• FM P-12-42

  • Discussion relating to the pre-1983 B&M and MEC railroads. For current operations, please see the Pan Am Railways Forum.
Discussion relating to the pre-1983 B&M and MEC railroads. For current operations, please see the Pan Am Railways Forum.

Moderator: MEC407

  by ramonesfan
does anyone know if the F-M P-12-42 duel mode loco also known as the speed merchant built by Fairbanks-Morse is still in revenue service. only 4 were built. 2 went to use at this railroad 2 others went to north-haven rr.
  by TomNelligan
All four are long, long gone. The Boston & Maine's pair were retired in the early 1960s and were stored at the Boston Engine Terminal roundhouse until about 1969, then sold to a scrapyard in Leeds, Maine that used them as stationary generators. They were cut up there in the late 1970s or early 1980s. The New Haven RR's pair were retired in the late 1950s and stored at Cedar Hill Yard in New Haven until the late 1960s, when they were scrapped.

BTW, only the New Haven's units had third rail electrical gear (for operation into Grand Central Terminal). The B&M's were straight diesel-electrics.
  by NRGeep
Where did they run on the B&M and are there photos?
  by TomNelligan
The B&M's P12-42s, like the New Haven's, were part of an early version of the Talgo train that was built in the US by American Car & Foundry in the mid-1950s. Only two sets were built. The B&M's Talgo set was purchased for the Boston-Portland run and ran there for a few years but wound up its days in commuter service between Boston and Portmouth. The New Haven's Talgo ran briefly between Boston and New York.

You can find a number of photos of the B&M Talgo in Robert Willoughby Jones' book Boston & Maine: City and Shore, among other publications.
  by ferroequinarchaeologist
In its final years, the Talgo ran in commuter service on the western and eastern main lines. I can recall my father commuting to/from Wakefield on it.

  by b&m 1566
They sure were ugly looking engines; although I'm sure the B&M paint scheme didn't help that at all. They took on a look similar to the engines over in Europe or something, all you need is the two bumper things in front. Was the design a success or bust? I know only 4 were made but that's because Fairbanks-Morse was strapped for cash as they did have plans to build more of them.
  by jbvb
The Talgos were defniitely failures on both th B&M and New Haven. IIRC, the NH Talgo never ran a mile in revenue service. The B&M's never ran long-haul, and was a poor fit for the commuter service it did provide: I believe the long, fixed-length consist only ran one R/T per day at rush-hour peaks, even when it was only going to Reading. The HEP required one or both diesels running to keep the cars heated or cooled, and it was highly unpopular with the neighbors of every outlying terminal where it laid over overnight. It also had the only two F-M opposed-piston prime movers on the railroad. It was kept while the B&M was selling surplus RDCs in the early 1960s, probably because no other RR wanted it, but the cutback of most passenger service to MBTA limits in early 1965 doomed it.

I recall riding it once, to Newburyport. It didn't stand out (to an 8-yr-old) as uncomfortable or noisy, but I was comparing it to the RDCs; It was certainly lots nicer to ride than the GO Transit cars or the Boise Budds. The latter were terribly noisy due to the removal of a lot of sound insulation in the rebuild.
  by jaymac
Even more Talgo trivia:
Whatever his other legal problems might have been, Patrick B. McGinnis was never indicted for his imposition of Talgos on both the NH and B&M, even though the sets were a methaphorically criminal waste of stockholder money.
At least a couple of Talgo car shells got repurposed as a diner near the Boston Produce Market in Chelsea. The last time I was there was the late 70s, and I don't know if they're still there.
For at least a while in the late 50s, the B&M set was in Portsmouth service. I saw it laying over at the engine house.
On the B&M, at least, the Talgo had a reputation for starting brushfires. The opposed-piston prime movers would coke up after idling and then go all vesuvius like some GEs when worked.