FM Erie-built

FM Erie-built

The Erie-built was the first streamlined, cab-equipped dual service diesel locomotive built by Fairbanks-Morse, introduced as direct competition to such models as the ALCO PA and EMD E-unit. As F-M lacked the space to manufacture the units in their own plant, the work was subcontracted out to General Electric, which produced the locomotives at its Erie, Pennsylvania facility, thereby giving rise to the name "Erie-built."

The unit's 2,000 hp, ten-cylinder opposed piston engine prime mover provided ample power to its A1A-A1A wheelset. F-M retained the services of renowned industrial designer Raymond Loewy to create a visually impressive carbody for the Erie-built. The initial windshield configuration utilized rectangular glass panes, whereas those units manufactured after March, 1947 (such as [ Fe #90 and #90B] ) received curved glass. Most units rode on conventional General Steel Castings trucks straight from the factory, excepting those destined for the New York Central (including [ #5000] ) which were fitted with specialized assemblies. At least one Erie-built ( [ #61C] ) was later repowered with an EMD 567 series diesel engine.

82 cab-equipped lead A units and 28 cabless booster B units were built for American railroads between December, 1945–April, 1949. Afterward, F-M continued to market dual service streamlined units under its Consolidated line of locomotives, more commonly referred to as "C-liners".

After their retirement, several Erie-built "B" unit hulks were sent to the Canadian Pacific for their incorporation in a quasi-portable CWR rail welding plant then located at Smiths Falls, Ontario. These units were painted in a reverse "Erie-Lackawannaish" CP Paint Scheme, as this was just before CP Adopted the CP Rail multi-mark paint. Around 1990, the CP CWR plant with the Erie-Built units was moved to CP Transcona near Winnipeg. When-to-be-scrapped, four (4) Erie-built trucks were salvaged from the CP welding plant units and these trucks were sent to Oregon to be placed under two truckless [ Ex-D&H/ATSF Alco-GE PAs] returned from Mexico.

No intact Erie-built units are known to survive today.

Units produced

A units (cabs)

B units (cabless boosters)

*Note: Union Pacific cab/booster/cab set 650 / 650B / 651 was originally Fairbanks-Morse demonstrator set 50-M-1A / 50-M-3B / 50-M-2A.



Further reading


ee also

* List of Fairbanks-Morse locomotives
* ALCO PA and FA, styling of which was inspired by the Erie-built

External links

* [ Fairbanks-Morse Erie-Built Roster]

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