My 1st railfanning picture

Discussion in 'The Real Thing- North America' started by Biased turkey, Apr 30, 2007.

  1. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    I've always been interested in trains since I was a kid in Belgium. I was happy enough to see the steam era. NowI pay for it because I'm old :)

    I went to the local CNR down the road to take some measurement on the ballast ( I suspects that N scale cork roadbed is too wide so I wanted to know how many millimeters I have to trim ).
    I was lucky to take that picture because not having a scanner I didn't know when a train will arrive or depart the Taschereau yard.

    This is the # 7070 CN engine . It has 2 axles per truck, so I ruled out an SD engine.
    Is there any way for me to check the engine model if I know the engine nubmber ?
    Could it be a GP18 or a later GP model ?
    I'm a newbie but I doubt a 40 years old engine would still be running.

    I really had some fun taking the picture.

    Attached Files:

  2. Chessie6459

    Chessie6459 Gauge Oldtimer

    Great Picture. Thanks for sharing that with us.:dance:
  3. railwaybob

    railwaybob Member

    You need to pick up the Canadian Trackside Guide available from your local hobby shop or available from Bytown Railway Society. It lists all locos in Canada. Cost is about $25 -$28. A must if you are doing any railfanning.
  4. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    Thanks for the nice words and for suggesting the Canadian Trackside Guide ( I saw a copy of it at my LHS ).
    At least I found an answer to my question at:
    GP9 - CN Lines SIG
    The 7070 is a GP9 .I can't believe it was built in ... 1956 and still running.
    What's the average life of a Diesel engine ?
  5. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    I think that it's possible to keep a diesel loco running as long as there are parts available to make repairs. However, other factors may determine if a loco is repaired or scrapped. If the loco is well suited to a particular task, or is economical to repair, or has no equivalent modern replacement, it may be kept going. On the other hand, some diesels were retired long before what would be considered a reasonable lifespan; this could be the result of chronic failures of certain components, lack of available parts, no longer cost-effective to keep running, etc., etc. Many locos such as Geeps, but also even large, older SDs, are downgraded to switching service, as there's no longer much available in the way of purpose-built switchers.
    Neat picture, Jacques, but please remember one of the first rules when you're around any tracks:
    Expect a train at any time, on any track, and moving in any direction. (Well, I guess we could pretty much rule out sideways, but I'm sure you get the idea.):lol: Also, keep in mind that railroad tracks are private property, and in some places, they're very picky on this point.

  6. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

    Lifespan of diesels varies hugely. Among older engines, EMDs have much higher life expectancies than all other builders. This is due to reliability and parts availability. EMD still supplies spare parts for their engines back to about 1965; GE (IIRC) not to before 1983. Rebuilds also extend an engine's life; that's the explanation for the CN GP9s. In general, 4-axle engines last longer than 6-axle, low-horsepower longer than high-horsepower, and normally-aspirated longer than turbocharged. GP9s fit all of those. Some engines have specific defects that shorten their lives. Some of the worst cases are UP's GE U50Cs and Amtrak's EMD SDP40Fs. The former, built 1969-71, were retired in 1977 because of their aluminum wiring that was prone to fires. The latter, built 1973-73, were all retired by 1984 and most several years before that. Their unique trucks had an unexpected dynamic interaction with the water supply for the steam generator, causing them to ride roughly and sometimes spontaneously derail. (Santa Fe did manage to rebuild some into usable engines, though.)
  7. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    Thanks Triplex and DoctorWayne for all that detailed information about the life expectancy of diesel engines, that's very interesting.
    Thanks too for the safety advices and to remind me about the code of conduct when railfanning.
    Don't worry, I'll be careful because I'll get retired exactly 2 months from now and I intend to enjoy my retirement for several years :-D
    The CNR GP9 # 7070 is listed as a GP9RM. Could someone please explain what the RM stands for ?
  8. rogerw

    rogerw Active Member

    Hey BT what who song had " out of my brain on a train " in it . Im a big who fan and its driving me crazy . lol
  9. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member is a gold mine. There are tens of pics about the GP9 just for Québec.

    To rogerw: The lyrics are from the 5:15 song ( from the Quadrophenia album ) The gauge being a "Family" forum I can't give the link to the lyrics :)
    As usual, Google is your friend, but anyway check your private mail on The Gauge website for the link.
    Yes, M-m-my generation still rocks.
  10. rogerw

    rogerw Active Member

    Big smiles here . will have to crank up some who tonight
  11. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    I think the RM is for remanufactured. 7070 was in a batch remanufactured in 1992. The Trackside Guide also lists it as a GP9u (upgraded).
  12. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

    David, congrats on reaching four thousand posts, the actual event which I obviously missed. :roll: balloon6

  13. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

    Designations for rebuilt locomotives are extremely non-standardized, because they're usually created by the railroad or rebuilder rather than the original manufacturer. FWIW, I usually see GP9u for CP's rebuilt GP9s and GP9R for CN's.
  14. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    Thanks again for the 1st class extra information.
    Congrats to 60103 for the 4000th post.

    I feel like an old rebuilt GP9: At the age of 55 I had some dental implants.
  15. Squidbait

    Squidbait Recovering ALCO-holic

    I believe the M may mean "Montreal"... I think the rebuilds were done at Pte. St. Charles.
  16. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    Thanks for the detail Squidbait.
    That Grand Trunk train shop at Pointe St. Charles must have been a fascinating place to visit 100 years ago.
  17. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    Now that the gallery has reopened, here is a better pic.

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