• EMD SD45 series official thread (covers all variations)

  • Discussion of Electro-Motive locomotive products and technology, past and present. Official web site can be found here: http://www.emdiesels.com/.
Discussion of Electro-Motive locomotive products and technology, past and present. Official web site can be found here: http://www.emdiesels.com/.

Moderator: GOLDEN-ARM

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  by BlackDog
 
brokenrail wrote:Any engineer that bumps his head going through the nose door of an F45 deserves it. What's an engineer, an "Aristocrat of Railway Labor" (BLE slogan), doing entering through the toilet anyway? You wouldn't enter an F7 through that little door. If you can't climb a ladder with a 50 lb. grip in your teeth you might as well stay home with mommy and the electric trains on the carpet.

F45's are noisy. And that's in the cab. Imagine the engine room at run 8! I always enjoy a call to run an F45. Maybe because they are so unusual. But I still catch myself turning in my seat on curves only to look back at the cab wall.
Well if they put the toilet in back like in the F-7's, we would still bump our heads on the small door in front. And those doors are a lot easier to enter than the nose door on an F-7. BTW, I've seen guys crack their skulls going in the side doors as well, F-7's, F-40's, F-45's, etc. Anyone dumb enough to drag their 50 lb grip by their teeth up the side ladder when there is an alternate available deserves there whacked out backs.

Yes those engine rooms are very noisy in run 8, warm too.

  by Allen Hazen
 
I came across a reference recently that claimed the 3600 hp SD-45 was more complicated electrically than the 3000 hp SD-40: more stages of traction motor shunting. Particularly before the "Dash-2" series's modular electronics design, this was apparently a maintenance headache. (Same source, however, said that this was a minor headache compared to the crankshaft one.)
--
(Source is "How Diesel-Electric Locomotives Operate" -- book at home, can't remember author: publisher is PEAT)

  by mxdata
 
Several railroads had a system called "Search" that was developed by Oregon Technical Products, which added a very complex harness of small gauge wires that was installed over the locomotive excitation and relay logic circuitry. This allowed the locomotive to be plugged into a recording and test machine housed in a small building so that an analysis could be done on the unit systems. This was used by several roads including the Erie Lackawanna on their SD45 locomotives as a way to assist the shop electricians in troubleshooting problems. When the Dash-2 line came out, a good electrician with a hand held meter could check most of the test points that "Search" monitored by going directly through the test plugs in the face plates of the Dash-2 modules, so the OTP system faded into history.
  by Allen Hazen
 
mxdata--
I'm not sure where the author of the "PEAT" locomotive book got his information-- by his own comments, a bit here and a bit there. I did get the strong impression that the SD45's electrical complexity "issues" did not apply to the SD45-2.
But THANKS for the bit about Oregon Technical Products and "Search"! This far into the microprocessor era it's easy to be ignorant about what went before: I suspect that a history of locomotive diagnostics would give a very vivid picture of how electronic technology has evolved in the past 65 years or so!
---
While I'm here.... We've all (you, me, Will Davis...) had our say about the perils of relying on the scholarship published in the railfan press, but the topic of this string-- the SD45 and its issues-- has had some of the better examples. "railfan & Railroad" had a 3-part history of the SD45 in May-June-July 1993, by Preston Cook. (Why doesn't the name of the author of articles I've remembered for a decade as WAY superior to the "railfan press" average come as a surprise when I look them up again?) With a coupole of add-on reminiscences by Ted Benson and Jack Wheelihan in the September 1993 issue. (Curt Katz's cartoon in the May issue is related, as well as being a dig at a certain other railfan magazine....)

  by mxdata
 
Preston Cook taught mechanical and electrical classes on these units for several decades. Maybe one of these years he will get the time to do some more articles or books. The INSIDE EMD program has kept him very busy for the last few years, and lately he has been doing lectures on some more recently completed projects.

  by ENR3870
 
CN will be hanging on to the SD50F's at least until all the new power shows up. The 5400's are really beat up and I don't see them lasting much longer.

  by BlackDog
 
ENR3870 wrote:CN will be hanging on to the SD50F's at least until all the new power shows up. The 5400's are really beat up and I don't see them lasting much longer.
It's a nice thought, butwith the CN being as sadistic as it is, (the only thing the CN hates worse than it's customers is it's employees),I think they will keep those unwanted, unloved ugly, rough riding, drafty POS's just to mess with us.

The controllers are worn out and sloppy, you can't read the labels for the switches, the window seals leak, all three trumpets on the air horns are pointed to the rear of the locomotive (okay, not on all the units, but more often than you might think), the foam padding on the ceiling is falling off, and the seats suck. All the more reason for the railroad to keep them around and scrap its SD45s.

  by GOLDEN-ARM
 
We see a bunch of the Ex-Cons, on the KCS. Those SD-50's run pretty well, although not as nice, as when I was on the Con. The kick in the seat transition, has slowed down a bit, but they still haul pretty well, when the "super series" isn't failing.......... :-D

  by ENR3870
 
BlackDog wrote:
It's a nice thought, butwith the CN being as sadistic as it is, (the only thing the CN hates worse than it's customers is it's employees),I think they will keep those unwanted, unloved ugly, rough riding, drafty POS's just to mess with us.
They probably will. They sent an eastbound out of here a couple months ago with a 7000 series GP9 leading a brand new SD70M-2. I have a feeling that the 5200 and 5300 SD40-2's will be retired soon, I've heard they are spending more time in the shops than out on the road.

  by NYSWSD70
 
It should be pointed out that the SD45/SDP45/F45 DID out sell the SD40/SDP40/SD40A. It wasn't until the dash 2's introduction in 1972 that the 40 series left the 45 in the dust.
  by ic9623
 
Does anyone know what happened to the special high horse power SD 45 thatr tested on the IC. It was from EMD of course, it had 2 fans for the dynamic blister and 4 cooling fans in the back. If this is not enough info I will try and find the photo and info on it.

  by Allen Hazen
 
It was called an SD45X. 4200hp, tested some Dash-2 features (such as the HTC truck). 7 built: six went to Souther Pacific (which I think ultimately derated them to 3600 hp), one retained by EMD as a test vehicle and finally scrapped a few years ago. Some discussionin earlier threads on this forum (including one I started about the fictitious ("alternate history") "SD-55".

  by SSW9389
 
Most likely EMD #5740 tested on IC. Extra 2200 South June/July 1970 article shows unit when new. EMD also had #4200-4202, these later went to SP as #9503-9505. :wink:

  by ic9623
 
Didn't one make it ot the KCS? I thought I recalled reading it.

  by Allen Hazen
 
I don't know if an SD45X ever operated on KCS, but I have a guess about what you might recall reading!

The SD45X (4200 hp from a 20-cylinder 645 engine) were built in 1970-1971. Several years (and the experience of using better wheel-slip control systems on experimental freight electric locomotives and a few modified SD40-2: five SD40-2SS that went to BN in 1978) later, EMD tried raising their engine output again, and built four "SD40X" prototypes (3500 hp out of 16 cylinders). These were prototypes for the "50-series" locomotives, and went to... Kansas City Southern.
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