PT Tender - What's the Attraction

There are several iterations of the Empire State Express and from what I've read, any set with a PT Tender seems to be advertised as an upgrade. They command a high price when sold alone.

What's the attraction? To me, it's just a big black tender. Is there some history with it in real railroading?

Original Post

Probably a number of reasons:

It was a more fuel efficient tender on the real NYC than the standard one.

You get much more train with that loco/tender combo.

It is a pretty unique contrast when you compare to the elegance of the locomotive.

For me, it just looks cool.

Thomas

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john f penca jr posted:

Big bad tender...made to eliminate stops for water and coal ...held more of each obviously.  Passenger tender hence PT...beauty is in the eye of the beholder as they say

MY understanding is that the "PT" stood for Pedestal Type, in reference to the 5 axle rigid axle pedestal. Union Pacific used a lot of PT tenders, with the FEF 4-8-4's, Challengers and Big Boys.

Doug

Yes, It IS a Choice, and one that no one else should be able to take away from you.

 

The Second Amendment protects your right to enjoy all the others

For ME, it is what BELONGS behind a Big Boy, Late Challenger and I believe it was the FEF-2's and later that got the PT tenders. IIRC the FEF-1's (800-819) were delivered with standard type tenders, and the FEF2/3's (820-844) got the PT's. To ME putting a standard tender behind the Challengers, Big Boys or FEF-2/3's would look as out place as putting SAILS on the Queen Mary, or the USS Nimitz, just don't belong. I neither particularly like or dislike, they are just what SHOULD be there.

Doug

 

Yes, It IS a Choice, and one that no one else should be able to take away from you.

 

The Second Amendment protects your right to enjoy all the others

raising4daughters posted:

There are several iterations of the Empire State Express and from what I've read, any set with a PT Tender seems to be advertised as an upgrade. They command a high price when sold alone.

What's the attraction? To me, it's just a big black tender. Is there some history with it in real railroading?

Lionel made the separate sale tender about ten years ago as part of the Century Club II collection. The price may have something to do with the fact that its Century Club and also one of the few separate sale tenders Lionel ever did. At the the time is also came with one of the best Railsounds versions which included 4 (count 'em) baby fatboy speakers. 

I don't believe any of the current MTH and Lionel releases that come with the PT tender cost any more than the ones with the original tenders. 

Personally I prefer the original streamline tender on the ESE but like the PT on the non streamlined J's.

Pete

I guess it is a matter of taste.  The original 6 axle tender used with the J3's seems more in proportion than the big PT tender.  In the real world, the PT tenders were build between 1944 and 1945.  They were big, 51 feet as compared to the 41' of the J3 tender.  Since the locomotive was 54 feet long, the PT tender made it look more like an "A" "B" setup rather than the more traditional look of a steam locomotive and its tender.  Most of their size was for coal, 46 tons versus 24 tons for the original 6 axle.  This allowed the run from NY to Chicago to require only one fuel stop, usually Collinwood (Cleveland).  Water increased only slightly from 12,500 gallons to 18,000 gallons, since NYC locomotives took water along the way from track pans.

The PT is a big hunk of cool machinery but I prefer the look of the original 6 axle tender.

Dan

challenger3980 posted:
john f penca jr posted:

Big bad tender...made to eliminate stops for water and coal ...held more of each obviously.  Passenger tender hence PT...beauty is in the eye of the beholder as they say

MY understanding is that the "PT" stood for Pedestal Type, in reference to the 5 axle rigid axle pedestal.

Internal engineering records from the New York Central indicate that the "PT" designation did indeed stand for "Passenger Tender".

Union Pacific used a lot of PT tenders, with the FEF 4-8-4's, Challengers and Big Boys.

True, however the UP, NP, DM&IR, etc. did NOT refer to their tenders as "PT". Only the NYC used the "PT" designation for "Passenger Tender".

Doug

 

FWIW,

The Century Club II separate sale PT tender was the ONLY Lionel product which included 4 speakers! (FOUR 32 Ohm Baby Fat Boy speakers)

Sound performance matches that of tenders with a regular 2" Fat Boy speaker, so there was no particular advantage, aside from the fact that you may be one of the lucky owners of the only Lionel product to include FOUR speakers! (that's all I can contribute to this thread!)

Thank you,
Mike

Thank you,
Mike Reagan

TW Trainworx

Mikado posted:

FWIW,

The Century Club II separate sale PT tender was the ONLY Lionel product which included 4 speakers! (FOUR 32 Ohm Baby Fat Boy speakers)

Sound performance matches that of tenders with a regular 2" Fat Boy speaker, so there was no particular advantage, aside from the fact that you may be one of the lucky owners of the only Lionel product to include FOUR speakers! (that's all I can contribute to this thread!)

Thank you,
Mike

When it comes to NYC Hudsons, I wish Lionel would offer the PT tenders for separate sale again.   Would love to switch out tenders on my ESE Hudson at will or any future Lionel hudson.

"Is there some history with it in real railroading?"

What - do you think Lionel and others just made it up?

======

And furthermore, regardless of comments above, a big, sleek PT tender definitely does belong behind a NYC Hudson, not just the Niagara (too bad the Mohawks never got them). Note that when they were originally put behind streamlined Century Hudsons that they were simply striped and lettered and required no streamlining at all - and looked superbly smooth.

Love the 12-wheeler, too, you understand. But that PT centipede tender looks so modern - which is why it was the perfect esthetic compliment to the Niagara - which looks a bit streamlined itself, even though it is not. 

Another great advantage of the PT tender was ride stability, especially at the high speeds frequently reached by those magnificent Hudsons and Niagaras! The tender was regarded as the worst riding car in the whole train because of the variable load that it carried. The suspension on a PT tender is far superior to that of a traditional 6-axle tender, resulting in a much more stable ride. And on the NYC, the PT's came with an upgrade in water scooping capabilities. The maximum speed was increased from 60 to 80 mph over track pans when scooping with the PT tenders, and damage and stress to the tender tank was reduced with the improved overflow systems. 

Also, a question for Hot Water: wasn't "PT" also used by the locomotive builders to refer to "Pedestal Tender"? Not at all trying to challenge your NYC claim, I have read the same thing in NYCHS materials.

Bandomnjr posted:

Also, a question for Hot Water: wasn't "PT" also used by the locomotive builders to refer to "Pedestal Tender"? Not at all trying to challenge your NYC claim, I have read the same thing in NYCHS materials.

I've always heard the technical term, "Pedestal Type" for those tenders, except of course on the New York Central.

D500 posted:

"Is there some history with it in real railroading?"

What - do you think Lionel and others just made it up?

======

And furthermore, regardless of comments above, a big, sleek PT tender definitely does belong behind a NYC Hudson, not just the Niagara (too bad the Mohawks never got them). Note that when they were originally put behind streamlined Century Hudsons that they were simply striped and lettered and required no streamlining at all - and looked superbly smooth.

Love the 12-wheeler, too, you understand. But that PT centipede tender looks so modern - which is why it was the perfect esthetic compliment to the Niagara - which looks a bit streamlined itself, even though it is not. 

The PT tenders (of which there were 6 variants) were, in my humble opinion, a marvel of engineering.   NYC built both the PT1's and one only PT2 (which was tied to Hudson 5401) and the 10 PT3 tenders at their Beechwood Grove shops.  The entire PT4 class were LIMA built.   All of the Niagara PT5 tenders, along with the lone PT6 variant used on Niagara 5500, were ALCO built.  A fully loaded PT tender outweighed the Hudson it was tied to.  I also feel that a de-shrouded J3a Super Hudson looked  good with the PT tender even if the proportions didn't quite match.  I have the Sunset 3rd Rail version of that.   For those of you that may be interested the NYCSHS Central Headlight, 3rd quarter 1985, has a full blown article on the PT tenders authored by H.L. Vail, Jr.  

PS:  The tenders used with the L3 and L4 Mohawks were certainly large enough in their own right, especially the L4b's with the cistern behind the slope sheet allowing for scooping water at higher speeds.

 

OKHIKER posted:
Jedderbob posted:

I've got that Century Club separate sale PT tender and it sounds awesome.

I've got one as well and I wholeheartedly agree with your assessment.  The PT's sounds are superb!

What undoubtedly enhances the sound is the larger tender body that acts similar to a sealed subwoofer.  With 4 speakers it must be pretty loud.  

 

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