Can a Budd car pull 1 or 2 freight cars?

Discussion about RDC's, "doodlebugs," gas-electrics, etc.

Can a Budd car pull 1 or 2 freight cars?

Postby rearedevice » Fri Oct 02, 2009 3:02 pm

We have a short tourist line that wants to move a couple of cars a year for a customer. Can we use our Budd car to pull a boxcar or a Plastic Pellets Car?
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Re: Can a Budd car pull 1 or 2 freight cars?

Postby scotty269 » Fri Oct 02, 2009 4:30 pm

I'm pretty sure that I read in a Conrail 1983 employee timetable that pulling freights with an RDC was something to be avoided. I'll double check the ETT later, though.
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Re: Can a Budd car pull 1 or 2 freight cars?

Postby polybalt » Fri Oct 02, 2009 6:09 pm

I understand that when Budd sold them, they strongly recommended against pulling any non-powered car with an RDC, and that doing so would void the warrenty. I assume the issue is with the torque converters overheating.
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Re: Can a Budd car pull 1 or 2 freight cars?

Postby DutchRailnut » Fri Oct 02, 2009 8:43 pm

With no replacement transmission/torq converter on market or available for trade, I would strongly advise against it.
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Re: Can a Budd car pull 1 or 2 freight cars?

Postby goodnightjohnwayne » Mon Oct 05, 2009 11:17 pm

I really can't find an example of a RDC being used successfully and reliably as an impromptu locomotive. Again, I think the problem is the use of hydraulic drive that is similar in concept to an automotive torque converter. They'll pull themselves, but even the RDC-9 trailers were half powered.

Ironically, the earlier gas-electric cars, or "doodlebugs," were often used to pull unpowered trailer coaches, and once passenger service had ended, some were even used as switchers. However, it's worth noting that some of those cars were very similar in concept to early diesel electric locomotives. Electromotive build gas-electric cars before GM bought the company and went into the locomotive business.

Budd cars are different beasts and won't stand that sort of abuse. The Quebec North Shore & Labrador tried to pull a dome coach between a couple of RDCs, but it's worth noting that was just about the time they ceased RDC operations. So, did they have problems? All I can say for sure is that today they run a conventional locomotive hauled mixed train. No more RDCs.
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Re: Can a Budd car pull 1 or 2 freight cars?

Postby CNJ » Tue Oct 06, 2009 7:17 pm

Asked and answered.

Thank you gentlemen for your inputs.
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