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PC: PC Preserved Electrics
- Subject: PC: PC Preserved Electrics
- From: Robert Holzweiss <robert.holzweiss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Fri, 26 Sep 1997 12:07:52 -0400
- Content-disposition: inline
Gene Fusco wrote:
"I had a hunch that some did. The freight motors seemed to be
indestructible. Too bad the Jets (EP-5s) didn't have the same longevity.
Too many horses packed into too small a car body."
The EP-5's were truly revolutionary locomotives for their time.
However, they were more the victims of New Haven's deteriorating
financial situation than their own technology. The New Haven had a
very well equipped electric backshop with workers skilled in maintaining
the electric fleet in the Bronx, NY. It was called the Van Nest shops. In
1957 the NH closed Van Nest in a cost cutting move and transferred all
electric maintenance (including overhaul) to the New Haven, CT shop
(primarily a diesel shop). At the same time, NH management retired all
the older electrics (EP-3's, pony motors, etc,...) some less than 15 years
old. The only electrics that remained were the EP-5's and the E33's
(former VGN). With proper maintenance the electrics could run forever
(see GG1), but electric maintenance suffered with the NH as a whole.
The E33's continued to haul freight but the EP-5's were bumped to
commuter service out of GCT in New York. The NH began cannibalizing
two of them to keep the other eight running. After PC took over in 1969
the EP-5's were rolling junk. Their poor maintenance caused two to burn
up in GCT forcing PC to take the two remaining units and place them in
freight service on former PRR lines in New Jersey where they lived out
their final days. They still existed when Conrail took over but I doubt
whether either turned a wheel for CR.
"My research shows that at least *one* E-33 has been preserved.
This is at the Virginia Museum of Transportation. It is classified back to
it's original owner, the Virginian Railway, as an EL-3a, #131. Does
anyone know if it has been restored, or has it just been "saved"
from the torch?"
The 131? (my roster shows VGN numbers 132-141 originally) has
been completely restored to VGN livery. It looks great, I have seen it for
myself. There is another E33 preserved at the Valley Railroad in Essex,
CT. Sorry I don't know the number. This one has not been restored yet
but restoration to NH livery is planned.
"What about any of the ex-NYC passenger and freight motors like the
P2s? I remember watching electrics getting swapped on and off trains in
White Plains and Harmon back in '67 and '68."
Again I don't know exact numbers but there are at least two S2E's
preserved (built 1906). There is also one T3 preserved and restored to
"Lightening Stripes" (This unit was PC 4678, NYC 4678, NYC 278, NYC
1178). Both the T3 and one S2E are upstate New York near Buffalo, I
believe they are owned by the Western New York Rail Historical Society.
I do not think any former Cleveland Union Terminal electrics were
preserved. Metro North Commuter Railroad still operates three straight
electric locomotives, MNCR 401-403. They were former CR / Niagara
Junction electrics. CR 4750 (NJ 14), CR 4752 (NJ 16), CR 4753 (NJ 17)
respectively. One NJ electric (CR 4751 / NJ 15) is preserved by the
Western New York Rail Historical Society. (It was purchased for $6342
Hope this helps.
"Robert.Holzweiss -AT- bush.nara.gov"
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