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Nostalgia & History > ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears


Date: 01/23/13 12:24
ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: NKP715

Well actually, they're sound baffles. (Sorry,
I'm from the smoke and cinders era.)

Four B36-7's (SP/SSW 7771-7774) were built by GE
in January-February, 1981 with them for test purposes.
I don't recall the details, but they were removed in
a relatively short time. If anyone could fill in the
blanks, it would be appreciated.

Photos show the 7772 in Erie, coupled to a GE test car.






Date: 01/23/13 17:05
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: doesyourdogbite

SSWweet 7772!



Date: 01/23/13 17:18
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: Evan_Werkema

I don't know all the details, but the baffles were a response to EPA noise regulations that went into effect in January 1980, 40CFR201.12 paragraph b:

(b) No carrier subject to this regulation may operate any locomotive or combination of locomotives to which this regulation is applicable, and of which manufacture is completed after December 31, 1979, which produce A-weighted sound levels in excess of 90 dB when moving at any time or under any condition of grade, load, acceleration, or deceleration, when measured in accordance with the criteria specified in Subpart C of this part with fast meter response at 30 meters (100 feet) from the centerline of any section of track having less than a two (2) degree curve (or a radius of curvature greater than 873 meters (2,865 feet)).

http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?c=ecfr&SID=ea307a524e7eff0795ee3324351d019a&rgn=div8&view=text&node=40:26.0.1.2.7.2.17.3&idno=40

The regulation also lead to the introduction of GE's fat "silencer" stack. The fat stacks stayed, but the baffles didn't - the Contemporary Diesel Spotters Guide speculated that GE developed a quieter radiator fan and no longer needed the baffles to comply with the noise requirements.



Date: 01/23/13 20:57
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: AlcoRSD15

Yeah, they were called "baffles" when these locos were new. "Elephant ears" were on SP's GP40Xs and SD45s.
-- Eric B.



Date: 01/23/13 22:02
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: Evan_Werkema

...by the way, the first B36-7's were SSW 7770-7773, built in January 1980 with baffles:

http://espee.railfan.net/sswb36-7.html

Santa Fe's ten B36-7's built in Oct/Nov 1980 were also delivered with baffles (removed in the mid-80's):

http://www.trainorders.com/discussion/read.php?11,2481833

Southern's six B36-7's built in March 1981 only had the lower baffle:

http://southern.railfan.net/images/archive/southern/b36/sou3816.html

So far as I know, those were the only production B36's that had sound baffles.



Date: 01/23/13 22:07
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: Big_Blue_mac_attack

Humm i find it funny the EPA was worried about sound db's! !

Cool photos ,never knew such things were attempted.

Posted from Android



Date: 01/23/13 22:44
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: lwilton

Big_Blue_mac_attack Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Humm i find it funny the EPA was worried about
> sound db's! !

Sound pollution of the environment is environmental pollution. :-)

I'm no fan of the EPA (to say the least), but I have to admit that 90 DBA A-weighted at 100 feet is a pretty impressive amount of noise. 90 DB at 100 feet is 105 DB at 3 feet, which is coming pretty close to instant ear destruction. I wouldn't have wanted to be a crew member without ear protectoes and have to walk along that walkway without the baffles. And I CERTAINLY wouldn't have wanted to walk along the walkway WITH the baffles there! Come close to lighting a baseball on fire from the sound level just by tossing it down the walkway!



Date: 01/24/13 03:22
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: Evan_Werkema

AlcoRSD15 Wrote:

> "Elephant ears" were on SP's GP40Xs and SD45s.

...by the way, MRS Logistica down in Brazil evidently decided those weren't such a bad idea after all:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/diegoferrovias/7021033697/
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1853897



Date: 01/24/13 12:06
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: NYSWSD70M

Conrail's B36-7's were built with the baffles but they did not last long. I have photo's of three of them in Syracuse in the fall of 1983 and they all have the baffles.



Date: 01/24/13 12:41
Re: ESPEE diesel with elephant-ears
Author: Evan_Werkema

NYSWSD70M Wrote:

> Conrail's B36-7's were built with the baffles but
> they did not last long.

Thanks! I looked some time ago and found 1984-vintage photos showing one-year-old Conrail B36-7's without baffles, but looking harder turns up photos from 1983 showing the baffles in place:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1751750
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1751748

Did *all* of Conrail's B36-7's come with baffles? This photo of 5057, so new the stack is still silver, doesn't show baffles:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=2810860

Looking harder some more turns up photos showing brand new Southern B36-7's with both of the baffle plates. Evidently they just lost the upper one early on:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=97388



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