Pan Am GE DASH 8 Locomotives

Guilford Rail System changed its name to Pan Am Railways in 2006. Discussion relating to the current operations of the Boston & Maine, the Maine Central, and the Springfield Terminal railroads (as well as the Delaware & Hudson while it was under Guilford control until 1988). Official site can be found here: PANAMRAILWAYS.COM.

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Pan Am GE DASH 8 Locomotives

Postby johnpbarlow » Fri Nov 18, 2016 4:27 pm

Heard at CPF-Jade II in Gardner today that Pan Am is purchasing 8 excess GE locomotives from CSX? Any corroboration / details (eg, 4 axle or 6 axle)?
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby GuilfordRailSD45 » Fri Nov 18, 2016 4:53 pm

Not to fuel the speculation fire, but didn't CSX just take the last of it's standard cab C40-8's off the roster? I wonder if they'd maybe be looking to sell those...
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby 690 » Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:30 pm

johnpbarlow wrote:Heard at CPF-Jade II in Gardner today that Pan Am is purchasing 8 excess GE locomotives from CSX? Any corroboration / details (eg, 4 axle or 6 axle)?


Rumor is 12 ex-CSX C40-8s through GE.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby gokeefe » Fri Nov 18, 2016 6:40 pm

Wow. Sounds like a lot of new power. When's the last time PAR actually bought engines (as opposed to leasing them)?
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby newpylong » Fri Nov 18, 2016 7:43 pm

That's the word on the street. I wonder who's going to fix them? No one at Deerfield or Waterville knows anything but EMD.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby MEC407 » Fri Nov 18, 2016 11:40 pm

Sadly all folks with GE knowledge who used to work at Waterville have long since retired... and all the GE-specific tools were sold off approximately 15 years ago.

But who the hell knows. This is a company that can barely maintain a 10 MPH mainline but then buys airlines, F-units, and dome cars, so anything's possible.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby johnpbarlow » Sat Nov 19, 2016 6:36 am

Per CSX Locomotives FB page (https://www.facebook.com/CSXLocomotives/), all 157 C40-8 locomotives have been retired and sold to GE. As these locomotives were built in 1989 (ex-Cons) or later, they would indeed be Pan Am's newest owned power being ~11+ years younger than PAR's current youngest unit, ex-KCS MEC 606 built in 1978.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby MEC407 » Sat Nov 19, 2016 2:35 pm

gokeefe wrote:When's the last time PAR actually bought engines (as opposed to leasing them)?


600-619 were bought in 2010.

The longest stretch of not buying anything was the period between 2000 and 2010. They bought 500-519 in 2000, and bought nothing more until the 600s in 2010. They also sold or scrapped a lot of units during that time period, including the last of the GEs, the last remaining SW1 and SW9, some GP9s, all of the remaining GP7s, GP35s, SD26s, SD39s, and SD45s, and the last GP38. So the roster was, I believe, at its all-time smallest just before the 600s arrived.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby MEC407 » Sat Nov 19, 2016 2:42 pm

johnpbarlow wrote:Per CSX Locomotives FB page (https://www.facebook.com/CSXLocomotives/), all 157 C40-8 locomotives have been retired and sold to GE. As these locomotives were built in 1989 (ex-Cons) or later, they would indeed be Pan Am's newest owned power being ~11+ years younger than PAR's current youngest unit, ex-KCS MEC 606 built in 1978.


And these Dash 8s are, I believe, going to need significant TLC pretty quickly. CSX would've had to do fairly substantial work on them (specifically the split cooling modification) in order to continue running them and comply with EPA regs. PAR, I believe, is not subject to that requirement... but we're still talking about locomotives that are approaching 30 years old and have had the living daylights beaten out of them.

Everyone here knows which locomotive builder I'm partial to, but this rumor remains a real head-scratcher in light of PAR's ongoing efforts to be a 100% EMD 40-Series railroad. It took them 15 years to get there and it would be a pretty strange reversal to suddenly undo it.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby gokeefe » Sat Nov 19, 2016 3:58 pm

I agree that its very strange. Perhaps the intention is to run the engines as a "pool" out of one location only.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby riffian » Sat Nov 19, 2016 4:11 pm

Reported on another site, with no stated provenance, pool between East Deerfield and CSX DeWitt Yard. Not sure how this fits in with SEPO/POSE.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby MEC407 » Sat Nov 19, 2016 8:02 pm

Pooled or not, it's still a bizarre change of philosophy unless their intention is to lease them and/or pay someone else to maintain them. Heck, even purchasing the 600s was a pretty big deviation from their previous course.
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby Trinnau » Sat Nov 19, 2016 9:20 pm

CSX power running through to Rigby isn't cheap, and a pool on Buffalo-to-Portland would seriously offset that. Pan Am tried sending some of the SD40s off-line in the past, but they were always turned around at Selkirk and sent right back dead-in-tow. Being ex-Conrail, these would be able to run on the B&A if CSX has maintained the cab signals, and the shops at Selkirk would be the ideal place to do the maintenance, since in that pool they would not regularly go by a Pan Am shop. That would make the most sense in my opinion.

Running to Deerfield via Rotterdam isn't bad either, the interchange at Rotterdam is annoying at best, CSX has run that job both out of DeWitt direct and backhaul to/from Selkirk with varying success. A solid run-through train from Deerfield to DeWitt (likely with a set-off/pick-up at Rotterdam) makes it much cleaner, just pull in and change crews like the grain train. Perhaps the NS was involved some, since they are running more direct from Deerfield now on their side.

And the Deerfield guys have certainly gotten some experience with all the NS Dash 9's running around on the property. By no means are they experts, but it's not exactly foreign to them.

Pan Am surprised us with the SD40s, starting to realize that the six-axle power does make a big difference on those road jobs. Maybe they are buying into that more having seen the success of the SD40s?
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby Mikejf » Sun Nov 20, 2016 4:55 pm

12 to keep 8 running..
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Re: PAR Locomotive Fleet - General Discussion

Postby Engineer Spike » Tue Nov 22, 2016 11:52 pm

I think this has everything to do with horsepower hours. Pan Am stays is perpetually in arrears. Sending a 3000 horsepower unit in run through service with CSX, or NS just doesn't add up fast enough. Same with sending a 3000 hp unit out to pay off hours. These larger engines can multiply the horsepower hours much faster.

In the long run, the EMD 645 platform is obsolete. A good example was CP running 4 unit sets of SD40s, in the early 2000s, on D&H. They could sometimes reduce a unit if they happened to send 3 SOO SD60s. They could so the same work as 4 SD40s.

Pan Am could easily reduce the roster size with more capable units. FEC did this with the SD70M-2, and also the new GEs. Other regional carriers have even gone with AC power, such as MRL, and IAIS. This would save thousands with less fuel, and less units to repair, and maintain. A secondary savings with a smaller fleet is less mechanical staff.
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