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November 1999 - Page 20

NIJ.!qE''''PFlo:ros '/Jy thf! author; others as indicated
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a nd B enter Spencer yard on the Northern Virginia Model Railroaders' layout.
1 ,600 lb. per hour steam generator supplied train heat. The F3A unit measured 50' 8 " long; the F 3 B w a s 5 0 '. L o a d e d , e a c h w e i g h e d 230,000 I b s . and carried 1 ,200 gallons o f diesel fuel , 200 gal lons o f lubricating oil, and 1 6 cubic feet of sand. The carbody was the same as the F2, with four raised fans and, in the early mode l s , s m a l l num ber boards. Most modelers are aware that the F3 can be classified into four "phases." The Phase I F3s had four raised fans, three port holes on each side, dynamic-brake grids on the roof, "chicken wire" instead of a fil ter gri I Ie, and rode on H yatt rol l er-beari ng trucks. These early trucks had both l arge box and sloped journals. The Phase IT F3s began to come off the production line in early 1 947. At first, these had raised fans, then low ones. They had only two portholes on each side, with four louvers between them. The d i stinguishing feature o f the Phase II unit is the g r i l l e c h i c ken w i re that extends down the s i de between the two portholes. Phase I I s also had large "bug-eye" numberboards, a feature that continued through F9 production. The Phase III units, produced in 1 948, had four louvers and two portholes with no chicken w i re between them. Finally, the Phase IV units had Farr air grilles, making them look exactly l ike the F7. The Phase IV F3s are sometimes called F5s. The F3 was a big seller. EMD sold I , I I I cab units and 695 boosters. The biggest pur chaser was the Union Pac i fi c , with 89 A units and 90 boosters. Virtual ly every Class I rai lroad in the country, with a few notable exceptions, such as the Norfolk & Western and the D e l aware & H ud s o n , p u rc h ased them. The F3 gave EMD a solid hold on the mainline diesel market for 1 5 years, helping to establ ish it as the preeminent locomotive builder in postwar America.

L A e ic ail d d SP n ew motive power. Some received FTs and F2s during the war, but these were hardly enough to fil l the gap. Steam locomotives that had been retired were brought out of storage during the war to sati sfy the vast re quirements it placed on America's rail trans portation system. EMD i n tr o d u c e d i t s F3 in A u g u s t of 1 945 , s e n d i n g d e m o n s trators across the country on a 1 00,000-mile tour designed to convince the railro'ads to purchase the new model. However, EMD was really in the dri ver's seat. The War Production Board had prohibited EMD's competitors from produc ing road units during the war. Limited to the switcher un i ts they were a l l owed to bu i ld, they were in no position to challenge the F3 . With this lack of competition, and the rail roads' great need for mainline motive power, the F3 would have been a big seller even if it had not been so well built. The F3 went into production in October of 1 946 w i th both cab and booster u n i ts available. This gave owners the flex ib i lity they needed to mix and match motive power for each part i c u l ar task. The F3 boasted many improvements over the Ff1F2 models. These i nc l u ded : a new generator, w h i c h could produce both AC and D C current for smoother operation; a new cooling system which al lowed any or all of the 36" roof fans to operate as needed; modular construction in the electrical and plumbing systems, mak ing maintenance and repair easier; and a 2cycle 1 6-cy l i nder series 567 pri me mover rated at 1 , 500 horsepow e r, u p fro m the Ff/F2 's 1 ,350. For passenger service, a new

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At the end of World War I I , the Maine Central was conducting joint operations with the Boston and Maine Railroad. The MEC h a d trac k s in M a i n e , Ver m o n t a n d New Hampshire, although its equipment could be fou n d throughout the B & M system. The MEC's fleet was considerably smaller than B & M 's , and its backbone during the ' 50s was its covered wagons, its G P7s, and its various switchers. The Maine Central began its diesel iza tion program in 1 933 with the purchase of a St. Louis Motor Car, #90 l . It continued with the purchase of an EMC articulated train in 1 93 5 , dubbed The Flying Yankee a nd later The Cheshire. T he MEC began purchasing fre i g h t d i e s e l s when i t b o u g h t two A l co HH660 switchers in 1 939. As a small road, the MEC cou ld obtain only a couple of other switchers during the war. MEC's first F3s were Phase II units with low fans, dynamic brakes, steam generators and Hyatt roller-bearing trucks with sloped journals. They were delivered in December of 1 947 in a beauti fu l maroon, b l ack and D u l u x g o l d p a i n t s c h e m e s i m i l a r to the B & M ' s . The M EC b o u ght t w o A lB sets, numbered 67 1 A , 67 I B and 672A, 672B. In postwar New England, passenger operations were a significant part of the rai lroad busi ness, and both the M EC and the B&M pur chased diesels with this in mind. Both roads
N O VE M B E R 1 999


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