Union Pacific 4014

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Union Pacific "Big Boy" 4014
An articulated steam locomotive with a 4-8-8-4 wheel arrangement (four leading wheels, two separate sets of eight driving wheels, and four trailing wheels) and its tender
Union Pacific Big Boy No. 4014 idles in Pine Bluffs, Wyoming, during a servicing stop on July 3, 2023
Type and origin
Power typeSteam
DesignerOtto Jabelmann
BuilderAmerican Locomotive Company (ALCO)
Serial number69585
Build dateNovember 1941
Rebuild dateJuly 2016–May 2019
Specifications
Configuration:
 • Whyte4-8-8-4
 • UIC(2′D)D2′ h4
Gauge4 ft 8+12 in (1,435 mm) standard gauge
Leading dia.36 in (914 mm)
Driver dia.68 in (1,727 mm)
Trailing dia.42 in (1,067 mm)
Minimum curve288 ft (88 m) radius/ 20°
Wheelbase
  • Locomotive: 72 ft 5+12 in (22.09 m)
  • Overall: 117 ft 7 in (35.84 m)
Length
  • Locomotive: 85 ft 7.8 in (26.11 m)
  • Overall: 132 ft 9+78 in (40.48 m)
Width11 ft (3.35 m)
Height16 ft 2+12 in (4.94 m)
Axle load67,500 lb (30,617 kg)
Adhesive weight540,000 lb (244,940 kg)
Loco weight762,000 lb (345,637 kg)
Tender weight436,500 lb (197,993 kg)
Total weight1,198,500 lb (543,630 kg)
Tender type25-C
Fuel typeNo. 5 fuel oil, originally coal
Fuel capacityTotal: 6,450 US gal (24,400 L)
Usable: 6,100 US gal (23,000 L)
Water cap.25,000 US gal (95,000 L)
Sandbox cap.8,000 lb (3,629 kg)
Fuel consumption20–25 US gal (76–95 L) of fuel oil per mile
200 US gal (760 L) of water per mile
Firebox:
 • Grate area150 sq ft (grate removed in 2019)
Boiler:
 • ModelFire Tube
 • Diameter107 in (2,718 mm)
 • Tube plates22 ft (7 m)
Boiler pressure300 lbf/in2 (2.1 MPa)
Feedwater heaterElesco Type T.P. 502 Exhaust Steam Injector
14,000 US gal / hour capacity
Heating surface5,889 sq ft (547 m2) ​
 • Tubes967 sq ft (90 m2)
 • Flues4,218 sq ft (392 m2)
 • Tubes and flues5,185 sq ft (482 m2)
 • Firebox704 sq ft (65 m2)
Superheater:
 • TypeType E
 • Heating area2,466 sq ft (229 m2)
CylindersFour, outside
Cylinder size24 in × 32 in (610 mm × 813 mm)
Valve gearWalschaerts
Valve typePiston valves
Valve travel7 in (178 mm)
Valve lap1+38 in (35 mm)
Valve lead14 in (6 mm)
Train heatingSteam heat
Loco brakePneumatic, Schedule 8-ET
Train brakesPneumatic
Safety systemsCab signals, PTC
Performance figures
Maximum speed80 mph (130 km/h)
Power output6,290 hp (4,690 kW) @ tender drawbar
Tractive effort138,240 lbf (614.9 kN)
Factor of adh.3.91
Career
OperatorsUnion Pacific
Class4884-1[1]
Number in class15
Numbers
  • UP 4014
Nicknames"The Big Boy"
LocaleWestern United States
DeliveredDecember 1941
First runDecember 1941 (revenue service)
May 2019 (excursion service)
Last runJuly 21, 1959
RetiredDecember 7, 1961
RestoredMay 1, 2019
Current ownerUnion Pacific
(Union Pacific Heritage Fleet)
DispositionOperational
References:[2][3][4]

Union Pacific 4014 is a steam locomotive owned and operated by the Union Pacific (UP) as part of its heritage fleet. It is a four-cylinder simple articulated 4-8-8-4 "Big Boy" type built in 1941 by the American Locomotive Company (ALCO) at its Schenectady Locomotive Works. It was assigned to haul heavy freight trains in the Wasatch mountain range. The locomotive was retired from revenue service in 1959 and was donated to the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society; thereafter, it was displayed in Fairplex at the RailGiants Train Museum in Pomona, California.

In 2013, UP re-acquired the locomotive and launched a restoration project at its Steam Shop in Cheyenne, Wyoming. In May 2019, No. 4014 moved under its own power after sitting dormant for almost six decades, becoming the world's largest operational steam locomotive and the only operating Big Boy locomotive of the eight that remain in existence.[3] It now operates in excursion service for the UP steam program. No. 4014 became the first mainline steam locomotive to be equipped with the positive train control (PTC) system in 2021.

History[edit]

Design[edit]

The Big Boy class was developed by Union Pacific and built by the American Locomotive Company (ALCO) in the 1940s to handle the 1.14% eastbound ruling grade of Utah's Wasatch Range.[5] A team led by UP's chief mechanical officer Otto Jabelmann adapted the design of the 4-6-6-4 Challenger, enlarging the firebox to about 235 by 96 inches (5.97 m × 2.44 m) (about 155 sq ft or 14.4 m2), lengthening the boiler, adding four driving wheels, and reducing the diameter of the driving wheels from 69 to 68 in (1,753 to 1,727 mm).[2][5]

The Big Boy was articulated like the Mallet locomotive design, although without compounding.[6] It was designed for stability at 80 miles per hour (130 km/h), allowing for a wide margin of reliability and safety, as steam locomotives normally operated well below that speed in freight service.[7] Peak power was reached around 35 mph (56 km/h); optimal tractive effort was reached around 10 mph (16 km/h).[7] It is longer than two city buses and weighs more than a Boeing 747.[8]

Revenue service and retirement[edit]

ALCO built No. 4014 in November 1941 at a cost of $265,174 ($5,276,000 in 2022[9]) and delivered it the following month to Union Pacific, which placed it in revenue service.[2][5] No. 4014 was part of the first group of 20 Big Boys, called 4884–1.[1] Designed to haul 3,600-short-ton (3,214-long-ton; 3,266 t) freight trains over the Wasatch Range, the Big Boys routinely pulled freight trains of up to 4,200 short tons (3,750 long tons; 3,810 t).[2] On April 2, 1943, No. 4014 pulled 65 freight cars between Ogden, Utah, and Evanston, Wyoming, generating a total of 5,530 hp (4,120 kW).[10]

No. 4014's last routine repairs took place in 1956.[11] The locomotive completed its final revenue run on July 21, 1959, just hours before the last revenue run by any Big Boy.[2] It had traveled 1,031,205 miles (1,659,564 km) during its revenue service.[2][5] Union Pacific retired No. 4014 on December 7, 1961.[7] All of the remaining Big Boys were retired by 1962, when their duties were taken over by diesel locomotives and gas turbine-electric locomotives (GTELs).[2][12] That same year, Union Pacific donated No. 4014 to the Southern California chapter of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society in Pomona, California, where it became one of the eight Big Boys preserved around the United States.[7][13][a]

Ownership transfer and restoration[edit]

"No other railroad has retained its historical equipment or honored its American roots like Union Pacific. Our steam locomotive program is a source of great pride to UP employees past and present. We are very excited about the opportunity to bring history to life by restoring No. 4014."

—Ed Dickens[7]

In late 2012, Union Pacific officials announced that they intended to obtain a Big Boy locomotive for restoration to operational condition for excursion service.[14] On July 23, 2013, UP announced that the Southern California Chapter of the Railway & Locomotive Historical Society (R&LHS) had agreed to return No. 4014 to UP.[15][b]

On November 14, 2013, No. 4014 began its journey to the UP Steam Shop in Cheyenne.[18][19] It was pulled from its display site at the museum, on temporary track, through the adjacent parking lot.[18][19] On January 26, 2014, No. 4014 was pulled from the Los Angeles County Fairplex to the Covina station on Metrolink trackage by No. 1996, an SD70ACe diesel locomotive painted in Southern Pacific colors.[20][21] It presently arrived at UP's West Colton Yard in Bloomington, California,[22] where it sat on display until April 28, when it began its journey to Cheyenne.[23] After arriving at the Steam Shop's roundhouse on May 8,[24] No. 4014 sat largely idle for two years while the UP steam crew worked to overhaul No. 844.[25][26] The Steam Shop also used the time to expand and upgrade its facilities to accommodate a Big Boy.[27]

In August 2016, a month after No. 844's repairs and inspection were complete, UP officials announced that the restoration work of No. 4014 had begun under Heritage Fleet Operations director Ed Dickens.[28][29] By early 2017, the locomotive had been completely disassembled.[30] Some new parts were fabricated, including the rod brasses, top boiler check valve, and lubricator check valves.[30] The driving wheels were sent to be repaired by the Strasburg Rail Road in Strasburg, Pennsylvania, for crankpin and axle work as well as installing new tires.[31][32]

The work included one major alteration: converting the coal-burning locomotive to run on No. 5 fuel oil.[7] This was done by replacing the firebox grates with a fire pan and an oil burner.[33] This made No. 4014 the first Big Boy to undergo a coal-to-oil conversion since No. 4005, which ran on oil from 1946 until it was converted back to coal in 1948 due to uneven heating in its large, single-burner firebox.[13][34] No. 4014's old firebox grates were salvaged and used on the Milwaukee Road 261 steam locomotive.[35][c]

In March 2018, it was reported that No. 4014 was being reassembled;[33] ten months later, the locomotive's restoration was nearly finished.[37] In December 2018, Union Pacific asked the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to exempt UP Nos. 4014 and 844 from federal Positive Train Control (PTC) requirements;[38] in February 2019, the FRA officials responded that such waivers were not needed.[39] On February 6, 2019, No. 4014's boiler passed a hydrostatic test and the locomotive was successfully test-fired on April 9.[40][41][42] Around 9 p.m. on May 1, 2019, No. 4014 moved under its own power for the first time in almost 60 years.[43] The following evening, the locomotive made its first test run, from Cheyenne to Nunn, Colorado.[44]

Excursion service[edit]

Once restored, No. 4014 joined the railroad's never-retired No. 844 steam locomotive in excursion service.[45][46] It also became the world's largest operational steam locomotive, displacing No. 3985.[47][d][e]

In May 2019, No. 4014 made its first excursion run amid the celebrations marking 150 years since the completion of the First transcontinental railroad.[32][53][54] Following its May 4 christening at the Cheyenne Depot Museum, No. 4014 — doubleheaded with No. 844 — traveled to Ogden, Utah.[54][55][56] No. 4014 subsequently made two tours on its own.[57][58] From July 8 to August 8, it visited the Midwestern United States,[57] including brief stops at Saint Paul Union Depot and the Lake Superior Railroad Museum;[59][60] it then toured the Southwestern United States from September 27 to November 26.[58]

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, UP announced in March 2020 that it would cancel that year's steam operations with Nos. 4014 and 844.[61] Excursion operations resumed in August and September 2021 with No. 4014 doing tour stops in Fort Worth and Houston, Texas; New Orleans, Louisiana; North Little Rock, Arkansas; St. Louis, Missouri; and Denver, Colorado.[62] Also in 2021, No. 4014 became the first mainline steam locomotive to be equipped with new PTC equipment.[63][64]

On April 11, 2022, UP announced that No. 4014 would tour the Northwestern United States, starting on June 26 in commemoration of UP's 160th anniversary, but the tour was cancelled on April 22 so UP could reduce supply chain congestion.[65][66] In late July 2022, No. 4014 pulled the Museum Special excursion between Cheyenne and the Denver Union Station to benefit the Union Pacific Railroad Museum.[67][68] On September 14, 2022, No. 4014 was fired up to move Union Pacific 5511, a 2-10-2 locomotive, from the Cheyenne roundhouse and around the yard for testing.[69]

In June 2023, No. 4014 ran from Cheyenne to Omaha, Nebraska, with the Home Run Express Tour, for display at Charles Schwab Field Omaha on June 15-21 and 24-25.[70][71] During the return journey to Cheyenne on June 29, No. 4014 banked a stalled freight train up the grade in Blair, Nebraska.[72] Two cab rides on the July 3 journey from Pine Bluffs, Wyoming, to Cheyenne were sold for $9,500 apiece to benefit the Union Pacific Railroad Museum.[73][f]

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Surviving tender No. 25-C-116 was connected with 4014 and placed on display at Fairplex (RailGiants Train Museum) in Pomona, California. The tender was connected with No. 4014 for 55 years.
  2. ^ On February 22, 2014, UP EMD SD40-2C No. 3105 (née Missouri Pacific No. 6027), UP insulated boxcar No. 453665, and bay window caboose UP No. 24567 (née Rock Island No. 17149) took No. 4014's place in the museum.[16][17]
  3. ^ No. 261 may be converted to burn oil, depending on the feasibility study and cost-benefit analysis.[36]
  4. ^ In January 2020, Union Pacific officials announced that the UP Steam Team would operate just two steam locomotives—Nos. 844 and 4014—and would retire No. 3985, which was in poor mechanical condition.[47][48] In April 2022, UP announced that it would donate No. 3985 to the Railroading Heritage of Midwest America (RRHMA).[49][50]
  5. ^ No. 3985's original tender, No. 25-C-311, is connected to No. 4014 to meet the restoration deadline.[48][51] In May 2022, the RRHMA planned to rebuild No. 4014's original tender, No. 25-C-116, to carry fuel oil instead of coal.[52] Afterwards, it will eventually be reconnected with No. 4014 and the No. 25-C-311 tender will be reconnected to the No. 3985 locomotive.[52]
  6. ^ UP's original plan was to auction off one cab ride.[74] But on June 23, UP informed its Steam Club members that the auction "was manipulated by an individual and did not result in an award to the highest bidder" and that as a result, the museum would sell two tickets, priced at $9,500 each, at 5 p.m. CDT on its website.[73]
  7. ^ On April 10, 2019, the diesel locomotive numbered 4014 was redesignated as 4479 on the UP active locomotive roster, allowing the "Big Boy" to retain the number.[75][76]

References[edit]

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  74. ^ "UP Museum holds auction for Big Boy cab ride". Trains. Kalmbach Media. June 5, 2023. Archived from the original on June 5, 2023. Retrieved June 27, 2023.
  75. ^ "Union Pacific to renumber SD70M No. 4014 before Big Boy runs". Trains. Kalmbach Media. June 27, 2018. Archived from the original on October 18, 2018. Retrieved April 28, 2019.
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