PRR B1

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PRR B1
0380 Strasburg - Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania - Flickr - KlausNahr.jpg
Type and origin
Power type Electric
Builder Altoona Works
In association with:
Westinghouse
Allis-Chalmers
Build date 1926-1935
Total produced BB1: 2 (paired)
BB2: 12 (paired)
BB3: 14 (paired)
B1: 14
Total: 42
Specifications
AAR wheel arr. C
UIC classification Co'
Gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)
Driver diameter 62 in (1,575 mm)
Length 31 ft 6 in (9.60 m)
Height 15 ft 0 in (4.57 m)
Locomotive weight 157,000 lb (71.2 tonnes)
Electric system(s) 11 kV  25hz AC
650 V DC (BB2)
Current collection
method
Catenary
Third rail (BB2)
Traction motors 3 × 233 hp (174 kW)
Transmission Resistance controlled DC or tap changer controlled AC supplied to AC-DC universal motors directly geared to the axles
Performance figures
Maximum speed 25 mph (40 km/h)
Power output 700 hp (520 kW)
Tractive effort 39,250 lbf (174.6 kN)

The Pennsylvania Railroad's class B1 comprised 42 switcher-type electric locomotives built between 1926 and 1935. They were of 0-6-0 wheel arrangement in the Whyte notation with 700 horsepower. As built, the first 28 locomotives in the 1926 order formed semi-permanently coupled pairs grouped in three classes.

The first, class BB1, were AC powered and served as prototypes. The second, class BB2, were DC powered and served in the New York Terminal district, specifically between Sunnyside Yard and New York Penn Station. The third, class BB3, was AC powered and built for the Long Island Rail Road's electrified freight operation on the Bay Ridge Branch. In 1934 a follow-up order of 14 locomotives were built as single unit class B1 for the expanding main line AC electrification system. In addition to these new units all previous BB classes were split into single units and the BB2 class were re-powered for AC operation as that system replaced the old 650VDC system in the New York terminal. At this point all 42 units were re-classed as PRR B1.

Most of the B1 fleet spent its time shuttling trains around Sunnyside Yard or between there and Penn Station. Other B1s were also assigned to the Penn Coach Yard at Philadelphia 30th Street Station and a few units even made their way to the PRR Harrisburg Station. As passenger traffic decreased in the 1950s and 60s the need for dedicated electric switchers diminished with only the Sunnyside B1s surviving into the Penn Central era. After retirement all B1s were scrapped except for a single example preserved at the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania.

References[edit]

  • Staufer, Alvin (1962). Pennsy Power. Staufer. pp. 260–263. LOC 62-20878. 
  • Pennsylvania Railroad. "B1". PRR Locomotive Diagrams. Retrieved 2006-01-05.  (simple drawing and specifications, for general reference by railroad staff).