FGEX ex-PRR R7s


Richard Hendrickson
 

On Aug 8, 2012, at 9:12 PM, Scott wrote:
Thanks Bill, that was interesting reading.

Why would FGE want them to start with? Pennsy make them an offer
they couldnt refuse? One mans junk is another mans treasure kind of
thing?

Scott, FGEX really didn't have much choice; they had to accept
whatever refrigerator cars the participating railroads had in service
at the time FGEX took over protective service for most of the eastern
and southeastern railroads. And some of the cars they got really
were junk - obsolete, poorly maintained wood framed truss rod cars.
But the R7s weren't junk - certainly not at the time that FGEX took
them over from the Pennsy - and the fact that they lasted so long in
revenue service suggests that they were actually a pretty good
investment. The design (which originated, remember, with the X23 box
cars) was eccentric and over-built; both the X23s and R7s were heavy
for their size, even by the standards that prevailed when they were
built, and difficult to repair. But through the first half of the
twentieth century the PRR's mechanical department marched resolutely
to the beat of its own drummer, so almost everything that came off
its drawing boards was eccentric and much of it was either overbuilt
or had inherent flaws (or both). It's no accident that the X23/R7
design was unique. Though the Pennsy proclaimed itself "the standard
railroad of the world," the mechanical officers of many other North
American railroads regarded their engineers as self-absorbed bozos
and, in general, Pennsy rolling designs weren't imitated except on a
small number of eastern RRs within the PRR's geographic and economic
sphere of influence. But the X23/R7 hat section steel body framing
and fishbelly steel center sills were advanced for their day and
extremely strong. Granted, the roofs leaked - the Pennsy never
figured out how to make a roof that didn't leak until they finally
and belatedly adopted the non-PRR Murphy rectangular panel design in
the '40s. However, the Hutchins roofs Fruit Growers applied to the
ex-R7s took care of that problem, and the fact that many of the ex-
R7s were still earning revenue thirty to forty years after they were
built speaks well for their design.

Richard Hendrickson


Bill Welch
 

Richard is correct but the story is at once much more complex and more interesting IMO, but I will try to lay out the short version. Initially the only cars the new FGE, Co. had were the cars about 5000 car they purchased from the Armour owned FGE Inc., a mixture of truss rod U/F cars and cars with U/F's very similar to PFE U/F of the period, both the built-up and the Bettendorf U/F. FGE wanted to immediately purchase 2000-3000 new cars but one of the owners, the Southern Railway, would not put in their share of the capital this would have required. (This company's behavior would be a problem for their partners in FGE for decades.) Meanwhile the C&EI's Bankruptcy Trustee let FGE know the C&EI had 900-plus truss rod cars they would sell to FGE for money and shares in FGE, Co. With the cooperation of the PRR and IC, FGE had enough cars to get them through the peach rush of 1921. The PRR and IC also helped with cars in 1920. (Although the PRR owned a large number of reefers, they had car and service contracts w/the Armour owned FGE, Inc. for their two subsidiary lines that served Delaware and Maryland, hence their involvement. With the creation of the new company, they too signed contracts with FGE, Co.)

For the next several years FGE Co. leased cars from the PRR and eventually purchased the cars they were leasing. They also leased 175 modern fishbelly U/F cars from the Florida East Coast and purchased over 1,000 cars with a mixture of U/F types from both the L&N and B&O. They purchased a smaller number of cars from the NYNH&H and the NYO&W and then in 1927 they made their last purchase of second hand cars for 13 years when they purchased 46 modern cars from the C&O. (In 1940 FGE purchased over 100 cars similar to the ex-C&O cars from the Pere Marquette.)

FGE built over 4,000 new cars from 1921 into 1924 and then another group of about 1,800 cars beginning in 1926 into about 1932. All of this was driven by the dramatic expansion of agricultural output in the southern states in the 1920's and other parts of FGE's territory that left FGE scrambling for years to try to meet the expanded need for refrigerator cars. It also motivated their partnership with the GN and WFE in 1923 and the CB&Q and BRE in 1926. Although they do not use the term "under capitalized" in any of their correspondence reports, it is clear to me that this was their problem for many years, perhaps their entire existence. Although they were often strapped for money, they were also very resourceful and creative. As late in 1957 the other owner RR's complained about the Southern not holding up its end financially.

In summary FGE. Co. was forced by necessity to purchase secondhand cars. They had the shop forces to update the cars with floor racks, insulated bunker bulkheads, and the other modernizations recommend by the USDA and USRA. Ironically the President of FGE, Henry Spencer, had worked for the Southern, with the exception of some time with the USRA, his entire RR career before going to FGE. It must have been very frustrating for him to deal with the Southern.

Bill Welch

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Richard Hendrickson <rhendrickson@...> wrote:

On Aug 8, 2012, at 9:12 PM, Scott wrote:
Thanks Bill, that was interesting reading.

Why would FGE want them to start with? Pennsy make them an offer
they couldnt refuse? One mans junk is another mans treasure kind of
thing?

Scott, FGEX really didn't have much choice; they had to accept
whatever refrigerator cars the participating railroads had in service
at the time FGEX took over protective service for most of the eastern
and southeastern railroads. And some of the cars they got really
were junk - obsolete, poorly maintained wood framed truss rod cars.
But the R7s weren't junk - certainly not at the time that FGEX took
them over from the Pennsy - and the fact that they lasted so long in
revenue service suggests that they were actually a pretty good
investment. The design (which originated, remember, with the X23 box
cars) was eccentric and over-built; both the X23s and R7s were heavy
for their size, even by the standards that prevailed when they were
built, and difficult to repair. But through the first half of the
twentieth century the PRR's mechanical department marched resolutely
to the beat of its own drummer, so almost everything that came off
its drawing boards was eccentric and much of it was either overbuilt
or had inherent flaws (or both). It's no accident that the X23/R7
design was unique. Though the Pennsy proclaimed itself "the standard
railroad of the world," the mechanical officers of many other North
American railroads regarded their engineers as self-absorbed bozos
and, in general, Pennsy rolling designs weren't imitated except on a
small number of eastern RRs within the PRR's geographic and economic
sphere of influence. But the X23/R7 hat section steel body framing
and fishbelly steel center sills were advanced for their day and
extremely strong. Granted, the roofs leaked - the Pennsy never
figured out how to make a roof that didn't leak until they finally
and belatedly adopted the non-PRR Murphy rectangular panel design in
the '40s. However, the Hutchins roofs Fruit Growers applied to the
ex-R7s took care of that problem, and the fact that many of the ex-
R7s were still earning revenue thirty to forty years after they were
built speaks well for their design.

Richard Hendrickson



[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Andy Sperandeo
 

Wow!, Bill,

When I read your great posts about FGE topics, they make me all the more anxious to read your book. I hope we'll all be able to do that soon.

Meanwhile, for myself, I've had a soft spot for the R7 reefer since reading the "Model Railroader" construction feature by Ralph Brown in the April 1958 issue. I started building the car from that article back in the mid 1960s but never finished it. (Just as well – I'd have painted it for PRR, which would have been a mistake.)

Now I have the Westerfield kit on a shelf in my basement, and photos like the that started this discussion to show why it makes sense to have at least one on my 1947-era Santa Fe railroad. I for one am glad to learn all that I can about R7 reefers.

So long,

Andy


________________________________

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Bruce Smith
 

Richard makes a couple of excellent points and one completely off the wall assertion.... I mean, seriously, comparing the PRR's mechanical department to "vesties"? Rather than calling people names, I favor a thoughtful analysis of the actions of railroad management in the context of the times. My feeling regarding the PRR is the first part (self absorbed) might well be true, but they were regarded as anything but clowns or buffoons. The PRR's mechanical department presents interesting contrasts. They were outrageously conservative, yet at times extremely innovative. They were among the 1st to use all steel construction in passenger and freight cars. The X23/R7, the X25, the X28/29, the X31/32/33 were all trend setters. No debate that the PRR, like many large american companies (Eastman Kodak perhaps being the most recent victim), suffered from the innovation impairing "our way is the right way" mentality and among many SPF's the phrase "standard railway of the world" is used with bemusement as well. However, think about the subject car. What PRR did was to create a "standard" car in the X23 that was adapted to many uses, including increased height automobile cars (X24), refers (R7), and stock cars (K7/K7a)... and it was neither the first not last time they did it. Ultimately, perhaps the duplexes best define the PRR's mechanical department. Outrageously innovative locomotives, with performance to match (for the most part) yet built when steam loco technology was just being eclipsed by the diesel. (I know some argue that the duplexes were failures, but much has been published that indicates that had they not been competing against diesels, they would have been considered very successful)

BTW, weren't the AT&SF mechanical department the, ahem, "bozos" who came up with the idea of a boiler that hinged in the middle? Really??

Regards

Bruce


Bruce F. Smith

Auburn, AL

https://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~smithbf/


"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."

__

/ &#92;

__<+--+>________________&#92;__/___ ________________________________

|- ______/ O O &#92;_______ -| | __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ |

| / 4999 PENNSYLVANIA 4999 &#92; | ||__||__||__||__||__||__||__||__||

|/_____________________________&#92;|_|________________________________|

| O--O &#92;0 0 0 0/ O--O | 0-0-0 0-0-0

On Aug 9, 2012, at 12:09 AM, Richard Hendrickson wrote:
Scott, FGEX really didn't have much choice; they had to accept
whatever refrigerator cars the participating railroads had in service
at the time FGEX took over protective service for most of the eastern
and southeastern railroads. And some of the cars they got really
were junk - obsolete, poorly maintained wood framed truss rod cars.
But the R7s weren't junk - certainly not at the time that FGEX took
them over from the Pennsy - and the fact that they lasted so long in
revenue service suggests that they were actually a pretty good
investment. The design (which originated, remember, with the X23 box
cars) was eccentric and over-built; both the X23s and R7s were heavy
for their size, even by the standards that prevailed when they were
built, and difficult to repair. But through the first half of the
twentieth century the PRR's mechanical department marched resolutely
to the beat of its own drummer, so almost everything that came off
its drawing boards was eccentric and much of it was either overbuilt
or had inherent flaws (or both). It's no accident that the X23/R7
design was unique. Though the Pennsy proclaimed itself "the standard
railroad of the world," the mechanical officers of many other North
American railroads regarded their engineers as self-absorbed bozos
and, in general, Pennsy rolling designs weren't imitated except on a
small number of eastern RRs within the PRR's geographic and economic
sphere of influence. But the X23/R7 hat section steel body framing
and fishbelly steel center sills were advanced for their day and
extremely strong. Granted, the roofs leaked - the Pennsy never
figured out how to make a roof that didn't leak until they finally
and belatedly adopted the non-PRR Murphy rectangular panel design in
the '40s. However, the Hutchins roofs Fruit Growers applied to the
ex-R7s took care of that problem, and the fact that many of the ex-
R7s were still earning revenue thirty to forty years after they were
built speaks well for their design.

Richard Hendrickson







------------------------------------

Yahoo! Groups Links


John Hagen <sprinthag@...>
 

Bruce, Richard,



Compare the performance of PRR's K4's to NYC's Hudson's. It's sorta like
comparing a blacksmith job to cutting edge development but the K4 did the
job. PRR mechanical department had the ability to carry a basic, inexpensive
design to the nth degree. And yes some went too far before they realized
they had upgraded to electric lights. So far as their locomotive design
influences only in the east, that is very true as the eastern clearances
were more restrictive. The fact that they were able to get the kind of
performance they did speaks very well for them.



Frankly I never liked the Pennsy steamers until I started to do a lot of
reading on them. That is when I started to admire them.



John Hagen



From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Bruce F. Smith
Sent: Thursday, August 09, 2012 12:13 PM
To: <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Subject: Re: [STMFC] FGEX ex-PRR R7s





Richard makes a couple of excellent points and one completely off the wall
assertion.... I mean, seriously, comparing the PRR's mechanical department
to "vesties"? Rather than calling people names, I favor a thoughtful
analysis of the actions of railroad management in the context of the times.
My feeling regarding the PRR is the first part (self absorbed) might well be
true, but they were regarded as anything but clowns or buffoons. The PRR's
mechanical department presents interesting contrasts. They were outrageously
conservative, yet at times extremely innovative. They were among the 1st to
use all steel construction in passenger and freight cars. The X23/R7, the
X25, the X28/29, the X31/32/33 were all trend setters. No debate that the
PRR, like many large american companies (Eastman Kodak perhaps being the
most recent victim), suffered from the innovation impairing "our way is the
right way" mentality and among many SPF's the phrase "standard railway of
the world" is used with bemusement as well. However, think about the subject
car. What PRR did was to create a "standard" car in the X23 that was adapted
to many uses, including increased height automobile cars (X24), refers (R7),
and stock cars (K7/K7a)... and it was neither the first not last time they
did it. Ultimately, perhaps the duplexes best define the PRR's mechanical
department. Outrageously innovative locomotives, with performance to match
(for the most part) yet built when steam loco technology was just being
eclipsed by the diesel. (I know some argue that the duplexes were failures,
but much has been published that indicates that had they not been competing
against diesels, they would have been considered very successful)

BTW, weren't the AT&SF mechanical department the, ahem, "bozos" who came up
with the idea of a boiler that hinged in the middle? Really??

Regards

Bruce

Bruce F. Smith

Auburn, AL






------------------------------------

Yahoo! Groups Links


Dennis Storzek
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Bruce F. Smith" <smithbf@...> wrote:

BTW, weren't the AT&SF mechanical department the, ahem, "bozos" who came up with the idea of a boiler that hinged in the middle? Really??

Regards

Bruce
The boilers weren't hinged, except in the minds of model railroaders. The hinge was between the boiler and what amounted to a large feedwater heater.

My take on the phrase "Standard Railroad of the World" is that it has nothing to do with standardization, but rather thet they were setting themselves up as the standard that all others would be measured against, and in that respect, they had a good claim.

Dennis


Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Dennis Storzek wrote:
My take on the phrase "Standard Railroad of the World" is that it has nothing to do with standardization, but rather thet they were setting themselves up as the standard that all others would be measured against, and in that respect, they had a good claim.
At the time PRR was making this claim, in the first decade of the 20th century, one of their people visited the Great Western in Britain, and the story goes that the GWR people received this claim with some hilarity. (And as it happens, the British modeling community regard the GWR much like Americans regard the PRR--love it or hate it. GWR fans will tell you it stands for "God's Wonderful Railway." Beat that, Pennsy guys.)

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, thompson@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history


Richard Hendrickson
 

On Aug 9, 2012, at 10:12 AM, Bruce F. Smith wrote:

Richard makes a couple of excellent points and one completely off
the wall assertion.... I mean, seriously, comparing the PRR's
mechanical department to "vesties"? Rather than calling people
names, I favor a thoughtful analysis of the actions of railroad
management in the context of the times. My feeling regarding the
PRR is the first part (self absorbed) might well be true, but they
were regarded as anything but clowns or buffoons. The PRR's
mechanical department presents interesting contrasts. They were
outrageously conservative, yet at times extremely innovative. They
were among the 1st to use all steel construction in passenger and
freight cars. The X23/R7, the X25, the X28/29, the X31/32/33 were
all trend setters. No debate that the PRR, like many large american
companies (Eastman Kodak perhaps being the most recent victim),
suffered from the innovation impairing "our way is the right way"
mentality and among many SPF's the phrase "standard railway of the
world" is used with bemusement as well. However, think about the
subject car. What PRR did was to create a "standard" car in the X23
that was adapted to many uses, including increased height
automobile cars (X24), refers (R7), and stock cars (K7/K7a)... and
it was neither the first not last time they did it. Ultimately,
perhaps the duplexes best define the PRR's mechanical department.
Outrageously innovative locomotives, with performance to match (for
the most part) yet built when steam loco technology was just being
eclipsed by the diesel. (I know some argue that the duplexes were
failures, but much has been published that indicates that had they
not been competing against diesels, they would have been considered
very successful)
I don't disagree with much of what Bruce asserts here, and I won't
comment on the Pennsy duplex locos as I know relatively little about
them (though I will say that when the PRR finally, and belatedly,
embraced internal combustion, they bought small numbers [by Pennsy
standards] of almost every diesel model being manufactured in the US,
with the predictable result that they created a maintenance
nightmare). "Clowns" and "buffoons" would certainly be excessive,
and even "bozos," the term I actually used, was perhaps
insufficiently respectful. However, there's plenty of evidence that
the mechanical departments of other major railroads thought the
Pennsy mechanical department was wrong-headed, unjustifiably
opinionated, and did not play well with others.
BTW, weren't the AT&SF mechanical department the, ahem, "bozos" who
came up with the idea of a boiler that hinged in the middle? Really??
Really. But that was a looong time ago when the Santa Fe was also
having a love affair with compounds, owing mostly to their potential
for saving water on a railroad that traversed many miles of the arid
southwest where there was no water. That all changed with the
appointment in May, 1912 of John Purcell as head of the Santa Fe's
mechanical department. Only 42 at the time (Purcell had begun his
employment on the Santa Fe at age 14), he had previously been
superintendent of the Topeka shops and was all too familiar with the
frequency and complexity of repairs required by the Santa Fe's
compounds. He was also well aware of the potential for efficiency of
the Schmidt superheater, which had just been introduced in North
America and installed on five of the Santa Fe's 1309 class balanced
compound 4-6-2s. The results of that experiment were so successful
that every subsequent Santa Fe steam locomotive was equipped with a
Schmidt superheater and none were built as compounds apart from some
balanced compound 4-6-2s that were already on order. Most of the
compound mallets (including the hinged-boiler 2-6-6-2s) were rapidly
rebuilt as simple locomotives with superheaters, and other compounds
were steadily converted through the late 'teens and early '20s. By
the mid-1920s, Purcell had reshaped the Santa Fe's mainline
locomotive fleet to four well-designed types (4-6-2, 4-8-2, 2-8-2,
and 2-10-2) which were all similar, were well adapted to the Santa
Fe's varying operating conditions, and had as many interchangeable
parts as possible, thus greatly simplifying maintenance. He then
went on in the late '20s and 1930s to supervise development of the
Santa Fe's spectacularly successful 4-6-4s, 4-8-4s, and 2-10-4s,
finally retiring in 1941. Purcell's story is well recounted in Larry
Brashear's Santa Fe Locomotive Development published by Signature Press.

What does all this have to do with freight cars? Well, it was under
Purcell's leadership that the unique mid-'20s composite cars of
classes Bx-3, Bx-6, Fe-P, Fe-Q, and Fe-R were developed, surely as
innovative and successful a design as the Pennsy X23/R7. When they
became obsolete as box cars in the 1950s, hundreds of Bx-3s and Bx-6s
were converted to stock cars and in that role many of them were still
running reliably in revenue service through the 1960s. I would add
that the Santa Fe was a prompt and enthusiastic convert to the AAR
standard freight car designs while the PRR continued for a decade or
more to build freight cars of its own design which were essentially
inferior to the AAR cars (e.g., the X37).

Richard Hendrickson


Don <riverman_vt@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "John Hagen" <sprinthag@...> wrote:

Bruce, Richard,



Compare the performance of PRR's K4's to NYC's Hudson's. It's sorta like
comparing a blacksmith job to cutting edge development but the K4 did the
job. PRR mechanical department had the ability to carry a basic, inexpensive
design to the nth degree. And yes some went too far before they realized
they had upgraded to electric lights. So far as their locomotive design
influences only in the east, that is very true as the eastern clearances
were more restrictive. The fact that they were able to get the kind of
performance they did speaks very well for them.



Frankly I never liked the Pennsy steamers until I started to do a lot of
reading on them. That is when I started to admire them.



John Hagen



From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Bruce F. Smith
Sent: Thursday, August 09, 2012 12:13 PM
To: <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Subject: Re: [STMFC] FGEX ex-PRR R7s





Richard makes a couple of excellent points and one completely off the wall
assertion.... I mean, seriously, comparing the PRR's mechanical department
to "vesties"? Rather than calling people names, I favor a thoughtful
analysis of the actions of railroad management in the context of the times.
My feeling regarding the PRR is the first part (self absorbed) might well be
true, but they were regarded as anything but clowns or buffoons. The PRR's
mechanical department presents interesting contrasts. They were outrageously
conservative, yet at times extremely innovative. They were among the 1st to
use all steel construction in passenger and freight cars. The X23/R7, the
X25, the X28/29, the X31/32/33 were all trend setters. No debate that the
PRR, like many large american companies (Eastman Kodak perhaps being the
most recent victim), suffered from the innovation impairing "our way is the
right way" mentality and among many SPF's the phrase "standard railway of
the world" is used with bemusement as well. However, think about the subject
car. What PRR did was to create a "standard" car in the X23 that was adapted
to many uses, including increased height automobile cars (X24), refers (R7),
and stock cars (K7/K7a)... and it was neither the first not last time they
did it. Ultimately, perhaps the duplexes best define the PRR's mechanical
department. Outrageously innovative locomotives, with performance to match
(for the most part) yet built when steam loco technology was just being
eclipsed by the diesel. (I know some argue that the duplexes were failures,
but much has been published that indicates that had they not been competing
against diesels, they would have been considered very successful)

BTW, weren't the AT&SF mechanical department the, ahem, "bozos" who came up
with the idea of a boiler that hinged in the middle? Really??

Regards

Bruce

Bruce F. Smith

Auburn, AL

With all due respect, Bruce, I wish you could see the Pennsy in the light which far more of us in the Northeast than you may realize view it. Speaking for myself, I have called it the "Standard Scrapyard of the World" for over 40 years now. Another member of this list kidded me for several years for modeling what he called a "backwoods railroad like the Rutland" when we were both "regulars" at the MIT Model RR Club years ago. The kidding quickly ended after no less a light and Pennsy fan than Bert Pennypacker published an article on Rutland motive power in the April 1970 issue of Railroad magazine. In the article Pennypacker quoted one Joe Manning, an acquaintance of his who was a retired Pennsy shop foreman and summered beside the Rutland mainline in Charlotte, Vt., as stating, "Yes, sir, those old Rutland mills ran like fine watches
and I wish some of our older power on the Pennsy had run as well.
I'd like to have had several of those Rutland machinists in my Pennsy shop because they always had the valves set and squared up perfectly". One of the jibes I had often received was about the Rutland's 90 lb. Dudley main line rail in comparison to the Pennsy's 155 ib. iron. All of the comments about the Rutland stopped with the publication of that article. As I stated to my friend, clearly the Pennsy had to use 155 lb. rail because the glorified blacksmiths they called machinists didn't know how to set the valves square and anything less than 155 lb rail was quickly pounded to pieces!!! (-:

And management???? Look at what the Pennsy spun of to the rest of us after they had been "trained" on the Pennsy. Lenore Loree, who nearly brought the D&H to its knees with his antiquated thinking, and David Fink, who reduced rail traffic on Guilford to a pittance of what it had been when the MEC and B&M were independent in less than five years time. So much for your Pennsy way of doing things. However, it gets better. As a supplier to New England railroads for many years I was acquainted with the MEC's E. Spencer Miller and was also a member of the New England Railroad Club, the latter being comprised of rail officials and suppliers. I will never forget Mr. Miller speaking to a group of us at a club presentation one evening around 1980. He had just returned from a California vacation during which he had enjoyed a visit with Mr. Symes, president of the Pennsy before Stuart Saunders took over. Mr. Miller related to us that in the course of their conversation Mr. Symes had stated that he believed if the Pennsy and NYC had not merged the NYC would be in solid black ink while the Pennsy would have been in a sea of red. To those of us who were present that was a pretty telling admission and confirmed much of what was thought about the Pennsy within New England, where it was viewed as simply another railroad and not a very well run one at that.

Sorry to rain on your parade once again but whether one is discussing the maintenance of steam motive power or steam era freight car design there was little about the Pennsy that impressed many in New England.

Cordially, Don Valentine


J.A. Phillips
 

Re: Don Valentine's comments. I enjoyed reading these very much, but as for E. Spencer Miller meeting James M. Symes in 1980, that must have been at a seance, as Symes died Aug. 3, 1976. As an aside, I asked the NYC list recently why Al Perlman went back to the drawing board with Symes and Saunders in the mid-1960s, after having gone it alone so well for so long after the suicide of R.R. Young. I was referred to Richard Sanders' _Merging Lines_, which points out that yes, Perlman went back into merger talks, but unfortunately, still doesn't answer my question as to _why_ he went back. Oh well. Off topic and rapidly getting "offer."

Regards
John Phillips
Seattle

Inez Mischitz says: "Nothing says 'Die, Jedi scum!' like Kent Sullivan on a Vespa!"


Don <riverman_vt@...>
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Phillips, III, J.A." <whstlpnk@...> wrote:

Re: Don Valentine's comments. I enjoyed reading these very much, but as for E. Spencer Miller meeting James M. Symes in 1980, that must have been at a seance, as Symes died Aug. 3, 1976. As an aside, I asked the NYC list recently why Al Perlman went back to the drawing board with Symes and Saunders in the mid-1960s, after having gone it alone so well for so long after the suicide of R.R. Young. I was referred to Richard Sanders' _Merging Lines_, which points out that yes, Perlman went back into merger talks, but unfortunately, still doesn't answer my question as to _why_ he went back. Oh well. Off topic and rapidly getting "offer."

Sorry if I'm off on the date, John. I know it was when the NERRC was still meeting at the Copley Plaza in Boston and if I can find my meeting minutes I could provide an exact date.

Cordially, Don Valentine


Mikebrock
 

Jerry Stewart says that Richard Hendrickson said the Santa Fe's modern 4-6-4/s, 4-8-4's and 2-10-4's were "spectacularly successful":

"Spectacularly successful", that's more than stretching the facts Richard. The
problems of Santa Fe steam locomotive designs have been well documented in
magazine articles and books for many years.
Well...hmmm. I don't know. I have just about everything so far written about these locomotives and the conclusion seems to be at least "highly successful"....although I have to admit that I haven't studied results of the 4-6-4 3460 class. Certainly the 1939 tests of 2-10-4 5007 only revealed one problem...the damned thing was too powerful for its weight on drivers and was, thus, a bit slippery at low speeds. Oddly, both the N&W class J and class A 2-6-6-4 were also slippery for the same reason.

This was exacerbated by the fact that the
engines
were very slippery due to the large driving wheel diameter and high boiler pressure
that caused side rod bending and failures.
Oh dear. I do wish we could correct this notion. Driver size has little to do with being slippery. In fact, a smaller driver tends to be more slippery because, believe it or not, a smaller wheel produces a deeper indention in the rail and, thus, has to climb out of it. That's why steam switch engines have very high factors of adhesion...the real culprit causing slipping. Weight on drivers divided by starting tractive effort. That's all there is to it. A number higher than 4 is good. Lower than 4...tends toward being slippery. The number 4 is associated with the coefficient of clean, steel rail and a steel driver tire surface.

As for finally get the 4-8-4s
sorted out..
....well they had to completely rebuild the first group and ended up with an engine
that had one of the strangest appliance arrangement one could ever find. A second
cross compound air compressor placed under the firemans' side of the cab.......very strange!
Now, now. Richard was referring to Santa Fe's "modern steam power"...the 3765, 3776, 2900 classes.

"Also, I think it's time also that we stopped calling railroad
locomotive
mechanical people "bozos", and understand that mistakes were made sometimes."
Well, maybe but surely not in Ashby's case.

Mike Brock


switchengines <jrs060@...>
 

Mike I think you need to read some Trains Magazine back issues, the August 1975
article by Lloyd Stagner (noted steam author, ex Santa Fe employee, and historian) on
the problems with the Santa Fe 2-10-4s, and a June 1985 article by the same author talking about the last class of Santa Fe 4-6-4 and it's related boiler problems.
I surely wouldn't argue with you about your points on locomotive adhesion, as you
are correct, but the driving wheel slipperiness on the 2-10-4s was causing side rod damage, and the problem was never successfully remedied by the railroad because
they had no room for a heavier side rods because of the lateral motion necessary for
the long wheel base due to the large driver size. I have to admit here that I have the
benefit of an hour and a half interview with the late Vernon L. Smith many years ago
when he was the Locomotive Superintendent for the Belt Railway of Chicago, and he
did have many interesting points to relate about Santa Fe steam problems.
As to the 4-8-4s, my point was that it took design changes to arrive at an engine
that was successful, and the railroad felt it was necessary to rebuild to first group.

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Mike Brock" <brockm@...> wrote:

Jerry Stewart says that Richard Hendrickson said the Santa Fe's modern
4-6-4/s, 4-8-4's and 2-10-4's were "spectacularly successful":

"Spectacularly successful", that's more than stretching the facts
Richard. The
problems of Santa Fe steam locomotive designs have been well documented in
magazine articles and books for many years.
Well...hmmm. I don't know. I have just about everything so far written about
these locomotives and the conclusion seems to be at least "highly
successful"....although I have to admit that I haven't studied results of
the 4-6-4 3460 class. Certainly the 1939 tests of 2-10-4 5007 only revealed
one problem...the damned thing was too powerful for its weight on drivers
and was, thus, a bit slippery at low speeds. Oddly, both the N&W class J and
class A 2-6-6-4 were also slippery for the same reason.

This was exacerbated by the fact that the
engines
were very slippery due to the large driving wheel diameter and high boiler
pressure
that caused side rod bending and failures.
Oh dear. I do wish we could correct this notion. Driver size has little to
do with being slippery. In fact, a smaller driver tends to be more slippery
because, believe it or not, a smaller wheel produces a deeper indention in
the rail and, thus, has to climb out of it. That's why steam switch engines
have very high factors of adhesion...the real culprit causing slipping.
Weight on drivers divided by starting tractive effort. That's all there is
to it. A number higher than 4 is good. Lower than 4...tends toward being
slippery. The number 4 is associated with the coefficient of clean, steel
rail and a steel driver tire surface.

As for finally get the 4-8-4s
sorted out..
....well they had to completely rebuild the first group and ended up with
an engine
that had one of the strangest appliance arrangement one could ever find. A
second
cross compound air compressor placed under the firemans' side of the
cab.......very strange!
Now, now. Richard was referring to Santa Fe's "modern steam power"...the
3765, 3776, 2900 classes.

"Also, I think it's time also that we stopped calling railroad
locomotive
mechanical people "bozos", and understand that mistakes were made
sometimes."
Well, maybe but surely not in Ashby's case.

Mike Brock


Mikebrock
 

Jerry Stewart says:


"Mike I think you need to read some Trains Magazine back issues, the August 1975
article by Lloyd Stagner (noted steam author, ex Santa Fe employee, and historian) on
the problems with the Santa Fe 2-10-4s, and a June 1985 article by the same author talking about the last class of Santa Fe 4-6-4 and it's related boiler problems."

Uh oh. I consider lloyd Stagner's August '75 article on the Santa Fe 2-10-4s one of the very best articles ever published. I have 3 copies and have read it a number of times. You mean I have to read it again? I have Vernon Smith's book One Man's Locomotives and he references the problem, "...These large locomotives would occasionally bend the front section side rods when they slipped violently." According to Smith, he designed a new replacement rod "...and the new rods overcame the problem".

I'm not certain that any locomotive...steam or diesel...arrived from the builder free of problems. After all...at least with steam power, usually a new locomotive was built and delivered to the buying railroad without extensive testing to eliminate "bugs". Even such a great design as UP's 4-8-4's had drafting problems due to the desire to "open" up the front end to reduce back pressure. The N&W Class A had a problem working water through the throttle during high steam utilization which was finally solved by lowering the crown sheet about 3 inches.

Mike Brock


Jon Miller <atsf@...>
 

On 8/11/2012 9:41 AM, Mike Brock wrote:
Santa Fe 4-6-4 etc.
Haven't heard anyone mention the book "Santa Fe's Big Three" by Kip
</servlet/SearchResults?an=Farrington%2C+S.+Kip>Farrington. I remember
the book seemed dry and don't remember much about it except the large
amount of soot these oil burners accumulated in a short time. Any
thoughts on this book?
</servlet/SearchResults?an=Farrington%2C+S.+Kip>

--
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax--Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS