NorthWest wrote:It is also interesting that ALCO was willing to supply components at the same time as their competing DL500 series. With the Alco-GE agreement, they may not have had a choice.
That’s an interesting issue that I have never seen addressed in anything that I have read.
Empirically one would deduce that when the Alco-GE agreement was in operation, GE was still free to pursue international locomotive business with its own designs, with powerplants of its own or its customers’ choosing. In practice it used either Cooper-Bessemer or Alco engines for the road locomotive designs. Whether Alco had any obligation to supply its powerplants to GE for this purpose is unknown. But if not, if would have had little reason not to supply given that in most cases, it was not otherwise going to get a share of the international business on offer. Some overseas railroads, such as those in Brasil and Uruguay, bought both Alco-GE and GE locomotives more-or-less concurrently. Their Alco-GE locomotives were essentially domestic designs. Possibly in export situations where Alco-GE domestic models either fitted or reasonably could be made to fit the requirements, GE might have been constrained from making an independent offer.
The DL500, announced mid-1953, actually started life as an Alco-GE model. But the split between Alco and GE happened just a few months later, so that was academic, and all production was under the Alco banner. Had the split not happened then, perhaps GE would have chosen to or would have had to phase out those shovel-nose models that were comparable to the DL500, that is the Alco 12-244 powered standard and broad gauge models. But there may still have been a place for the lighter and more-compact-in-profile Cape/metre gauge variants, as the DL500, although nominally available for those gauges, was probably a bit too heavy and a bit too high and wide for some applications. In the weight and profile departments, GE got it right with its export U18C model of 1956. With its earlier independent experience, it really had had a head-start in the CMT gauge world when compared with Alco and EMD, and so knew what the constraints were.
After the split, supplying - or not as the case may be - engines to GE was probably simply a business decision for Alco.
Allen Hazen wrote:Tangential to topic, but…
Pneudyne, do you know how the running gear of the Indonesian 3-truck units worked? Did the centre truck have provision for side-play? (Yes, I'm still fretting about the abortive GE/Alco/Nelseco/New York Central unit from the 1920s.)
It must have done, otherwise what was rather a long locomotive would never have gotten around the curves. But how it was done I don’t know. From the photographic evidence, the centre truck was of GE’s slab-framed design, outside equalized, with cutouts for the coil primary springs and the elliptical bolster springs. The presence of the latter strongly suggests that the bolster was of the swing motion type, perhaps arranged to provide significantly more lateral motion than was usually the case.