U34CH Dash-7?

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U34CH Dash-7?

Postby Allen Hazen » Fri Feb 07, 2014 8:37 pm

(Sorry for the potentially misleading title…)

The U25B had its central equipment air blower in the radiator compartment. In the redesign that led to the "definitive" U-series carbody (introduced with the "Phase 2" U28B and U28C in 1966), this was changed: the equipment blower was now between the cab and the engine-generator set, with the central air intake high on the hood side behind the cab (the square opening). This arrangement was continued on six-axle Dash-7 units, but on 4-axle Dash-7 units the equipment blower went… back into the radiator compartment (in order to make room for other things -- toilet compartment and low-voltage control electricals --behind the cab). The Davis brothers have recently posted some original GE publications about (what has since come to be known as) the Dash-7 line when it was new, including cut-away drawings of the rear end of the long hood on 4-axle and 6-axle units:
http://railroadlocomotives.blogspot.ca

There was, however, one exception to the rule that the air blower was behind the cab in later U-series units: the U34CH. (I assume because the HEP generator was located in the space where the equipment blower should have gone?). This can be spotted from the outside: unlike, say, the U36C, the U34CH didn't have the square intake on the side of the hood for the central air system.

So, question for anyone who knows the interior of a U34CH: was its central equipment blower installation similar to that on a B23-7?

(As for other possible interpretations of the title… No, the U34CH wasn't any more like a Dash-7 than other early-1970s U-series. Recall that when another U34CH was wanted in the late 1970s, GE thought it was easier to buy back a U30C from the C&NW and have it rebuilt to a U34CH (at, I think, GE's Cleveland shop, not Erie) than distract the Erie people by making them build a U-series unit in the middle of Dash-7 production!)
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Re: U34CH Dash-7?

Postby Allen Hazen » Fri Feb 07, 2014 8:55 pm

Partial answer:
The U34CH operator's manual is available on-line, and the "location of apparatus" diagram on page 55
at
http://www.hobokenterminal.com/u34ch/u34ch_55.html
shows the equipment blower in a position like that on a U23-7. So, as far as it goes, this is consistent with the installation being the same… but the diagram is, well, sort of… diagrammatic.
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Re: U34CH Dash-7?

Postby Allen Hazen » Fri Feb 07, 2014 11:50 pm

Correcting myself-- the ex-C&NW U30C was rebuilt into a U34CH at GE's PITTSBURGH shop, not CLEVELAND. (It was given a new serial number, too.) … There is some U34CH history at the hobokenterminal.com site: GE's Cleveland shop did wreck repairs on one of the earlier U34CH.
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Re: U34CH Dash-7?

Postby Typewriters » Sat Feb 08, 2014 12:44 pm

For whatever it is worth, I'm pretty sure the U50C had the same location for its equipment blowers- that is to say, in the radiator compartment and driven off the back of the radiator fan drive gearbox.

-Will Davis
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http://www.railroadlocomotives.blogspot.com
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Re: U34CH Dash-7?

Postby Allen Hazen » Mon Feb 10, 2014 5:52 pm

Thanks, Will!
George Elwood's "Fallen Flags" site has, as ne of its collection o operator's manuals, a manual for the U50C, and the general arrangements diagram at the end shows the location of the equipment blowers: they are, indeed, "behind" the radiator fans (i.e. on the side of the radiator fan further from the engine: on the U50C this means that the two equipment blowers are facing each other in the radiator compartment in the centre of the locomotive). As far as I can tell from the diagrammatic drawings, the installation (including the drive from the fan gear-box) could be the same as on the U34CH and the BXX-7.

(Somewhere near the beginning, the manual has an italicized note warning that different railroads buy locomotives with idferent equipment options, so the pictures in the manual may not match a particular railroad's units. This COULD be taken as indicating the GE was hoping to sell the U50C to customers other than the UP, but I suspect it was just standard wording in all GE locomotive operator's manuals… The general arrangements diagram shows a unit with the ex-GTEL truck used on the UP units: I remember seeing (in, I think, the "Railway Age" article when the new model was announced) some GE-supplied artwork showing a U50C with FB-3 trucks.)
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Re: U34CH Dash-7?

Postby Bright Star » Sat May 17, 2014 4:12 pm

The HEP alternator was located where the equipment blower would be on a 'conventional' C-C U-Series.
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Re: U34CH Dash-7?

Postby Allen Hazen » Sat May 17, 2014 11:06 pm

Brightstar--
Yes. See "location of equipment" diagram linked above.
Hence the obvious visual spotting difference between a U34CH and a U33C or U36C: the U34CH lacks the intake for the equipment blower located on the upper side of the long hood between the cab and the engine compartment.
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