dkgrubb wrote:A very interesting fact about an existing BL2 is the outstanding performance of former Western Maryland BL2 #82, which operates on the former WM, now the West Virginia Central, in Elkins, West Virginia. This locomotive went to the West Virginia State Rail Authority who operated it on the South Branch Valley Railroad, in Moorefield, WV. As with all of their locomotives, they ran the BL2 into the ground, and declared it no longer operational. The SRA was goin to scrap the locomotive, but Mr. John Smith convinced the state to move it to the WVC, the other state owned railroad. The shop men at the SBV said that it would take (i think) $200,000 the repair the BL2 to operation. The WVC mechanics, Tim Cochran and Jack Sanford returned the BL2 to operation with less than $2000. It has been operating ever since. It did go to CSX's Huntington Shops for some work to the trucks and prime mover, though. An interesting fact about it is that compared to the EMD FP7 that the Central operates, it is said that the BL2 outpulls it, no contest, as the passenger unit was built for speed, and the BL2 was built for heavy freight service. The line out of Elkins traverses quite steep grades, as part of the line was actually built for Shay steam locomotives of a logging railroad. More later...
(Sam Peer) I happen to very familiar with the BL2 and SBVR operation as a part of my job. You've made some errors in your comments and also sme nearly slanderous remarks about he SBVR Shop people. Let me correct you. First the BL-2 was transferred from Cass Railroad to the South Branch after the 195 flood destroyed the Greenbrier Branch. When the BL-2 arrived on the South Branch nearly half the electric equipment was missing. It leaked oil from about every place imaginable on the desiel engine. In fact, the engine room was not a safe place to walk becasue of oil leaks. Additionally, the BL-2's frame was not sufficient to MU with other units, making it useless on the SBVR. The engine was never run on the SBVR in freight service.
You are correct in that the engine was taken to the West Virginia Central. I haven't the foggiest how much money they put in repairing the BL-2 but, I can assure you it was more than a $2,000 paint job. Especially, knowing the PSC and FRA railroad safety inspectors and how picky they can be. Additionally, you fail to mention the costs associated with the work that was done on the BL-2 by the Huntington Shops. In speaking to the shop supervisor, he informed me they had not put a price onf renovating the BL-2, thus the $200,000 figure you state is straight out fo your imagination.
Now, as for the SBVR shop people running their power into the ground. You have no idea of what you speak. I imagine since you are little more that a glaze eyed railfan, you know very litttle about real railroading in general and even less about shortline railroading. That is obvious by some of your posts.
I see the SBVR's equipment from time to to time and it is kept in good shape. The vast majority of their equipment is 50's vintage and requires a hugh amount of TLC to keep running. They do that quite well on a very limited budget and under very limiting conditions. As of right now, the SBVR has 6 GP9's, 2 SD9, 1 SD18, and a 80 ton center cab. All are operating except the SD 18 and one GP9, both of which should be up in the near future. Three of the GP 9s are equiped with computers and have autostarts. Soon, all three of the SD's will have auto starts saving thousands of dollars in fuel.
Quite frankly you owe the SBVR personnel an apology for the tenor of your comments. They do not run anything in the ground. Additionally, so far as railroading goes, I would certainly put them up against any company out there today.