Big Blow...Union Pacific's Super Turbines (Great Railroading Series)

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9780916160029: Big Blow...Union Pacific's Super Turbines (Great Railroading Series)
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From the Preface: The days of the world's most powerful and dramatic motive power on the Union Pacific Railroad have now become a part of railroad history. By the end of 1969, all 30 of the "Big Blows" were silent. The Giants of the vast and windy west have been stilled, but the roar of the Turbines will always echo in the pines high atop Sherman Pass, and over the rugged, dusty plains of Wyoming. For those of us who were thrilled by its mighty thunder, and by its massive steel body, the word "TURBINE" will always be a fond and cherished memory. Perhaps the following material and pictures will in some small way recapture the strength of that era. The most awesome and strongest locomotive in all the world . . . that distinction applies only to the Super Turbines used by the Union Pacific Railroad. Thirty of these "Big Blows" were constructed by the General Electric Corporation. #1 was delivered in August of 1958 and #30 was delivered in July of 1961. They were built to haul heavy tonnage over the never-ending prairies of Nebraska; the rugged grades of Sherman Pass; the windy and dusty highlands of central Wyoming; and through the rocky cuts of the Wahsatch in Utah. They were designed to move heavy freight trains over a long haul more economically than any other internally powered engine. This was the only fleet of Gas-Turbines in the world and for the most part they only operated from Council Bluffs, Iowa on the east to Salt Lake City on the west. Publicity stated that one of those Goliaths could pull 735 loaded cars (making a train 7 miles long) at a speed of 12 miles an hour over flat land. It was build to handle a 5000 ton train up the 1.53% grade in Echo Canyon, Utah.

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