The LV U-boats in Texas.

Discussion related to the Lehigh Valley Railroad and predecessors for the period 1846-1976. Originally incorporated as the Delaware, Lehigh, Schuylkill and Susquehanna Railroad Company.

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The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby scottychaos » Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:17 am

As many of you know, I have been searching for three "missing" Lehigh Valley U23B's since I first started the LV survivors page back in 2003:

http://www.frontiernet.net/~scottychaos ... tives.html

Three of the LV's twelve U-boats remain unaccounted for to this day..
I was beginning to assume they must be scrapped, since no one has seen them since they left the R&N in 1998.

The three "Missing" U-boats in question are these:

Lehigh Valley U23B 505
to Conrail 2781
to Reading & Northern 2394
sold by R&N in 1998 to RMDI
sold to Texas Utilities by RMDI
To Texas Utilities 2394


Lehigh Valley U23B 506
to Conrail 2782
to Reading & Northern 2393
sold by R&N in 1998 to RMDI
sold to Texas Utilities by RMDI
To Texas Utilities 2393


Lehigh Valley U23B 507
to Conrail 2783
to Texas Utilities 6/23/1993


every once in awhile I do a new google search, poking arund the internet for any sign of these engines..usually nothing comes up..
but today something has!! ;D

Check out these pics! taken by Ben Helsel, a month ago, In Amarillo, Texas!

http://ns2557.rrpicturearchives.net/sho ... id=1791327

http://ns2557.rrpicturearchives.net/sho ... id=1791339

Not positively ID'd yet..but! they are U23B's, and they are in Texas!
also notice a bit of Red showing through the paint!

They could also be Missouri Pacific U23B's..as its known Texas Utilities has some Mopac U23B's as well as the LV units..

I have compared the Texas photos with LV photos..I can find no obvious spotting features that would rule them out as LV units..

now we have to somehow figure out their true identity!

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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby 56-57 » Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:21 am

I hate to be a naysayer, but I doubt they're of LV pedigree. They still have the oval cab window glass intact, whereas anything that made it to the 90's with Conrail had those plated over.

I hope I'm wrong.

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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby scottychaos » Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:41 am

56-57 wrote:I hate to be a naysayer, but I doubt they're of LV pedigree. They still have the oval cab window glass intact, whereas anything that made it to the 90's with Conrail had those plated over.

I hope I'm wrong.

MJK



good catch..
but if those windows can be plated over, they can also be UNplated! ;)
all conrail did was replace the glass with opaque panels:
http://crcyc.railfan.net/locos/ge/u23/cr2716ef.jpg
would be very easy to put glass back, if wanted.


while we are on the topic..anyone have any idea why Conrail did that? (plating over the windows)
what is the point in reducing visability?
I suppose there could be minor heating/cooling savings..like sealing up windows in your home..
but not really in this case, because only the composition of the panels has changed..all the rubber window molding is still in place..
(where you would have air leakage)..the only thing that Conrail changed was the composition of the windows..

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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby lvrr325 » Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:06 pm

Pretty sure Conrail just installed steel plates instead of the glass, a lot easier to install, no welding needed. Eliminates the need for expensive FRA glazing. Same reason the lower engineer's side window was plated on switcher cabs. I believe the switchers were rebuilt at Juniata and so got the welded plate, but the U23Bs and other GEs never got rebuilt, the plates were an easy swap keeping the unit out of service for a minimal time.

Texas Utilities may not even be required to have FRA glazing, if they're not a common carrier and just an industrial operation.
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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby GOLDEN-ARM » Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:12 pm

windows were covered, as they didn't really offer any visibility, that enhanced safe operation of the loco, AND, the expense of converting them to FRA 223 glazing, with approved frames. in the beginning, they went "cheap", and merely painted over extra windows. (for some reason, the paint didn't prevent them from breaking, or leaking!) also, the greenhouse effect wasn't really appreciated by the crews. (imagine, not being able to lay back, and sleep, because you would be in the middle of a window!)

kind of the same reasoning for Conrail blanking the upper center windows in RS units, and the lower left rear window, on SW models. It's an added expense, for a window that doesn't enhance efficient operations. i will opine this. the loco's in the pictures don't have class/marker lights, which the LV units did have, through the end of their service on Conrail. i don't know about the MOP units, but my time on the UP showed, that these lights were removed, from units that were acquired from other roads, as well as the removal of the light fixtures, from the rear numberboard lights. sometimes they were removed "correctly, with a round plug welded in, and puttied over,etc., but more often simply covered with a square patch of sheet steel, welded onto the outside.....
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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby lvrr325 » Wed Oct 14, 2009 1:22 pm

PRLX is a Progress Rail Services reporting mark; Diesel Era did a nice 2-part article on U23Bs over the December-January issues in 1999-00 or 2000-01 that's not too hard to find which may show differences.

NdeM also had U23Bs and I think theirs may have had 5-digit numbers, although who knows if the numbers are original; I believe Progress is who had the ex-NdeM E60s that went to Canada several years ago and ended up last year at the NYS&W shop in Utica, where they were parted out and cut up. They do have divisions in South America and Australia as well.

Progress is a subsidary of Caterpillar.
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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby Lehighton_Man » Mon Nov 23, 2009 2:54 pm

Thing is, did the Valley ever equip the locomotives, that other railroads did not? Like, an out of the blue ID thing that could've somehow, within one hell of a miracle, remained to it's current owner, or show markings of where such device could've been mounted?
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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby lvrr325 » Tue Nov 24, 2009 4:00 pm

No, although it's possible Conrail added cab signals to them. They were plain jane GE issue with only dynamic brakes as an option.

No response to an emailed inquiry some weeks back.
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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby scottychaos » Fri Aug 03, 2012 7:10 am

A break in the case!
I started the LV survivors page almost 10 years ago, in 2003:

http://www.frontiernet.net/~scottychaos ... tives.html

All that time, these three "missing" LV U-boats have been unaccounted for..
LV U23B's 505, 506 and 507, to Texas Utilities.
No one has seen them in over 10 years..I have assumed it's very likely they were all scrapped years ago..
Which would explain why no one has seen them in the past 10 years, because they don't exist to BE seen!

But! One was found! although it's existence was confirmed because it left Texas to be scrapped! :(
I received an email, from a very reliable source, that said:

Texas Utilities 23012/Conrail 2783/Lehigh Valley 507 U23B moved from Texas
Utilities to Kansas City and scrapped in May 2012.

So thats very sad..after all this time, one of the three is finally "found"..but it was found only because it escaped Texas to be scrapped..
But this leads to an interesting conclusion..

Clearly at least ONE of the "missing U-boats" *was* in fact in Texas all this time afterall!
which means it must have been really hidden away from the general public..stored somewhere where it cant be seen from public property..
which means! its possible sister units 505 and 506 might still be there as well..

Scot
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Re: The LV U-boats in Texas.

Postby scottychaos » Fri Aug 03, 2012 10:56 am

Lehigh Valley U23B No. 507 - built 1974.
to Conrail No. 2783 in 1976.
sold by Conrail to Texas Utilities 6/23/1993, to Texas Utilities No. 23012.
(that is correct, a 5-digit number, 23012.)
Moved from Texas to Kansas City in May 2012, and scrapped.
scrapped wearing Conrail blue paint.

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