Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

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Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby goodnightjohnwayne » Mon Feb 16, 2009 1:54 pm

What Caterpillar diesel is in the rebuilt SD-50 "PR43C" locomotives for NS?

I've seen references to the new C175-16, but also to the C280-12, which was an update on the 3612?

In addition, there are the mysterious SD-40 rebuilds for UP, which have been quoted at 3,005 hp, and as having a 3516 variant, although the precise designation is a mystery?

Looking back a few years, the C175 was supposed to replace the lower end of the 3600 family and slot above the higher end of the 3500 family, while the C32 was direct 3500 series replacement?

It looks as if Caterpillar is getting very serious about the North American locomotive market, but there doesn't seem to be very much in the public domain, especially in regard to the new Progress Rail rebuilds?

Does anyone have more information?
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby RickRackstop » Mon Feb 16, 2009 9:45 pm

The CAT 3516D will make 3385 HP at its war emergency rating. For switching service with short bursts of power it will probably be ok but I think this is the engine with 4 small turbos a potential maintenance headache and will make it a candidate for a maintenance contract with the local CAT dealer.
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby tj48 » Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:57 am

Found these pictures of the units being sent for paint:
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=1433070
and
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=1433067
Check out the radiators on the beasts.....
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby goodnightjohnwayne » Tue Feb 17, 2009 4:57 pm

tj48 wrote:Found these pictures of the units being sent for paint:
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=1433070
and
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=1433067
Check out the radiators on the beasts.....


I'm counting 8 engine access doors on the side, so does this imply a 16-cylinder diesel, namely the C175-16?

Or am I reading to much into the pictures?
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby tj48 » Wed Feb 18, 2009 5:02 pm

The Progress Rail web site doesn't say much:
http://www.progressrail.com/repowered-locomotives.asp
Caterpillar, Progress Rail's owner doesn't say much either:
http://www.cat.com/cda/layout?m=37644&x=7
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby ex Budd man » Fri Feb 20, 2009 1:09 pm

Septa has four engines powered/repowered by Cat diesels.Two BL15s (repowered SW-1200s) and two RL-1as from Republic. The BLs have 1500HP v12s and the RLs have 100HP v8s. Since they don't see constant road service (rescues, wire trains, MOW trains, gel trains in the fall) they seem to be OK. One of the BLs is undergoing an overhaul at Wayne car shop. Our SW1200 still has its 567 v12.
"I may not have a brain, but I have an idea!" BOB, benzoate ostylezene bicarbonate.
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby D.Carleton » Wed Mar 11, 2009 2:22 pm

goodnightjohnwayne wrote:
tj48 wrote:Found these pictures of the units being sent for paint:
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=1433070
and
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=1433067
Check out the radiators on the beasts.....

I'm counting 8 engine access doors on the side, so does this imply a 16-cylinder diesel, namely the C175-16?

Or am I reading to much into the pictures?

According to our cousins north of the border these beasties indeed do have the CAT C175 prime mover and are rated at 4000 HP. What gets me is that there are SD90MAC's being cut up which would be prime candidates for this kind of conversion (along with the benefit of radial trucks). It's easier as well as more cost effective to down-rate from 6000 HP to 4000 HP than to up-rate from 3500/3600 HP. Are the SD90's so abysmal so as not to be even considered as rebuild fodder?
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby RickRackstop » Thu Mar 12, 2009 11:00 am

The CAT C280-12 is the new designation for 3612 engine and was designed to bolt up to the old alternator as a EMD replacement. The CAT catalogue doesn't say anything about a C175-16. So the SD 50 with a C280-12 could be rated at 4000 HP and require that large radiator. The SD 40's with the 3516 engines will require a new alternator because of the 1800 rpm speed the engine is rated at. I wonder if there is any way to follow this experiment other than the rumor mill.
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby D.Carleton » Thu Mar 12, 2009 12:36 pm

RickRackstop wrote:The CAT C280-12 is the new designation for 3612 engine and was designed to bolt up to the old alternator as a EMD replacement. The CAT catalogue doesn't say anything about a C175-16. So the SD 50 with a C280-12 could be rated at 4000 HP and require that large radiator.

The 3612 was the same prime mover in the ill fated MK5000C. I hope they have resolved the turbocharger issues. Can 4000 HP be coaxed out of an AR-11 alternator?
RickRackstop wrote:I wonder if there is any way to follow this experiment other than the rumor mill.

Give it enough time and David Lustig will write something up for Trains magazine with the straight scoop.
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby RickRackstop » Fri Mar 13, 2009 9:58 am

RE MK 5000 prime mover: I read that these engines had main bearing failure, never said anything about turbos. I had some experience with one of these engines as part of a generator package built by MKO for Indonesia. They pre-lubed very thoroughly before starting. The crankshaft is heavy enough that may have to do that at every start. The other thing it needed a soft start (rack limiter) so that it wouldn't give its impression of a volcano blowing up every time it started. All this can be automated of course but the one thing I wonder about is the note in the CAT marine catalogue for these engines is to unit exchange the cylinder heads every 10,000 to 12,500 hrs or every 2 years of use. Like I said, it will be interesting.
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby Chesapeake » Fri Mar 13, 2009 10:01 am

the PR43C has 2 engines.

a Cat C175-16 at 3600HP and a Cat C18 at 700HP.
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby MEC407 » Fri Mar 13, 2009 10:45 am

That's certainly an interesting twist on the genset concept.
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby D.Carleton » Fri Mar 13, 2009 3:45 pm

RickRackstop wrote:RE MK 5000 prime mover: I read that these engines had main bearing failure, never said anything about turbos.

I had read that too but the story I heard from the inside was that the turbochargers didn't take well to railroad service. Whatever the case, if indeed Cat has resolved the issue(s) and if they can provide a kit to transform a 3600 HP SD50 into a 4000 HP PR43C which meets all the new regulations then they may be on to something significant. I don't need to be the one telling anyone times are tight. There were over 400 SD50's of different variants built. If they can be converted into the equivalent of an ES44DC or SD70M-2 for a fraction of the price then Cat may finally get the high horsepower locomotive success they've long sought. When was the last time we had a large scale locomotive capitol rebuild program in this country?
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby RickRackstop » Fri Mar 13, 2009 4:49 pm

D.Carleton wrote: There were over 400 SD50's of different variants built. If they can be converted into the equivalent of an ES44DC or SD70M-2 for a fraction of the price then Cat may finally get the high horsepower locomotive success they've long sought. When was the last time we had a large scale locomotive capitol rebuild program in this country?

Not to mention using 16-710-G3A-T2's and they'll even sound the same.
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Re: Progress Rail/Caterpillar PR43C mystery? 3005hp for UP?

Postby D.Carleton » Fri Mar 13, 2009 5:40 pm

RickRackstop wrote: Not to mention using 16-710-G3A-T2's and they'll even sound the same.

I'm guessing Progress Rail & Caterpillar have different ideas.
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