Caterpillar - Owner of EMD Locomotives

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mmciau

New Member
I ask please?

When is it likely (if at all) that Caterpillar will put their 'imprimatur" on EMD Locomotive Construction by either persevering with the two-stroke 710 series, update the EMD 265 4-stroke or place their own engines in the locomotives?

Will they pour resouces into the Ace Electronics to put them on at least par (or better) with GE which has a discrete electronics circuit for each Traction Motor?

Regards


Mike McInerney
 

Pat

Photo Critiques Welcome
This is what Caterpillar said,

"The acquisition of EMD will enable us to provide rail and transit customers an industry-leading range of locomotive, engine and emissions solutions, as well as unmatched aftermarket product and parts support and a full line of rail-related services and solutions,".

"This acquisition represents the latest step in our strategic plan to aggressively grow our presence in the global rail industry," said Caterpillar vice chairman and CEO-elect Doug Oberhelman. "Including today's announcement and our acquisition of Progress Rail, Caterpillar has invested about $2 billion since 2006 to grow our rail and transit businesses. Rail has proven to be a highly efficient and sustainable method for moving freight and people, and we see a positive long-term future for the continued growth of the rail industry."


This would imply they are going to continue to develop the EMD product. A company like Cat will make a significant investment into a new market segment. Then they will evaluate what they actually got in the purchase and decide if a continued investment will generate a sufficient return for their growth targets. If it won't make the returns they want they sell it off rather than dilute their earnings. I don't think you'll see Cat pour resources into EMD until they know they are going to stay in the heavy locomotive market.
 

Tower 55

Its DGNO. Not Dingo!
I wonder if they are going to keep up with the PR program.

Maybe use a 12-710ECO at 3,200hp and pair it with a 700hp Cat engine. That way both engines meet the current EPA Tier rating.

As of now, it seems EMD is going full on with both their 2 and 4 stroke engines.


As for the EMG vs GE traction system, is it really that big of a deal? How often are they failing now on AC traction motors? Is it enough of a concern to have EMD redesign the system?
 

CSX 700

New Member
I wonder if they are going to keep up with the PR program.

Maybe use a 12-710ECO at 3,200hp and pair it with a 700hp Cat engine. That way both engines meet the current EPA Tier rating.

As of now, it seems EMD is going full on with both their 2 and 4 stroke engines.


As for the EMG vs GE traction system, is it really that big of a deal? How often are they failing now on AC traction motors? Is it enough of a concern to have EMD redesign the system?
By PR program I assume you are speaking of the Progress Rail PR22B, PR30C and PR43C locomotives. Being that they are still operated as separate companies (EMD and Progress Rail) but under common ownership (Caterpillar) its not likely that any of these units will be discontinued. Each caters to a different segment in the market

Pairing an existing EMD diesel with a smaller CAT is unlikely. The Progress Rail PR43C with dual CAT diesels already fits the description you give, except for having 2 CAT diesels rather than an EMD and a CAT.

Its likely that any significant changes to the EMD product line will come in the next couple years in preparation for the Tier 4 emissions requirements which will take effect in 2015. This will have a major impact on both EMD and GE products. If CAT has intentions on keeping the EMD 265H prime mover in production for domestic service this will be the prime opportunity for it, though the 710G certainly can't be counted out. At this point nobody really knows publicly what plans are, like any major company they will be keeping their cards close to their chest.

Bryan Jones
Brooks,KY
 

5thGenRR

New Member
When I asked our local EMD rep right after the aquisition he was extreemly positive. He said that EMD hasn't had the money to put into the electronics side of the units for years. He is always talking poo about the electrical especially on the ACE's. He feels this will give them the financial backing to update their electrical systems. When I asked him about the engine he thought that that they would continue to produce the 710's since they have no real problems with the tried & true 2 stroke ans they have no issues with passing the next level of emmissions.
 

mmciau

New Member
May I ask please?

Is the current 710 series engine block and crankcase still fabricated out of plate steel?

Or is it cast steel now?

Mike
 

NDHolmes

New Member
As far as I know, all EMD blocks are fabricated and will continue to be for the foreseeable future, including the 710G.

As has been already mentioned, EMD has one inverter per truck, whereas GE has one inverter per traction motor. There are advantages to both - cost, handling of adverse rail conditions, number of parts, reliability, etc. Per a presentation EMD made on AC traction (it was floating around the internet at one point, can't remember where), their idea was that having only two inverters was better because of the lower parts count, even wheel wear, and intrinsic load sharing between motors. The biggest thing is that if you lose one on an EMD, you lose an entire truck and half your tractive effort. On a GE, you only lose one axle and 1/6 of your TE. Then again, if having one big one is more reliable than three small ones, then the overall effect isn't as bad. I honestly have no idea how it plays out.

Will be interesting to see what Cat does with the company. I doubt they'll transition away from the 710 for some time, as the railroads like them, have maintenance forces trained to work on them, and have parts inventories to service them. Every new engine they have to deal with is more training and more parts logistics, which is an oft-quoted reason as to why other manufacturers just can't break into the market. Hopefully they'll put some money back into making it a good product for the guys who use it every day (ie, noise and ride quality issues) and not just for the bean-counters that buy them.
 

Passin Thru

New Member
CAT has had a time with overheating problems on the new engines.Their truck engines always ran hotter than Cummins or Detroit and were quite reliable but the Electronics were a nightmare after they replaced the E models. We used 435 Es turned up to 500 hp and they were never any problem. Heat is the problem, if CAT can control it they will do OK.
 

mmciau

New Member
710 Engine block manufacture

May I ask please? Where are the Engine Blocks (welded plate steel) manufactured and is this likely to be continued at Muncie in the future?
 

5thGenRR

New Member
May I ask please? Where are the Engine Blocks (welded plate steel) manufactured and is this likely to be continued at Muncie in the future?
I will ask my EMD rep if they will be continuing to be made at that facility.

I know that is what they are referred to but in the shops we don't refer to the engines as "Prime Movers" so it is always funny to read it. The official term for an EMD engine "block" is a Manufactured Crankcase. As you mentioned above they are sheetmetal that is welded together.
 
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