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NW3

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NW3
Posted by SSW9389 on Monday, April 18, 2022 11:33 AM

The Great Northern owned seven of these units. The NW3 was ordered five times from EMC/EMD and deliveries spanned from November 1939 to March 1942. It is very possible that additional NW3s would have been built had not the War Production Board halted EMD's switcher line for several years.

Preston Cook called these the first true road switchers, although the Alco RS-1 gets the honor of being first, the NW3 was built first. The common items in these seven units were the 12-567 diesel engine, the Blomberg road trucks in B-B arrangement, the 2250 pound per hour steam generator and the 59:18 high speed gearing. The NW3 was built with the D4 generator and four D7 traction motors. 

The differences are the 12-567 diesel engines installed in the first two units, GN 5400-5401. They may have been the 567U deck version, that is not certain at this time as the change over to the 12-567V deck version may have been in progress when the first two NW3s were built. The remaining five NW3's production falls within the range of the 567V deck engine. The first two NW3s share the same wiring diagram: 8029670. The next three NW3s have sequential serial numbers, which indicates they were planned at the same time, but were on three different orders: E334, E413, and E437. Great Northern #5402-5403 have the same wiring diagram 8055050 and were shipped seven months apart, September 1940 and April 1941. The NW3 #5404 has a December 1941 shipping date and wiring diagram 8062572. The last two NW3s built, Great Northern 5405-5406 have the same wiring diagram as #5404 and were shipped in March 1942.

What was the original service for these units? The steam generators and passenger gearing suggest some type of passenger service.

At least one of these NW3s survives on display in Montana.

Ed in Kentucky

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Posted by PNWRMNM on Monday, April 18, 2022 1:13 PM

Ed,

I suspect original service was branch line passenger or mixed train service.

North Dakota had many branches with such service and NW3 units would have replaced ancient 4-4-0 steam power.

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Posted by SSW9389 on Monday, April 18, 2022 3:49 PM

This linked photo shows brand new GN 5402 in Minot, ND. gn5402.jpg (696×375) (donrossgroup.net)

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Posted by Erik_Mag on Monday, April 18, 2022 11:15 PM

Maybe off-topic, but IIRC, the NW1's were powered with 12-cyl 201A engines and the "NW" stands for Nine hundred hp Welded frame. The the 600hp 201A swutchers were SC1 and SW1 for cast and welded frames repsectively.

I recall seeing one the last NW's in 1976.

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Posted by SSW9389 on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 8:14 AM

Erik_Mag

Maybe off-topic, but IIRC, the NW1's were powered with 12-cyl 201A engines and the "NW" stands for Nine hundred hp Welded frame. The the 600hp 201A swutchers were SC1 and SW1 for cast and welded frames repsectively.

I recall seeing one the last NW's in 1976.

 

Great Northern had an NW and an NW1 both delivered by EMC in January 1938 on consecutive orders. The NW was built with Westinghouse electrical gear and the NW1 was built with GE electrical gear. The GN then followed up this initial EMC diesel order with 2 SW1s and 22 NW2s all built in 1939 between February and August. The first two NW3s were shipped in November 1939. This points to GN satisfaction with the previous EMC units. And raises a couple of questions: Did GN experiment with any of these early EMC switchers in branchline passenger service? Was the NW3 a response to any experiment? Was the NW3 solely a GN idea, EMC idea, or both?  

 

Ed in Kentucky

 

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 8:54 AM

The thing that was special, to me, about the NW3 is that it was unquestionably a road unit, like a downsized FT with higher visibility and a ¾ size motor.  I have the impression it used the same end-cab-convenience principle as the 2000hp FM engines that had end-cabs and road trucks... an arrangement which was altered into (1) full 16-cylinder power, and (2) short-hood 'protection' in the (wildly successful) Geep configurations.  It had not occurred to me before, but I know of no version either of the BL or the early GP (or the TR-1 either) that uses the 12-cylinder 567...

When I was growing up, it was common for EL to park one of its NWs just west of Palisade Avenue in Englewood, NJ, where I became familiar with that EMD idle.  I had not really appreciated why DPM called it 'chanting' before then, but I came to understand.

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Posted by BEAUSABRE on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 1:07 PM

The NW4 was the original roadswitcher, despite a widespread belief that the Alco RS1 was first (In terms of configuration 10 New Haven switchers from GE built in 1936 had the familiar short hood-cab-long hood layout, so the RS1 can not claim to be the originator of that either. The short hood on the GE units housed the radiators. The RS1 can claim to be the first roadswitcher with the definitive layout)

From my master list of EMD locomotives

Light Road Switchers

NW4 1938 2 units Welded frames Steam generator in hood extension in front of cab Large air tanks on pilot deck 900 hp Winton Model 201 Engines, Electrical gear and "AAR B" Trucks from scrapped EMD boxcab demonstrators #511 and #512 Retired 1961

NW3 1939-1942 7 units 1000 hp EMD Model 567 Engine Lengthened frame Steam generator in lengthened hood ahead of cab Blomberg B trucks Disposed of 1965 4 scrapped 3 sold Last retired in 2018

NW5 1946-1947 13 units 1000 hp EMD Model 567B Engine Lengthened frame Steam generator in short hood behind cab Blomberg B trucks BN retired its surviving 9 in 1982 3 scrapped 6 sold 1 operational in museum 1 (SOU) unit in commercial service on short line

Apparently the NW3 project was underway when MoPac came with its request and rather than wait, accepted an EMD offer to use refurbished parts in what was apparently the first episode of using parts from a diesel trade-in, hence the NW4 preceeded the NW3 in production. 

It is significant that the GN bought 17 of the 22 LRS's built. Who originated the idea, GN or EMD?

EMD didn't pay much attention to low profit light road switchers, with a limited capacity it prefered to built higher profit road units. Even also-ran Lima built 16 LRS's!  (BLW 22 DRS-4-4-1000's 50 RS-12's Alco 469 RS-1's 4 RSC-1's 150 RSD-1's)

There was a locomotive whose A units resembled NW3's but were transfer unit

Transfer

TR1 1941 2 units “FT in a switcher body” Cow and Calf 1350 hp EMD Model 567 Engines Long frame Blomberg B trucks total 2700 hp A+B unit drawbarbar connected Retired 1966

And much later GM Diesel Limited built 

Light Road Switchers

GMD1 1958-1960 101 Units 1200 hp EMD Model 567C Engines Either B (18) or A1A (83) Flexicoil trucks  B-B units had steam generators Some A1A-A1A units were rebuilt to B-B units In 1988-1989 39 were rebuilt by CN as GMD1U's 12 B-B units ran long hood forward 26 A1A-A1A units were converted to short hood operation Last unit retired in 2021                                                

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 1:53 PM

Don't forget the RS1325, which could be an EMD-built variant of the GMD1.  It was a stetched version of the SW1200 with flexicoil trucks.  2 built, both for C&IM.

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Posted by SSW9389 on Tuesday, April 19, 2022 3:41 PM

BEAUSABRE

The NW4 was the original roadswitcher, despite a widespread belief that the Alco RS1 was first (In terms of configuration 10 New Haven switchers from GE built in 1936 had the familiar short hood-cab-long hood layout, so the RS1 can not claim to be the originator of that either. The short hood on the GE units housed the radiators. The RS1 can claim to be the first roadswitcher with the definitive layout)

NW4 1938 2 units Welded frames Steam generator in hood extension in front of cab Large air tanks on pilot deck 900 hp Winton Model 201 Engines, Electrical gear and "AAR B" Trucks from scrapped EMD boxcab demonstrators #511 and #512 Retired 1961

Apparently the NW3 project was underway when MoPac came with its request and rather than wait, accepted an EMD offer to use refurbished parts in what was apparently the first episode of using parts from a diesel trade-in, hence the NW4 preceeded the NW3 in production.                                      

 

 

That's interesting about the NW4 preceeding the NW3. The NW4s were outshopped by EMC as demonstrators #823-824 in August 1938 and were sold to MP in May 1939. They did have 1200 pound per hour steam generators and a later wiring diagram number than the NW3s. You could say that EMC and Great Northern were working on the concept of the NW3 when the opportunity to build the NW4s occurred. Here's a linked photo of NW4 demonstrator 824 in passenger service on the MP mp_lincoln-ne_1939_andrews.jpg (800×595) (trainweb.org) 

Ed in Kentucky

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Posted by BEAUSABRE on Wednesday, April 20, 2022 11:37 AM

And I would argue that the GP15 series were light road switchers as they were the machinery of a SW1500 in a road switcher body and riding on Blomberg B trucks. To which you can add the SW1504 and MP15 series since they also used SW1500 machinery, rode on road trucks and were capable of transition. (Obviously the Turbocharged sub models used an 8 rather than 12 cylinder engine, but the power output was the same)

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Posted by Backshop on Wednesday, April 20, 2022 12:04 PM

Because of times changing, while a GP15-1 was a "light" road switcher when it was introduced, twenty-five years earlier, that would've been a "standard" roadswitcher, i.e. GP7, RS2, etc.

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Posted by BEAUSABRE on Wednesday, April 20, 2022 12:37 PM

But times do change. In 1960, we had the "High Horsepower" (2000 hp) GP20. Within 10 years, 2000 hp (GP/SD38) was considered "intermediate horsepower". Jerry Pinkepank originated the term "Light Road Switcher" in the Diesel Spotters Guide (I have my original 1967 copy) to apply to a road switcher that employed a switcher power plant, the way the RS-1 used the internals of a S-2. Like I said, a GP15 was a tarted up SW1500 - which was a switcher. This from Trains "Diesel Family Tree" (2006)

Light road-switcher

The light road-switcher consists of switcher machinery on a road engine frame and trucks. The concept was realized in 1941 when builder Alco took a 1000 h.p. end-cab switcher, lengthened the frame, added a shorter hood section behind the cab, and exchanged the switcher’s trucks for road trucks (more on trucks later). The result was a low-horsepower locomotive that was at home in the yard and, in the case of local work and other non-priority service, out on the road.

The light road-switcher concept pioneered by Alco’s RS1 survives today in two modern builder models: General Electric’s U18B and EMD’s GP15. The latter follows in the path of the RS1 by offering the machinery of EMD’s MP15 switcher on a lengthened road-switcher frame.

 

 

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, April 20, 2022 12:51 PM

I would argue that road-switcher 'bracket creep' is illustrated by the U23B and equivalents, too...

I am still more than a bit delighted by LIRR's MP-15s, run in passenger service, with a toilet in the back of the long hood...

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Posted by Backshop on Wednesday, April 20, 2022 1:00 PM

Another one not mentioned (unless I missed it) was Montreal Locomotive Works M420TR. A whopping TWO were made.

MLW M420TR Data Sheet (thedieselshop.us)

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Wednesday, April 20, 2022 1:56 PM

Fifteen M420TR-2's were built for FC del Pacifico in 1975.

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Posted by SSW9389 on Thursday, April 28, 2022 7:28 AM

Two more factoids: The NW4s are shown as having GE electrical gear and 59:18 gears in the 1959 EMD Product Data. So the question would be were these GE 716 traction motors with that gearing or EMC D7 traction motors in an initial application or D7 or later traction motors replacing earlier GE traction motors? 

The EMC serials for the first two NW3s, 869-870, follow the initial order of 10 NW2s for GN on order E219 delivered February-May 1939. Was the development of the NW3 held back by testing of the traction motors and gearing on the NW4s? And by the development of the 567V engine? You could make a case for it.

Ed in Kentucky

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Posted by Leo_Ames on Thursday, April 28, 2022 9:30 AM

The NW4 recycled major components, including the running gear, from older EMC boxcab demonstrators from the mid 1930's that had led to the birth of the E-unit. They were obsolete as demonstrators by the end of the 30's but their major components had a lot of life left and rather than scrap them these were the result.

It was my understanding that they each used a 12 cylinder Winton and main generator from the boxcabs, with the original GE traction motors retained. So it's doubtful that mechanically the NW4 impacted the development of models like the NW3 in any way or were responsible for any delays.

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Posted by M636C on Friday, April 29, 2022 7:15 AM

Leo_Ames

The NW4 recycled major components, including the running gear, from older EMC boxcab demonstrators from the mid 1930's that had led to the birth of the E-unit. They were obsolete as demonstrators by the end of the 30's but their major components had a lot of life left and rather than scrap them these were the result.

It was my understanding that they each used a 12 cylinder Winton and main generator from the boxcabs, with the original GE traction motors retained. So it's doubtful that mechanically the NW4 impacted the development of models like the NW3 in any way or were responsible for any delays.

 

I was unaware that the NW4s had been built as demonstrators. This would explain the recycling of components from 511 and 512. One assumes that they were to demonstrate the road switcher concept.

I doubt that they reused engines from 511 and 512, unless those two had received replacement engines fairly recently (which is of course possible...) McCall in "Early Diesel Daze" suggests that 1A and 1B had more welding than original material in their 201A crankcases by 1942. One imagines that the 201As in the two demonstrstor/prptotypes would not be much better.

The other thought is that 12-567s were effectively being rationed at the time. E3s in particular were issued two to a customer, their choice of two As or A+B. Atlantic Coast Line only took one but C&NW managed to get four (two A+B sets) and KCS ended up with the demonstrstor 822. This suggests that 12-567s were in limited supply at the time.

So I would suggest that the two NW4s were fitted with 201As since these were probably available at the time, and wouldn't affect the demonstrations. Any production orders would have been NW3s, had they eventuated and had the war not intervened.

Peter

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Posted by Leo_Ames on Friday, April 29, 2022 9:04 AM

M636C
I was unaware that the NW4s had been built as demonstrators. This would explain the recycling of components from 511 and 512. One assumes that they were to demonstrate the road switcher concept.

You misunderstood my post. The demonstrators had been the boxcabs that were cannibalized for these pair of NW4's.

The NW4 was just the result of some ingenuity from La Grange in recognizing that the components from boxcab demonstrators #511 and #512 had life left in them and a customer in Missouri Pacific that saw a deal and grabbed it.

They were one offs using several obsolete but still useful components, so I can't imagine La Grange intended to promote them for further sales. It was the NW3 utilizing the latest EMD components (That presumably was already on the drawing boards when the NW4 was designed and built) that EMD would've been interested in promoting.

M636C
I doubt that they reused engines from 511 and 512, unless those two had received replacement engines fairly recently (which is of course possible...) McCall in "Early Diesel Daze" suggests that 1A and 1B had more welding than original material in their 201A crankcases by 1942. One imagines that the 201As in the two demonstrstor/prptotypes would not be much better.

You very well could be correct. With their 1938 build date, the 201A was still a current powerplant.

Had they appeared a year or so later, I'd be inclined to be skeptical that they received new build 201A's with the 567 available (And the War Production Board and government control of industry and resources not yet a thing).

 

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Posted by SSW9389 on Friday, April 29, 2022 11:32 AM

Just to be clear EMC took components from boxcab demonstrators #511 and 512 and created NW4 demonstrators #823 and 824 in August 1938. Sale to Missouri Pacific of those NW4 demonstrators was in May 1939. 

The NW4s were built with new 12-201A blocks. The block numbers installed in the NW4s are higher than the 12-201As installed in the EAs built for the B&O and the  E1s built for Santa Fe, both from the 1938 deliveries. The NW4 blocks were followed in production by 12-201As for NW, NW1 and NW1A switchers which had the highest numbered 12-201A blocks in the EMD Product data. 

Ed in Kentucky  

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Posted by SSW9389 on Friday, April 29, 2022 2:06 PM

The point about the 59:18 gears is important. None of the early EMC E units had this gear ratio. The NW4s may have had their GE traction motors changed for EMC D7s when the units were sold to Missouri Pacific and that is why the EMD product data shows them with 59:18 gears. The EMC FT demonstators of November 1939 and the new NW3s shipped to Great Northern that same month had the 59:18 gears with the new Blomberg B trucks. 

Ed in Kentucky 

 

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Posted by Leo_Ames on Friday, April 29, 2022 6:04 PM

SSW9389

Just to be clear EMC took components from boxcab demonstrators #511 and 512 and created NW4 demonstrators #823 and 824 in August 1938. Sale to Missouri Pacific of those NW4 demonstrators was in May 1939. 

The NW4s were built with new 12-201A blocks. 

Great information.

I'm inclined though to not think of them as demonstrators, at least if we limit demonstrators to locomotives intended to spur sales of additional examples of the same model. They were utilizing yesterday's EMC technology rather than the latest components.

 

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Posted by M636C on Friday, April 29, 2022 10:09 PM

Leo_Ames

 

 
SSW9389

Just to be clear EMC took components from boxcab demonstrators #511 and 512 and created NW4 demonstrators #823 and 824 in August 1938. Sale to Missouri Pacific of those NW4 demonstrators was in May 1939. 

The NW4s were built with new 12-201A blocks. 

 

Great information.

I'm inclined though to not think of them as demonstrators, at least if we limit demonstrators to locomotives intended to spur sales of additional examples of the same model. They were utilizing yesterday's EMC technology rather than the latest components.

 

 

On that basis, 511 and 512 might be regarded only as prototypes rather than demonstrators, since the only similar locomotives built followed them by three and four months, well before the results of demonstrations could have been evaluated.

Had there been 12-567s to spare, I suspect the NW4 pair would have used those rather than the 12-201As actually fitted. It is interesting to consider that the traction motors were updated before sale. Perhaps a change of prime mover to the 12-567 had been considered, dependent upon availability of such engines.

Peter

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Posted by Overmod on Friday, April 29, 2022 11:32 PM

I will have to review that book on the Super Chief but ISTR a number of references to 511 and 512 being additional power on the early Super Chief runs (cut in and out where a little 'snapping' was needed, and a little mysterious).

With the advent of streamstyled power, the boxcar B-Bs would fairly abruptly have lost their raison d'etre as fast passenger power, so it is not really surprising to find them repackaged for a 'new' market segment...

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Posted by SSW9389 on Sunday, May 1, 2022 2:18 AM

Leo_Ames

 

 
SSW9389

Just to be clear EMC took components from boxcab demonstrators #511 and 512 and created NW4 demonstrators #823 and 824 in August 1938. Sale to Missouri Pacific of those NW4 demonstrators was in May 1939. 

The NW4s were built with new 12-201A blocks. 

 

Great information.

I'm inclined though to not think of them as demonstrators, at least if we limit demonstrators to locomotives intended to spur sales of additional examples of the same model. They were utilizing yesterday's EMC technology rather than the latest components.

 

 

OK, call the NW4s test units, whatever. There is a very strong possibility that the NW4s  broke new ground with the gearing. The very oldest date shown for an EMC unit with 59:18 gears is May 1939. There is a small family of then very unique units with that gear ratio stemming from that date and the NW4s. The EMC FT demonstrators and Great Northern NW3s followed six months after the sale of the NW4s to Missouri Pacific. Santa Fe's first two FT sets #100 and #101 used the 59:18 gearing, Illinois Central's two TR1 sets used that gearing and Great Northern's two FT AB passenger sets and five additional NW3s had that gearing. It was a thing for a short while before it was decided lower gearing was needed to maximize power from the FT. And when the War Production Board shut down further EMD development. Data from EMD and Early Diesel Daze. 

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Posted by SSW9389 on Sunday, May 1, 2022 9:38 AM

SSW9389

Two more factoids: The NW4s are shown as having GE electrical gear and 59:18 gears in the 1959 EMD Product Data. So the question would be were these GE 716 traction motors with that gearing or EMC D7 traction motors in an initial application or D7 or later traction motors replacing earlier GE traction motors? 

The EMC serials for the first two NW3s, 869-870, follow the initial order of 10 NW2s for GN on order E219 delivered February-May 1939. Was the development of the NW3 held back by testing of the traction motors and gearing on the NW4s? And by the development of the 567V engine? You could make a case for it.

Ed in Kentucky

 

This website shows the NW4s had GE 287 traction motors and were rated for 50 mph. A GE gear ratio of 68:16 is much more likely.  EMC NW4 Data Sheet (thedieselshop.us) 

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Posted by M636C on Sunday, May 1, 2022 11:22 PM

Overmod

I will have to review that book on the Super Chief but ISTR a number of references to 511 and 512 being additional power on the early Super Chief runs (cut in and out where a little 'snapping' was needed, and a little mysterious).

With the advent of streamstyled power, the boxcar B-Bs would fairly abruptly have lost their raison d'etre as fast passenger power, so it is not really surprising to find them repackaged for a 'new' market segment...

 

I don't think 511 was used by Santa Fe apart from any early demonstrations with 511 and 512 together.

On the other hand, 512 was leased by Santa Fe as a backup for 1A and 1B as required and was initially painted in the olive green and blue stripe colour scheme used by 1A and 1B and known as "unit 1C" although the number isn't visible in any of the photographs. It appears in the green colours on page 432 of Worley's "Iron Horses of the Santa Fe trail (wrongly identified as unit 1B). This was during 1937 at least. During April and May 1937, "1C" worked the last heavyweight Super Chief behind 1B as lead, and the first lightweight Super Chief behind 1A as lead. Photos of these trains appear on pages 54 to 59 of McCall's "Early Diesel Daze". In these photos it was painted silver with "Santa Fe" on the letterboard.

It was later used on "The Chief" as a third unit with 1A and 1B, since "The Chief" was a heavier train.

The other really good customer, CB&Q leased 511 for some time, used as a spare for the Twin Zephyrs and similar trains using the 1800HP B-B units. It was also silver, and lettered "Burlington".

Maybe B&O got one from time to time but I haven't seen any photographs.

Peter

 

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Posted by wjstix on Thursday, May 12, 2022 1:42 PM

SSW9389
What was the original service for these units? The steam generators and passenger gearing suggest some type of passenger service.

I found a photo online of GN NW2 #181 arriving in Superior WI with the passenger train from Grand Forks ND:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=5234863

GN was an early believer in diesel power, even before road switchers were developed they used some of their early diesel switchers as branchline locomotives.

GN 192, an NW5 (kind looks like a kitbash of an EMD switcher and an Alco RS-1) is in the collection at the Lake Superior Transportation Museum at "The Depot" in Duluth, MN, and is used on some North Shore Scenic Railroad fantrips.

https://lsrm.org/project/diesel-locomotives/

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Posted by BEAUSABRE on Thursday, May 12, 2022 10:01 PM

1) Notice the smokejacks on the cars for the stoves to heat them - no need for steam from the locomotive

2) It would have been a slow trip without transition and riding on AAR Type A trucks - rough for the crew, too

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Posted by daveklepper on Friday, May 13, 2022 3:19 AM

There were reglae EMC-EMD switchers built with transition.   Unsuure how many, which ones. 

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