electric Slug? Diesel?

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Seaboard, Jan 21, 2007.

  1. Seaboard

    Seaboard Member

    Hi all, I have been lookin at slugs for awhile and was wondering what makes some of them run. I know the NS SW1200 slugs are powered by a diesel engine and that some other ones like the flat body slug don't have an engine. I was wondering how especially the flat dody slugs run. I was told they feed off the power from the main locomotive, and iv'e also been told they have a battery of some kind. They are booster units I know, but for what specific job? I'm just plain curious thats all.
  2. LongIslandTom

    LongIslandTom Member

    There is a difference between a slug and a B-unit...

    A slug does NOT have a power plant (i.e. diesel engine) on-board. It only provides additional traction motors (to produce extra tractive effort), and it needs to draw the electrical power needed from a locomotive.

    A B-unit has a power plant and is otherwise a fully-functional locomotive, except it doesn't have a control cab.

    As far as using batteries to provide power for traction motors, there might have been some experimental units in the past, but the only production locomotives with on-board batteries that I know of would be the GG20 Green Goats being offered by Rail Power Technologies. These are basically the locomotive version of the Toyota Prius-- It's a hybrid diesel-and-battery powered loco.
  3. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    No sur about SW1200, but SW9 came in a cow and calf version, where one unit was missing a cab but had a full diesel engine and traction motors. This was a B unit, not a slug.
    Slugs were used in slow haul service where 4 traction motors couldn't use all the power of the engine so they hooked 8 to it.
  4. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    Tom, B-units do have a hostlers control stand, for moving the unit around a service area, etc. I'm not sure, but I think that it's located near one of the end doors (or maybe both), and requires that the door be open to afford a view of the track. (In crummy weather, that'd be a true "all-weather" cab! :D :D :rolleyes:

  5. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

    Some B-units have hostler stands, some don't. I believe BN B30-7A(B)s and ATSF GP60Bs have no hostler controls.
    Some locomotives were built that used battery power only. There were multi-mode switchers, mostly boxcabs, that had diesel engines and batteries and sometimes could also run on catenary or third rail or both.
  6. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    You're right. I was thinking only of cab units, and completely overlooked hood units. :oops:

  7. jtloconut

    jtloconut Member

    Most slugs have to be kitbashed, Most are non-powered AKA(dummy). Just for looks In the modeling world. On the other hand North west short line makes a Flea 2 drive unit # 53-2056 & 53-2076 Listed in WALTHERS 2006 cat. page 828. that stuffed in a truck will supply power to a slug:thumb:
  8. jetrock

    jetrock Member

    The Flea 2 is okay but a PDT or a Tenshodo SPUD makes a better choice for a diesel power truck.

    Just to add a bit more complexity, in addition to slugs there are also "snails": basically they look like B units, they are equipped with a diesel engine and a generator but no traction motors.
  9. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

    Snails are used to power rotary snowplows.

    More regarding slugs: A locomotive without a cab is not necessarily a slug. Also, slugs are not necessarily cabless.

    CSX ex-GP30 road slug with cab: http://www.trainweb.org/csxphotos/photos/RDMT/2280CSX-bc.jpg

    CSX ex-GP35 road slug with cab: http://www.trainweb.org/csxphotos/photos/RDMT/2281CSX-bc.jpg

    Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis ex-GP35 slug with cab: http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=124874

    Appalachian & Ohio ex-GP? road slug with cab: http://railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=163927

    St. Lawrence & Atlantic ex-GP? road slug with cab: http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=149763

    BN ex-SD9 yard slug with cab: http://www.trainpix.com/BN/EMDRBLD/TEBUC6/6290.HTM

    Winchester & Western slug with cab: http://railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=157843 This one is really weird. Like most slugs, it was rebuilt from a locomotive, and it lost its cab then. However, it was eventually retrofitted with another cab.

    I know KCS had an ex-F3A slug, but I can't find a photo.

    One last edit: http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=476540 I think the two Fs with large KCS lettering might be slugs.

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