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Re: Dumb Question

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  • jim_manley_alpha_six
    Hi Don and All the Other Dandy DudetteZ n DudeZ, The average cost of a brand-spanking-new GE or EMD diesel-electric locomotive is about $2 million today, but,
    Message 1 of 8 , May 1 10:46 PM
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      Hi Don and All the Other Dandy DudetteZ 'n DudeZ,

      The average cost of a brand-spanking-new GE or EMD diesel-electric
      locomotive is about $2 million today, but, as with any other mode of
      transportation, your mileage may vary a few hundred thousand dollars
      either way, depending on options (which I'm sure includes things like
      dealer prep, undercoating, rust-proofing, a moon roof ... The
      big-ticket options in reality are, as with everything else these days,
      in the electronics (including computer control for max fuel
      efficiency, which in some cases includes - are you sitting down? -
      WindoZe XP! Yikes!).

      The really big deal in loco technology lately, as in autos, is hybrid
      diesel/battery technology (yep, a Toyota Prius with a ~1,600
      horsepower prime mover!). The federal EPA has finally gotten around
      to mandating that the railroads get with the pollution-reduction
      program, and hybrids are the obvious choice, especially when it comes
      to switching in urban areas. One switcher (and they tend to be the
      oldest and worst polluters) can generate as much pollution as about
      7,000 modern automobiles, and that's pretty bad. Hybrids make a lot
      of sense for this application, because swithchers spend the vast
      majority of their time accelerating from a stop (when DC motors have
      the most torque - at stall), doing a lot of braking (which regenerates
      most of the energy back into the batteries), and otherwise driving
      along at relatively low speeds that electric motors are pretty good at
      handling. When the batteries run low enough, or the speed demand gets
      high enough, the diesel starts up and does its thing at up to full RPM
      (and therefore, max efficiency) until the batteries are charged, or
      the speed demand drops back down to "city driving". The companies
      that are making them can't do so fast enough, just like with the
      hybrid cars. Since they're not big road hogs, the price tags are down
      in the sub-million buck range, but the cost of all those batteries and
      the electronics, as in a Prius or Civic hybrid, makes them initially
      more expensive than an old-tech switcher does. However, as you might
      expect, the fuel savings are even more substantial, proportionately,
      compared with the autos, so they will probably pay for their higher
      price tags in fairly short order.

      As for scrap recovery, I would say the railroads are second only to
      the naval and merchant marine shipping industries in getting the most
      mileage out of old equipment (and having served on WW-II era ships
      over 50 years after they were commissioned, that's still saying a
      lot). Basically, if something can be righted, bent back into shape,
      rewired, welded, patched, screwed, glued, stitched or otherwise
      mended, it will be. When a loco falls off the tracks, the thing of
      most value is the engine, followed by the generators and motors, then
      probably the frame, the trucks, and the control electronics. The
      bodies/shells are just sheet steel, and there are plenty of body shop
      folks in the depots to bang them back into shape when they get
      dented/mangled. The components of a loco are all pretty robust, so
      unless something gets completely cracked/split/shredded beyond repair,
      it's going to get recycled back into operating equipment, sooner or
      later, and probably sooner. As I pointed out above, switchers,
      especially road switchers, are the old actresses of the industry -
      they get smaller and less significant bit parts until they are
      eventually unceremoniously sold for scrap, and they're generally well
      beyond being operational at that point, having anything that still
      works scavenged/cannibalized for use on other equipment. The
      railroads should get some kind of recycling award, that's for sure.
      Even most of the scrap metal is pretty useful high-yield steel, copper
      from the motors, and lots of good ol' resmeltable iron.

      BTW, as far as I'm concerned, there are no dumb questionZ here - just
      dumb answerZ, like mine! I have lots of my own dumb questionZ, and
      have kept the geniuseZ here entertained for years on end.

      All Z BeZt,
      Jim


      --- In z_scale@yahoogroups.com, "zbarr474" <d.f.avila@a...> wrote:
      > I realize this question is about as smart as asking "how high is
      > up", but what is an "average" or "typical" price that a railroad
      > might pay for some of the new mainline engines with and without all
      > the "extras" that we see around the countryside? Also if you have a
      > BAD accident is there apt to be any salvage value other than scrap
      > metal.
      >
      > ...don
    • Don
      Thanks for all those tidbits. Windoze XP was a real surprise. I guess Billy Gates is really going to run everything. I can just see a piece of spam working
      Message 2 of 8 , May 2 4:32 AM
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        Thanks for all those tidbits. Windoze XP was a real surprise. I guess
        Billy Gates is really going to run everything. I can just see a piece
        of spam working its way in and messing up signal control. Couldn't a
        trackside hacker have a field day. Scary!

        Actually the price doesn't seem as high as I thought it might be. The
        basic power equipment seems fairly simple, but all the electronics and
        controls must cost a real bundle.

        Again thanks for a couple of eye openers.

        Don

        -----Original Message-----
        From: z_scale@yahoogroups.com [mailto:z_scale@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
        Of jim_manley_alpha_six
        Sent: Monday, May 02, 2005 1:47 AM
        To: z_scale@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [Z_Scale] Re: Dumb Question

        Hi Don and All the Other Dandy DudetteZ 'n DudeZ,

        The average cost of a brand-spanking-new GE or EMD diesel-electric
        locomotive is about $2 million today, but, as with any other mode of
        transportation, your mileage may vary a few hundred thousand dollars
        either way, [snip]
      • randy smidt
        Hey Jim, Technically ALL diesel electric locomotives are hybrids(second most numerous application is marine power plants/transmissions). The term hybrid
        Message 3 of 8 , May 2 6:39 AM
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          Hey Jim,

          Technically ALL diesel electric locomotives are hybrids(second most numerous application is marine power plants/transmissions). The term "hybrid" refers to a mechanical power source with a non-mechanical (dissimilar) drive train - the electric motors. I laugh when people get all excited about "new" hybrid technology - this technology has been in use since the 1930's, just not in automobiles. You are correct though in pointing out that the new interesting twist is using smaller engines to charge batteries (as well as regenerative technology).

          Another new energy efficiency option on locomotives is using small engines(sort of like an APU), separate from the prime mover, to run auxillary systems like pumps and oil heaters to keep liquid lines from freezing, etc. rather using keeping the prime mover idling to do the same thing. Gives great fuel savings (what the RR's care about) and lower emissions (what the EPA cares about).

          Randy Smidt


          jim_manley_alpha_six <jim.manley@...> wrote:
          Hi Don and All the Other Dandy DudetteZ 'n DudeZ,

          The average cost of a brand-spanking-new GE or EMD diesel-electric
          locomotive is about $2 million today, but, as with any other mode of
          transportation, your mileage may vary a few hundred thousand dollars
          either way, depending on options (which I'm sure includes things like
          dealer prep, undercoating, rust-proofing, a moon roof ... The
          big-ticket options in reality are, as with everything else these days,
          in the electronics (including computer control for max fuel
          efficiency, which in some cases includes - are you sitting down? -
          WindoZe XP! Yikes!).

          The really big deal in loco technology lately, as in autos, is hybrid
          diesel/battery technology (yep, a Toyota Prius with a ~1,600
          horsepower prime mover!). The federal EPA has finally gotten around
          to mandating that the railroads get with the pollution-reduction
          program, and hybrids are the obvious choice, especially when it comes
          to switching in urban areas. One switcher (and they tend to be the
          oldest and worst polluters) can generate as much pollution as about
          7,000 modern automobiles, and that's pretty bad. Hybrids make a lot
          of sense for this application, because swithchers spend the vast
          majority of their time accelerating from a stop (when DC motors have
          the most torque - at stall), doing a lot of braking (which regenerates
          most of the energy back into the batteries), and otherwise driving
          along at relatively low speeds that electric motors are pretty good at
          handling. When the batteries run low enough, or the speed demand gets
          high enough, the diesel starts up and does its thing at up to full RPM
          (and therefore, max efficiency) until the batteries are charged, or
          the speed demand drops back down to "city driving". The companies
          that are making them can't do so fast enough, just like with the
          hybrid cars. Since they're not big road hogs, the price tags are down
          in the sub-million buck range, but the cost of all those batteries and
          the electronics, as in a Prius or Civic hybrid, makes them initially
          more expensive than an old-tech switcher does. However, as you might
          expect, the fuel savings are even more substantial, proportionately,
          compared with the autos, so they will probably pay for their higher
          price tags in fairly short order.

          As for scrap recovery, I would say the railroads are second only to
          the naval and merchant marine shipping industries in getting the most
          mileage out of old equipment (and having served on WW-II era ships
          over 50 years after they were commissioned, that's still saying a
          lot). Basically, if something can be righted, bent back into shape,
          rewired, welded, patched, screwed, glued, stitched or otherwise
          mended, it will be. When a loco falls off the tracks, the thing of
          most value is the engine, followed by the generators and motors, then
          probably the frame, the trucks, and the control electronics. The
          bodies/shells are just sheet steel, and there are plenty of body shop
          folks in the depots to bang them back into shape when they get
          dented/mangled. The components of a loco are all pretty robust, so
          unless something gets completely cracked/split/shredded beyond repair,
          it's going to get recycled back into operating equipment, sooner or
          later, and probably sooner. As I pointed out above, switchers,
          especially road switchers, are the old actresses of the industry -
          they get smaller and less significant bit parts until they are
          eventually unceremoniously sold for scrap, and they're generally well
          beyond being operational at that point, having anything that still
          works scavenged/cannibalized for use on other equipment. The
          railroads should get some kind of recycling award, that's for sure.
          Even most of the scrap metal is pretty useful high-yield steel, copper
          from the motors, and lots of good ol' resmeltable iron.

          BTW, as far as I'm concerned, there are no dumb questionZ here - just
          dumb answerZ, like mine! I have lots of my own dumb questionZ, and
          have kept the geniuseZ here entertained for years on end.

          All Z BeZt,
          Jim


          --- In z_scale@yahoogroups.com, "zbarr474" wrote:
          > I realize this question is about as smart as asking "how high is
          > up", but what is an "average" or "typical" price that a railroad
          > might pay for some of the new mainline engines with and without all
          > the "extras" that we see around the countryside? Also if you have a
          > BAD accident is there apt to be any salvage value other than scrap
          > metal.
          >
          > ...don





          -Z- WARNING! HANDLE WITH CARE! Highly addictive in Small DoseZ!

          Yahoo! Groups Links









          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Bill Hoshiko
          ... other than scrap metal. ... Hi Don, Go to this link and scroll to the bottom of the page. Read the comments just above the photo.
          Message 4 of 8 , May 2 7:40 AM
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            "zbarr474" <d.f.avila@a...> wrote:

            > Also if you have a BAD accident is there apt to be any salvage value
            other than scrap metal.
            >
            > ...don

            Hi Don,

            Go to this link and scroll to the bottom of the page. Read the
            comments just above the photo.

            http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/GP60/GP60a.htm

            If you have the time to spend go here:

            http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/rrpictale.htm

            Great stories with great photos. I use some of them for my desktop.

            If you are short on time at least read this one:

            http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/steam700/steam700a.htm

            I guess that this is the third week that I have been reading Krug's
            tales. I am not even 1/4 way through.

            If you do not like his stories and photos, you do not like trains.

            Bill H
            El Toro, Ca
          • Don
            I bumped into this site about a month ago and sent an E-Mail to Krug saying that I thought he had the best collections of photographs from more than 95% of the
            Message 5 of 8 , May 2 9:08 AM
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              I bumped into this site about a month ago and sent an E-Mail to Krug
              saying that I thought he had the best collections of photographs from
              more than 95% of the photos on the web. The reason they are so good is
              that they are taken from vantage points that only a train engineer can
              get to, while the rest of us are outside looking in from the roadway or
              down from a bridge. ...plus he is really funny. He had one story about
              "doing it" by the "book" where if you read the book word by word, there
              is no correct way -- unless the loco sprouts wings or a propeller etc.
              Anyway, I looked at every one of his photos over a two week period. For
              anyone else, take the time and scroll though his photos. He has some
              views that are really unique plus you'll get some great ideas for
              scenery. In addition he also has some train information that I'm
              willing to bet you have never seen before.

              Don

              -----Original Message-----
              From: z_scale@yahoogroups.com [mailto:z_scale@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf
              Of Bill Hoshiko
              Sent: Monday, May 02, 2005 10:40 AM
              To: z_scale@yahoogroups.com
              Subject: [Z_Scale] BAD accident and no scrap

              "zbarr474" <d.f.avila@a...> wrote:

              > Also if you have a BAD accident is there apt to be any salvage value
              other than scrap metal.
              >
              > ...don

              Hi Don,

              Go to this link and scroll to the bottom of the page. Read the
              comments just above the photo.

              http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/GP60/GP60a.htm

              If you have the time to spend go here:

              http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/rrpictale.htm

              Great stories with great photos. I use some of them for my desktop.

              If you are short on time at least read this one:

              http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/steam700/steam700a.htm

              I guess that this is the third week that I have been reading Krug's
              tales. I am not even 1/4 way through.

              If you do not like his stories and photos, you do not like trains.

              Bill H
              El Toro, Ca
            • Bill Hoshiko
              Thanks Don, http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/rrpictale.htm It will take me more than a month to go through all of them. So much to learn. Western
              Message 6 of 8 , May 3 6:57 AM
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                Thanks Don,

                http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/rrpictale.htm

                It will take me more than a month to go through all of them. So much
                to learn. Western railroading at its best.

                Bill H
                El Toro, Ca
              • Joe Krepps
                This site is *well* worth the visit. I do suggest, however, that you ve got something faster than a 56k dialup. Excellent, big photos taken by a real
                Message 7 of 8 , May 3 8:04 AM
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                  This site is *well* worth the visit. I do suggest, however, that you've
                  got something faster than a 56k dialup.

                  Excellent, big photos taken by a real railroader complete with stories.
                  Think of it as an Internet based "Trains" magazine. It's that good.

                  I haven't visited the site for a while, for fear of losing interest in
                  my beloved Western Maryland Ry. & European trains.

                  > Western railroading at its best.

                  That would be my _only_ unhappiness with the site - it's all western.
                  Still, it's perfect for non-U.S. modelers as a resource for modeling
                  today's western U.S. mainline scene.

                  The URL merits a repeat for those stumbling onto this thread:
                  http://krugtales.50megs.com/rrpictale/rrpictale.htm
                  Don't let the simple, basic home page fool you into thinking it's not a
                  great site...it is!

                  Joe
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