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Thread: The things I hate about new d/e locomotives on American roads the most.

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    Angry The things I hate about new d/e locomotives on American roads the most.

    The weird-looking bogie, axle and wheel styles. They look cartoonish. I like the truck styles up to about the 1980's production GM/EMD locos the best.

    Even ALCO and GE engines looked nicer back in the day.

    The other weird thing is the nerdy wide cabs which make the front of the engine look like a bus.

    Classic carbodies and classic spartan-cab hood units look the neatest.

    I like the sounds of the old engine horns better too, more harmonious to the ears.

    I like the sounds of the old diesel engines too: the whine of the gear-driven scavenge blowers.

    That BNSF below has big fat ugly barrel-like air tanks embedded in the fuel tank instead of the long, thin elegant GM/EMD air tanks.

    Last edited by JonMyrlennBailey; December 26th, 2019 at 05:57 AM.
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    I agree that there's a certain "personality" missing from the locomotives today, but a lot of that is due to streamlined, meaning less expensive, manufacturing processes. If there are simple panels and consistent bogies between a bunch of models, the manufacturing process is not only less expensive, it's also faster.

    Back in the olden days of Alco, GE, and early EMD, each locomotive was fashioned by hand with less automation if any. EMD/GM was the first company to use off the shelf parts while ALCO, Baldwin, and the others were still custom-building each and every locomotive by hand. It was in ability to keep up with the manufacturing processes that put them behind, therefore, out of business.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JCitron View Post
    I agree that there's a certain "personality" missing from the locomotives today, but a lot of that is due to streamlined, meaning less expensive, manufacturing processes. If there are simple panels and consistent bogies between a bunch of models, the manufacturing process is not only less expensive, it's also faster.

    Back in the olden days of Alco, GE, and early EMD, each locomotive was fashioned by hand with less automation if any. EMD/GM was the first company to use off the shelf parts while ALCO, Baldwin, and the others were still custom-building each and every locomotive by hand. It was in ability to keep up with the manufacturing processes that put them behind, therefore, out of business.
    Yes, many different GM engines of old seemed to have common truck frames. Many body panels, tanks, headlights and air reservoirs look the same on various hood unit models at GM. General Motors was always good at using as many of the same parts as possible through various product models. The carbody F7 engines even had windshields from Chevrolet cars. I think the old GM diesel locos look the nicest and sound the most awesome. GM has done some crappy cars over the years like the Chevy Corvette, Chevette, Vega, Corvair, Nova and Citation, not to mention diesel Oldsmobiles and Cadillacs, but were always the masters of trains and Frigidaire appliances.
    Last edited by JonMyrlennBailey; December 26th, 2019 at 03:08 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonMyrlennBailey View Post
    Yes, many different GM engines of old seemed to have common truck frames. Many body panels, tanks, headlights and air reservoirs look the same on various hood unit models at GM. General Motors was always good at using as many of the same parts as possible through various product models. The carbody F7 engines even had windshields from Chevrolet cars. I think the old GM diesel locos look the nicest and sound the most awesome. GM has done some crappy cars like the Corvette, Chevette, Vega, Corvair and Citation but were always the masters of trains and Frigidaire appliances.
    I thought the windshields looked like those from the GM buses that came out at the time; I never thought they used car windshields, but it makes sense. Reuse parts through out the process. When I worked in manufacturing a long time ago, the company I worked for used the same case parts for all their video terminals that they made, and also many models shared the same motherboards. Their V-50, V-55, V-60, and V65 models all had the some components, motherboards, cases, and keyboards. The only difference was some EPROM features that were special to each product. The display and keyboard were the same used on their V-1050 CP/M Plus-based computer as well. Their whole product line was like this.

    I agree with you on the older models though especially the hood units. In the 1980's the local commuter railroad purchased some F-units from the ICG and reworked them into FP10 through a contract with Morrison and Knudsen. This gave a nice new life to the ancient F-units that were destined for the scrap yard. They also removed the traction motors from the aging fleet of Budd RDCs so we had streamliner passenger cars with bumps on the roof being pulled by F-units for about 10 years.

    Eventually these were replace by F40PHs, which are still operating on some lines but are slowly being replaced with the newer sneaker shaped diesels.



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    Quote Originally Posted by JCitron View Post
    I thought the windshields looked like those from the GM buses that came out at the time; I never thought they used car windshields, but it makes sense. Reuse parts through out the process. When I worked in manufacturing a long time ago, the company I worked for used the same case parts for all their video terminals that they made, and also many models shared the same motherboards. Their V-50, V-55, V-60, and V65 models all had the some components, motherboards, cases, and keyboards. The only difference was some EPROM features that were special to each product. The display and keyboard were the same used on their V-1050 CP/M Plus-based computer as well. Their whole product line was like this.

    I agree with you on the older models though especially the hood units. In the 1980's the local commuter railroad purchased some F-units from the ICG and reworked them into FP10 through a contract with Morrison and Knudsen. This gave a nice new life to the ancient F-units that were destined for the scrap yard. They also removed the traction motors from the aging fleet of Budd RDCs so we had streamliner passenger cars with bumps on the roof being pulled by F-units for about 10 years.

    Eventually these were replace by F40PHs, which are still operating on some lines but are slowly being replaced with the newer sneaker shaped diesels.



    Yes, looking at older American locos that are painted up nicely pleases me the same as looking at a 1950's or 1960's American automobile. An SD40T-2 Tunnel Motor in SP livery delights my eyes as does a mint 1964 Cadillac Eldorado convertible or a Lincoln Continental suicide doors convertible from that era. The grunt of a Geep warms my heart as the grunt of a Harley-Davidson Big Twin. The old-model rolling stock has that same sort of charm.

    The Pullman heavyweights and the Baldwin steam locos all painted up nicely do too. These modern space-ship-looking things on rails charm me not. Even an Apollo moon rocket is more charming.
    Last edited by JonMyrlennBailey; December 27th, 2019 at 02:12 AM.
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    I don't think that windshields on GM E and F locomotives came from cars, trucks, or buses. Locomotives are usually wider than cars, trucks, or buses.

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    Those engines had split windshields. Post in the middle. Each of two sides was an entire one-piece windshield from an automobile.
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    Locomotive windshield glass is quite a bit thicker than automotive glass despite outward appearances.
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    but General Motors made exceptions: they were being cheap back in 1947-1953 when the F7 was produced. They weren't that safety-conscious then either. My grandpa's 1961 Corvair lacked factory seat belts and had a pretty chrome-laden unpadded sheet metal dash sharp enough to slice bread. I know, I bruised my left shoulder on it when grandpa slammed on the brakes at a mere 5 when when an idiot in a yellow cab cut in front of him. I was 9 then. It was in the summer of 1973, San Francisco. Seat belts were not mandated by law yet then.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonMyrlennBailey View Post
    Those engines had split windshields. Post in the middle. Each of two sides was an entire one-piece windshield from an automobile.

    This is udder nonsense, all those locos had relatively flat windows for windshields. All the cars made in America in the 50s, 60s and 70s had highly curved windshields. Curved both side to side as well as top to bottom. They were even marketed as wrap around windshields to give the car a futuristic look. I know because I lived through those eras. Every car you listed was no more than 7 feet wide at the largest. Most were closer to 6 feet. If your opinion had been that bus windows had been used at least that would have been believable.

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    William

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    Quote Originally Posted by wreeder View Post
    This is udder nonsense, all those locos had relatively flat windows for windshields. All the cars made in America in the 50s, 60s and 70s had highly curved windshields. Curved both side to side as well as top to bottom. They were even marketed as wrap around windshields to give the car a futuristic look. I know because I lived through those eras. Every car you listed was no more than 7 feet wide at the largest. Most were closer to 6 feet. If your opinion had been that bus windows had been used at least that would have been believable.

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    William
    They might have been rear car or pickup windows then. I remember reading about this several months ago but I can't seem to catch it on Google now.
    There was a video on YouTube about the F7. The guy said it had the side roll-up window mechanism from certain GM autos. The guy also
    said the loco windshield glass were the same factory specs for certain GM motor vehicle parts.
    Last edited by JonMyrlennBailey; December 27th, 2019 at 06:43 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by JonMyrlennBailey View Post
    They might have been rear car or pickup windows then. I remember reading about this several months ago but I can't seem to catch it on Google now.
    There was a video on YouTube about the F7. The guy said it had the side roll-up window mechanism from certain GM autos. The guy also
    said the loco windshield glass were the same factory specs for certain GM motor vehicle parts.
    The glass may have come from the same factory, but not the exact windshields which makes more sense.

    I too remember the cars from the late 50's to present quite well. My dad had a '63 Dodge Dart and later a '71 Dart Swinger. We don't count the K-cars that came later though.
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    I'm going to assume that the mention of specs had to do with the glass used was safety glass and provided the same protection as safety glass in cars. I can see the door glass being used for side windows. The window on a two door car in those days could be huge. Four feet long in some cars like the '60 Impala. It was a piece of flat glass. We had a sky blue one.

    It is likely the guy was confusing GM with GMC. Though owned by the same parent company. GMC made trucks, buses and four wheel drive vehicles.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=1960...w=1903&bih=963

    William
    Last edited by wreeder; December 27th, 2019 at 02:53 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wreeder View Post
    I'm going to assume that the mention of specs had to do with the glass used was safety glass and provided the same protection as safety glass in cars. I can see the door glass being used for side windows. The window on a two door car in those days could be huge. Four feet long in some cars like the '60 Impala. It was a piece of flat glass. We had a sky blue one.

    It is likely the guy was confusing GM with GMC. Though owned by the same parent company. GMC made trucks, buses and four wheel drive vehicles.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=1960...w=1903&bih=963

    William
    Suffice it to say, GM would use car parts in their locos wherever practical to do so and to cut production costs.
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    I don't think that the windshields on F7 and F8 locos came from cars or trucks. I downloaded a front view of F7 or F8 loco image and rotated the image so that one of the windshields is horizontal. The ends of the windshield are not vertical. I don't like the "wild" styling of late 1950s/early 1960s, especially the 1959 Cadillacs with huge tail fins.

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