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Diesel Locomotives by EMD[Inhalt]
A 1950 F7 (right) and a 1956 GP9 (left), now in the service of the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad, once again in the livery of their former owners.
A 1950 F7 (right) and a 1956 GP9 (left), now in the service of the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad, once again in the livery of their former owners.
James St. John

Electro-Motive Diesel was a General Motors subsidiary for most of its existence, going back to the Electro-Motive Company, founded in 1922. The Electro-Motive Company began building and upgrading gasoline-powered railcars with electric transmission using engines from the Winton Engine Company. Since EMC thus became the main buyer of Winton engines, the mutual dependence of the two companies grew. Meanwhile, General Motors saw the potential of the diesel engine and was looking for partners to implement its two-stroke diesel ideas. Thus, in 1930, EMC and Winton were bought at the same time and rail vehicles with this engine were developed to series maturity.

The advantage of the two-stroke diesels was that they had one combustion stroke for each revolution of the crankshaft and therefore theoretically did twice the work per revolution compared to four-stroke engines. This led to a low power-to-weight ratio, which also benefited the Junkers two-stroke diesels used as aircraft engines in the 1930s. Since two-stroke diesels did not require inlet valves and only a Roots blower was required to scavenge the combustion gases, the number of individual parts was also reduced, which reduced manufacturing costs and simplified maintenance. In contrast, the poorer exhaust gas behavior was only relevant towards the end of the twentieth century.

It started with streamlined multiple units, the first of which was the 1933 M-10000 “City of Salina”. In the second half of the 1930s, switching locomotives and soon mainline locomotives with Winton engines followed, all of which had electric power transmission. In 1941, the company was renamed the Electro-Motive Division (EMD), becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of GM and losing the freedoms it had had until then. As early as 1938, the Cleveland Diesel Engine Division was founded to build larger two-stroke marine diesels and the Detroit Diesel Corporation to build smaller two-stroke diesels for road vehicles.

Builder's badge on a D&RGW F9
Builder's badge on a D&RGW F9
John W. Stephens III

After the TA mainline locomotive, only six of which were built, the great success of the EMD locomotives with the E and F series began in 1937 and 1939, respectively. The name of the E series passenger locomotives came from “Eighteen hundred”, since initially two Winton engines with a total of 1,800 hp were used. The F series was intended for freight trains and got its name from “Fourteen hundred” because the built-in engine initially provided 1,350 hp. Like the TA, both locomotive families had a self-supporting, streamlined carbody structure. The 567 series engines replaced the Winton 201A and were groundbreaking in their modular design, offering engines with six to 16 cylinders and in different power levels with a large number of interchangeable parts. According to their name, the engines had a displacement of 567 cubic inches (9.29 liters) per cylinder. They formed the basis for the engines of the 645 and 710 series, which were used in almost all EMD locomotives until 2014 and are still manufactured today on request for countries in which no strict exhaust gas regulations apply.

The era of the road switcher only began at EMD in 1949, when ALCO had already been offering the RS-1 for eight years. With the four-axle GP7, the six-axle SD7 and their successors, however, it was possible to make it to the top of the world within a short time. While other manufacturers were already offering engines with exhaust gas turbochargers in the 1940s, this complex technology was initially dispensed with. Thanks to the light two-stroke engines with Roots supercharger, they could initially keep up with the competition in terms of power and didn't have to struggle with the sluggish response behavior of the turbochargers of the time. It was not until 1958 that they gave in and developed the “mechanically-assisted turbocharger”, which is being connected to the crankshaft via a clutch at low engine speeds or rapid load changes and then acts like a supercharger.

In the following decades, EMD was the world market leader with the Road Switchers with the prime movers of the 567, 645 and 710 series. Since General Electric had appeared as a direct competitor in 1956, the market in North America had been divided up among themselves. It wasn't until the 1980s that GE took the lead, only just ahead of EMD. Since the 1990s, only the six-axle models of the SD series have been offered because the four-axle GP models were no longer popular with customers. Internationally, EMD locomotives were particularly popular in second and third world countries without their own production facilities, but industrialized countries also imported EMD locomotives. Other foreighn designs were also manufactured with EMD power trains, such as the 125 mph British Class 67 and the Stadler Euro, which were or are manufactured in Spain by MACOSA or its successor companies Meinfesa, Vossloh España and Stadler.

SD70ACe, the most successful variant of the SD70 series, which has sold almost 6,000 units since 1992
SD70ACe, the most successful variant of the SD70 series, which has sold almost 6,000 units since 1992
Tyler Silvest

The first attempt to move away from the two-stroke came in the late 1990s with the 265 series prime mover, which had 1,010 cubic inches per cylinder and as a V16 produced up to 6,300 hp. Reliability issues kept the engine from winning customer favor and the 710 series continued to be ordered. The EPA Tier 4 emission standard, which came into effect in the USA in 2015, ended the career of the 710 abruptly. In Central Europe, too, no new examples of the class 66, which was so popular with private railways, could be introduced around the same time because similar emission standards came into effect. This led to the 265 series four-stroke being brought up to date and today dubbed the 1010 series it is fitted to all EMD locos delivered in the USA. This engine has three turbochargers and state-of-the-art electronic fuel injection to comply with current emission regulations, while the 710 series two-stroke continues to be produced as an option for export.

EMD had already been sold to investors in 2005 due to GM's financial problems and was renamed Electro-Motive Diesel. In the following years the workforce increased and in 2010 EMD was sold again to Progress Rail, a subsidiary of Caterpillar. Appropriately, the company has been trading as Progress Rail Locomotive since 2016 and is still in second place worldwide behind the diesel locomotives from GE Transportation, which is now a subsidiary of Wabtec.

Electro-Motive Company 1800 hp B-B
United States | 1935 | 5 produced
The two locomotives of the ATSF
The two locomotives of the ATSF
Acme News Service-published by Mexia Weekly Herald

In 1935, EMC built a total of five machines to test the use of large mainline diesel locomotives under everyday conditions. These were two company demonstrators, one for the Baltimore & Ohio and a double set for the Santa Fé. Since there was no production capacity for large diesel locomotives at that time, they turned to General Electric and the St. Louis Car Company.

The basic idea was to install two diesel engines, each with its own generator and about 50 percent more total power, instead of just one diesel engine. Since the engines were less heavily loaded on average, less wear and tear and a longer service life could be expected. If one engine or generator failed, the locomotive could continue to run with the other. The concept of having a driver's cab at each end was new, but was not pursued on later American diesels.

For cost reasons, the two demonstrators had got simple, box-shaped bodies like earlier boxcabs. For the first time, they were given multiple controls, so that both locomotives could be controlled by one driver at the same time. In fact, they were often used together to achieve the same performance as a large steam engine. After extensive testing, they were scrapped in 1938.

The Baltimore & Ohio received a locomotive identical to the first two and was numbered 50. It soon got a slanted fairing on one end, also known as a “Shovel Nose”. This cladding was removed again during World War II. In this form, the locomotive was still used for local freight and passenger trains for a while after the end of the war. It later ended up in the National Museum of Transportation in St. Louis, Missouri and can still be found there today.

The double locomotive of the Santa Fé was managed as one complete unit and received the number 1. It had streamlined shapes, covered bogies and an attractive color scheme. The company's route network had long stretches that led through deserts and mountains and offered good conditions for testing the new technology. Their advantage over steam locomotives was that they were not dependent on water supplies and could cover long distances with one tank of diesel.

The 2,226.6-mile route, which was regularly run with passenger trains, served as preparation for the later operation of the streamlined trains and revealed a few teething problems. The fairing on the bogies soon had to be removed due to repeated overheating problems. The hood over the air intakes above the driver's cabs also impeded cooling, so that additional air intakes on the roof were necessary. The unit was later reinforced with one of the EMC demonstrators. In 1938, one driver's cab was removed and a “Bulldog Nose” formed, as was also found on the later production locomotives. In addition, both bogies each received a leading axle. The locos were returned to EMD in 1953 and converted to booster units.

The locomotives provided many insights which were implemented in the series production of the E series. These were powered by the same Winton engines, initially each with 900 hp, but bogies with a central carrying axle. The multiple control was soon adopted by all manufacturers and is still used today in almost all North American diesel locomotives in a form that has hardly changed.

General
Built1935
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Corporation
Axle configB-B 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
EngineWinton 201-A
Engine type2x V12 diesel
Engine output1,800 hp (1,342 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
passenger
prototype
last changed: 01/2023
Electro-Motive Company Winton-engined switchers
United States | 1935 | 175 produced
Minneapolis and St. Louis Railway D538 at the National Railroad Museum in Green Bay, Wisconsin
Minneapolis and St. Louis Railway D538 at the National Railroad Museum in Green Bay, Wisconsin
Dual Freq

In 1935 EMC manufactured a total of three prototypes of a heavy switcher, which were equipped with the Winton engine, of which the E-series had two. Two of these switchers had a 600 hp in-line 8-cylinder engine, while the third had a 900 hp V12. All had the same frame length, but with the more powerful version, the body was longer. A special feature of the hoods over the machinery was that the ceiling tapered to the driver's cab to improve visibility.

The production locomotives received an S for “six hundred” in the version with 600 hp, while the version with 900 hp received an N for “nine hundred”. There were also two different types of frames, which can be distinguished by the second letter in the type designation. The first version was cast by General Steel Castings and therefore has a C for “cast”, while the other was welded by EMC themselves and therefore has a W for “welded”.

The SC, SW, NC and NW types initially resulted from the combinations of engine and frame. Other versions of the more powerful variant were built, which differed mainly in terms of the electrics and were designated NC1, NC2, NW1 and NW1A. Two more copies were made from the NW4, which were lengthened and had an additional steam generator. These were used by the Missouri Pacific for switching passenger cars. A total of 175 series locomotives were produced up to 1939.

A single one was only given the type designation T and basically consisted of two power trains from the N series, which stood on four two-axle bogies with a driver's cab in the middle. With an output of 1,800 hp, it was intended to transfer freight trains between nearby marshalling yards and was not built in series because the long frame settled over time.

VariantSC, SWNC, NC1, NC2, NW, NW1, NW1A, Model 90NW4T
General
Built1936-19391935-193819381936
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Division
Axle configB-B B-B-B-B 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length44 ft 5 in67 ft 2 in
Wheelbase28 ft47 ft
Fixed wheelbase8 ft7 ft 6 in
Service weight180,000 lbs198,000 lbs208,000 lbs324,000 lbs
Adhesive weight180,000 lbs198,000 lbs208,000 lbs324,000 lbs
Axle load45,000 lbs49,500 lbs52,000 lbs40,500 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
Top speed50 mph
Starting effort50,000 lbf60,000 lbf70,000 lbf71,500 lbf
EngineWinton 201-A
Engine type8-cyl. dieselV12 diesel2x V12 diesel
Fuel600 us gal (diesel)1,200 us gal (diesel)
Engine output600 hp (447 kW)900 hp (671 kW)1,800 hp (1,342 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
switcher
last changed: 05/2022
Electro-Motive Company TA
United States | 1937 | 6 produced
The “Texas Rocket” in 1937 with an EMC TA
The “Texas Rocket” in 1937 with an EMC TA
Rock Island Railroad
General
Built1937
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Corporation
Axle configB-B 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length60 ft 10 in
Wheelbase53 ft
Fixed wheelbase9 ft
Service weight229,940 lbs
Adhesive weight229,940 lbs
Axle load57,540 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
Top speed110 mph
Starting effort56,500 lbf
EngineWinton 201-A
Engine typeV16 diesel
Fuel1,000 us gal (diesel)
Engine output1,200 hp (895 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
passenger
last changed: 09 2023
Electro-Motive Company EA, EB, E1 and E2
United States | 1937 | 29 produced
No. 2483 in August 1949 with a passenger train at Llandidloes, Wales
No. 2483 in August 1949 with a passenger train at Llandidloes, Wales
Fred Harvey Company
General
Built1937-1938
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Corporation
Axle configA1A-A1A 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length69 ft 1 in
Wheelbase57 ft 1 in
Fixed wheelbase14 ft 1 in
Service weight300,000 lbs
Adhesive weight225,000 lbs
Axle load56,250 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
Top speed116 mph
Starting effort56,500 lbf
EngineWinton 201-A
Engine type2x V12 diesel
Fuel10,200 us gal
Engine output1,800 hp (1,342 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
passenger
last changed: 09 2023
Electro-Motive Company E3 to E9
United States | 1938 | 1,321 produced
Two surviving E9A units in Panola County, Mississippi
Two surviving E9A units in Panola County, Mississippi
Matthew Nichols
VariantE3 bis E7E8E9
General
Built1938-1942, 1945-19491949-19541954-1964
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Corporation
Axle configA1A-A1A 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length70 ft 4 1/8 in71 ft 0 in70 ft 3 in
Wheelbase57 ft 1 in
Fixed wheelbase14 ft 1 in
Service weight308,400 lbs315,000 lbs
Adhesive weight220,000 lbs225,000 lbs
Axle load55,000 lbs56,250 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
Top speed117 mph
Starting effort56,500 lbf
EngineEMC 12-567EMC 12-567BEMC 12-567C
Engine type2x V12 diesel
Fuel1,200 us gal (diesel)
Engine output2,000 hp (1,491 kW)2,250 hp (1,678 kW)2,400 hp (1,790 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
passenger
last changed: 09 2023
Electro-Motive Company F series
FT, F2, F3, F7, FP7, F9 and FP9
United States | 1939 | 7,582 produced
The “Moring Hiawatha” in January 1966 with two A and one B unit at Lake, Wisconsin
The “Moring Hiawatha” in January 1966 with two A and one B unit at Lake, Wisconsin
Roger Puta
A four-part F3 in 1972 in a Santa Fe freight yard
A four-part F3 in 1972 in a Santa Fe freight yard
Roger Puta
VariantFT, F2F3, F7F9FP9
General
Built1939-19461946-19531953-19601956-1960
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Division
Axle configB-B 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length48 ft 3 in54 ft 8 in50 ft 8 in55 ft 2 1/4 in
Wheelbase35 ft 6 in39 ft43 ft
Fixed wheelbase9 ft
Service weight228,000 lbs234,000 lbs230,000 lbs260,000 lbs
Adhesive weight228,000 lbs234,000 lbs230,000 lbs260,000 lbs
Axle load57,000 lbs58,500 lbs57,500 lbs65,000 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
Top speed75 mph65 mph105 mph
Starting effort55,000 lbf64,000 lbf55,000 lbf
EngineEMD 16-567 oder 16-567AEMD 16-567BEMD 16-567C
Engine typeV16 diesel
Fuel1,200 us gal (diesel)
Engine output1,350 hp (1,007 kW)1,501 hp (1,119 kW)1,750 hp (1,305 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
freight
passenger
last changed: 09 2023
Electro-Motive Company AB6
United States | 1940 | 2 produced
AB6 in October 1966 with bi-level cars in suburban service in Joliet, Illinois
AB6 in October 1966 with bi-level cars in suburban service in Joliet, Illinois
Roger Puta
Variantas builtrebuilt
General
Built1940
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Corporation
Axle configA1A-3 A1A-A1A 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length71 ft 1 1/2 in
Fixed wheelbase14 ft 1 in
Service weight31,500 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
EngineEMC 12-567
Engine typeV12 diesel2x V12 diesel
Fuel1,200 us gal (diesel)
Engine output1,000 hp (746 kW)2,000 hp (1,491 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
baggage railcar
passenger
last changed: 09 2023
Electro-Motive Division BL1 and BL2
United States | 1947 | 59 produced
BL2 of the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad in April 1965 at Englewood Union Station in Chicago
BL2 of the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad in April 1965 at Englewood Union Station in Chicago
Roger Puta
General
Built1947-1949
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Division
Axle configB-B 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length54 ft 0 in
Wheelbase44 ft
Fixed wheelbase9 ft
Service weight230,000 lbs
Adhesive weight230,000 lbs
Axle load57,500 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
Top speed65 mph
Starting effort56,200 lbf
EngineEMD 16-567B
Engine typeV16 diesel
Fuel800 us gal (diesel)
Engine output1,500 hp (1,119 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
freight
last changed: 09 2023
Electro-Motive Division SW7, SW8 and SW9
United States | 1949 | 1,739 produced
Texas Pacific Lines SW9 in November 1965 at Dallas, Texas
Texas Pacific Lines SW9 in November 1965 at Dallas, Texas
DeGolyer Library / Southern Methodist University
VariantSW7SW8SW9
General
Built1949-19511950-19541951-1953
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Division, General Motors Diesel
Axle configB-B 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length44 ft 5 in
Wheelbase30 ft
Fixed wheelbase8 ft
Service weight248,000 lbs230,000 lbs248,000 lbs
Adhesive weight248,000 lbs230,000 lbs248,000 lbs
Axle load62,000 lbs57,500 lbs62,000 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
Top speed65 mph
Starting effort62,000 lbf57,100 lbf62,000 lbf
EngineEMD 12-567AEMD 8-567BEMD 12-567B
Engine typeV12 dieselV8 dieselV12 diesel
Fuel600 us gal (diesel)
Engine output1,200 hp (895 kW)800 hp (597 kW)1,200 hp (895 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
switcher
last changed: 09 2023
Electro-Motive Division GP28 and GP35
United States | 1963 | 1,365 produced
Canadian Pacific GP35 in Montreal in March 1970
Canadian Pacific GP35 in Montreal in March 1970
Roger Puta

The next power level after the GP30 was the GP35, that was introduced in 1963. Thanks to improvements to the traction motors, 2,500 hp could now be obtained from the EMD 567D prime mover, which has been in use since the GP20 and has not yet been able to exploit its full power potential in four-axle locomotives. Production took place again in both the USA and Canada and a total of 1,334 pieces were made. Of these, 24 went to the Canadian Pacific, two to the Canadian National, 55 to the Mexican State Railway, two to the Sonora-Baja California Railway and the rest to US customers. The largest customers in the US were the Santa Fe, the Pennsylvania Railroad and Southern Pacific, which each ordered more than 100 examples. Many railroads got their GP35s while trading old F-series and Alco locos to EMD. There, the bogies were reused together with the traction motors and fitted with new superstructures.

Nine months after the GP35, the GP28 was added to the range. It was a cheaper variant that only had an installed power of 1,800 hp. The power came from the same engine, which only had a Roots supercharger instead of the turbocharger and was therefore in roughly the same power class as the GP9 engine. However, the GP9 was still using the old EMD 567C, while the GP28 had the more modern EMD 567D1. However, sales were limited and only 31 were built, 15 of them for Mexico and Peru. Other very similar locomotives were created when the Burlington Northern bought some GP9s from the Northern Pacific and brought them up to the same technical level. These locomotives are referred to as GP28M.

VariantGP28GP35
General
Built1964-19651963-1966
ManufacturerElectro-Motive Division, General Motors Diesel
Axle configB-B 
Gauge4 ft 8 1/2 in (Standard gauge)
Dimensions and Weights
Length56 ft 2 in
Wheelbase41 ft
Fixed wheelbase9 ft
Service weight280,000 lbs260,000 lbs
Adhesive weight280,000 lbs260,000 lbs
Axle load70,000 lbs65,000 lbs
Power
Power sourcediesel-electric
Top speed65 mph
Starting effort60,500 lbf64,000 lbf
EngineEMD 16-567D1EMD 16-567D3A
Engine typeV16 diesel
Fuel2,600 us gal (diesel)1,700 us gal (diesel)
Engine output1,800 hp (1,342 kW)2,500 hp (1,864 kW)
Power Plant
Boiler
Calculated Values
diesel locomotive
freight
last changed: 03/2022
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