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EMD F2 Built After F3 Production Began

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Posted by SSW9389 on Thursday, June 17, 2021 11:39 AM
Here's another question that may have already escaped history. Does anyone have any insight as to the where and when EMD tested high speed gearing in the F2/F3 before production started in July 1946? Remember the very first production F3s went to Santa Fe with 56:21 gearing. It seems like EMD would have speed tested the concept before any production locomotives were built. Likely candidates for high speed test runs would be Alton, Burlington and Santa Fe, others?. Ed in Kentucky
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Posted by BaltACD on Friday, June 18, 2021 5:09 PM

SSW9389
Here's another question that may have already escaped history. Does anyone have any insight as to the where and when EMD tested high speed gearing in the F2/F3 before production started in July 1946? Remember the very first production F3s went to Santa Fe with 56:21 gearing. It seems like EMD would have speed tested the concept before any production locomotives were built. Likely candidates for high speed test runs would be Alton, Burlington and Santa Fe, others?. Ed in Kentucky

Don't know if EMD tested the high speed gearing.  I do know that the F3's the B&O ordered for passenger service were delivered with high speed gearing.  Gearing the engines retained when the were put into freight service on the B&O's Chicago Division between Willard and Chicago.  Making up time on Time Savers and other 'hot' trains.  PSR was not in effect in the late 50's and early 60's.

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Posted by M636C on Friday, June 18, 2021 10:36 PM

BaltACD

 

 
SSW9389
Here's another question that may have already escaped history. Does anyone have any insight as to the where and when EMD tested high speed gearing in the F2/F3 before production started in July 1946? Remember the very first production F3s went to Santa Fe with 56:21 gearing. It seems like EMD would have speed tested the concept before any production locomotives were built. Likely candidates for high speed test runs would be Alton, Burlington and Santa Fe, others?. Ed in Kentucky

 

Don't know if EMD tested the high speed gearing.  I do know that the F3's the B&O ordered for passenger service were delivered with high speed gearing.  Gearing the engines retained when the were put into freight service on the B&O's Chicago Division between Willard and Chicago.  Making up time on Time Savers and other 'hot' trains.  PSR was not in effect in the late 50's and early 60's.

 

Remember that Santa Fe had a number of passenger equipped four unit FT sets with high speed gearing in service for some time before their F3s appeared. These continued in service until a large number of F3s were available for service.

Both EMD and Santa Fe had a lot of experience with high speed gearing on on E units back to 1937 and earlier on the specific Chicago Los Angeles service.

There were gear problems with the first Santa Fe F3 set 16LABC, but I don't recall the detail.

Peter

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Posted by SSW9389 on Saturday, June 19, 2021 3:13 AM

M636C

 

 
 

 

Don't know if EMD tested the high speed gearing.  I do know that the F3's the B&O ordered for passenger service were delivered with high speed gearing.  Gearing the engines retained when the were put into freight service on the B&O's Chicago Division between Willard and Chicago.  Making up time on Time Savers and other 'hot' trains.  PSR was not in effect in the late 50's and early 60's.

 

 

 

Remember that Santa Fe had a number of passenger equipped four unit FT sets with high speed gearing in service for some time before their F3s appeared. These continued in service until a large number of F3s were available for service.

Both EMD and Santa Fe had a lot of experience with high speed gearing on on E units back to 1937 and earlier on the specific Chicago Los Angeles service.

There were gear problems with the first Santa Fe F3 set 16LABC, but I don't recall the detail.

Peter

 

While it's true that Santa Fe had FTs with 95 MPH gearing, what they didn't have and no one had until 1946 was an F unit cab with a steam generator, water tanks and 30 foot truck center spacing. Santa Fe had FT boosters equipped with steam generators. Southern 6700-6701 were the first such units that combined water tank and steam generator in an F unit cab. It would seem that EMD would have tested this concept before production began. The EMD 291 demonstrators had steam generators in the booster units, but not in the cab units. Perhaps Southern 6700-6701 did some actual test work. The June 1, 1946 F2 Operator's Manual has continuous tonnage ratings for high speed gears on pages 24-25. How were those ratings, which are slightly different from the FT tonnage chart, arrived at? Did the EMD test department use slide rules and extrapolate, or did some actual testing occur? 

Ed in Kentucky

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, June 19, 2021 10:17 AM

It occurs to me that while Mr. Goding's time at EMD was later, he started in comparable testing and might have worked with people at EMD who would have decided the testing required for higher-geared F units.  You might PM him.

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, June 19, 2021 10:18 AM

It occurs to me that while Mr. Goding's time at EMD was later, he started in comparable testing and might have worked with people at EMD who would have decided the testing required for higher-geared F units.  You might PM him.  (I'd have sent this as a PM if Kalmbach had kept their word and fixed the forum glitches in spring 2021)

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Posted by bogie_engineer on Saturday, June 19, 2021 11:37 AM

The people involved in any testing would have mostly or all been retired by the time I joined EMD. But I do suspect there would have been some testing done to insure stable running and choose the wheel profile for the speed. From my experience with the swing hanger 2-axle truck, without modern yaw dampers, truck hunting with new 1:20 wheels and tight pedestal liners would have started around 75-80 mph, much lower with worn wheels. I did hear from a colleague that the Santa Fe used cylindrical profile on their passenger F units but don't know when they started doing that, they could have been delivered that way. AFAIK, the 1:40 profile was a more recent (1970's) compromise to keep flange wear at a more reasonable rate.

Dave

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Posted by SSW9389 on Saturday, June 19, 2021 6:38 PM

M636C

 Remember that Santa Fe had a number of passenger equipped four unit FT sets with high speed gearing in service for some time before their F3s appeared. These continued in service until a large number of F3s were available for service.

Both EMD and Santa Fe had a lot of experience with high speed gearing on on E units back to 1937 and earlier on the specific Chicago Los Angeles service.

There were gear problems with the first Santa Fe F3 set 16LABC, but I don't recall the detail.

Peter

 

Santa Fe tested #17, #51 and #164 in the October 1946 time frame. The F3 set #17 had a locked pinion gear on one of the units. Additionally relays and electrical interlocks failed and cylinder heads had to be changed out due to high heat. See page 172 of Early Diesel Daze. The relays and electrical trouble sounds like the same thing W. A. Gardner encountered with the B&M F2s in October 1946. 

 

Ed in Kentucky

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Posted by M636C on Saturday, June 19, 2021 8:08 PM

While it's true that Santa Fe had FTs with 95 MPH gearing, what they didn't have and no one had until 1946 was an F unit cab with a steam generator, water tanks and 30 foot truck center spacing. Santa Fe had FT boosters equipped with steam generators. Southern 6700-6701 were the first such units that combined water tank and steam generator in an F unit cab. It would seem that EMD would have tested this concept before production began. The EMD 291 demonstrators had steam generators in the booster units, but not in the cab units.

The original queston referred to the inroduction of Santa Fe F3 units.

As far as I know Santa Fe never had an F series cab unit with a steam generator, hence my reference to the FTs, which also did not have steam genertors in the cab units.

As long as the truck spacing didn't match the rail length, would the wheelbase have been important?

Peter

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, June 19, 2021 9:27 PM

.

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Posted by Overmod on Saturday, June 19, 2021 9:29 PM

I can't help but wonder, considering the supposed issue with some of the SDP40Fs, whether there might be emergent behavior from the water tankage at some critical higher speeds, including on curve entry and exit.  Testing might need to be a little protracted with different combinations of 'parameters' to make the behavior appear...

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Posted by Paul Milenkovic on Sunday, June 20, 2021 4:35 PM

Overmod

I can't help but wonder, considering the supposed issue with some of the SDP40Fs, whether there might be emergent behavior from the water tankage at some critical higher speeds, including on curve entry and exit.  Testing might need to be a little protracted with different combinations of 'parameters' to make the behavior appear...

 

Yes, some 20 or 30 years from now, some group of enthusiasts will want to construct from scratch an SDP40F, forming an entity called the "SDP40F Trust", and one of their objectives will be resolving the sloshing-in-the-water-tanks-to-supply-the-steam-generators historical question (whether the SDP40F only sloshed at low speeds or if it suffered from a high-speed sloshing phenomenon) and to counteract the dismissive position of railroad historians that the SDP40F was "a failure"?Geeked

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 Overmod on Sunday, June 20, 2021 6:16 PM

That's pretty funny!

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Posted by BaltACD on Sunday, June 20, 2021 6:47 PM

Overmod
I can't help but wonder, considering the supposed issue with some of the SDP40Fs, whether there might be emergent behavior from the water tankage at some critical higher speeds, including on curve entry and exit.  Testing might need to be a little protracted with different combinations of 'parameters' to make the behavior appear...

Was baffling ever applied to the SDP 40's water tanks?

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, June 20, 2021 7:33 PM

BaltACD
Was baffling ever applied to the SDP 40's water tanks?

The issue was the shape of the tank: thin and upright.  Baffling would have been comparatively ineffective against what was a coupling between the lateral compliance characteristics of the hollow-bolster Flexicoil trucks and the water mass up high.

At one time there was a fairly detailed discussion on the Web of this problem and, as I recall, its resolution.  I don't remember if this was a priority to replace steam with HEP, but I suspect it did not hinder the effort... Wink

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Posted by BaltACD on Sunday, June 20, 2021 8:52 PM

Overmod
 
BaltACD
Was baffling ever applied to the SDP 40's water tanks? 

The issue was the shape of the tank: thin and upright.  Baffling would have been comparatively ineffective against what was a coupling between the lateral compliance characteristics of the hollow-bolster Flexicoil trucks and the water mass up high.

At one time there was a fairly detailed discussion on the Web of this problem and, as I recall, its resolution.  I don't remember if this was a priority to replace steam with HEP, but I suspect it did not hinder the effort... Wink

Never had any experience with the SDP40's

All the other steam boiler engines I have had experience with had the water carried in a tank similer to and in the location of the fuel tanks - thus low in the framework of the engines structure.

As a layman - what were the engineers thinking putting that much weight that high up in the engine?  Water is not light.

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, June 20, 2021 8:57 PM

BaltACD
As a layman - what were the engineers thinking putting that much weight that high up in the engine?

It is difficult for me to figure that out.  As I recall, the excuse had to do with relative ease of conversion to pure freight use -- they shoehorned the tank where it could fit rather than compromise the 'usual' area under the frame between the trucks where the water tankage would be hung at the expense of fuel.

Dave Goding knows more than I do about Flexicoil in general and hollow-bolster in particular, and I'm sure EMD was involved figuring out where the problem arose.

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Posted by M636C on Sunday, June 20, 2021 9:17 PM

BaltACD

 

 
Overmod
 
BaltACD
Was baffling ever applied to the SDP 40's water tanks? 

The issue was the shape of the tank: thin and upright.  Baffling would have been comparatively ineffective against what was a coupling between the lateral compliance characteristics of the hollow-bolster Flexicoil trucks and the water mass up high.

At one time there was a fairly detailed discussion on the Web of this problem and, as I recall, its resolution.  I don't remember if this was a priority to replace steam with HEP, but I suspect it did not hinder the effort... Wink

 

Never had any experience with the SDP40's

All the other steam boiler engines I have had experience with had the water carried in a tank similer to and in the location of the fuel tanks - thus low in the framework of the engines structure.

As a layman - what were the engineers thinking putting that much weight that high up in the engine?  Water is not light.

 

 

I've actually read the SDP40F investigation report, but some years ago.

I might still have a copy.

However, there were a number of points not often mentioned. The derailments were all in the Eastern states on track that was not up to the highest standard. No derailment ever occurred on the Santa Fe or on the Union Pacific. The SDP40Fs were the heaviest passenger locomotives used on the tracks where they derailed. A feature of curve forces in most bogie vehicles is that the lead axle of the trailing truck often applies the highest lateral force to the outer rail in a curve, because the rear truck is steered by the trailing axle in a curve.

Add to this a heavy water tank just above that axle with a free water surface and you have a derailment looking for a place to happen. The big fuel tank was there to feed the expected HEP generators and to allow Amtrak to run their trains further without refuelling.

Drawings had been issued showing SDP40Fs fitted with twin HEP generators instead of the boilers and water, and the arrangement might have been agreed as a temporary fit until HEP was standardised, with that changeover expected earlier than it finally happened.

The GE P30s and E60s had their own share of derailments without a large, high water tank so the appearance of the F40PH which could use many of the expensive parts of the SDP40Fs allowed a face saving way out for both Amtrak and EMD and regardless ow how they got there, the F40PHs were a resounding success.

Peter

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Posted by IA and eastern on Monday, June 21, 2021 2:50 AM

There was a SDP40A proposed with twin steam geneators or double sized steam geneators. Gary

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, June 21, 2021 6:09 AM

IA and eastern
There was a SDP40A proposed with twin generators or double sized steam generators.

Presumably on the longer frame with the second generator in the space 'opened up' by the shorter V16?

The working idea would presumably be that this would give the effect of a heater car for a long consist without the full length and tare weight of one.  It is interesting to consider what the effect of DPU or even early Locotrol might have been if applied to something like a City of Anywhere consist using a trailing unit with, say, the 3300hp E3A engine common to a Centennial and two SGs.

There is also the interesting possibility of 'hybrid' implementation of HEP using a genset in one SG position while retaining the other for 'legacy compatibility'.

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Posted by wjstix on Wednesday, June 30, 2021 11:12 AM

SSW9389
While it's true that Santa Fe had FTs with 95 MPH gearing, what they didn't have and no one had until 1946 was an F unit cab with a steam generator, water tanks and 30 foot truck center spacing. Santa Fe had FT boosters equipped with steam generators.

A railroad could order an F3A with a steam generator, but there was very limited room for water - I forget the exact numbers, but it was only like 1/4 what you could carry in a B-unit. A railroad in a cold weather area could generally only use an A unit by itself on a passenger train if it was a very short run like commuter service. That's why EMD came up with the FP series, F units stretched out to fit the same water tanks as an F B-unit.

Anyway, I don't think just having that steam generator would require a lot of extensive testing for high speed operation?

Stix
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Posted by BaltACD on Wednesday, June 30, 2021 11:54 AM

wjstix
 
SSW9389
While it's true that Santa Fe had FTs with 95 MPH gearing, what they didn't have and no one had until 1946 was an F unit cab with a steam generator, water tanks and 30 foot truck center spacing. Santa Fe had FT boosters equipped with steam generators. 

A railroad could order an F3A with a steam generator, but there was very limited room for water - I forget the exact numbers, but it was only like 1/4 what you could carry in a B-unit. A railroad in a cold weather area could generally only use an A unit by itself on a passenger train if it was a very short run like commuter service. That's why EMD came up with the FP series, F units stretched out to fit the same water tanks as an F B-unit.

Anyway, I don't think just having that steam generator would require a lot of extensive testing for high speed operation?

The limited water capacity with F3's equipped with steam generators was one of the principle reasons that the B&O stopped using them on their 'long distance' passenger runs.  

From living at the B&O's divison point of Garrett, IN for several year and being in contact with numerous personnel - when the F3's were used on passenger runs out of Chicago - they would be out of water upon arrival at Garrett.  The units would be serviced at the Robey Street coach yards, move their train to Grand Central Station to await a On Time departure and then normally take three hours to Garrett.  

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Posted by IA and eastern on Wednesday, June 30, 2021 1:46 PM

Would the proposed FL9 have been better at solving the problem of water. Gary

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, June 30, 2021 1:59 PM

FL9 had extra weight-bearing capacity as well as carbody length... but there would be little point in providing the additional structure merely for additional steam-generator water.

Absent the need for third rail, such a locomotive could have used a 'normal' swing-hanger A-1-A EMD truck at the rear instead of the Flexicoil, and retained the swing-hanger B truck of the two prototypes at the front.  A very logical step here might have been the use of a turbo V16 to get higher unit horsepower comparable to, say, a FM CPA24.  However I suspect the passenger market for new power was pointedly not directed at such a thing by the early '60s.

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Posted by SSW9389 on Monday, July 5, 2021 9:18 AM

It was 75 years ago this month the EMD began building F units again. The last FTs were built in November 1945. Then a United Auto Workers strike shut down EMD until March 13, 1946, but no additional units of any kind were built until April presumably because of a steel strike and lack of parts. The Engineering department would have had plenty of time to test the D8B generator in the 291 test set. Tonnage ratings would have been established for the new F2s and instructions on operating with FTs would have been written. Operator Manuals for the F2 were published on June 1, 1946 in advance of the July production of 43 F2A units. Of the 43 new F2As, a total of 39 were built to work with FTs, another two were low geared units for use on a light rail short line and two were passenger units. 

Ed in Kentucky 

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