Installing correct trucks on the New Atlas SD35 to Match Southern units
Electromotive division of General Motors--FT Models
In November 1939 some 18 months after a spokesman for one of the large
locomotive makers had written a technical paper stating that the diesel-
electric locomotive was suitable for switching and fast passenger operation
but that it would not replace the steam locomotive in heavy freight service,
Electro-Motive Corp. of La Grange, Ill., turned out the first of what be-
came the class FT freight locomotive. In the next 11 months the "One-oh-
three" demonstrated its ability to haul trains of normal makeup over 20
railroads, racking up some 83,764 miles. Temperatures ranged from 40
degrees below zero F. to 100 above. Between the locomotive and the trains
it hauled were inserted a dynamometer car, two business cars for officials,
a tank car for fuel oil, and a boxcar of spare parts.
The locomotive consisted of four similar units in pairs. One unit of
each pair was called an "A unit" and its mate was a "B unit." The two A
units had operating cabs behind streamlined noses; in other respects the
four units were alike. One A and one B were semipermanently coupled with a
drawbar, forming a one-ended pair that could be used as a single-ended
locomotive. The other pair was similar but was coupled to the first pair
with a normal coupler and usually operated in reverse. Thus the four units
as a group became a double-ended locomotive that did not need to be
turned at a terminal.
Each of the units contained a 1350-horsepower diesel engine that drove
an electric generator supplying a voltage varying with the speed of the
engine (not track speed). The two two-axle trucks had electric traction
motors geared to each axle, so all wheels were drivers. The power and
speedof these motors depended on the voltage delivered from the
generator;thus, no resistance grids were needed as in other types
of electric locomotive. The four units delivered 5400 horsepower.
A few FTís were equipped with "steam generators," actually boilers that
supplied steam for the trainís heating line. These had the boiler at the
rear of the B unit and a stack above it.
PROTOTYPE F2 & F3 COVERED WAGONS
Electromotive Division of General Motors
No. they do not all look alike.
True. there were 1805 F-3 units constructed, and they all were basically
similar: all had B-B wheel arrangement, 1500-hp. 567B V-16 engines, and
identical layouts of equipment. But there were differences easily visible
to the trained eye-and any modeler can not only spot them with a little
training, but reproduce them in his "fleet" of F-3ís. The trick is to decide
first on the prototype that one wants to imitate (if that is the intention)
or on the kind of railroad he dreams up for himself. The "off-the-shelf"
modeler does not need a dissertation on the subtleties of diesel spotting;
the commercial products will do as they come. However, if the modeler
istrying to assert individuality in the face of GM-inspired mass
production, the photo essay following should be of value. There can be
variety within conformity.
EMD followed its successful wartime production of the FT with a heavy
commitment to the F-type unit after World War II. The first improvement was
in the engine. The original straight 567 engine profited from the companyís
experience with the FT and emerged as the 567B in the F-2, there being no
"F-l" to follow FT production. F-3 horsepower was raised from the FT and
F-2ís1350 to a 1500 figure. and the basic carbody design of the first F
units was retained. Gone were the famous four portholes of the FT. and in
their place were, at first, three ports evenly spaced along the side of the
carbody. The entire body of F-2 production kept this appearance. and the
first F-3 models did also. This is in part due to the ED custom of applying
new components to models as they are developed. without necessarily waiting
for a formal change of model. Thus the F-2 entered production before the
last FT units were delivered; F-3 units at first looked identical to the
F-2ís they superseded; and the "F-5" units. although not delivered as such
(but always referred to in ED technical manuals that way). were F-7 rated
units in late F-3 carbodies. Itís exactly as if a 1969 Chevy were built
late in the model year and received the 1970 engine and transmission. For
this reason. and for others. it is possible to separate F-2/F-D production
into "phases" which we shall label Phase I. Phase II. and so on.
For example. it is easier to classify those early F-3 units which were
identical in appearance to F-2ís as "Phase I" F-3ís than to explain what
this means each time. Thus we will describe the F-2 look-alikes as the "F-3
I" or "Phase I F-3."
Those F-3ís which are distinguished by only two ports. square vent
openings between the ports. and a kind of "chicken wire" grille covering the
openings are the F-3 Phase II. Where horizontally-slitted louvers replace
the earlier vents. and the wire grille is only along the large openings at
the topí of the side panels. we call that a Phase III. When the unit
acquired the F-7 type stainless steel grille along the top. and look
sexactly like the F-7, we will designate it Phase IV. Varieties. within
these categories. usually created by the owners in the course of time, will
be separately illustrated and explained. It is hoped that this photo essay
will dispel for all time the "They All Look Alike" syndrome.
Miscellaneous F-3 Facts All F2 and F3 units had the 16-567B diesel engine.
Largest owners of F-3ís: Southern 177 (101 A-76B); UP 179 (89A,90B).
Largest F2 owners National Railways of Mexico (NdeM)28 (14A,14B); ACL 24
Demonstrators (no F2 demos), 6 F3"s) 59A became KCS (L&A) 59A (7459, 10-
48); 29lAl became TP&W 100 (#3310, 7-45); 29lBl became TP&W 101 (#3372, 7-
45; this B-unit was later rebuilt to an A by railroad); 754Al became Monon
65-C (#4065. 9-46); 754A2 became Monon 85-A (#4066, 9-46); 754Bl became
Monon 85-B (#3373, 7-45; B-unit). Unit 29lA2 (#3371, 7-45) was wrecked and
scrapped while demonstrating as part of A-B-A set 291. All but 59-A were F-
3 Iís; this unit was an F-3 II.
At this time, all F-2 units (with the possible exception of the NdeM
units) have been scrapped. About 90% of theí F-3ís have also been scrapped.
EMD test car ET909 has the appearance of an F-3B. but was never a
powered unit and is therefore not included in the totals (it was not a
Pre-production artwork on some F-3 I units does not look like the
finished product. No units with the "F-7 type" grille between the portholes
were actually built. KCS and Erie units. among others; have been
illustrated like this by EMD artists.
Production dates: F-2 during 1946; F-3 from 9-46 to 8-48;
so-called "F-5" from 8-48 to-49.
Stewart Phase II and Phase III shells
Does anyone now what the difference is between the Stewart F-3 phase II
shell and the Phase III?
I don't have the shells in front of me to compare but here is a
description of the two phases you asked about.
Phase II-This is commonly referred to as the "Chicken Wire" phase. This
phase has only 2 portholes and 4 louvers on the side and these louvers as
well as the intake grills were covered with a wire mesh(chicken wire).
Phase II came with both high and low fans, so get a pic of the unit you are
Phase III-similar to Phase II except the wire mesh(chicken wire) only
covers the intake grills at the top and does not cover the louvers.
Phase III came with both high and low fans.
Many F3's were reworked into later ratings and Phases so again get a
picture of the unit you are modeling. Both Phase II and III had the large
slanted number boards with classification lights above. Phase I had the
small number boards with integral classification lights.
The "B" units for the phase II and III were alike, 3 portholes, no body
louvers and wire mesh(chicken wire) covering the intake grills at top of
This does not answer the original question, but may help in identifying
which shell to use.
PROTOTYPE F3 & F5 COVERED WAGONS
Electromotive Division of General Motors
Nickel Plate Products is proud to bring you the F3, phase IV and F5
diesel-electric locomotive. Available in limited sets factory painted for
the Baltimore & Ohio, New York Central, and Pennsylvania railroads. Each set
consists of a powered A unit and a dummy A unit. These handsome HO models
are also available unpainted. The prototype F3, phase IV was the last
variation of the F3 produced by EMD. Built from September, 1946 until
August, 1948, they were superseded by the F5. The F5 was essentially an
F3,body with F7 electrical components. The F5ís were built from August,1948
until March, 1949. Prime mover was EMDís 1500 h.p. V-16 diesel. Other
railroads which used these locomotives were C&EI, Santa Fe, Clinchfield,
CB&Q, EL, and many others.
From an advertisement...
Spotting difference between an F7 and F9
The F9 also has "rounded" door corners, a 48" Dynamic brake fan, and,
typically, has cooling coils on the roof's left side . The 48" fan
was also used on late F7's as were the louvers you mentioned.
Some F7's were re-fitted with cooling coils as well.
The rear door on F9's was a "porthole" window while all other F's
typically had "square" windows.
DECK HEIGHTS FOR SOME EMD MODELS
Here are some basic dimensions from my collection of EMD fabrication
prints with regards to the discussion of lowering models, modifying frames
and or building same. Hopefully these will help to determine which models
need modifications and which don't. To quote the drawing notes: "Locomotive
is shown including half variable supplies and in new condition, standing
still on level and tangent track." "Loco. height tolerance =3D +/- 1.5"."
TOP OF RAIL TO TOP OF UNDERFRAME
GP30/35 - 60.25"
40 SERIES, DASH 2 & 50 SERIES GP'S - 61.75"
40 SERIES & DASH 2 SD'S - 64.5"
SD70 - 67.62"
SD70MAC - 66.88"
SD80/90 - 69.75"
The missing dimensions for the GP60's and SD50/60 are because I don't have
prints on those models. Maybe someone could help fill in the blanks.
I have a EMD GP 60 Drawing and it lists 63.25" as the height (with 40"
The SD70/M/MAC all have 42" wheels and the SD80/90s have 44" wheels.
What about the others?
Just for information I measured two out of the box Athearn units:
GP40-2 measured 68.73" (.080 too high)
SD40-2 measured 68.29" at the front and 66.55" at the rear (.035 too high
EMD TORPEDO BOATS
Torpedo boats are EMD geeps with the airtanks in pairs along
the edge of the long hood, rather than crosswise under the
frame next to the fuel tank.
Most torpedo boats were passenger units with the airtanks
relocated to provide additional fuel and water capacity, but NP
and RF&P bought torpedo boats without steam generators, desiring
the extra fuel capacity for freight service.
MP rebuilt non-torpedo boat units into torpedo boats for the
same reason, and many passenger torpedo boats had their water
tanks converted to extra fuel capacity when the steam generators
were removed or disabled. Perhaps the extra fuel capacity is one
of the reasons why torpedo boats seem to be so popular with
shortlines today, including several I've missed in the lists
To the best of my knowledge, only CRI&P units were rebuilt from
torpedo boat to standard configuration (some of these units were
still active on the C&NW at the time of the UP merger).
Besides Atlas's newly announced N-scale B&O, BN, GTW, MILW, NKP,
NYC, and SP; torpedo boat GP9 owners included BNML, C&NW, CR,
CUT, CV, GN, GT, IC, L&N, MRL, MRyM, N&W, NP, PC, SOO, SP&S,
UTR, VS, WAB, and WC.
Torpedo boat GP7 owners included A&StAB, A&WP, AT&SF, B&O, BN,
CG, CIRR, CR, CRI&P, CRR, DL&W, EL, Ga, GN, IC, L&N, MKT, MP,
N&W, NC&StL, NP, PC, PRR, RF&P, Sou, WAB, and WofA.
GTW and MP had torpedo boat GP18s.
Commonly, only classic geeps with the airtanks grouped where
dynamic brakes might otherwise be are considered true torpedo
boats, but other models were also occasionally found with
rooftop airtanks, including selected: CP d/b GP9s, Southern
F-3s and E-8s, A UP Alco PA modified to serve as the lead unit
for the experimental coal-dust turbine, SLSF and C&NW GP-35s,
NYC RS-3s, several EMD switchers, and all SD24/SD26s.
© S.A. McCall