Archived Photos of Chesapeake and Ohio M-1 Steam Turbine Engines

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Archived Photos of Chesapeake and Ohio M-1 Steam Turbine Engines
Posted by Jones1945 on Friday, December 6, 2019 6:05 AM

A new book "Turbine Power" by Walter Simpson covers steam and gas turbine locomotives and trains, how they functioned, and the technology used from the 1939-2003 era, will be available on Kalmbach Hobbystore next year. Before getting the book, let's see what "new" photos of American steam turbine engines has been uploaded to the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania Railroad's internet archive:

C&O M-1 Steam Turbine Locomotive https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chesapeake_and_Ohio_class_M-1 ):

Turbines and the generators. 

Turbines and the generators. 

You would find more pics here:

 https://rrmuseumpa.andornot.com/Gallery?q=steam+turbine&p=1&ps=20

Happy weekend!

 

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, December 6, 2019 9:12 AM

Yikes!  Looks like "under the hood" that thing was a plumber's and electrician's nightmare!

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Posted by BaltACD on Friday, December 6, 2019 1:02 PM

Flintlock76
Yikes!  Looks like "under the hood" that thing was a plumber's and electrician's nightmare!

Any wonder why it failed in its mission?

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, December 6, 2019 1:50 PM

Didn't even make 2 years on the planet before it was converted to razor blades. Wonder how much time they actually spent in service hauling something. 

NDG
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Posted by NDG on Friday, December 6, 2019 3:51 PM

There are some things WORSE than Dieselization?

Thank You.

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, December 6, 2019 4:13 PM

.... and don't forget the poor Goldfish. ( or whatever fish it was in those tanks) 

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, December 6, 2019 6:36 PM

Miningman
.... and don't forget the poor Goldfish. ( or whatever fish it was in those tanks)

Now, hold on there.  Just because fish tanks would turn into fishsicles in Canada doesn't mean the thing wasn't thought through by the Chessie designers.

As I recall (the story appeared in Trains many years ago so should be checkable from that end) the tanks were to be stocked with South American fish chosen for their hardiness to precisely the kind of slosh and temperature excursion they'd be faced with in passenger-car tanks.  As it turned out, they weren't quite hardy enough... but don't blame the designers for that.

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Posted by Penny Trains on Friday, December 6, 2019 7:09 PM

Flintlock76

Yikes!  Looks like "under the hood" that thing was a plumber's and electrician's nightmare!

 

Reminds me of what they say about the F-117 and the army of "martians" needed to remove, repair and replace the radar absorbing covering every time a repair is needed.

Trains, trains, wonderful trains.  The more you get, the more you toot!  Big Smile

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, December 6, 2019 8:26 PM

BaltACD

 

 
Flintlock76
Yikes!  Looks like "under the hood" that thing was a plumber's and electrician's nightmare!

 

Any wonder why it failed in its mission?

 

No wonder to me, man.  Looking at all that (and I have to say it) over-engineering makes me wonder if the designers were playing some kind of expensive practical joke on the C&O.

Now if any professional engineers out there want to correct me on this go ahead, I won't be offended at all, but just WHAT is so difficult about designing a turbo-electric steam locomotive?  To my admittedly amateur mind it should go like this...

You boil water to make high-pressure steam.  You run said steam through a turbine connected to a generator turning at a constant rate to produce the maximum amount of electricity.  You run that electricity through a rheostat (think a BIG electric train transformer) to vary the amount of juice to the traction motors for speed control.  Direction should be handled by the flip of a switch. 

It may be a stupid comparison, but this is how traditional O gauge electric trains work.  120 volts AC to the transformer, variable 0 to 22 (more or less) volts AC to the locomotive.  The voltage from the outlet to the transformer never changes nor does it need to.  What's hard about that?

Am I wrong?  Am I crazy?  Or just plain ignorant?  Or should I just saddle up and go riding with this caballero?   

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rER7n6fcpzk  

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, December 6, 2019 8:50 PM

Penny Trains

 

 
Flintlock76

Yikes!  Looks like "under the hood" that thing was a plumber's and electrician's nightmare!

 

 

 

Reminds me of what they say about the F-117 and the army of "martians" needed to remove, repair and replace the radar absorbing covering every time a repair is needed.

 

My brother's ex-Air Force.  He says the F-117 proves the truth of the old pilot's saying...

"Anything'll  fly if you put a big enough engine on it!"

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Posted by Penny Trains on Friday, December 6, 2019 9:17 PM

Flintlock76
"Anything'll fly if you put a big enough engine on it!"

Yeah!  I taped a Nova series years ago where they went inside the Skunk Works (that's at area 51) during the R&D for the JSF and one test pilot said during the 117 evaluation flights he'd lost a rear stabilizer and didn't even know it because the computer was controlling the engine!  Fly by wire indeed!  Tongue Tied

Trains, trains, wonderful trains.  The more you get, the more you toot!  Big Smile

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Friday, December 6, 2019 9:40 PM

Becky, thank God there's on on-board computer on the 117.  You can't fly the plane without it, but in this case it certainly saved the pilots life.  

Can't fly a B-2 without an on-board computer either.

 

My brother let me in on a dirty little secret about the F-117.  The prototype was so secret the test piloting was done by Air Force generals, something that's usually unheard of.  One brigadier general was killed during the testing phase.

This was long-declassified stuff at the time he told me, or he'd have kept quiet about it.

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Posted by Miningman on Friday, December 6, 2019 9:41 PM

Sayeth Overmod-- " As I recall (the story appeared in Trains many years ago so should be checkable from that end) the tanks were to be stocked with South American fish chosen for their hardiness to precisely the kind of slosh and temperature excursion they'd be faced with in passenger-car tanks.  As it turned out, they weren't quite hardy enough... but don't blame the designers for that."

What!? Outrageous! Of course it's the designers fault, what, ...you think it's the fishes fault?

Designers 100%. 

As you have pointed out in the past, Baldwin just sort of 'disappeared' after they got their loot and the things were delivered. Too bad, I would loved to have seen and heard one actually with a train operating under load. Must have been quite a shock and disappointment to the C&O.  

Also must have been entirely hopeless as they were scrapped so quickly.

Something tells me there is a bit more to the story... personal ,  bet there were some nasty phone calls.

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, December 6, 2019 10:03 PM

Flintlock76
No wonder to me, man. Looking at all that (and I have to say it) over-engineering makes me wonder if the designers were playing some kind of expensive practical joke on the C&O.

There is very little actually 'strange' about this, especially when compared with the PRR V1 design that was under consideration about the same time.  As I think I've noted, this was a hurry-up Baldwin project from the immediate postwar years intended to 'steal a march' on the (presumed) market for noncondensing turbines that PRR thought it had a commanding lead (and some pending patent protection) on.  Apparently much of the development was conducted in a 'hush-hush' atmosphere and this probably contributed to some of the 'unanticipated consequences' issues with the locomotives as built.

The design is remarkably conservative: the pressure used is 'only' 310psi which is ridiculously low for a 6000hp turbine.  Cumulative losses in the transmission, and back EMF concerns at speed, eat up a surprising amount of the nominal horsepower, just as they have in every DC turboelectric since the French built the first one in the 1890s.

The first problem Wayne's merry control system runs into is the biggest: Imagine that in your O scale analogy, the 120V supply from the wall is powered from a steam turbine, like a version of a Pyle headlight generator.  Whether or not the AC transformer is pulling coupled power, the turbine is spinning the generator core at a speed corresponding to the 60Hz of the wall power ... and passing the corresponding mass flow of steam, and its enthalpy, to exhaust.  That's a lot of expensively treated, expensively heated water mass to throw out the stack. 

In any case, in this pre-60s era, the large generators are just that: DC generators, and the voltage they make is proportional to speed.  The control system used for the turbine governor is probably a version of at least a modified Ward-Leonard scheme (see Erik for better details in comprehensible English) so both the speed and excitation of the generator will be modulated to produce the DC output actually fed to the motors... this may be very similar to load regulation on contemporary Baldwins.  The trick here is to minimize 'slip' by getting the turbine rotor to a speed that matches mass flow (thereby getting around the single biggest problem of the direct-drive PRR S2) and then balancing turbine speed and generator excitation as you increase, make transition, etc.

Of course, it's relatively stupid to design a DC-motor STE in the first place: the motors don't like water or coal dust (which is conductive; the two together are not just an open invitation to Flashover City, which ends your locomotive working day, but will build up as deposits in the motor case and then pop loose to a remarkable dead short when you hit a good bump (of which C&O had plenty).  Note that C&O didn't have motors on all the effective axles, which was cutting something of an unnecessary corner given all that cast underframe, but was smart enough not to try motoring the truck axles (which N&W was perilously trying only a couple of years later, before they drank the Baldwin Fla-Vor-Aid and built a truck-mounted disaster...)

There were DC engines that used rheostatic control as provided -- the problem with a traction rheostat that big is that it develops a LOT of waste heat on DC, even if it is made of segments with power resistors in between.  And that is very expensively created waste heat. 

There were a few control schemes that implemented the 'rheostat' as plates in some kind of conductive bath -- the original N&W side-rod things, I think, were controlled that way at slow speed.  Of course the idea was to get rid of any variable resistance just as quick as you could to stop throwing away power as heat.  Many DC traction controllers have a fixed number of resistances, instead of a relatively stepless resistance like a wirewound pot ... which might not be too happy a thing in a 6000hp locomotive having to start a very heavy consist smoothly.

The later version of the V1 mechanical turbine, reached about the time the Baldwin M1 went into road testing (this is presumably the basis for Loewy's design patent of 1947) had an interesting form of 'direct' speed control: the turbine exerted mechanical torque through a combination of induced magnetic fields, with the result being a combination of torque and rotational speed to a geared final drive with comparatively little electrical loss.  This would have been the "9000hp" locomotive referred to in the late-40s PRR book of advanced motive power.

In all likelihood this would have been spooled up to 'appropriate' rpm to avoid slip fairly rapidly, and the Bowes drive then selectively energized to produce high starting torque at appropriate output speed.  In this case, control is much as you indicated, with the turbine running at relatively constant speed and any road-speed changes accomplished by modulating the circuits in the Bowes drive, the turbine governor controlling steam flow to keep the turbine in a reasonably constant speed range (corresponding to its best efficiency for given throttle pressure)

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Posted by SD70Dude on Friday, December 6, 2019 10:05 PM

Flintlock76
BaltACD
Flintlock76
Yikes!  Looks like "under the hood" that thing was a plumber's and electrician's nightmare!

Any wonder why it failed in its mission?

No wonder to me, man.  Looking at all that (and I have to say it) over-engineering makes me wonder if the designers were playing some kind of expensive practical joke on the C&O.

Now if any professional engineers out there want to correct me on this go ahead, I won't be offended at all, but just WHAT is so difficult about designing a turbo-electric steam locomotive?  To my admittedly amateur mind it should go like this...

You boil water to make high-pressure steam.  You run said steam through a turbine connected to a generator turning at a constant rate to produce the maximum amount of electricity.  You run that electricity through a rheostat (think a BIG electric train transformer) to vary the amount of juice to the traction motors for speed control.  Direction should be handled by the flip of a switch. 

It may be a stupid comparison, but this is how traditional O gauge electric trains work.  120 volts AC to the transformer, variable 0 to 22 (more or less) volts AC to the locomotive.  The voltage from the outlet to the transformer never changes nor does it need to.  What's hard about that?

Am I wrong?  Am I crazy?  Or just plain ignorant?  Or should I just saddle up and go riding with this caballero?   

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rER7n6fcpzk  

You have forgotten all the coal dust and cinders that would get into the fine mechanical and electrical parts.  N&W's 'Jawn Henry' had the same problems.

Something I've never seen is a good mechanical overview of exactly what type of electrical gear and traction motors these things had.  The Westinghouse equipment did very well in contemporary diesels and straight electrics, why not in these?  Was it really just the filth found around a coal burner? 

EDIT:  Thanks to Overmod for the excellent writeup above, which was written as I was typing this.

Greetings from Alberta

-an Articulate Malcontent

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, December 6, 2019 10:19 PM

Flintlock76
My brother's ex-Air Force. He says the F-117 proves the truth of the old pilot's saying... "Anything'll fly if you put a big enough engine on it!"

You don't need a big engine on a Hopeless Diamond, just a whole bunch of low-latency actuators driven by a fairly fast set of processors.  The aerodynamic control surfaces are not set to a constant position; they 'excurse' and jitter to keep the airframe at a commanded attitude.

One of the theoretical advantages of this is that a battle-damaged airframe may remain not just controllable but flyable (assuming no significant part of the circuitry has been damaged, which is usually a pretty big assumption even with multiple redundancy).  There are a couple of F117 crash videos that show aspects of this.

To comment a bit further on the plumber's nightmare: sometimes if you build something purposely complex to be redundant and help 'repair itself' the result may be more effective, and less complicated to actually run, than a control system that involves a 'plurality' of simple controls that have to be carefully monitored and delicately kept adjusted -- as in conventional oil-fired steam locomotives.  Note that many of the Bailey controls on the N&W Big Jawn were comparable to the controls the company was building for nuclear submarines -- in fact, there was some speculation about a Claytor connection, which was only dispelled in my case by interviewing an actual surviving Claytor brother (at the VMT ceremony for 1218's return). 

At one point there was some design of the control suite for high-performance aircraft to make the stick input an indication by the pilot of intended vector, not demanded response.  In some conditions of high lift or disturbed air, engines might be unstarted by following a high-g stick movement, and the control computers would therefore command motions to bring the aircraft to the commanded attitude through other motions that would not 'cause problems'.  The interesting thing was that the algorithms developed to 'predict' this moment-to-moment could "learn" when various controls were partially or wholly shot away or functionally impaired, and fly the aircraft quite happily as long as there was some, any, achievable flight attitude that could be made to work on average.

Had something like this actually been implemented on the XB-70 prototype that crashed, it would have promptly dropped the outboard wings to act as stabilizers, and the aircraft could then almost certainly have been landed under reasonable control...

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Posted by BaltACD on Friday, December 6, 2019 11:07 PM

Overmod
 
Flintlock76
My brother's ex-Air Force. He says the F-117 proves the truth of the old pilot's saying... "Anything'll fly if you put a big enough engine on it!" 

You don't need a big engine on a Hopeless Diamond, just a whole bunch of low-latency actuators driven by a fairly fast set of processors.  The aerodynamic control surfaces are not set to a constant position; they 'excurse' and jitter to keep the airframe at a commanded attitude.

One of the theoretical advantages of this is that a battle-damaged airframe may remain not just controllable but flyable (assuming no significant part of the circuitry has been damaged, which is usually a pretty big assumption even with multiple redundancy).  There are a couple of F117 crash videos that show aspects of this.

Video explaining some things of the F117 development

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slYAVymZ99M

 

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, December 7, 2019 1:14 AM

BaltACD
Video explaining some things of the F117 development

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slYAVymZ99M

And then there's this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djdG0TNvPio

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Posted by BaltACD on Saturday, December 7, 2019 8:45 AM

Overmod
 
BaltACD
Video explaining some things of the F117 development

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slYAVymZ99M 

And then there's this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djdG0TNvPio

What I found most interesting was that the F117 was designed in the way it was, was because there wasn't sufficient computer power available to calculate the Radar reflectance of rounded objects - they could only calculate the reflectance off flat surfaces.  Remember - the F117 was designed and developed in the 1970's.

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Saturday, December 7, 2019 8:57 AM

Great write-ups Mod-Man, thanks!

A thing that should never have been built, is what it amounts to.  I keep remembering the wise words of Mischa Kalashnikov...

"All that is complex is not useful.  All that is useful is simple!"

That concept sure worked in his case.

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, December 7, 2019 4:09 PM

BaltACD
What I found most interesting was that the F117 was designed in the way it was, was because there wasn't sufficient computer power available to calculate the Radar reflectance of rounded objects - they could only calculate the reflectance off flat surfaces. Remember - the F117 was designed and developed in the 1970's.

You're being handed a piece of subtle disinformation: the 'curved surfaces' only work because of better-performing RAM coatings.  The point of the flat faceted surfaces and edges is precisely to give specular reflection of any incident EM radiation at an angle that would not engage either the original emitter or any likely aircraft being vectored to the stealth aircraft's vicinity (as the Russians were famously set up to do).  The reflectance characteristics were known; what wasn't known was how to absorb incident radiation over a wide GHz range effectively, which came later (and much of which is still effectively 'classified').

Of course there's a cognate of the Australian OTH tracking: even if the aircraft has the radar signature of a bird, you can set Doppler radar to look for a 400kt bird in all the noise, and it will likely find, discriminate, and track it.  THAT is one place where extra computer power applies.

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Posted by Erik_Mag on Saturday, December 7, 2019 5:19 PM

Overmod

In any case, in this pre-60s era, the large generators are just that: DC generators, and the voltage they make is proportional to speed.  The control system used for the turbine governor is probably a version of at least a modified Ward-Leonard scheme (see Erik for better details in comprehensible English) so both the speed and excitation of the generator will be modulated to produce the DC output actually fed to the motors... this may be very similar to load regulation on contemporary Baldwins.  The trick here is to minimize 'slip' by getting the turbine rotor to a speed that matches mass flow (thereby getting around the single biggest problem of the direct-drive PRR S2) and then balancing turbine speed and generator excitation as you increase, make transition, etc.

I strongly suspect that the M-1 generators were set up with a Lemp control scheme, where the battery, shunt and differential field windings conspire to produce a more or less constant power output with respect to load. This effectively gives a continuously variable transmission, although some shuffling of motor connections (e.g. series, parallel) has to be done to keep the output voltage and current of the traction generator within spec. This is pretty close to being a lossless control mechanism. The kicker was that the output power of the turbines required two traction generators, so a gearbox was used to reduce shaft speed for the generators and split the torque. The electrical set-up wasn't too horrendously different than from what was used on the 4500HP GTEL's.

The Lemp control system should require less torque from the prime mover at reduced speeds, which would be a much better match to the turbine than a straight mechanical drive such as the PRR S2.

The Trains article on the Geisl ejector implied that exhaust back pressure was a problem, and I'd bet that was a major cause of poor performance.

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, December 7, 2019 11:25 PM

Erik_Mag
I strongly suspect that the M-1 generators were set up with a Lemp control scheme, where the battery, shunt and differential field windings conspire to produce a more or less constant power output with respect to load.

My understanding of the Lemp system is that it is designed to be load-following to whatever the prime mover is set to, so the throttle only regulates the shaft power and the electrical gear adjusts to an output comparable to input.  See here in the 1924 patent.  The earlier Lemp scheme (from 1914) combined throttle and excitation together in a system adjusted from a single unified 'power controller', to keep from getting into any setting where the engine was commanded too high or too low for the required electrical load.

This makes somewhat better sense for an engine governed to run at one of a limited number of programmed shaft speeds (as is a diesel engine with an 8-notch Woodward governor) but it still works well, as Erik noted, for a locomotive where the turbine throttle is adjusted by a simple mechanical grapevine to be familiar to steam railroaders ... as I believe the M-1s were. 

Here are some of the questions I'd have to look at with this setup:

1) in a conventional first-generation EMD, there is a careful note to close the throttle when running over crossings or known hard shock sources, to protect the traction motor brushes.  Is there such a note for the turbine, and does it effectively derate current when the throttle is closed instead of continuing to load as the turbine winds down?

2) how is series/parallel adjusted on the M-1s? - to my knowledge automatic transition a la 'hunting season' didn't come along until later, and to provide engineer control to soft-drop the generator excitation and bring it up again as part of manual transition might be 'interesting' to implement.  As far as I can see, Lemp not only has his motors permanently in parallel but indicates in the patent that his invention optimizes keeping them so.

I wish I could remember more about the Giesl article (I believe you mean the one from 1968?) as it was a formative influence on my interest in steam technology.  I remember thinking that a typical Giesl might not benefit from progressive nozzles in its 'fan' for excessively high mass flow unless the stack were so long that the escaping steam path at the 'ends' produced little effective entrainment -- I doubted this would be likely.

In any case we know that steam-turbine designers were often a bit overenthusiastic in providing the necessary very low effective back pressure in atmospheric-exhausting turbines -- the dimensions of the exhaust plenum in the condensing UP locomotives of the late Thirties, and the four rather large stacks that caused so much woe for the PRR S2 are a couple of visible examples.  One would expect that Baldwin would have sized the front end for proper exhaust mass flow at 6000hp, and further adjusted things so that in some control regimes only the amount of exhaust needed to produce steam generation would actually go through the nozzle and stack arrangement to make draft, with the rest being bypassed directly (through proper diverging plenum arrangements) to atmosphere, or condensed to practical extent in FWH.  It would be highly unusual for Baldwin to undersize the draft elements on this poster child of a postwar locomotive; perhaps they felt so 'burned' by the disasters enabled by the four-stack arrangement that they overcompensated -- but that seems strange and unlikely for Baldwin.

In any case, it seems logical to me, with no particular hindsight that wouldn't have been present for Baldwin designers in 1945, that the same kind of arrangement used in the early-Twenties automatic cutoff control could have provided additional  feedback control based on back pressure, keeping turbine mass flow proportional to back pressure -- this would certainly tend to affect actual achieved shp from the turbine in a way that would permit lower effective excitation to maintain the Lemp control's fixed engine output speed, and that might easily result in the locomotive not producing the anticipated power at speed or in certain operating conditions.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Sunday, December 8, 2019 4:10 AM

Flintlock76

Great write-ups Mod-Man, thanks!

A thing that should never have been built, is what it amounts to.  I keep remembering the wise words of Mischa Kalashnikov...

"All that is complex is not useful.  All that is useful is simple!"

That concept sure worked in his case. 

 

 

Yeah! Thank you for everyone's input. I am taking a short break somewhere in Southeastern Europe, thus the late and quick response. I thought there would be zero respond to this thread when I was posting it, to be honest.

The C&O M-1 was a complete disaster, but it was also an exciting over-engineered machine that people probably could only find inside a Steampunk fantasy world. C&O had some remarkable express passenger steam engine like their class L 4-6-4s equipped with RC poppet valves, should have been powerful enough to lead the proposed Chessie train but Robert R. Young made some very ambitious and risky decisions that was supposed to wow the public, including millions of money that C&O wasted on purchasing new passenger cars. Well, we know not only C&O made such a mistake during the transition era.

I love new ideas, and appreciate businessperson who willing to take risks, though sometimes it would cost the future of their entire company CoffeeSurprise:

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, December 10, 2019 7:50 PM

Jones1945
The C&O M-1 was a complete disaster,

It was far from that; I'd suspect that with the same kind of attention PRR gave the T1s in this same era, many of the bugs could have been worked out.  It's just that there was no use for a 6000hp dedicated locomotive of this complexity with diesels available.  Especially since the heavy consists the engines were designed to pull were stillborn.

I think we do have to thank the Young Chessie initiative for one very special thing.  I suspect the N&W gave careful thought to how it was going to compete with something like the Chessie ... and what would match the M-1 speed through mountains and around curves.  And they came up with the other 70"-drivered Timken-rod-equipped locomotive capable of high dash speed but with one-and-a-half times the power of a J...

...now put the promised Q2 boiler on it, and let the fun commence!  No one will ever bother with a silly overweight Allegheny again...

As it turned out, the anticipated desire to reach Cincinnati as if it were a new Chicago-class destination turned out to be not too subtly overrated.  Which is a shame considering B&O's entry in the sweepstakes...

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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 4:16 AM

Overmod

It was far from that; I'd suspect that with the same kind of attention PRR gave the T1s in this same era, many of the bugs could have been worked out.  It's just that there was no use for a 6000hp dedicated locomotive of this complexity with diesels available.  Especially since the heavy consists the engines were designed to pull were stillborn.

I love Young's idea and appreciate his passion for creating another vanguard streamliner, the first time I saw an O gauge C&O M-1, I thought it was a very successful locomotive; but how to prevent the coal dust and cinders from entering the motor? On a ship, the generator could be placed somewhere wholly isolated to the boiler room, on M-1, some of the motor mounted on the truck was just a few feet away from the firebox, and the coal bunker; the smokestack was very close to the generator as well. This sounds like a fundamental design flaw, and I do have the impression that the M-1 was"unrescuetable," C&O already spent $1.6 million for three of them but scrapped all of them after merely two to three years, I wonder how much more money would have been required to fix all the bugs. Yes, we know C&O didn't want to spend the time and money, just curious! (and because I know you would have fixed them, Overmod)

Overmod

I think we do have to thank the Young Chessie initiative for one very special thing.  I suspect the N&W gave careful thought to how it was going to compete with something like the Chessie ... and what would match the M-1 speed through mountains and around curves.  And they came up with the other 70"-drivered Timken-rod-equipped locomotive capable of high dash speed but with one-and-a-half times the power of a J...

...now put the promised Q2 boiler on it, and let the fun commence!  No one will ever bother with a silly overweight Allegheny again...

A duplex version of the Js? or something like the long-forgotten NYC C1a, PRR T2 proposal? A PRR Q2 boiler, 70" drivers, Franklin Type C poppet valve gear, 4-8-4 or 4-4-4-4 wheel arrangement, 7900hp dual-service steam engine. The maximum power output of the (_____) on a N&W Class J is 5,300hp (4,000 kW) at (_____mph) or 5495hp using Alco's simple formula to calculate. They were one of the best 4-8-4 ever made but I think there is nothing wrong to imagine how to make them even better or make a hot rod Class J... 

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, December 11, 2019 7:58 AM

Jones1945
A duplex version of the Js? or something like the long-forgotten NYC C1a, PRR T2 proposal? A PRR Q2 boiler, 70" drivers, Franklin Type C poppet valve gear, 4-8-4 or 4-4-4-4 wheel arrangement, 7900hp dual-service steam engine. The maximum power output of the (_____) on a N&W Class J is 5,300hp (4,000 kW) at (_____mph) or 5495hp using Alco's simple formula to calculate. They were one of the best 4-8-4 ever made but I think there is nothing wrong to imagine how to make them even better or make a hot rod Class J...

Much, much more simple than that.  And the fun part is that (aside from the Q2 boiler conversion) examples were BUILT.  It's the last few As, difficult to explain coherently otherwise...

The traction-motor issue is fixed with better seals at the case and relocating the TM blower intake to a filtered duct or box up high or on the roof behind the bunker.  A simple multiple-shield cavity wall with airflow through one of the cavities neatly shields any smoke box-end radiation from anything at the back -- I must be missing something, probably weight distribution, but I'd put the turbine adjacent to the smokebox end and use longer connections from the generator.

Of course, Baldwin was famous as a kind of American Lucas when it came to running power wiring (and other lines) from point to point -- for example they would put the stuff in a closed chase neatly under the floor, in the articulated chassis, where the oil and grit would naturally build up and compromise the insulation and connections.  Most of the lube lines had flexible hose connections where EMD had gasketed joints -- chronic source of oil leaks to trickle down to... see above.

Little detail design stuff not found on steam locomotives so 'designed around' by smart engineers without a clue.

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Posted by Jones1945 on Wednesday, February 26, 2020 2:49 AM

Some fine-tuned photos from the public internet archive of The Chesapeake & Ohio Historical Society https://cohs.org/) :

 

 

 

" 1949 Chicago Railroad Fair showing GM Train of Tomorrow, PRR steam turbine, and RR GG-1 electric." That is a NYC Niagara in the pic but the PRR S2 Direct-drive Steam Turbine was in the Fair. It was the last time she attended a publicity event. 

"C&O STREAMLINED COALING STATION AT CLIFTON FORGE, VA CA 1948 - Built to fuel M-1 steam-turbine-electrics powering The Chessie train."

 

Thank you. 

 

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Posted by Miningman on Wednesday, February 26, 2020 9:09 AM

Very nice Mr. Jones. Always a fascinating but tragic locomotive to look at. What a way to burn up all those wartime profits. In today's world this would have been a government funded project with all kinds of consultants and spokespersons and all that jazz. 

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, February 26, 2020 12:17 PM

Miningman
In today's world this would have been a government funded project with all kinds of consultants and spokespersons and all that jazz. 

It probably wouldn't.

The steam-turbine development program at Baldwin was a rushed and kept-top-secret effort, apparently largely intended in 'scooping' the PRR including Steins which had some key patents on steam turbine locomotives and was expecting to capitalize on them in the late Forties.  There is some amusing correspondence at the Hagley regarding what the PRR team thought of the resulting locomotive detail design.

There were a couple of design efforts in that period that would qualify as 'government funded with all kinds of consultants and all that jazz'.  One was the effort to develop free-piston locomotive idea ... the thing that I argue first ate Lima, then Baldwin as relevant diesel-era locomotive builders.  The other was the great, almost incredibly ill-starred BCR effort to design a coal-burning gas turbine, which had almost as many lives as a cat -- a black cat showing more and more symptoms of FIP, as it were -- all more or less disastrous.  By the time this began to be perceived as the self-sustaining think-tank scam it was (at least under Yellott) there was an awful lot of various railroads' development capital tied up in what was increasingly looking like the sort of R&D locomotive builders ought to be paying for -- or securing national grants to figure out how to build in practice.  Hirsimaki covers this in some detail but not nearly enough to get the fine flavor of the technological issues actually involved, and supposedly at one time or another 'solved'...

The Baldwin locomotive was really little more than a conventional electric's undercarriage with a plain old riveted-construction boiler propped on top.  By that time I'm sure Vauclain & Co. had seen plenty of the preliminary design for the mechanical PRR V1 and decided its configuration was just nifty for electrical axle power instead of gears ... before figuring out anything relating to the Bowes drive.  Meanwhile N&W was proceeding to fall off the trolley in a different impractical direction, succumbing to the siren call of all-axles-driven in a complex V1-style chassis ... and then, of course, going to all truck-borne design.

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