• Maine Central GE U18B Locomotives (MEC 400 - 409)

  • 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 chrisf
GP40MC1118 wrote:The P&W's sole U18 went to the SRNJ and is up on blocks and derelict near Winslow Jct, NJ.
http://rrpicturearchives.net/locoList.a ... RNJ&mid=65" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
And now this U18 has been cut up: http://rrpicturearchives.net/showPictur ... id=4645260" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
  by b&m 1566
GP40MC1118 wrote:All MEC U18's were scrapped by Guilford except for the two that went to CAD.
Were these engines junk by the time they were scrapped? (I assume they were)
  by MEC407
Not necessarily. I think one or two of them had wreck damage, but mainly the company was in a purge mode of getting rid of almost everything that was less than 2500 HP, including an awful lot of perfectly good GP9s and GP7s. I don't know what scrap prices were like at the time but maybe they were on the high side. That, along with there not being much of a market for older GEs, probably meant that scrapping them made the most economic sense.

For what it's worth, 404 and 407 were in good shape when they left the property. Ditto for U23B #288.
  by GP40MC1118
The only one I remember with wreck damage was the 406, which was the runaway engine out of East Cambridge.

  by MEC407
I'm 97% certain there was another one, but for the life of me I can't remember the number. It'll come to me eventually.

And something happened to 404 to warrant getting a U25B nose, but I suppose that's not germane to the question about them being scrapped.

At any rate, I'm sad to hear that they're all completely gone now, but I guess that was inevitable.

From everything I've heard — from MEC people who worked on and ran them — they were good locomotives. They performed better on the Mountain than the GP38s did, and that's good enough for me. :wink:

Not MEC, but if you want to see a U18B doing its best impression of a mountain goat, watch this:

http://youtu.be/CdL9d0CC_Iw?t=3m8s" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
  by GP40MC1118
Here's another interesting tidbit from my MEC U18B roster:

MEC 400:1 was retired, then reactivated/renumbered to MEC 406:2 after the original MEC 406 was wrecked. MEC 406:1
was involved in a runaway incident 4/21/95 at North Billerica, Ma. Renumbered to MEC 400:2 and retired 10/10/95.

Great video!

  by RGlueck
I think there was a special affinity for the "Independence" class U18B's. They had recycled EMD trucks under them, they were named patriotically, MEC management created an art poster of them, they wore eagle decals. These traits made them very "Yankee" in nature, and they were odd units in teh GE character. U18B's were small road locomotives. One original, at least a shell, might have been preserved as a regional museum icon, but they represented money as used units or scrap. It was really neat to see them followed by the ex-Rock Island U25B's.
  by b&m 1566
I know most but not all baby boats were given recycled EMD trucks; P&W and some of Seaboard Coast Line, U18b's had different trucks. Were all U18b's delivered with used trucks, or were the non EMD trucks brand new?
  by MEC407
Some of them came from the factory with new GE trucks. The P&W one came with new GE FB-2 trucks, for example (and P&W later replaced them with an older set of GE trucks from a different unit; one of the U23Bs perhaps).
  by 690
talltim wrote:So, did anyone find when the nose was replaced? I've has quick look through http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/Locopi ... px?id=7144" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; but the differences aren't obvious. What I could spot from http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=2643067" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; from 1989 is that the little lights (what are they called) are set further out on 404 than on 406. Is that a signifier of the the U25 nose?
In this pic from 1983 http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=3015899" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; the lights look further in and in this http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=1192359" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; from 1987 further out so I'm guessing that the nose job was between 1983 and 1987.
http://www.railpictures.net/showphotos. ... newsort=12" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; has far less photos so isn't much help
https://scontent.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/ ... e=593D550B" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Someone just posted this on facebook, guessing this was the reason the nose was replaced on the 404. No date on it, just the location (Livermore Falls), but I'd guess probably around the time Maine Central bought the Rock Island U25Bs,
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