by Engineer Spike
The point was well made already that the top gearing was a margin below MAS of where the units would run. The high speed gears could also be a detriment. That would be a higher minimum continuous speed. This would potentially fry motors, if the speed dropped too low, but a high throttle position was required. The other issue is acceleration. With high gears, it is analogous to trying to start off a manual transmission car in about third or fourth gear. It was mentioned that New Haven had the lowest gearing offered. The Shore Line is not a straight, flat line across the prairie. There were many speed restricted curves. Having the low gears allowed the units to accelerate out of the restrictions quicker.