were usually my go tos.  :)

To add a few more questions, how big is your railway? (as in comparable prototype or milage) judging from your previous post it's closer to the shortline end of the spectrum...

Also what region are you representing?
Ryan in Alberta

Point353

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2020, 12:46:53 PM »
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There are plenty of photos of New Haven passenger trains with one C-liner and one PA on them.  Usually the C-liner is in the lead, I've no idea why.


C855B

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2020, 12:56:49 PM »
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Quote from: nickleplate759
There are plenty of photos of New Haven passenger trains with one C-liner and one PA on them.  Usually the C-liner is in the lead, I've no idea why.



So it doesn't have to inhale the Alco's smoke.   :trollface:
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Chris333

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Re: Prototype MU diesels from different builders
« Reply #14 on: January 09, 2020, 02:24:13 PM »
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George Ellwood's site says Erie Baldwins had air throttles, whatever that is.
Quote
These units had air throttles and MU and some with dynamic brake capability.
http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/el/loco/erie1111bba.jpg
http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/el/loco/erie1114alb.jpg
http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/el/loco/erie1114lbC.jpg
Looks like up high next to the MU cables there were 4 extra air hoses.