Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

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Postby CSX ENG » Wed Sep 13, 2006 11:23 pm

SW9's #8881 and 8919 as well as SW7's #8893 and 8887 are four more that had these windows....
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Postby CSX ENG » Fri Feb 22, 2008 7:08 pm

NW2 #9271 and 9278 also had this type of window arrangement. Since I started the original topic nearly four years ago, I have yet to find out the reason "why" the NYC needed locomotives with this type of modification. Anyone have any insight??
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Postby lvrr325 » Fri Feb 22, 2008 11:03 pm

Does the North Shore RR, a central PA shortline, still have a switcher with the dual windows on one side? Seems to me they had one at least at one time, repainted into their Erie Lackawanna style paint.
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby GOLDEN-ARM » Fri Jun 20, 2008 8:38 pm

In a regular cab window arrangement, the side cab windows slide towards the ends of the cab walls, and are "hidden" by the steel cab side walls, when fully open. A pair of seats on the firemans side, means neither crewman has a proper seat, in the window, to view signals, or for crew comfort. Looking at the photo from Scot, it's clear that the new windows are centered on the seats, and that the windows now slide into the center of the cab, and the cab ends, as opposed to the ends only. This means both guys have a window, for watching signals, watching the train, or for fulfilling a local agreement, about crew comfort. Ultimately, the entire window opening hasn't changed, it's just been cut in half, and seperated. The theories about it being done as a hedge against vandalism just don't hold any credibility. Dual armrests and windscreens prove it's a crew requirement, otherwise they would just be windows. Even modern diesels, like Geeps and SD's have the same problem, with a 3 man crew. The guy in the back seat gets little or no window, or the guy up front rides with his knees on the door. One window opening won't satisfy two crewmen, on the same side of the cab.
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby lvrr325 » Tue Jun 24, 2008 4:28 am

Reason for blanking windows in RR equipment is normally to eliminate the need for FRA glazing, which is on the level of making the glass bulletproof - not cheap. That's why you saw a lot of cabooses get blanked windows or in the case of some roads get mesh screens added to them.

Of course, that was a change that got made in the PC era. Prior to that with the upper window blanking in RS units and so forth, it may simply have been to reduce maintenance - a piece of steel will stand up to more abuse than glass.
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby Noel Weaver » Tue Jun 24, 2008 9:31 am

This probably goes back many, many years to the era when the New York Central way buying diesels for specific assignments
and had them "custom built" and tailored to these particular assignments. I remember working on a former NYC Alco/GE
yard engine in Oak Point one night with the control stand in front of the engineer rather than aside the engineer as most of
the others were. It may have been fine for a hump yard or something like that but it was a stinker to work on in the yard
at Oak Point or Harlem River. Both the BLE divisions on the Central and New Haven complained about that particular
engine and it did not stay in New York for very long.
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby CSX ENG » Sun Nov 02, 2008 6:41 am

NW2 #9177 can also be added to the list....
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby railroadcarmover » Wed Nov 05, 2008 10:31 pm

ASRY 66 can be added to the list too. It had the same split windows on the fireman side. The unit was a former NY Central NW2 #9166. It was bought from Conrail by the Ashland Railway and renumbered #66.
It was then transferred over to Raritan Center in Edison NJ where it was used for the Durham Transport RR in the mid 90's as DRHY #66.
I used to work on this RR as a conductor / brakeman and we wound up repainting it orange and black.
It has since gone back to the Ashland Railway.
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby CSX ENG » Sat Jul 25, 2009 10:05 pm

Penn Central NW2 #8687 also has this window arrangement...
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby lvrr325 » Mon Jul 27, 2009 12:23 am

Noel Weaver wrote:This probably goes back many, many years to the era when the New York Central way buying diesels for specific assignments
and had them "custom built" and tailored to these particular assignments. I remember working on a former NYC Alco/GE
yard engine in Oak Point one night with the control stand in front of the engineer rather than aside the engineer as most of
the others were. It may have been fine for a hump yard or something like that but it was a stinker to work on in the yard
at Oak Point or Harlem River. Both the BLE divisions on the Central and New Haven complained about that particular
engine and it did not stay in New York for very long.
Noel Weaver


That's about like how there were a handful of PC GP38s with the EMD tandem control stand (as built) - set up so one could switch sides without needing to stop the locomotive and set it back up again, the two were connected through some means. This caused the center of the cab to need to be pushed out about a foot. There were dynamic brake equipped units (7822 comes to mind) and non-dynamic units (7904-5-6). The latter may have been a PRSL order that ended up going to PC instead. (Conrail also inherited some Reading SD45s with this stand). I'm not sure that they kept this setup, or even dual control, by the 1990s. But these too were ordered for specific locations/jobs, apparently, since only a handful came that way.
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby CSX ENG » Fri Jul 22, 2011 7:53 pm

Also, NW2 #9282...
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby scharnhorst » Sun Jan 29, 2012 9:38 am

no matter the weather or the country I'll still be trackside!
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby CSX ENG » Sun Oct 28, 2012 6:14 pm

NW2 #8697 as well......
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby CSX ENG » Sun May 17, 2015 9:50 pm

I'm still wondering the real answer after all these years? Add 8914 to the list.........
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Re: Odd window arrangements on PC SW9's

Postby scharnhorst » Tue May 26, 2015 7:14 pm

I posted a photo of one of these units on Facebook on the Conrail page and have gotten some interesting thoughts on these. From what I have been told these are former New York Central Units so this narrows down the original ownership of these. One poster informed me that there is also a double step which is a rare things to see it's on the conductors side of the cab as well. The units in question had 2 seats and not a bench style seat. The thought is that this was done for 1 window for the fireman and 1 for the conductor. Nothing has been brought up as to if this was a Union thing or not. So I guess this would be something to maybe post to the New York Central experts and see what and if they know anything??
no matter the weather or the country I'll still be trackside!
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