TS20: Big Task, Big Locomotive
Written by: Gary Dolzall.
Coming soon to Train Simulator is General Electric’s burly and powerful U36C diesel in Clinchfield Railroad livery!
Hauling ponderous coal trains through America’s rugged Appalachian Mountains was a task that called for horsepower, lots of it, and in 1971 the famed Clinchfield Railroad purchased General Electric’s big U36C diesel, then one of the most powerful diesel locomotives in the world. And soon, the 3,600-horsepower General Electric U36C, in the distinctive black-and-yellow livery of the Clinchfield, will come to Train Simulator!
General Electric’s landmark series of “Universal” diesel locomotives – nicknamed “U-Boats” –dated to 1959 and the historic 2,500-horsepower U25B. Over the following quarter-century, GE U-Boats would roll out of the builder’s Erie (Pennsylvania) locomotive plant in ever-greater numbers and variety, and with ever-more horsepower.
The U36C, a 3,600-horsepower, six-axle (C-C) behemoth was produced by General Electric from 1971 through 1975. The U36C was one of GE’s final and most powerful variants of U-Boats, with only the customized twin-diesel U50s and U50Cs exceeding the U36C’s potency. Powered by GE’s reliable four-cycle FDL16 power plant, the U36C weighed nearly 400,000 pounds and exerted 92,500 pounds of tractive force.
Before being succeeded in the General Electric diesel catalog by Dash 7 series locomotives, the U36C garnered orders for 124 units from four U. S. railroads – the Santa Fe, Milwaukee Road, Erie-Lackawanna, and Clinchfield – as well as orders from two railroads in Mexico.
Clinchfield acquired seven GE U36Cs (CRR road numbers 3600-3606) in late 1971, and together with EMD SD45-2s purchased during the same period, the units were the most powerful locomotive types on the CRR. Purchased primary for coal-train service, the husky GE U-Boats could often be founding working Clinchfield’s priority manifest freights as well.
As the only General Electric-built diesels on the Clinchfield roster, the U36Cs were somewhat out of place and in 1977 CRR swapped its U36Cs to parent Seaboard Coast Line for a group of eight SD45s. The ex-Clinchfield U36Cs went on to serve the Seaboard Coast Line and successors Seaboard System and CSX.
The upcoming General Electric U36C for Train Simulator will feature realistic details, controls, and sounds – and is dressed in Clinchfield’s final distinctive black-and-yellow livery. Accompanying the U36C in this DLC will be a Clinchfield 100-ton, four-bay coal hopper as well as CRR’s well-known “Santa Fe style” steel cupola caboose. And the DLC will include three career scenarios that will take you over the length of Train Simulator’s popular Clinchfield Railroad: Elkhorn City - St. Paul Route (route available separately).
The Clinchfield General Electric U36C was a big locomotive built for a big task - and it is coming soon to Train Simulator! – Gary Dolzall
Soon, the powerful and burly 3,600-horsepower General Electric U36C diesel locomotive, in the distinctive black-and-yellow livery of the Clinchfield, will come to Train Simulator! Nearing St. Paul, Virginia on Train Simulator’s Clinchfield Railroad: Elkhorn City - St. Paul Route, a pair of CRR GE U36Cs have southbound coal in tow. Screenshots by Gary Dolzall.
The U36C, a 3,600-horsepower, six-axle (C-C) behemoth was produced by General Electric from 1971 through 1975 and Clinchfield acquired seven units (CRR 3600-3606) in 1971 (above). Typical of its era, the U36C employed a traditional engineer’s control stand (below). Note: Screenshots depict content while in development.
A set of GE U36Cs are rolling north through Dante, Virginia. Each of the big U-Boats generated more than double the horsepower of the veteran CRR EMD F7A standing nearby (above). The first hints of dawn lighten the sky at Dante as U36C 3604 rides the turntable (below). GE’s six-axle U36C weighed nearly 400,000 pounds and exerted 92,500 pounds of tractive force.
On Train Simulator’s popular Clinchfield Railroad: Elkhorn City - St. Paul Route, a trio of CRR GE U36Cs have just emerged from Sandy Ridge Tunnel and are rolling north at Trammel (above). At Fremont, a pair of the husky GE’s are picking up a cut of coal loads at one of the route’s numerous coal mines, tipples, and loaders (below).
At the Clinchfield’s well-known, albeit remote, northern terminus of Elkhorn City, Kentucky, CRR GE U36C 3600 is pulling to a stop at the yard office where a Chesapeake & Ohio crew will take over. The upcoming Clinchfield GE U36C DLC will include three careers scenarios on the Clinchfield Railroad: Elkhorn City - St. Paul Route (route available separately).
Accompanying the U36C in this upcoming DLC will be a Clinchfield 100-ton, four-bay coal hopper (above) and CRR’s well-known “Santa Fe style” steel cupola caboose (below).
A trio of CRR General Electric U36Cs make their pull from the Norfolk & Western yard at Boody, Virginia. The Clinchfield GE U36C was a big locomotive built for a big task – and it is coming soon to Train Simulator!
Screenshots and images displayed in this article may depict content that is still in development. The licensed brands may not have been approved by their respective owner and some artwork may still be pending approval.
TS20: Big Task, Big Locomotive