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Date: 04/11/12 18:36
Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: rosevillebill


It has been some time since I last visited Train Orders let alone generate a new thread subject.
The demands of my employer Motive Power in Boise Id., and the project for which I have been involved, have prevented me from being an active TO member or even a railfan much these last 2 years, due to my work commitments. I am pleased to say that me and my co-workers have finally completed the project for which I was hired back in May of 2010.

MPI was contracted by NYCTA (New York City Transportation Authority), to design an all new switcher locomotive capable of pulling work trains anywhere on the NYCT subway system. The locomotive had to be extremely light weight, so that it could operate even on the elevated portions of the NYCT subway system.

As a result of the demands placed upon MPI by NYCT for a very light weight locomotive, it was decided an all new locomotive would need to be designed to meet NYCT's criteria.

The contract began in 2006, with a prototype being built and rejected. An all new design was proposed and approved, and the project for which I was hired started over again in Late 2009.

Suffice to say these last 23 months at MPI have made me feel like I was on both Jury Duty and Boot Camp all at the same time. NYCT was extremely demanding of every single aspect of the design, and I worked 50 to 90 hour weeks, weekends and holidays to help get the project completed.

The first of 28 locomotives was just completed and approved by NYCT, and the locomotive is currently being prepped for shipment to NYCT tomorrow.

The locomotive's model designation is the "MP 8AC-3".

#1 The locomotive is an all new switcher design from the ground up.
#2 The weight of the locomotive could not exceed 112,000lbs. Last Month the locomotive was weighed, and came out under weight at 111,000 lbs, so we had to add 1000lbs.
#3 The locomotive is designed to operate longhood forward.
#4 The locomotive is NOT a gen set style locomotive, just a brand new designed switcher.
#5 The locomotive's prime mover is a Cummins QSK 23 engine, rated at 800hp, which is what the "8" in the model designation is for.
#6 Like MPI's commuter locomotives this locomotive has a separate Caterpillar HEP engine to maximize prime mover horsepower.
#6 The locomotive uses Kawasaki trucks and traction motors.
#7 NYCT designates the locomotive as "R156".
#8 The buff test requirements for this locomotive was 250,000lbs, much below the typical 900,000lbs required for locomotives/passenger cars.

My design contributions on this locomotive include: The longhood doors, The HVAC system and the Car body longhood structure.

The photos were taken yesterday just in front of our main locomotive assembly shop. I included a neighboring UP SD90MAC in my photos just to show you the scale of the little switcher locomotive.

Now that this project is over, I hope for continued employment at MPI and for normal working hours. I hope to now be a more regular contributor to Trainorders, now that I will have more time on my hands.

Goodbye for now, and thanks for Looking.

Boise, Id.

Date: 04/11/12 18:38
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: rosevillebill

Last Photo

This photo really shows the size comparison between the MP8 and an EMD SD90 MAC.

Enjoy and thanks for Looking

Boise, ID

Date: 04/11/12 18:43
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: cates625

For a guy that has been away for a while this is an A+++++ post. What a great project to be part of with a very cool result. Just curious what is the interior cab height?

Date: 04/11/12 19:16
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: erielackawanna

Man that is neat... like a little Fairbanks Morse.

Great post.

Great job.

Well done all around.

Date: 04/11/12 19:18
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: icancmp193

The last one reminds me of when a regional jet pulls up next to 767 or similar.

Tom Y

Date: 04/11/12 19:23
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: funnelfan

Thanks for posting the photos. That is a neat little engine.

Ted Curphey
Cheney, WA

Date: 04/11/12 19:39
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: john1082


I swear it needs to say LIONEL someplace . . .

Is that a third rail shoe on the rear truck? The reddish / orange thingy

John Gezelius
Tustin, CA

Date: 04/11/12 19:48
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: rosevillebill


The interior height of the cab is just under 7 feet, plenty of headroom, unless you are a typical height NBA player.

What looks like a pick-up shoe is actually an Ice Scraper. The locomotive does not draw any power from the 3rd rail of the NYCT subway system.

Typically when track workers are repairing the subway track, the power is turned off for safety, which is the reason why NYCT needs a diesel powered locomotive.

Boise, ID.

Date: 04/11/12 20:28
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: bnsfsd70

That last pic is great! Thanks for sharing, and congrats on a job well-done.

- Jeff

Date: 04/11/12 20:34
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: PasadenaSub

Great work, Bill.

Glad to see you posting here again,


Date: 04/11/12 20:37
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: train544

Great job and great photos
Hopefully this unit will travel thru Willard Oh being delivered
Tom Boylan

Date: 04/11/12 20:55
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: jimB

Great photos and very informative - thanks.

Jim B

Date: 04/11/12 21:03
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: GP30Frank

Last photo looks like a comparison of "O" guage and "HO" guage.

Date: 04/12/12 06:28
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: jtwlunch

When working in tunnels what is the procedure on running the locomotive while standing doing work train duties? Is it shut down? What about HEP running too?


Jim Wilson

Date: 04/12/12 08:51
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: portlander

Where are you hiding the fuel tank?!!!

Date: 04/12/12 09:31
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: RyanWilkerson

Outstanding post Bill!
Not too many people (let alone railfans) can say they were involved in designing a new locomotive!

Like others have said, great perspective on the last photo with the SD90MAC!

Looking forward to seeing you post on TO more in the coming weeks.

Ryan Wilkerson
Fair Oaks, CA

Date: 04/12/12 10:32
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: Inthehole

It looks like a 1" scale locomotive next to a 1 1/2" scale loco at the local live steam track!

Date: 04/12/12 16:20
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: Lurch

Kinda reminds me of the military MRS1's.


Date: 04/13/12 09:11
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: Chooch

I believe you have answered a long time question about track gauge. I have often wondered if the track gauge between the railroads in our country and the track gauge of our subway systems are compatible. Apparently your picture of the new locomotive sitting on the track at your facility answers my question.

Sounds like this was a great project and I am sure you have a great satisfaction of the sauces of this project. Congratulations.


Date: 04/13/12 11:53
Re: Introducing the MP 8AC-3
Author: ColoradoRailfan

Great job Bill! Hopefully we can welcome you back to a life of 40 hours per week in the office. :)

Out of curiosity, you said it was designed to run long hood forward. Was this a specific requirement of NYCT? And if so, do you know why they required it that way?


Kevin Morgan
Arvada, CO

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/13/12 14:33 by ColoradoRailfan.

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