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Southern Pacific GP 60

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tom d View Drop Down
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    Posted: Aug 27 2009 at 10:21am
 
8-27-09 I'm posting this project to keep all up to date on my train play. First a little history on this unit: it was built by Backyard Rails Inc. sometime around 1982? I think it was #2 unit built by them for Dick Jensen of LALS. He ran it for many years every Sunday and logged up many hours of running. He then sold it to Leonard Evans and then it went to the team of Tracy Beattie and Sam Calderwood, all well known LALS members.
 
When Tracy passed away, Sam sold the unit to me and my son Wyatt. Wyatt was running a 1" Alco FA but wanted to move up to a bigger unit and I thought I'd get to run it some too as at LALS rules say he cant run this unit by himself.
 
Sam told me, and I knew this unit was going to need some work on the trans, as it sounded bad when we got it. Sam also said it was just limping along, it was going to need a lot of love, so I got it for a good low price. We ran it off and on for 6 months and then the transmission finally gave out one day.
 
Oh-well the start of a new project. The unit was built as a GP50 and lettered for Southern Pacific as number 711 because the first owner Dick J. owned a 7-11 store at the time. Now SP didn't have any GP 50 locos so I thought I would turn it into a GP 60 and make the number 9711 as this was a unit that SP had and it would still have Dick's 7-11 thing going on. It just seems like a good fit to me.
 
The transmission was an Eaton H-stat type, top of the line for 1980 but not so now. This one was running very hot and made a lot of noise at times. On bigger units like this, it cost over 800.00 to replace as they can't be fixed. I am going to put a 1.3 GPM gear pump and a log splitter valve in it as this seems to be the way most of the newer units out there are, they run well, and it cost  less then 300.00 to go this way.
 
This type of setup looks to run without the heat and noise that the old unit had. I have removed the old transmission, mounted the new pump on the motor, rebuilt the carb, put in a new spark plug, new points and a new condenser. I have started the layout for the new H lines and mock up for a newer quieter type muffler and an electric fuel pump as the old ones are known to leak and get vapor locked.
 
As you can see from the photo, she's a little rough now but one day it will look just like its big brother.  You can see in the lower photo, when new, a lot of the SP GP 60 9700 numbered units where lettered for Cotton Belt, however we are going to use the SP lettering in the later speed lettering style. We will also have the lights set as a mix of old and new setups. Yes, thats the rebuilt riding car in the background of the loco photo as Wyatt is a big fan of speed lettering he says "it looks like its going fast all the time!" 
 
Tom D.
 


Edited by PhilC - Aug 27 2009 at 11:41am
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tom d View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep 06 2009 at 11:00am
Southern Pacific GP60
9-6-09 Well I've installed a new 12 volt fuel pump. I got the fuel lines run to the carb, welded a new piece of black pipe on the muffler which goes into a steel union and then a short pipe to the motor.  This was not the plan at the start, but after some time mocking up some pipes to see what looked good, this way of using good old steel water pipe seemed to be the easiest way to do it. I ran 3/4" copper pipe from the muffler to a spot just behind the left front truck with a smaller muffler at the end of the pipe as I'm thinking this will keep a lot of the exhaust smell away from the riders behind the loco.
 
I gave the battery a good over night charge and fired her up and she came back to life and ran good right from the start. Wow! I then played with the carb adjusters and she's running great now.
 
The muffler is working good when all the hydraulic lines are run to the pump.  I will wrap all the exhaust pipes and muffler with that new exhaust wrap tape that comes in a roll. It says it will take out 70% of the heat from the outside of the pipes and I'm thinking it will help take a little more noise out too. 
 
I noticed that the fuel pump is giving a little too much fuel to the carb so I put an old air line adjuster in the fuel line to try adjusting the fuel pressure down which seems to work, I think that I will still have to put a good fuel pressure adjuster in as I think this one will let go soon.
 
I will also have to change the way the keyed starter switch is wired so the pump stops running when you turn the motor off and not flood the carb out.
 
This week I hope to  get the hydraulic pump coupler mounted and all of the lines run to it. I will have to redo the control rods that go to the hydraulic valve as the old pump had a different layout that just wasn't much fun to use. I like the EZ way the controls work on Rory's loco so I will try to copy that layout while adding a few improvements of course.
 
Test runs well be coming soon if all goes well,
 
Tom D.    


Edited by PhilC - Sep 06 2009 at 6:15pm
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tom d View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep 17 2009 at 1:07pm
Went to the club and ran the GP60 on September 16.  The biggest problem I had was loading and unloading the locomotive.  This loco is big and very heavy compared to the little steamer I have, so I will have to build a steel rack to hold it in the back of my truck. 
 
Arrived at the track at 5:30 PM and unloaded. Boy! That was almost as much fun as the 2 hours it took to load at my house.  Anyways, got it out on the track and topped all the fuel and oils off, took the body off and fired it up.
 
First thing that was incorrect was the control arm/handle.  It was hitting the riding car when reversing and the draft gear couplers were moved too much. I will make a new handle and put in a draw bar to couple the engineer car to the locomotive. 
 
On the main line it ran well so I put my son Wyatt on it to run it around. This allowed me to stand back and see and hear how it was running. I adjusted the carb and it smoothed right out. About that time Rory Hawkins arrived after he had finished his day job. Rory got on the train and gave it a run. I then played with the detent adjustment on the splitter valve with Rory moving it to get it set so that it had a good feel. We then ran it around the track a few more times.
GP60 Locomtive chassis
 
The unit seemed to smoke some and had a "pop pop" sound from the exhausts.  Funny  thing is I told Rory that I had put some ring sealing oil in it so it should fix itself.  We put Wyatt back on it and let him just run the heck out of it when I herd the exhaust sound had changed.  It got very quiet and the unit started to smoke a little more.  I thought "oh no" now here comes some work. We got Wyatt to stop, and I could feel the body sides were hot, so I pulled the body off and Rory found out that it had blown off the small muffler that I had put in just before the dump out pipe on the exhaust and the paint on the muffler rapper was burning off a little. After it sat there running for a few minutes it stopped smoking and it was running very quietly: Hmmm, like I said it fixed itself. Wow, sometimes I scare myself.
 
We then headed off down the Crenshaw Line when the cable on the throttle slipped so I adjusted it back. About half way down the line I got behind the controls and opened her up.  It is just one of these "race car things" I learned years ago on how to test a new unit, and man, this thing can really get going. I was very surprised how fast it would go. It fits on the 1/2 turn table with 6" to spare as it has a long riding car on it for a three-man crew which makes the whole unit longer than most.
 
 
I had to readjust the cable again then Rory ran it back in the dark as I blew out the headlight when making adjustments to the throttle. As we were running along, the unit got very quiet. Rory said the cable had slipped again, but it was still just running along. Man! It was so quiet and with no head light, the people on the walking path didn't know we were there just a few feet away.
 
Well, I would say it was a good test run, with only a few things to change and yes, it took way too long to load it back in my truck. Good thing Rory was there too help. So now it's off to the Orange County Fall Meet and I'm thinking it will do just fine.
GP60 Locomotive
The funny thing is, all this felt just like getting one of my new race cars on its first run something I learned from my dad and now have passed on to my son, Wyatt. To see how you can build or rebuild something from just a pile of parts and odds and ends.  Man! it feels so good to have a successful run after changing so many parts of this unit.
Tom D.


Edited by tom d - Sep 17 2009 at 1:12pm
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Steve C View Drop Down
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OC? Bring it back to the club I have some nice shiny new riding cars to pull behind it! I will post some pics later.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Sep 21 2009 at 1:08pm
9-20-09 Well we made it to the Orange County Mechanical Engineers meet in Costa Mesa. I worked until 1:00 AM on Friday night getting a few things we found on the last run changed around.
 
W ran the GP60 around on their nice big layout, a good test for this project. Although Wyatt was more then ready to get out there on the track and go for it as soon as we unloaded, I thought it would be best to wait for 1 hour or so for Rory too show up with his loco so we had someone to pull us back in if something didn't go right. Well, we got out and Wyatt gave it a good run, with or friend Rob L. as a ride along, and all seemed to go well at first but after 3 laps around there layout, which I think equals about 6 miles, we pulled into their yard and the GP60 stalled and would not restart, plus the unit was hot. So we went to lunch to give it some time to cool off. After a good lunch we came back and restarted the loco. We had to give it some choke to get it to go.  
 
After it ran a bit it was fine.  Hmmm, that means it had too much air in the mix to run or not enough fuel. Mel B., a member of the LA and OC clubs came over with a Kohler motor book and we looked some things up for me to adjust. He also gave me some go info he had learned from running these motors over the years as he has two locos with these motors in them. A big thanks too MEL B. for the info.
 
Wyatt and I ran 5 or 6 more laps around and Rory called me on the cell phone and we thought it would be best if we loaded up before it got too dark. Wyatt on the other hand thought it would be best to run all night and loaded up in the morning when there was way more light: Hmmm! Man that boy loves too run these locos! Anyway as we haded back down the long lead to there steaming bay the loco stalled again and would not start and was vary hot around the motor, so we pushed it back and loaded up with lots of help from the nice group of members at OC.
 
The next changes I will make are to move the Electric fuel pump back by the fuel tank where it is cooler and cut in some more cooling holes in the front of the body, more like the other units I see running around, as air cooled motors need a lot of air to cool them. The body the way it is now is not letting enough air in. I am also going to change the  hydraulic pump lines so the oil filter is on the return side of the H pump as I'm thinking the filter is slowing down how much oil can get to the pump. It also sounds to me like the pump is making a noise like it is getting air in it. this is the layout the pump maker showed to use so we will try that and give it another good long run.
 
Tom D.


Edited by PhilC - Sep 22 2009 at 12:21pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Oct 28 2009 at 6:14pm
10-14-09 It has been a bit since I last posted. Well I have cut out the windows and the side vents right behind the cab on the body and it seems to be running much cooler. I did however have to take a sheet of metal and bend it in front of, and then over the top of the muffler to guide the hot air from the motor out the side vents. This seems to be working good.
 
I got a new fuel pump that goes on the motor. After going on the Kohler motor web site there was info on the old fuel pumps getting too hot and not pumping fuel, so they made a new style pump made of plastic so the heat from the motor doesn't over heat the pump unit. I got a new OME pump to try next as the electric pump seems to be just pumping too much fuel and overheat .
 
I started working on the body and there are a few changes to be done to make it in to a GP60. First I made a new blower housing that goes on the left side behind the cab. This is a very notable item on a GP60, and had to be changed. A new roof panel for the bathroom that is in the nose of the unit. I did a light sanding of some of the body and started to repaint it. Now to go to Maricopa I needed a head light so I looked around and found two small flash lights at the local auto parts store and used them for parts.  
 
I had an H.O. scale MARS light unit form Daley with a few of his 12v LEDs. I put all these parts together and wired it up to the loco and when I turned it on it worked and looks OK, but not very bright. It was OK to get us going for now. I will have to play with that some more later when I get to working on all the lights for the unit. If all goes to plan there will be two ditch light units on the front porch that flash for 10 sec. after the horn is blown. There will be a yellow beacon that flashes on the roof of the cab, and small lights under the cab and side steps. After looking at all the light parts, Rory said  they should be a good show all on there own when they are  all on.
 
Oh Well! Off to work on all this stuff.
 
Tom D  


Edited by administrator - Oct 28 2009 at 10:05pm
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tom d View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tom d Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 21 2009 at 6:11pm
12-19 I ran the loco for the full day at the club with 3 bench cars for 2.5 hrs and it ran good. It makes a sound like the pump is cavitating at times but it may only be when there is a load on it. When we where running at Maricopa it ran hot so I made some duct work that goes from the motor up to the vents on the side of the body. It worked great so I'm going to make a better looking vent and mount it to the body so that it stays with the shell as its laying on the muffler.  I think it is making some nose the way it is now so this will fix it. The fuel pump is working much better so soon I will bring it back to the shop and work on getting the paint, lights and detail done.
 
Tom D. 


Edited by administrator - Dec 21 2009 at 7:32pm
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