KSmitty wrote:Some, the GP9r's I think, have high short hood mounted bells. The unrebuilt units have them tucked somewhere under the frame. Dave Hutchinson will be able to offer more info, or you could check the MEC/B&M forum in the fallen flags section. I asked the same question a few years ago.
Originally, all B&M GP-7's and GP-9's had their bells mounted under the frame on the short hood end just as EMD intended. This location proved to be a terrible spot for a bell when it snowed. When the locomotive would hit a drift or snowbank, the snow would get up underneath and inside the bell, muffling the sound and making the bell useless, that is why railroads like the Maine Central and others in heavy snow regions of the country ordered their bells mounted high up on the hood. One would think the B&M would do the same, but remember, all through its history, the B&M was very frugal with their money.
Starting in 1979, the B&M started retrofitting their geeps with hood mounted bells on the short hood offset toward the fireman's side. GP-7's 1555-1556-1557-1558-1559-1560-1562-1563-1565-1566-1567-1569-1570-1574 and GP-9's 1707-1708-1720-1724-1732-1734-1736-1743-1747 all got the re-located bells.
Now, one would ask, why did they do mostly older GP-7's instead of their newer GP-9's? The answer is, The MBTA was, at that time, paying for the upkeep of the GP-7's they were leasing from the B&M. During their tenure on Commuter Rail, all of the GP-7's got retro-fitted bells and new paint jobs, after all, they were free advertising in the Boston area.