• C38AChe trucks

  • Discussion of General Electric locomotive technology. Current official information can be found here: www.getransportation.com.
Discussion of General Electric locomotive technology. Current official information can be found here: www.getransportation.com.

Moderators: AMTK84, MEC407

  by Allen Hazen
Some photos of the C38AChe locomotive designed by GE for use on China's new railway to Tibet have hit the WWWeb. (One of the units was sent by GE to test in Colorado -- I found photos on Colorado/DRGW railfan site by Googling C38AChe .)
The trucks look, on first glance, very similar to the lightweight (fabricated?) version of the GE "roller blades" truck used on the Australia NR class ( = lightweight, low-profile, no short hood, version of a Dash-9 built by GE's Austalian licensee Goninan for use on the national standard-gauge network).
Anyone know more? Like, where were the trucks built?
  by es80ac
the truck looks like a C version of the P42/P40 Genesis bolsterless trucks. Even the carbody looks similar to Genesis units, without the nose. (the slanted roof, the integrated fuel tank)

  by Allen Hazen
I hadn't noticed the integrated fuel tanks-- I'll have to look again. Thanks!
Chinese railways seem to have lower permissible axle loadings than U.S. (The C36-7 built for China back in the 1980s were significantly different from domestic models: among other things, they were shorter -- intermediate between a domestic C36-7 and a domestic B36-7 -- in what I assume was an effort to produce a lightweight version.) Integral fuel tanks are a weightsaving technique GE has used before: on Genesis, and I think also on the Australian NR.
As for the trucks: I think the "roller blades" trucks on domestic C44-9 (and AC44 for some customers) are themselves bolsterless, and owe something to the (Krupp?) design of the Genesis trucks -- so it wouldn't be surprising if a lightweight version looked even more like a Genesis truck.

  by DutchRailnut
The light weight designs were by Krupp but the factory that designed them is now Vosloh, as stated on later Genesis units

  by es80ac
Yes, for a long time China rail's axle load was only 23 metric tonnes due to lighter rails. Now most of the mainlines are upgraded to at least 25 tones per axle, some of the newer locomotives now weighs 150 tonns. But GE kept the weight to under 138t. The original C36-7 kept their GSC trucks. But this batch are destined for passenger haulage, which is probably the reason for the custom trucks. Too bad, I really like the HI AD roller blade trucks.

  by Allen Hazen
Dutch Railnut--
Krupp used to be a GE partner on some locomotive business (I think there are exort U-series somewhere that were built by Krupp), and at the time the Genesis was introduced it was announced that their trucks were a Krupp design. (I assume GE also called on their European partner's engineering expertise in trying to design a lightweight carbody for the Genesis, but I don't actually remember any announcements.)
Thanks for numbers! I don't have anything of value to add. ... For comparison, the 70,000 pounds per axle that large parts of the North American rail network tolerates would be close to 32 metric tonnes, and the new heavy-freight locomotive EMD and Cossloh have announced for European use is something like 21 per axle.

  by PortoAmboim

The bogies for the C38AChe locomotives were built in Australia by United Goninan in Taree, New South Wales.

The deal to supply 156 bogies for the 78 locomotives GE was/is building at Erie for China's Ministry of Rail was apparently worth $30 million (Australian dollars).

  by Allen Hazen
Porto Amboim--
Neat! I THOUGHT they looked like NR trucks!
(Thank you very much for the information.)

  by PortoAmboim
It looks like the first three C38AChe locomotives (NJ2-0001, 0002 and 0003) were shipped from Philadelphia in early December 2005, and arrived in China (Tianjing) on 17 January, painted in the standard dark green with a mid-level yellow stripe. The press release that went with the story and photos of the unloading said they were going to be sent to Golmud (which I understand is going to be their service base) to begin testing.

As you'd know, NJ2-0004 was the unit that west to East Portal for testing.