• What is it? (switcher #5118)

  • All about locomotive rebuilders, small locomotive works, and experimental works
All about locomotive rebuilders, small locomotive works, and experimental works

Moderator: Komachi

  by Komachi

But why use a German/Brazilian company's offerings and have a prime mover that is different from the rest of your fleet (I doubt the MTU locomotives use parts from GE, ALCo/FM, EMD engines... although a little "yankee enginuity" could rectify that catch)? As we've discussed on the HO forum (before the merger), it makes more economic sense for shortlines to have ONE type of prime movier (or one manufacturer) in their fleets, not only in terms of spare parts, but also in terms of "down time" when the unit is OOS (out of service) in the shop.

Although, there are those who seek something different sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't (look at the SP and D&RGW who tried the Krause-Maffi units, or the SP's Sultzer powered U-boats...). Although, seeing as those MTU motors have a possible connection to Daimler-Benz (at least, that's what I gleaned from the thread, provided in the posting above), there might be decent parts availability and "tech support" when needed.

But, no, I think the "mystery loco" is powered by a domestic company. Either the PM is the original (rebuilt) or a new one from CAT or one of the other domestic companies.

What we need is some info. from someone "in the know." Any Pickens employees here?

  by dansapo
This is from yahoo groups loconotes
Joseph Yarbrough wrote:
Alcoa Terminal Model PL15B:4RS Process Locomotive Data:

Model PL15B:4RS Process Locomotive - Manufactured by CLCX (Chattahoochee
Locomotive Company, Inc.)

Remanufactured yard/road switcher built from an EMD GP9 core. DDC-MTU
12-cylinder Model 12V4000 engine from Detroit Diesel rated up to 2,025
BHP (provides over 100,000 pounds of starting tractive effort); EPA and
CARB (California Air Resources Board) certified for Tier 2 switcher duty

Blomberg Type B trucks; NC-390 alignment couplers and draft gear;
Allen-Bradley ControlLogix PLC (programmable logic controller) master
microprocessors; HMI computers running a "Wonderware" graphics
interface; modified Cattron-Theimeg model MP96RCL radio remote control;
CCTV w/ video and audio event recording plus remote transmission;
wireless Ethernet communcations; climate controlled HVAC; low cab noise
levels (less than 85 dBA); nitrogen fire suppression system; GPS; ground
radar; AEI; Griffin "NASCAR style" radiators; 215 CFM screw-type air
compressor w/compressed air dryer.

Overall length is 49 feet 6 inches w/24 foot 2 inch truck centers;
weight on rail is 140 tons (can vary from 105 tons up to 150 tons by
adjusting the amount of steel ballast plates used in construction.

All process locomotives built to date have used Detroit Diesel or
Cummins engines. Other manufacturers engines can be used. Models
available next year will go up to 2,250 BHP.

This locomotive can also be built with a longer frame (model PL2300:4RS)
w/DDC-MTU 16V4000 engine rated at 2,700 BHP.

Joseph Yarbrough

I still can not find any information on this rebuilder/builder,but this is the locomotive

  by Engineer James
Interesting design..... I do like the "Christmas Lights" on the side. its definately origional. EMD trucks are a give away though.....
  by Komachi

Those "Christmas lights" are indicator lights that are lit up when the unit is in remote control mode and let surrounding crews/personnel know what moves the operator will be doing with the locomotive. (Those members of the site who have experience operating units via R/C can elaborate further on the specifics, as I am not a railroad employee and have not had the privilage of doing so.)

  by Engineer James
Oh, I read and completely understand. However, what ghets me is why they did not put on a Yellow Flasher light like most Class I's do with their RCPU's.

  by BobLI
That looks like the Loco that is in the Feb issue of Trains magazine, built on a GP 9 frame.
  by Komachi
James responded...

"Oh, I read and completely understand. However, what ghets me is why they did not put on a Yellow Flasher light like most Class I's do with their RCPU's."

An amber rotary beacon, or an amber strobe light/"wig wag" light*? (**Shrug**) I don't know why. I believe each railroad has their own set of rules and regulations regarding beacons and other "auxillary warning lighting." But, again, I'm not in the business, so "those in the know" can contridict me if needed.

* I think that's what they're called. My father was on the volunteer EMT crew here in town and he (and the other members of the crew) used to call the lights that used to switch back and forth from either side of the ambulance (left side light, right side light, etc.) "box" and grille "wig-wags." I've also seen the term used to describe the back-and-forth flashing of headlights on police cruisers.
  by Mhendrix
Hey Guys
I have only a few minutes, but I wanted to tell you a little about the locomotive. Yes, the locomotive is featured in Trains, Feb.2007. Also it is on the cover of Diesel Today, a MTU Detroit Diesel publication, and also it is in Railway Age Dec.2006. All of the articles are correct. It is a new breed of locomotive. This is the first of two locomotives for Alcoa, TN. The frame is originally a GP9. We cut it down, and took almost 7 feet out of the frame to make it close to the MP15 truck centers. Then everything else from the deck up is brand new. We use alot of our on design & technology in these units. We have been in bussiness for many years, quietly building locomotives. We think we got a product now that will, and is drawing alot of attention.
Take Care
P.S.- The Status Lights or "Christmas Lights", are for indication of both remote and manual operation. Each one is L.E.D. and has a strobe function, thus replacing the strobe lights on top and they also have a low current draw. This is a very good solution to the very high maintenance of a regular strobe light or the Wig-Wag. The only regulations that FRA has is that "if it is there, it must work". That's why you don't see them much anymore.

  by Engineer James
Yes, but they are SO small, you could see the strobes on the Class I's, on this thing I couln'd tell really how its operating, unless I saw someone in the cab.
  by amtrakhogger
According to published reports, this is a product intended for
shortlines,yards, and/or industrial plant operations. The idea
is to market an affordable "new" locomotive for shortlines, terminal RR's,
and industrial RR's who have limited budgets for equipment.

The unit also uses (as noted previously) a lot of off the shelf
components that are common to industrial applications, so parts
can be found virtually found almost anywhere.

  by Engineer James
That's all fine and dandy, I have no convictions against this locomotive, only that they should use the flasher or amber light rather than those hard to see christmas lights. its safety. I say use the bigger lights, although you'd probably hear this monster from a mile away.

  by MEC407
How do you know that they're hard to see? LEDs are very bright, despite their relatively small size. Have you seen this unit in action? Please do enlighten us. :P

  by ExEMDLOCOTester
Prior to any movement we were required to activate the Bell. Is this so with the roads?

  by U-Haul
The bell is rung or horn blown when a locomotive starts moving. This is meant to warn anybody nearby that the locomotive is about move