Posts Tagged ‘Canadian National locomotives’

CN Returns Standard Cab Units to Mainline Duty

June 10, 2022

Some standard cab locomotives have been returned to mainline service by Canadian National  after being sidelined or assigned to captive service since early 2021, Trains magazine reported this week on its website.

Some other units, including idled wide cab units, also have returned to service or are being prepared for a return as part of the railroad’s fall and winter surge fleet.

Most of the 134 GE C-40-8 units CN acquired between 2010 and 2012 have been parked or retired since 2020.

The Dash 8s are not expected to be mainstays on CN for long. The Trains report can be read at https://www.trains.com/trn/news-reviews/news-wire/news-photos-canadian-national-returns-dash-8-locomotives-to-service/

CN Testing Renewable Fuel Locos on B&LE

February 14, 2022

Canadian National has begun testing renewable fuel locomotives on its Bessemer & Lake Erie line in Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Railway Age reported that the testing is being conducted in partnership with Progress Rail and Renewable Energy Group.

Locomotives in the test use a blend of biodiesel and renewable diesel fuel. The locomotives began operating on Feb. 1.

CN officials told Railway Age that the test program will run for approximately two years. One of the project objectives is to gain a better understanding of the long-term durability and operational effects of renewable fuels on locomotives, particularly during cold weather.

The fuel is being supported by Renewable Energy and contains high-percentage blends of biomass-based fuel, including both biodiesel and renewable diesel fuel.

Fall Foliage and Street Running

November 10, 2021

Hickory Street in Warsaw, Indiana, is famous for two blocks of street running on the Marion District of Norfolk Southern, which many railfans still like to call the Marion Branch.

A street project that wrapped up earlier this year changed the traffic patterns on Hickory for vehicles but not for trains. The street is now one lane northbound only with the other lane devoted to on-street parking.

Last Friday I chased the 13Q from Goshen to Warsaw with the objective of getting some fall foliage and street running. There were no colorful trees on Hickory itself, but a pair of tees with gold leaves were visible on Fort Wayne Avenue. The latter comes into Hickory at an angle on the north end of the street running at the crossing of East Main Street.

The 13Q, which was led by a Canadian National unit and had a CN unit on the rear as a DPU, is shown in the top image. However, the first train I saw run down the street was the 14J, whose rear is shown about to clear the street running in the bottom image.

Note that in theory through vehicles are prohibited on the tracks and in the easternmost lane. But during my time waiting for trains I saw a number of vehicles straddle the rails while waiting at the stop light to make a left turn onto Fort Wayne Avenue.

Working for Conrail at the Time

July 30, 2021

At the time this image was made, this Canadian National unit was leased to Conrail. It is working in Stanley Yard in Toledo on Oct. 14, 1977.

Photograph by Robert Farkas

GTW Heritage Unit Visits Northeast Ohio

July 26, 2021

I met Jeff Troutman in Perry on Sunday evening to catch CSX ethanol train K614. There were three other railfans there as well. What was special about his train is that it was led by Canadian National 8952, the Grand Trunk Western heritage unit. It passed through just after 7 p.m.

Photograph by Edward Ribinskas

Eastbound and Westbound in Akron

July 9, 2021

Both images above were made in Akron the CSX New Castle Subdivision on the morning of June 16, 2021. The top image shows an eastbound while the bottom image has a westbound with Canadian National motive power.

Photographs by Robert Farkas

Happy 4th of July

July 4, 2021

Old glory waves in the breeze from a bridge in Paxton, Illinois, over the Chicago Subdivision of Canadian National, formerly the Illinois Central.

Shown is a southbound CN auto rack train whose consist also had a few boxcars of, perhaps, auto parts.

The train was captured on July 3, 2021, during a holiday weekend. The train had slowed here for a possible meet with a northbound, but the dispatcher elected to move the meet to the next siding to the south at Rantoul.

Yeah its Trailing But Look What its Trailing

May 9, 2021

In my perfect world the first Canadian National heritage locomotive I would see and photograph would be ET44AC No. 3008 on the point of a southbound on the former Illinois Central mainline in east central Illinois.

As it turned out my first CN heritage unit was the 3008 and it was running on the ex-IC in east central Illinois. But it was trailing and headed northward.

What’s special about the 3008? It’s the Illinois Central heritage locomotive.

Yeah, my first sighting of it was as a trailing unit, but just look at what it is trailing. No. 3008 was assigned as the third of three units pulling train A407, the daily Centralia, Illinois, to Kirk Yard in Gary, Indiana, job.

In recent months this train has typically operated with former IC SD70 units, many of them still in their IC “death star” livery.

So what we had on Saturday, May 1, was a pair of original IC SD70s, Nos. 1028 and 1001, both wearing their “death star” look teamed up with a “death star” IC heritage unit.

This begs the question of which of these units is the heritage unit.

The 3008 could have been the leader on the A407. It’s nose was facing north. I would later learn that the 3008 was removed from the A407 in Champaign and put on another northbound train as a leader.

I don’t know if working with original IC units is a first for the 3008. CN heritage units are allowed to roam the CN system, which is quite vast so the 3008 will be matched with a wide range of CN motive power.

Whatever the case, this motive power consist was one instance in which I didn’t mind all that much that the heritage unit was trailing. Three out of five isn’t a bad day’s work in railroad photography.

First Day of May Delights

May 6, 2021

Nice weather for the first day of May 2021 has railroad photographs out to catch what they could find in Northeast Ohio. Here are a trio of images made on the CSX New Castle Subdivision west of Akron.

In the top image, a Canadian National SD75I leads train Q276 around the curve in downtown Warwick on the single track segment.

In the middle we see AC44CW No. 402 on the point of an eastbound in Barberton.

Finally, GP40-2 No. 6415 sits in Warwick at a new fueling facility. This unit is stored here between runs of local D750. The apparatus visible toward the rear of the locomotive is a plug in for the crankcase heater.

Photographs by Robert Farkas

CN to Order 75 New Locomotives

April 28, 2021

Anticipating traffic growth, Canadian National has ordered 75 locomotives for delivery over the next year.

CN is the first Class 1 railroad thus far this year to order new motive power.

Chief Operating Officer Rob Reilly said the locomotive order is not related to CN’s efforts to acquire Kansas City Southern.

“It’s really based on growth and growth prospects we see over the next 12 to 24 months,” he said. “In terms of timing, we expect to get roughly 25 of those here in the second half of this year, the other 50, first half of next year.”

Reilly said CN could speed up the pace of accepting new locomotives if traffic volume growth exceeds expectations.

The Montreal-based carrier expects traffic to grow between 7 percent and 9 percent this year.

“As we see growth coming, we want to be prepared for it,” said CN CEO JJ Ruest. “We want to be able to move the economy and do our part to enable the recovery post COVID.”

CN did not say which manufacturer will receive the locomotive order.

The last new locomotives CN acquired were part of a 200-unit order placed in December 2017.

The last of those were 60 ES44AC units built in September 2018.