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B&O Emerson Water-Tube Firebox Engines

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B&O Emerson Water-Tube Firebox Engines
Posted by L-105 on Sunday, April 4, 2021 6:08 PM
The Baltimore and Ohio Railroad had a number of engines similar to the Baldwin 60000 with hybrid water-tube firebox / fire-tube economizer boilers, some of these being the T-1 4-8-2 #5510, KK-1 2-6-6-2 #7400 and N-1 class 4-4-4-4 duplex #5600 (there were also 4-6-4s and a J-1 4-4-4 “Lady Baltimore”). The T-1 #5510 and KK-1 #7400 both had 250 psi boilers while the N-1 #5600 had a 350 psi boiler. The T-1, KK-1 and N-1 all had outside HP cylinders - there were no inside cylinders. The water-tube firebox gave a considerable increase in direct heating surface, 866 sq ft for the T-1 and KK-1.
 
Unlike the Baldwin 60000 and other water-tube experiments, these engines apparently lasted in service for a decent amount of time, only being retired in the early 1950s, at about the same time as their conventional stayed firebox counterparts (in the case of the T-1 and KK-1).
 
Information on these engines is scarce, and any information there is focuses on maintenance headaches and vibration related to the water-tube firebox. Given that the some of these engines survived in service for a reasonable time (over 20 years for the T-1 #5510 and KK-1 #7400), I’d be interested to know how these engines performed when they were working. For instance were they regarded as powerful and/or free-steaming engines?
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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, April 4, 2021 6:26 PM

They performed well enough; the 'proximate' thing that killed them was Emerson's death, the secondary thing being the absence of any steam B&O could afford that would use the advantages of watertube firebox and still do better than an investment in diesels.  The account of the fate of the W-1 constant-torque locomotive maps reasonably well to the timeframe for the Emerson boxes.

Note that these are NOT water-tube boilers in the usual powerplant sense -- they are waterwall fireboxes replacing staybolted fireboxes, with a common firetube convection section (not an 'economizer') in front of the rear tubesheet.  This got rid of the maintenance hassles involved with thermal stresses, complicated labor in threading, leaks and caulking, etc. etc. etc. associated with conventional staybolt construction on large locomotive boilers.

These would have been 'about as good' as a good staybolted-water-leg firebox in steaming: there was some reduction in the practical heat uptake as you had defined tubes instead of 'pachinko' staybolting between plate surfaces, but a little better defined upcoming flow and tolerance of DNB conditions than a typical wagon-top box.  All the reports I've ever seen, admittedly not any guarantee of correctness or completeness, essentially noted performance was 'no better and no worse' on the road -- a similar story to other watertube-firebox designs in the United States in the 20th Century.  Having spent good money to build them, it was cheaper to run and depreciate them than scrap them...

The chief potential advantage was, as on Baldwin 60000, the ability to run higher pressure without commensurate cost and damage.  But on most of the actual locomotives, the higher pressure wouldn't be of commanding use -- it would require some form of compounding, which was anathema to American designers in the '30s and '40s.

And then you have the advent of water treatment, and the fun involved with turbining water tubes free of deposited scale.  There were very advanced devices made to perform this.  Expensive devices, requiring expensive access to a great many little plates in awkward places, usually through expensive drums in alloys that turned out to corrode and crack in interesting ways.

In order to realize much of the advantage of an Emerson-style watertube box, a very large plenum at the bottom of the waterleg space would be necessary.  This never seems to have been provided in a way that gave equal circulation through all the various tubes, and this might hamper effective radiant uptake although I have no data or simulations to substantiate that.  Improvements in welded fabrication after WWII would have made it easier to make these boxes effectively ... but nobody cared by then.

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Posted by M636C on Sunday, April 4, 2021 8:15 PM

In order to realize much of the advantage of an Emerson-style watertube box, a very large plenum at the bottom of the waterleg space would be necessary.  This never seems to have been provided in a way that gave equal circulation through all the various tubes

 

The modified Admiralty three drum boiler in LNER 10000 provided this additional volume, although the "firebox" was directly coupled to a "barrel" formed from another set of water tubes and drums with a water tube superheater in the gas space.

This locomotive and the subsequent 4-6-4, also seem to have adequate volume...

The French Water Tube Boiler. (douglas-self.com)

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, April 4, 2021 11:01 PM

Keep in mind that there is an enormous difference between a watertube boiler arrangement, at the typical heat flux and gas-plume pattern of a forced locomotive firebox, and a more simple waterwall arrangement as in the Baldwin compound or most of the Emerson boilers I have seen.

If you look at many of the early 'fireboxes with water tubes' (for example Maxim's or Thornycroft's high-volume torpedo-boat or airship boilers) you will see downcomers arranged in the box structure, and often convoluted pipe passages through parts of the gas space.  What the French text that confused Mr. Self is probably describing is such an arrangement, where circulation through some of the pipes is heated vastly more than expected under certain conditions of firing or load, DNB gets established in them quickly, and they progress to burning with a range of predictable effects.  The 'final' design of boiler used in that silly British LSR car had this problem even with intricate and fast-acting computer feedwater control, and I believe it was never made practical for more than the short times needed for back-to-back FIA runs.

What was to my knowledge not tried was the approximation of Lamont-style forced circulation to a typical "firebox-shaped" Emerson style arrangement, with purposely high flow entirely at 'boiler pressure' and mechanical steam separation.  Apparently the East Germans tried this with some sort of once-through design, which will probably never work better on a locomotive supposed to be flexible than it would in a power station requiring high turndown, and failed predictably -- at least we got locomotive 18 201 out of the aftermath somehow.

The general experience with Yarrow-style multidrum boilers on locomotives does not appear to have met with any great success, perhaps in part because both the load-following and superheat arrangements in marine practice were different.  Certainly maintenance and some proper approach to water treatment were never brought to the opportunity-cost range for more conventional boilers that could be replaced with cheap shop and labor; some version of this appears to be true for most of the fancy high-pressure 'thermodynamic improvements' in the '20s and early '30s, and concentration on improved waterwalls 'standing in' for staybolted construction and syphons/arch tubes in the firespace appear to be where the development was in the United States -- if we had anything comparable to 'Rear Boiler Knowledge' with fillet-welded staybolts in the postwar half-decade I'm not aware of it.

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Posted by Juniatha on Monday, April 5, 2021 12:29 AM

There were several water tube firebox types in experimental locomotives. That the 2-8-0 and 4-8-0 locomotives lasted in service had nothing to do with their construction costs - see NYC 5500, early scrapped, and others. RRs under the influence of the diesel parties were inclined to scrap experimental steam pretty fast in the US. It was a different thing in Europe when GM tried to approach DB (Deutsche Bundesbahn) with a Bo-Bo diesel supposed to be a replacement for light Pacifics. DB allowed a test period arranged against the - then un-rebuilt - 03-10 engines and after that, a test report stated that the diesel had clearly lost against the Pacific, even though the 03-10 at that time were plagued with boiler troubles due to the unconventional sort of steel they were made of - reason for their little later rebuilding with new combustion chamber boilers. Neither did the diesel save any maintenance costs, nor did it save on the fuel consumption, nor did it run with less lateness (on the contrary, there were much more). In a nutshell: it was a complete failure and DB wouldn't have it for free! Later, the reknown Dipl-Ing Düring proved that the newly built V100 light diesel were less economic than the old pre-DR P8 (38 class) 4-6-0. Again, the 1950s 23 class proved more economic than the P8 in controlled vis-à-vis regular service. If that wasn't a disgrace for the diesel then I don't know! Yet, in the sense of the time, the 23 was stopped at engine 23 105 and the diesel V100 was continued.
On the Hungarian railways MAV the water tube firebox was pretty common, one large 4-6-0 with such a firebox is preserved, although not running. On the German 50 / 52 classes trials with water-tube fireboxes were made during the war, but as could be expected, any failure met with disbelief and helplessness by the maintenance crews where the locomotive had happened to be thrown by the upheavals of the times and thus the experiment failed.
With welded tubes, it would have been a much different proposition and the advantages of making a much lighter firebox, providing an increase of direct heating surface for a given size of firebox, and being suited for higher boiler pressures would have shown. When properly designed none of the mechanical water circulators mentioned would have been necessary any more than with staybolted fireboxes. It's all in proper choice of dimensions of tubes and water legs. Connection with a conventional drum section of firetubes boiler is no problem with a suitably large upper water / steam drum and a rear tubes plate of the drum section of boiler. Of course there needs to be proper stiffenting of the upper part of the tubes plate with triangular stay plates. Steam separation would be adviseable however, it needs not to be mechanically driven but can be a simple centrifugal device, suffices to mention here without detailed description because we don't go into building one such engine. Same as with the detailed design of the tubes arrangement which doesn't so much have to be a single row as it was in most of the historical designs that by the way often showed the flaw of having tubes straight not curved for some section (the awkward 'A' type cross-section).
A boiler straight out of water tubes with a long upper drum would call for oil firing because of its lower water content and only then can the supply with combustion heat be varied so thoroughly and fitting to demand avoiding over or under evaporation of steam.

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Posted by M636C on Monday, April 5, 2021 7:21 AM

It was a different thing in Europe when GM tried to approach DB (Deutsche Bundesbahn) with a Bo-Bo diesel supposed to be a replacement for light Pacifics. DB allowed a test period arranged against the - then un-rebuilt - 03-10 engines and after that, a test report stated that the diesel had clearly lost against the Pacific, even though the 03-10 at that time were plagued with boiler troubles due to the unconventional sort of steel they were made of - reason for their little later rebuilding with new combustion chamber boilers. Neither did the diesel save any maintenance costs, nor did it save on the fuel consumption, nor did it run with less lateness (on the contrary, there were much more). In a nutshell: it was a complete failure and DB wouldn't have it for free! 

I think you are being a bit hard on G12 No 7707.....

It is still in working order and preserved in Norway, having worked for the Swedish railways from 1956 to 1989. SJ thought enough of it to buy 179 more locomotives of the same type, although admittedly the later ones were upgraded versions.

It was rated at 1425 gross horsepower, 40% more than a V100. I suspect that it would be less powerful than an 03 10, even without a combustion chamber. But for the fuel cost to be higher, the relative cost of coal must have been low compared to diesel at the time (1955 or so). I frankly do not believe that the maintenance costs of a three cylinder Pacific could be lower than those of an EMD G12. Since presumably Henschel paid for at least some of the maintenance costs, perhaps DB came up with an estimate favourable to the decision they had already made.

New Zealand was the biggest single customer for the G12 as tested, and they bought 145 of them.

In Brazil there were 241 on different systems, 137 in Iran, 86 in Mexico....

By any possible measure, the G12 was, and is, far more successful than the 03 10.

Peter

 

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Posted by Paul Milenkovic on Monday, April 5, 2021 10:31 PM

If the watertube fireboxes were such a headache for scale removal, how did such firebox appliances such as Nicholson syphons or T-circulators do in that regard?

If GM "killed the electric car", what am I doing standing next to an EV-1, a half a block from the WSOR tracks?
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Posted by Juniatha on Monday, April 5, 2021 11:56 PM

Peter, 

first of all, the G12 never competed with any Pacific, because it was a Decapod and not used in express service. In fact, it was the first German Decapod, by chief-engineer Meister of Borsig, later 58 class in DR scheme.

Of course, you didn't know about this engine type, I know.

 

Secondly, I didn't write nor care about foreign railways and if or not they were satisfied with the GM diesel. I take notice however, the railways you named are then were not the top technical ones, or rather were third place, like New Zealand, Mexico, Brasil. The statement "By any possible measure, the G12 was, and is, far more successful than the 03 10." is therefore very questionable. It is just the number of units sold, now that may be a measurement of success for you - but it is no technical scale or objective sign of success. Nobody is responsible but themselves if they bought it, I didn't write you couldn't make some traffic with it, only I wrote that DB found the steam 03-10 were more economic and DB at that time was looking for replacement of steam! I am not hard or anything, I cited the results of a DB test report - if at all you would have to call that report hard on the GM diesel. But I would recommend not to be so patriotic about that engine, if a DB test came to the conclusion it wasn't worth it you can rely upon it wasn't.

 

Btw, it was not 40 % more powerful than a V100 since that one had 1100 hp, so 1425:1100 = 1.295 or 29.5 % plus. See, that is exactly the thing that broke the neck of the GM diesel on DB, this exaggerating its power output. Further, I didn't write it competed with the V100 because that one came only later. It competed with the 03-10 because, as far as I know, the GM people told DB it would accelerate so much faster from a standstill. That is true - but only from 0 to about 10 mph! All diesels were strong at starting but when it got to accelerating to speed up - oh-hoh-hoh!

 

The 03-10 at that time were close to being taken out of service because of their boiler trouble - it were the depots of Ludwigshafen, Offenburg and Dortmund that requested to keep these engines in service, namely the Dortmund engines ran up to 26,000 km/month. So, headquarters of DB, if they could, they would only have been glad to see the last of the three-cylinder Pacifics.

 

Your note: "I frankly do not believe that the maintenance costs of a three cylinder Pacific could be lower than those of an EMD G12." If the report stated so, it was so. You probably hang on to the familiar thinking 'if three cylinders, maintenance coasts are 3/2 of a two-cylinder engine' - which is an unwarranted simplicity.

 

Dipl-Ing Düring has proven that even the costs of the Baden IVh, 18-3 class four-cylinder compound Pacific, were not any higher than those of the much simpler 03 two-cylinder Pacific. While it is known he didn't like the 03 class, his data were correct. Same came out in a comparison, Prof Nordmann's Grunewald institution had made between the 03 class and the 17-10 class, Prussian S10-1 four-cylinder compound 4-6-0: the four-cylinder engines sowed so much lighter wear that maintenance costs on the two-cylinder engines were no lower. That was not to the liking of the officials because they had left the four-cylinder compound type just for claims of lower maintenance costs with the simple two-cylinder type. Reason for this is in the advanced and sophisticated procedures of maintenance between depot and backshop and the materials of bearings (no roller bearings! this meant maintenance of the four-cylinder engines was made as low as that of the simpler engines, not vice-versa!) So, even though the schedules of the 03-10 involved a lot of continued 120 km/h (75 mph) running, it doesn't appear unlikely to me the Pacifics had a lower maintenance rate per ton/km (!) work done than a diesel not quite out of its fledgling stage, mind that even in the US, certain railroads made it a practice to have mechanics run with the train and do motor repairs on the way! What do you think this did cost?

 

"Since presumably Henschel paid for at least some of the maintenance costs"

?? What made you fantasize about that? Serious: no, why should Henschel pay for what DB did with the engines, more so, the 03-10 were not even built by Henschel but by Borsig, Krupp and Krauss-Maffei - chee-chee-chee ... The nominal power output of an 03-10 with the original boiler was officially stated as 1800 ihp, in reality it could easily exceed 2200 and reach to 2800 ihp, depending on the ability and intention of driver and fireman (that was due to the rather low standard rate of steaming as a basis for official nominal outputs once fixed by Grunewald but made obsolete by later water treatment and full application of welding in boilers). You can easily see that GM's facing their diesel with these engines was a straight suicide mission - even though the lightest runs were selected for the diesel.

 

"perhaps DB came up with an estimate favourable to the decision they had already made."

No, completely wrong: no estimate but a solid test - no favorable decision, on the contrary, the modernization camp of DB's had hoped this would show how obsolete steam was - but it wasn't. 

 

"But for the fuel cost to be higher, the relative cost of coal must have been low compared to diesel at the time "

No, the price of coal was higher on DB than it was in the US because a lot of locomotive coal came from the US by enforced contracts Germany had to agree to after a lost war. Diesel costs were also higher, however. But the main point was simply the US diesel was a gas-guzzler, the 03-10, namely the Dortmund engines, were among the most economic steam engines on DB at that time.

 

Maybe GM paid part of fuel costs of US railroads to push dieselization? (just a joke - or?)

 

 

Juniatha

 

 

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Posted by Juniatha on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 12:08 AM

"If the watertube fireboxes were such a headache for scale removal, how did such firebox appliances such as Nicholson syphons or T-circulators do in that regard?"

A little better!

For one, the T-circulators were but five or seven, maybe some more in extreme cases, but not hundreds of tubes, and they were larger in diameter.

Secondl, the Nichcolson water chambers were treated much like the water legs of the firebox - only they mostly had that one intake which was connected to the front firebox plate and was shaped like a tube. Preferably you had washout plugs positioned directly in front of that. 

It all came down to no importance as proper water treatment was developed and introduced. This was the greatest improvement in boiler up-keep for a long time both ways, before and aft. Together with fully welded steel fireboxes, stays and tubes / flues this made boilers stay free of damage in service and minimized boiler maintenance costs. 

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Posted by M636C on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 7:33 AM

First of all, the G12 never competed with any Pacific, because it was a Decapod and not used in express service. In fact, it was the first German Decapod, by chief-engineer Meister of Borsig, later 58 class in DR scheme. Of course, you didn't know about this engine type, I know. (Juniatha)

 

In my copy of Weisbrod Muller & Petznik Deutsche Dampflokomotiven Volume 2 it lists a G12-1 Class 58 0 as being built in 1915 and the G12 class 58 10 as being built in 1917. Are you sure the G12 was the first German Decapod? It certainly wasn't the first Prussian Decapod... But both types were built by Henschel....

 

I have read Duering's claim about the IV H being cheaper to run than the 03 and I'm not sure I believe that either.

 

Does Austria count as a first rank country? After all they speak German there.. The OeBB class 2050 is an EMD type J12 with the same equipment as 7707.after that locomotive carried out a successful demonstration in Austria. Ten locomotives were built by Henschel who sponsored the demonstation. I rode behind a 2050 in 1975 and enjoyed listening to the distinctive exhaust sound.

 

While the EMD blower engines were heavier on fuel than some other engines (like the Alco 244 and 251), their overall operating costs were very good and their availability was excellent. The EMD might not make the timetable of an 03 10 but it could run straight back without any servicing and easily run twice as far in a day.

 

My ideas about the economy of steam was fixed when I discovered that my Navy's steam powered Destroyers each used more fuel per year than the six submarines they operated.. The Destroyers were very impressive but they weren't as useful as the whole submarine squadron. And yes, they burnt the same (diesel) oil.

 

By the way, I'm not from the USA, so supporting EMD isn't required by patriotism. General Motors don't even sell cars here any more because we drive on the wrong side of the road (like Japan). But GM don't own Opel any more either.

 

The EMDs are tough. I've seen a G8 in Cairo, Egypt that was more decrepit than any other locomotive of any type that could still run. It was so dirty that I didn't realise it was painted red and white, it looked black. It was coupled to a driving control passenger coach but the multiple unit socket had gone missing and the MU wires had been twisted together by hand. But it was still running and in service...I don't believe it cost more to maintain than a German three cylinder pacific, because whatever the records said, virtually nothing was actually spent on it...

 

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 8:56 AM

Paul Milenkovic
If the watertube fireboxes were such a headache for scale removal, how did such firebox appliances such as Nicholson syphons or T-circulators do in that regard?

Syphons are almost wholly flat, staybolted construction comparable to water legs.  The portion of their necks going to the throat sheet were comparatively little exposed to the kind of heat flux that causes accelerated scaling (and accelerated corrosion or cycling damage under it).  Arch tubes by definition are enclosed in or at least shielded by refractory, and again are less subject to excessive radiant exposure or high gas convective transfer.  T circulators are almost childishly easy to turbine and -- in principle, at least -- always have strong circulation through the areas most exposed to the greatest intensity of luminous flame.

On the other hand, less-well-informed attempts at firebox circulation certainly shared in watertube-type disaster.  Take for example the weird little chamber circulators put on the redesigned boilers of the ATSF 3460 class in the late Forties.  They disappeared really quick and no one wanted to talk about it in detail afterward; this was not one of those improvements that did not "succeed enough to be widespread nor failed enough to be replaced" (like Emerson boxes after their inventor and 'champion' retired in the early 1940s).  They were taken out with some haste, and most of what we have left has to be deduced from little dotted lines on diagrams and blueprints.

As noted, the only 'real' way to fix issues with scaling in rail watertube installations is with proper water treatment.  Problem with that is that it can be expensive, requires both knowledge and discipline to implement fully, and can cause almost insane problems in even brief lapses.  (Say the words "swimming pool" to Ed Dickens... but be prepared to dodge the swing! Surprise)

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Posted by Sara T on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 9:02 AM

@ M636C:

One thing is for sure: you never-ever convince a diesel devotee. He will forever dig out views that may be considered strange, one-sided or even contorted by any other but he firmly believes in it by his life if necessary! It almost seems, the diesel engine somehow has created its own circle of stout followers as much as anything! I'm immune against it, so I can only sit and watch. Now, I have earlier noticed that you seem to be Australian or around there, not American, but still! No supporter of electric locos would go so far and defend electrics under each and every circumstances even by his own welfare or even by his life. I can imagine you could get into a pub's controversy where two people get at each other's throat seriously and don't even stop when the police has arrived. The only way to stop this without anyone killed would be to shoot both with a tranquilizer gun and then get them into seperate cells for a week to cool down. I haven't read such a piece yet. To offer sentences like >>Does Austria count as a first rank country? After all they speak German there.. << as an arguement should not be worth a forum of specialists. I could quote more but please save me from it! And then this arguement about war ships: there you are, that tells me about you.

I cannot tell how much of this content is true or at least is debatable, but I see it's no use trying to discuss with you.

Thank you, I will never answer on your posts anymore, so you will have your free ways. 

Good bye

Sara 05003

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 12:40 PM

Why shouldn't diesel-electric locomotives generater their own fan base?  I'm 68 years old and the only steam locomotives that I remember are NKP Berkshires, and I was 5 years old at the time.  Diesel-electrics and straight electrics are that I've really known.  Steam does not hold much of an attraction to me.  Why should it?

The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by Sara T on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 1:25 PM

CSSHEGEWISCH

you are fine to love the diesels, but you shouldn't interfere in this. It was all about something completely different. Sorry, I will not try to explain, it wouldn't work. Never mind, kind regards.

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Posted by Backshop on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 2:51 PM

Sara T

CSSHEGEWISCH

you are fine to love the diesels, but you shouldn't interfere in this. It was all about something completely different. Sorry, I will not try to explain, it wouldn't work. Never mind, kind regards.

Sara

 

That sounds awful "moderator-ish" of you.

Why does it seem like every thread on these forums anymore turn into engineers trying to out-egghead each other?  Maybe that's why there's only about a dozen people regularly posting here anymore.  

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Posted by Flintlock76 on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 3:11 PM

Juniatha
Later, the reknown Dipl-Ing Düring proved that the newly built V100 light diesel were less economic than the old pre-DR P8 (38 class) 4-6-0. Again, the 1950s 23 class proved more economic than the P8 in controlled vis-à-vis regular service. If that wasn't a disgrace for the diesel then I don't know!

That wasn't the only time and place it happened!

Post-war when the heavy dieselizin' began, the Lackawanna found it was actually cheaper  to run their veteran Pacific types in commuter service than it was to run the new diesels! 

But, the handwriting was on the wall.  The rash of post-war coal strikes pushed a lot of hesitant eastern 'roads off the fence when it came to dieselizing.  Lackawanna steam ended in 1953. 

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Posted by Sara T on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 3:11 PM

@ Backshop

I believe the problem is that at least half of them are only pretending to be engineers (in the sense of engineering, not in the sense of driving as the word is also used). They step from detail into smaller parts of details, like one calls simple selling an engineering success, he takes to New Zealand railways to prove the locomotive was brilliant only Deutsche Bundesbahn was too blind to see and so on. To help his 'arguement' he writes 'disbelief' over everything that would prove things were the other way.  This is not a proper technical discussion but a sort of "You are wrong, I am 'right'! " Didn't you notice that Juni doesn't take part in that anymore? She knows the scheme: as soon as she has posted a concise answer to a question or a topic, there come the 'Nietenzähler' as it has been remarked here and that's the word for it: the rivet counters take everything apart and off its context and make it look stupid. We all know who is the number one and always the first and who is the number two in these scrutinizing take-apart replies. Then there are other members who can't tell one engineer's arguement apart from one sophist's reply and that blurrs all the expertise. I' trying to avoid putting down the obvious reason for this.

I don't like it neither, that's why I wrote this!

 

Flintlock,

that's a proper contribution to the topic, thank you.

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Posted by M636C on Tuesday, April 6, 2021 9:06 PM

Sara T

@ Backshop

I believe the problem is that at least half of them are only pretending to be engineers (in the sense of engineering, not in the sense of driving as the word is also used). They step from detail into smaller parts of details, like one calls simple selling an engineering success, he takes to New Zealand railways to prove the locomotive was brilliant only Deutsche Bundesbahn was too blind to see and so on. To help his 'arguement' he writes 'disbelief' over everything that would prove things were the other way.  This is not a proper technical discussion but a sort of "You are wrong, I am 'right'! " Didn't you notice that Juni doesn't take part in that anymore? She knows the scheme: as soon as she has posted a concise answer to a question or a topic, there come the 'Nietenzähler' as it has been remarked here and that's the word for it: the rivet counters take everything apart and off its context and make it look stupid. We all know who is the number one and always the first and who is the number two in these scrutinizing take-apart replies. Then there are other members who can't tell one engineer's arguement apart from one sophist's reply and that blurrs all the expertise. I' trying to avoid putting down the obvious reason for this.

I don't like it neither, that's why I wrote this!

 

Flintlock,

that's a proper contribution to the topic, thank you.

Sara

 

 

Since I am the one being (mis)quoted here, I feel that I have the right of reply. I gained a degree in Mechanical Engineering in 1971 and worked as a professional engineer until 2019, so for 48 years. The first nine years were as a railway mechanical engineer, but I later entered the defence field as the rail industry was at the time contracting.

One problem here is the correct allocation of costs, particularly that of supporting personnel.

Assume we are comparing the cost of an 03 10 4-6-2 being prepared from cold with those of the demonstrator G12 number 7707 being offered to the German Federal Railways by Henschel who were one of three European associates of EMD.

So in the case of the Pacific, some three hours or so before it was due to leave the depot a cleaner or hostler would check that the boiler was filled and start a coal fire. He might check this two or three times before the road crew arrived. They would check the locomotive and usually would oil around, checking that all the components requiring lubrication were attended to. This might take an hour or so, and then they would take the locomotive to the passenger station where it would either couple to a train or wait for a train to arrive.

With the diesel, the crew could arrive around 30 minutes before the locomotive was due to leave the loco depot, would check that it had fuel and charged batteries, start it up and proceed to the station.

So the costs of maybe four or five extra manhours should be debited against the steam locomotive, but since the cleaners and hostlers were paid by the locomotive depot on a daily basis, the costs weren't allocated against the locomotive concerned.

Equally, in the workshops, it is difficult to determine which locomotive had which number of technicians who worked on on it and for how long. And what proportion of the overhead and management costs should be allocated to each individual locomotive and to a particular class of locomotives.

In the 1950s it was very difficult to correctly assign these costs and even more so in the 1930s and 1940s.

So if I say I don't believe a particular figure regarding relative costs of steam and diesel locomotives, it is because I don't know to what extent the full costs have been considered in the analysis.

In the comparison quoted, Henschel as the local representative of EMD would have paid for some of the support costs of the demonstration locomotive, training the DB crews to operate it and supervising the servicing. DB may not have known these costs and may have estimated the cost of these services as if they had carried them out.

If the people doing the analysis were in favour of retaining steam, they may over -estimate the costs of the diesel, and not take account of services provided to the steam locomotive fleet as a whole that were not usually allocated on a per locomotive basis.

Peter

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