Puneet Varma

EMD FP7

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Power type  Diesel-electric
Total produced  381
Model  FP7
AAR wheel arr.  B-B
EMD FP7
Builder  General Motors Electro-Motive Division (EMD) General Motors Diesel (GMD, Canada)
Build date  June 1949 – December 1953

The EMD FP7 was a 1,500 horsepower (1,100 kW), B-B dual-service passenger and freight-hauling diesel locomotive produced between June 1949 and December 1953 by General Motors' Electro-Motive Division and General Motors Diesel. Final assembly was at GM-EMD's La Grange, Illinois plant, excepting locomotives destined for Canada, in which case final assembly was at GMD's plant in London, Ontario. The FP7 was essentially EMD's F7A locomotive extended by four feet to give greater water capacity for the steam generator for heating passenger trains.

Contents

Design

While EMD's E-units were successful passenger engines, their A1A-A1A wheel arrangement made them less useful in mountainous terrain. Several railroads had tried EMD's F3 in passenger service, but there was insufficient water capacity in an A-unit fitted with dynamic brakes. The Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway's solution was to replace the steam generators in A-units with a water tank, and so only fitted steam generators into the B-units. The Northern Pacific Railway's solution was to fit extra water tanks into the first baggage car, and to pipe the water to the engines. The real breakthrough came when EMD recognized the problem and added the stretched FP7 to its catalog.

A total of 381 cab-equipped lead A units were built; unlike the freight series, no cabless booster B units were sold. Regular F7B units were sometimes used with FP7 A units, since they, lacking cabs, had more room for water and steam generators. The FP7 and its successor, the FP9, were offshoots of GM-EMD's highly successful F-unit series of cab unit freight diesels.

F3s, F7s, and F9s equipped for passenger service are not FP-series locomotives, which although similar in appearance have distinctive differences, including but not limited to the greater body length. The extra 4 ft (1.2 m) of length was added behind the first body-side porthole, and can be recognised by the greater distance between that porthole and the first small carbody filter grille. The corresponding space beneath the body, behind the front truck, was also opened up; this either remained an empty space or was filled with a distinctive water tank shaped like a barrel mounted transversely.

Preserved examples

  • Alaska Railroad 1510 and 1512, used by the Verde Canyon Railroad in Clarkdale, Arizona, on its excursion train.
  • Chicago Great Western Railway 116-A, on display, at Hub City Heritage Railroad Museum, Oelwein, Iowa.
  • Canadian Pacific Railway 4071, renumbered as Western Maryland Railway 243, in working condition and in use at the Durbin and Greenbrier Valley Railroad.
  • Canadian Pacific Railway 4069, in working condition and in use at the West Coast Railway Heritage Park; see West Coast Railway Association.
  • Clinchfield Railroad 200, renumbered as Western Maryland Railway 67, in working condition and in use at the Durbin and Greenbrier Valley Railroad.
  • Milwaukee Road 101A, on static display (was non-operational when acquired but reportedly restored by volunteers to operable condition) in Cresco, Iowa.
  • Milwaukee Road 104C, at the Illinois Railway Museum, Union, Illinois.
  • Milwaukee Road 96C, in Monon livery waiting to be restored at the Indiana Transportation Museum, Noblesville, Indiana.
  • Reading 900, at the Reading Railroad Museum in Hamburg, Pa.
  • Reading 902, on display at Steamtown National Historic Site in Scranton, Pennsylvania.
  • Reading 903, also on display at Steamtown.
  • Soo Line 500A (né EMD demonstrator #9051), on display at Ladysmith, Wisconsin.
  • Soo Line 2500A (né EMD demonstrator #7001), restored to working condition, at Lake Superior Railroad Museum, Duluth, Minnesota.
  • Southern Railway No. 6133, in working condition at the North Carolina Transportation Museum at Spencer, North Carolina.
  • Southern Railway No. 6143, in working condition and in use at the Stone Mountain Park at Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Southern Railway, two units in use by the Kentucky Dinner Train operation out of Bardstown, Kentucky.
  • Western Pacific 805-A, a locomotive used on the famous California Zephyr, is preserved in operable condition at the Western Pacific Railroad Museum at Portola, California.
  • References

    EMD FP7 Wikipedia


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