Whitcomb Locomotive

British Columbia Forest Products No.9

No.9 is significant in that it represents the change from steam to diesel
 

Technical Data:

  • Specification: 80-DE-7-B (80-ton, 0-4-4-0, Double Power Plant Diesel Electric).
  • Weight: Light – 157,000 pounds Fully loaded: 161,000 pounds.
  • Built: 1943, as c/n 60634.
  • Engines: 2 Buda Model 6-DCS-169 (Supercharged), 325 hp each at 1200 rpm.
  • Generators: 2 Westinghouse Model 197-A – Railway Type. 305V, 650A @1200 rpm
  • Motors: 4 Westinghouse Type 970-A Railway Type. 300V, 180A.
  • Dimensions: Length – 43’ 2” Width – 9’ 10” Height – 14’ 0”
  • Maximum tractive effort: 53,330 pounds (Hauling capacity 6660 tons).
  • Maximum speed: 40 miles per hour.


History:

  • Built for USA military service in WWII. It is believed to have been intended for duty in North Africa, but was not sent due to early victory in that campaign. NB: Most USA military locomotives sent overseas were coal fired – except for those intended for North Africa or Italy, where coal was not readily available.
  • Worked the Oakland Naval Supply Depot as US 65.00342, road number 9.
  • Purchased by BCFP from the Pan-American Engineering Co. of Dallas TX in August of 1956, for use at the Crofton Pulp Mill. The locomotive had been declared surplus and was being stored at Oxnard CA. A larger than normal mill switcher was required due to the steep grade between the deep-sea dock and the mill.
  • No.9 served the mill until increased production and heavier freight cars required more power and it was placed on standby service in 1985. In 1989 it was donated to the (then) BC Forest Museum.
  • The original Buda engines were replaced with Cummins L1-600s, which were in turn replaced by Caterpillar 353s.
  • No.9 is significant in that it represents the change from steam to diesel power in BC’s pulp and paper industry railways. BCFP had 4 Pacific Coast Shays, 2 Climaxes and a West Coast Special Heisler available as surplus from its logging operations, but chose to make the change to diesel power. As still remains common, the company chose a used diesel-electric locomotive over a (more costly) new one.