Loco Windshield Wipers Question...

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Sean R Das

Railfan
SOrry if this sounds like a silly or stuipid question but...

I was watching trains in the rain one day and I always wondered--do locomotives' windshield wipers have an intermittent setting (like a car) or are they simply on/off?
 

setxrailfan

John 3:16
Sort of like a car. It depends on how much you turn the knob as to how fast they will wipe. They work off air from the locomotive.
 

cnw and up fan

New Member
i would see why not all you need to know is what size is the wiper blade, although i am sure they keep them instock at the maintance facilities
 

bnsf971

Roadmaster
LOL, I can see it now..... walking up to the parts counter at NAPA, and ask for wiper refills for a 2006 EMD SD70ACe :p
I've done that with a piece of shop equipment before.
I walk in, carrying a V belt.
"Hi, I need a replacement for this belt".
"What year, make and model is it?"
"1972 Massey-Ferguson 135".
"Umm... Let me match that up for you."
 

litz

Trainman
I ran into that getting new spark plug wires for my Fairmont MT-19 ... walked in with the old ones, asked for "new ones just like it" ...

The computer wouldn't allow the sale without a make/model and engine type being entered.

Well, the only Fairmont in an auto parts store's computer is gonna be a Ford, so that didn't work ... guy finally just put my Jeep's info in and rang me up.

- litz
 

5thGenRR

New Member
i would see why not all you need to know is what size is the wiper blade, although i am sure they keep them instock at the maintance facilities
Just to clarify, they are different from a auto's blade. But, Railpower's GenSets come with Anco automotive blades and the do not last more than about a few months in the winter.

To reiterate what CN Sparky said even the regular locomotive blades are job security.
 

BN Oly

New Member
I'll add on to the question. Any railroad employees out there ever use the siamesed wipers on the center windows of a standard cab GE or EMD? To this day in my 25 years of railfanning I have never seen the center wipers in use.
 

5thGenRR

New Member
I'll add on to the question. Any railroad employees out there ever use the siamesed wipers on the center windows of a standard cab GE or EMD? To this day in my 25 years of railfanning I have never seen the center wipers in use.
I'll put in my 2 cents even though mine really doesn't count since I was only in the service facility. When I hostled locomotives I only used the ones right in front and rear. For what I was doing the center windows didn't need to be cleared since I was either looking straight forward or looking down at my ground guy.
 

KevinD

New Member
The 4000 series SD40-2 rebuilds from CSX have electric motor wipers with multiple speed settings. The only complaint from the crews so far is the blades do not 'park' off to the side as they did with the air blades.

One area that I think the new automotive-like blades will fail at is when the wipers are mistakenly left on. You know, when a crew dies on hours, and the train sits awaiting a re-crew, and the departing crew left the wipers on, rubbing on dry glass long after the rain quit. I've seen that before. Many parts of the locomotive have to be designed to accommodate the least common denominator, crew-wise. The control stand has to be able to withstand weather, when some crew member leaves a door open, that sorta thing. I can see the cheaper automotive type blades not holding up under those 'lowest denominator' conditions as well as the present grade of rubber.
 

Midsouth fan

Engr/'duc/brkmn/DS
I'll run my center wipers when I'm pulling a train. I think it will help me catch something out of the corner of my eye if, say for example, a tree falls toward me.
 

setxrailfan

John 3:16
You have one black mess with when the previous crew forgets to turn them off and they wipe for some time after the rain stops. I had an engineer once that carried a package of razor blades just for this purpose.
 

5thGenRR

New Member
You have one black mess with when the previous crew forgets to turn them off and they wipe for some time after the rain stops. I had an engineer once that carried a package of razor blades just for this purpose.
+1!
When I hired out I was what they call an F&O (entry level in the Mechanical side). One of the tasks of the F&O's is to clean the cabs including washing the winders. That was such a pain. Unfortunatly it happens all the time!
 




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