Show Us Your Favorite or Most Sought After Switch Engine

Jerry Tarvid Oct 19, 2015

  1. John Moore

    John Moore TrainBoard Supporter

    8,699
    2,878
    131
    While no photos yet my new favorite has become both the 44 and 70 tonners. Nice slow running characteristics unlike the race horse LL SW-9 and possessed of the ability to take much tighter radius curvature that 9 inch. My switchers are now road engines on the TCC.
     
    FriscoCharlie likes this.
  2. Run8Racing

    Run8Racing TrainBoard Member

    812
    132
    15
    The Baldwin Center Cabs were actually considered transfer units. I have 4 for the EJ&E. I'll show you my most sought after switcher when someone FINALLY makes an Alco C415 !!!
     
  3. robert3985

    robert3985 TrainBoard Member

    841
    45
    14
    Here's my favorite switcher so far. When I get around to detailing and custom painting a few more, maybe they'll take this one's place. Started with a Life Like SW-9, removed cast-on grabs and replaced with brass ones, BLMA etched wipers, Sunrise beacon sitting on a scratched Styrene base, scratched brass awnings, scratched drooping canvas radiator cover, scratched Styrene armrests and a brass wire bell air-pipe. Painted in Scalecoat II and weathered with washes and light airbrush coats of Polly Scale paints w/Microscale decals. Finally, MTL Z-scale couplers and Precision Scale brass brake air lines.

    Photo (1)
    [​IMG]

    Photo (2)
    [​IMG]

    Cheerio!
    Bob Gilmore
     
  4. J Starbuck

    J Starbuck TrainBoard Member

    457
    112
    20
    Very nice Bob!
     
  5. DCESharkman

    DCESharkman TrainBoard Member

    3,595
    514
    53
    No picture, but the NW-2 was one of my all time favorites. I have the Kato ones and I really like them.
     
  6. Andrew Hamilton

    Andrew Hamilton TrainBoard Member

    36
    18
    5
    I have a soft spot for Alco RS3s but I like my SW9/1200s as well. Actually my GP7s are right up there as well.

    Oh Dang it... Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

    3877.1234056285.jpg
     
    Jerry Tarvid likes this.
  7. Point353

    Point353 TrainBoard Member

    1,862
    578
    31
    So, what would you call these - switchers or transfer units?

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2015
  8. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    59,634
    4,271
    600
    As far as recall, the CGW units saw duty as both. MILW had some cow-calf sets, which switched, transferred and saw hump service.
     
  9. JMaurer1

    JMaurer1 TrainBoard Member

    1,650
    425
    30
    SP had 6 TR-6 cow and calf units as well. They saw duty on the NWP as road and transfer service engines (beginning in 1951) and were also used in hump service at Roseville in 1961. They weren't considered 'successful' however and the drawbars were rather quickly changed to couplers and the A units (not being ordered with dynamic brakes) were swapped out with SW-7's that did have dynamic brakes. They were almost all retired by 1971.

    These would be on my list of favorite switch engines for sure.
     
  10. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    59,634
    4,271
    600
    I should add that when new, a couple of sets were sent out west and powered branch line trains.
     
  11. Charlie Vlk

    Charlie Vlk TrainBoard Member

    745
    36
    25
    EMD designated the Cow Calf units "TR" which would indicate the were intended as TRansfer units. After using theirs in transfer service and trying them as branch line power, the CB&Q split them apart (they were delivered as drawbared sets) and modified the cab on the "A" to conventional rear windows and built new cabs and controls for the "B" units.
    Charlie Vlk
     
  12. Point353

    Point353 TrainBoard Member

    1,862
    578
    31
    Where do we draw the line between switchers and transfer units?
    Is there a "duck test" for switchers?
    If it looks like a switcher...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Jerry Tarvid likes this.
  13. Run8Racing

    Run8Racing TrainBoard Member

    812
    132
    15
    Point353, sorry it took a while to get back. I guess my answer would have to be "YES" !!! Depends on how the RR used them. Baldwin designated the Centercabs as transfer locomotives. The EJ&E used them as road units. Strange thing is, they MU'ed them with GM switchers !!! To "clarify" things even further, the EJ&E Baldwins were eventually re-powered by EMD, and switcher cowls were installed on both ends !!! !!! I LOVE the cow /calf pics you presented. Those always looked so COOL !!! I have an ancient Concor cow /calf set for BN, and I will power that calf one of these decades !!!
     
  14. randgust

    randgust TrainBoard Member

    3,468
    390
    51
    Conversely, the big Baldwin 'transfer' unit centercabs were put into helper service on ATSF in Arizona for a few years (prior to the 1960's line relocation program) and worked out of Ash Fork. You'll find a number of 'switchers', and cow-calfs, that got drafted into helper situations like that, at least for a while.

    I was just out at IRM this fall and got to pay my respects to the only survivor of that group of Baldwins. Those things are just immense.

    You've also got a number of shortlines, that for various reasons, thought the smart thing was to just keep piling on switchers until the train moved. The Pittsburg & Shawmut was no lightweight, either on bridges, rail, or tonnage, and had legendary lashups of EMD switchers in MU to move long coal trains. Same with Lake Erie, Franklin & Clarion.
    http://www.blueridgenrhs.org/programs/reisweber_nov06_mauk.jpg
    And the Union RR in Pittsburgh: https://c2.staticflickr.com/6/5094/5547260693_b189e2f47f_b.jpg

    Somehow, piling on switchers to move road trains appeals to me.... and I don't see it modeled enough. Roads like the Shawmut, complete with high bridges, tunnels, even excursion steam, just seem to get no modeling respect.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2015
  15. Doug Gosha

    Doug Gosha TrainBoard Member

    1,181
    812
    28
    When I was a kid, I used to watch 4 Milwaukee Road SW1s, pulling freight cars, arrive in or leave Austin, MN on the Smokey Valley Line in Southern Minnesota. They would run all the way to the Minnesota/Wisconsin border and return. The crews called them "Donkeys"

    Doug
     
  16. Doug Gosha

    Doug Gosha TrainBoard Member

    1,181
    812
    28
    When I was a kid, I used to watch 4 Milwaukee Road SW1s, pulling freight cars, arrive in or leave Austin, MN on the Smokey Valley Line in Southern Minnesota. They would run all the way to the Minnesota/Wisconsin border and return. The crews called them "Donkeys"

    Doug
     
  17. Point353

    Point353 TrainBoard Member

    1,862
    578
    31
    LV used that technique:

    [​IMG]
     
    Kurt Moose and Jerry Tarvid like this.
  18. Run8Racing

    Run8Racing TrainBoard Member

    812
    132
    15
    I LOVE this thread !!! But, doe's ANYONE else agree that N scale deserves an Alco C415 ??? C'mon. I know you're out there !!!
     
    Kurt Moose likes this.
  19. Point353

    Point353 TrainBoard Member

    1,862
    578
    31
    Even with five C-415 up front, you still need some help from an EMD to get a train moving:

    [​IMG]
     
  20. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    59,634
    4,271
    600
    Almost has me thinking these are DIT. Retired units being moved.
     

Share This Page