Santa Fe 3460 class, any freight use?

In the early 1950s when Santa Fe was able to dieselize all its passenger trains what happened to the 3460 class 4-6-4s (including the "Blue Goose")? Were they dead lined/scrapped immediately or were they put into freight use on the eastern lines? I can't seem to find any pictures of 3460 class locomotives in freight use. I'd expect the 3460 wasn't used to haul freight (Blue Goose) but I would assume the other 5, non-streamlined, locomotives in the class were. Maybe hot shot refrigerator or boxcar trains?

Santa Fe, All the Way

Original Post
Lou1985 posted:

In the early 1950s when Santa Fe was able to dieselize all its passenger trains what happened to the 3460 class 4-6-4s (including the "Blue Goose")? Were they dead lined/scrapped immediately or were they put into freight use on the eastern lines? I can't seem to find any pictures of 3460 class locomotives in freight use. I'd expect the 3460 wasn't used to haul freight (Blue Goose) but I would assume the other 5, non-streamlined, locomotives in the class were. Maybe hot shot refrigerator or boxcar trains?

They had 84" diameter drive wheels, and where pretty "slippery", thus not much good for freight service. 

Hot Water posted:
Lou1985 posted:

In the early 1950s when Santa Fe was able to dieselize all its passenger trains what happened to the 3460 class 4-6-4s (including the "Blue Goose")? Were they dead lined/scrapped immediately or were they put into freight use on the eastern lines? I can't seem to find any pictures of 3460 class locomotives in freight use. I'd expect the 3460 wasn't used to haul freight (Blue Goose) but I would assume the other 5, non-streamlined, locomotives in the class were. Maybe hot shot refrigerator or boxcar trains?

They had 84" diameter drive wheels, and where pretty "slippery", thus not much good for freight service. 

That makes sense. Were they just stored and then scrapped? The 4-8-4s saw lots of freight use but that makes sense. 4-6-4s weren't much suited to that kind of use. 

I'd like to eventually pick up a late Santa Fe steam locomotive for freight use on my layout but a 2900 class 4-8-4 might be too large for my layout, hence why I was wondering about the 3460 class, since it would work if it was prototypical. 

Santa Fe, All the Way

Hot Water posted:

Just going from memory, since I don't model Santa Fe, Lionel recently issued a VERY nice looking "hi-Bred" Santa Fe 2-8-2. Also, Sunset/3rd Rail issued a Santa Fe 4-8-2 some time back. You might try searching eBay for one of each.

I've seen those two models. While nice they are out of my price range unfortunately. I know a 2900 class is too big for the section of my layout I would want to run it on. It has 054 curves. My MTH Premier GS4 goes around that area no problem, but on one of the curves there is only about 1/16" of a gap between the rear cab overhang and a lightweight passenger car parked on an 072 curve next to the engine. Being that a 2900 class is as large, if not larger, it's a no go.

But back to the 3460 class. After about 1952 or so were they just stored until 1956 or so, when they were cut up (except 3463)? 

Santa Fe, All the Way

Hot Water is right.  There were other more useful engines for freight, still serviceable in the early 1950's.

There was still intermittent passenger work for the 3460's and all classes of 4-8-4's even after the final rednose F7's were delivered in 1953, because of second and third sections of regular trains during the summer and the holiday season.   The 3460's were first of those classes to be laid up good, because they were unsuitable as dual service engines and also unsuitable for grades west of Wellington.  The Santa Fe Locomotive Assignment Lists available from the Santa Fe Historical and Modeling Society archives in Temple, Texas have good information about the fading fortunes of steam power throughout the 1950's.

I have a Lionel 2-8-2 as well as a 2-10-2 and a 4-8-2 from Sunset.  The 2-8-2 should be able to run on any layout.  The other two are larger, but manageable.  The Sunset 2900 Class 4-8-4 is definitely a large engine that does not like O72 reverse curves.  Beautiful, yes, but temperamental on small layouts.  "O72 minimum radius" is not the same as "recommended for O72 curves."

Tom

 

Superintendent, High Plains Division (O Gauge) 

The Panhandle & Santa Fe Railway Co.

Lone Star Hi-Railers

Santa Fe, All the Way

So about the closest a 3460 class would get to freight service in the early 1950s would be on the #7 or #8 Fast Mail Express. That's something I could model with a 3460 class locomotive and several heavy weight/light weight baggage/RPO cars, and it would run fine on the area of my layout I want to run it.

Santa Fe, All the Way

There is a lot of photographic and train consist information that indicates that 3460's were very often used on Trains 7 and 8, so, yes, you have caught the scent of oil fired exhaust from the 3460 Class of large 4-6-4's.  

Tom

 

Superintendent, High Plains Division (O Gauge) 

The Panhandle & Santa Fe Railway Co.

Lone Star Hi-Railers

Santa Fe, All the Way

As I recall Scott Mann (3rd Rail) ran the 3450 class 'up the flagpole', and got an insufficient number of 'salutes'.  Of course, ditto for that road's Prairies (2-6-2), of which there were far greater numbers among several classes.

Yes, I do believe John Smith (Pecos River) has a few 3450-class he's disposing of from time to time.  They seem to pop up on Ebay a few times a year.  I have a couple....they're very nice models.  Typically very reasonably priced, too.

With only a total of 16 engines of the 4-6-4 Whyte arrangement in 2 classes on the ATSF, they are, perhaps, the red-haired stepchildren of the final steam years on that railroad.  The "Blue Goose" (The Shopton crew called it the Blue Bird....perhaps a little kinder, more respectful moniker?) was, of course, the darling of the prairie sprinters.  But, seeing Rusty's photo above....3460 awaiting the Grim Reaper's Torch...is almost too painful to look at.   (Sniff!)

Of course, a common mantra for this neck of the hobby in particular is always in vogue....'It's your railroad!  Run 'em as you like 'em!'  Pickers-of-Nit?.........

KD

I do not run scale.  I respect the ATSF.  But the Fast Mail on the SF is one of those trains which seem to have a lot of character.  You do not need matched sets.  And the makeup of the train changed in the years that it ran.  Steam. Diesel. Heavyweight.  Some lightweight.  Express boxcars.  Horse cars.  REA and NYC express flats and containers.  Run through cars from other railroads.  The main 7 and 8 via Raton.  Southern train via TX Panhandle.  7N and 8N to and from the Bay Area.  A world onto itself to model!

The TEXAS SPECIAL:  The REAL RED streak of the golden prairies!

There is a hobby shop local to me that has a Pecos River Brass 3450 class hudson (late rebuild) mint in box. They want $900 for it, which seems a bit excessive. On looks and presence I prefer the 3460 class. I think I'll end up searching out an MTH model of a 3460 at some point.

I'm still leaning towards having it pull the Fast Mail. As you guys have pointed out above I can just create a motley crew of RPOs, baggage cars, and express cars and recreate the train. Or my other thought was a train of Santa Fe Pullman green express boxcars, REA boxcars, REA refrigerator cars, and a caboose. Kinda a "boxcar" section of the Fast Mail. 

Santa Fe, All the Way

rattler21 posted:

I think work trains on the Santa Fe were restricted to 40 MPH. 

John in Lansing, ILL

Actually it was work train cars -- some maintenance of way cars were restricted, but, if none of those were in the train, then it was allowed track speed.  Often though, there were restricted cars in work trains.  There were some ancient cars with arch bar trucks in Santa Fe MofW service through at least the 1960's.   You had to look at the Timetable speed restrictions for equipment restrictions, as Santa Fe did not issue a separate special instructions publication like many other roads did.

High-wheeled engines can run at slow speeds.  

Tom

 

Superintendent, High Plains Division (O Gauge) 

The Panhandle & Santa Fe Railway Co.

Lone Star Hi-Railers

Santa Fe, All the Way

I found some information about the last in-service days of the 3460 Class:

  • In the late 1940's Santa Fe limited the cutoff to 60% to reduce the tendency to slip the drivers at high speed on wet rail, and this made them even less suitable for any dual service use.
  • In 1949, 3463 was assigned to Clovis, assigned to the Scout.  All the way from Clovis to Belen -- about 200 miles -- is on a grade, 1% westbound ruling and 1.25% eastbound ruling.  The 4-6-4 was shown to be inferior to the 4-8-4's on this territory, and that confirmed that the 3460's were best suited for the territory east of Wellington, and there they stayed until retirement.
  • In May, 1951, 3460 only was averaging 362 miles per day
  • By February, 1952, the 3460 Class was only averaging 278 miles per day.
  • On December 3, 1953, the 3463 was drained and stored and never was called for duty again.

This is in contrast to the various classes of 4-8-4's, which were being used much more in passenger and freight service through 1953, and in freight service through 1957.  The 3460's did not have a life after passenger service, as did the 4-8-4's.

This information came from Santa Fe Locomotive 3463, Kin of the "Blue Goose", by the late Lloyd H. Stagner, The Warbonnet, Second Quarter, 1999.

Tom

 

Superintendent, High Plains Division (O Gauge) 

The Panhandle & Santa Fe Railway Co.

Lone Star Hi-Railers

Santa Fe, All the Way

So that does settle it. The most "freight" hauling a 3460 class would do would be on the Fast Mail on the eastern end of the system. The nice thing is the Fast Mail has no set consist. Basically any ATSF express boxcars, RPOs, or baggage cars are fine. Along with REA express refrigerator cars/boxcars or baggage/express cars from eastern roads. It should end up being an interesting train to model. 

Santa Fe, All the Way

Lou1985 posted:

So that does settle it. The most "freight" hauling a 3460 class would do would be on the Fast Mail on the eastern end of the system. The nice thing is the Fast Mail has no set consist. Basically any ATSF express boxcars, RPOs, or baggage cars are fine. Along with REA express refrigerator cars/boxcars or baggage/express cars from eastern roads. It should end up being an interesting train to model. 

Just remember that, unlike the Santa Fe 4-8-4s and 2-10-4s, which primarily handled the "Fast Mail", those high driveled 3460 class Hudsons could NOT handle the same large train. Thus, you will need to model a shorter/lighter Santa Fe "Fast Mail" train.

Hot Water posted:
Lou1985 posted:

So that does settle it. The most "freight" hauling a 3460 class would do would be on the Fast Mail on the eastern end of the system. The nice thing is the Fast Mail has no set consist. Basically any ATSF express boxcars, RPOs, or baggage cars are fine. Along with REA express refrigerator cars/boxcars or baggage/express cars from eastern roads. It should end up being an interesting train to model. 

Just remember that, unlike the Santa Fe 4-8-4s and 2-10-4s, which primarily handled the "Fast Mail", those high driveled 3460 class Hudsons could NOT handle the same large train. Thus, you will need to model a shorter/lighter Santa Fe "Fast Mail" train.

That shouldn't be a problem. I've only got room for 6-7 cars, which should be just right for a "short" section of the Fast Mail.

Santa Fe, All the Way

I've advocated creation of a 'fast mail' set in past threads re ideas for the manufacturers for new products.   A lot of them have tooling already for the types of cars/mix in a fast mail train.

But one car that would be a nice production addition would be an appropriate tail end passenger car.  For instance, a heavyweight coach...but with some added features: Working marker lights, a scissors-style tail gate at the vestibule diaphragm, some modest ridership. 

Some of the mail trains had one, maybe two, passenger cars at the tail end for those hardy folks who were willing to tolerate a different ride, maybe even at a reduced ticket price, lengthy schedule, more frequent stops for drops and adds, etc.

An eclectic mix of flags/colors/styles on the mail car mix was somewhat a hallmark of those trains at their best.  What an opportunity for manufacturers, retailers, consumers......IMHO, of course.  Why, catalogs could have a special 'mail train' category featuring new releases/additions specifically targeting this important rail service in our history.  In fact, changes could be as subtle/significant as a correct set of trucks (e.g., Allied Full Cushion) on a mail train release of a boxcar for that sort of service, along with correct paint/lettering, etc..

I know, I know.....not as flashy and glamorous as the crack passenger trains.  But rather overlooked considering their scheduled importance.

Again,......IMHO, only.

KD

dkdkrd posted:

I've advocated creation of a 'fast mail' set in past threads re ideas for the manufacturers for new products.   A lot of them have tooling already for the types of cars/mix in a fast mail train.

But one car that would be a nice production addition would be an appropriate tail end passenger car.  For instance, a heavyweight coach...but with some added features: Working marker lights, a scissors-style tail gate at the vestibule diaphragm, some modest ridership. 

Some of the mail trains had one, maybe two, passenger cars at the tail end for those hardy folks who were willing to tolerate a different ride, maybe even at a reduced ticket price, lengthy schedule, more frequent stops for drops and adds, etc.

An eclectic mix of flags/colors/styles on the mail car mix was somewhat a hallmark of those trains at their best.  What an opportunity for manufacturers, retailers, consumers......IMHO, of course.  Why, catalogs could have a special 'mail train' category featuring new releases/additions specifically targeting this important rail service in our history.  In fact, changes could be as subtle/significant as a correct set of trucks (e.g., Allied Full Cushion) on a mail train release of a boxcar for that sort of service, along with correct paint/lettering, etc..

I know, I know.....not as flashy and glamorous as the crack passenger trains.  But rather overlooked considering their scheduled importance.

Again,......IMHO, only.

KD

I really think this is something that can be easily put together by most hobbyists through the internet/train shows. Since the trains are so mixed you can just buy pieces here and there till something is assembled, hence where there probably isn't much interest in packaging something as a set. The components are available, they just have to be put together.

Adding marker lights to the last car should be pretty easy. Just some LEDs and a few castings and you're good to go. That's my plan whenever I get this train put together. 

Santa Fe, All the Way

Lou1985 posted:

I really think this is something that can be easily put together by most hobbyists through the internet/train shows. Since the trains are so mixed you can just buy pieces here and there till something is assembled, hence where there probably isn't much interest in packaging something as a set. The components are available, they just have to be put together.

Adding marker lights to the last car should be pretty easy. Just some LEDs and a few castings and you're good to go. That's my plan whenever I get this train put together. 

Lou...  Couldn't agree more with your premise.  I'm also in the process of rounding up pieces/parts to do the same.  Tomar makes some dandy marker lights, Scale City (FKA Keil Line) makes the scissors (diamond) vestibule gates, cars/bodies frequently pop up at flea markets, meets, auctions, etc., etc....

My only point is that not everyone is willing to put in the time/effort to do all that.  Many would rather have it done for them by the manufacturers...set(s), add-ons, accessories, etc..  It seems to be a viable market group...especially looking for something never done before (I mean how many more Big Boys and Warbonnet F's does the world need????).  Besides, a car or two or figures or accessories or....? with the "Mail Train" identity might be of interest.  I know, I know....not the same as Disney, Military, Campbell soup, Coca-Cola, national/collegiate sports, Christmas, Halloween, Parker Brothers games, States, Presidents, etc., etc., etc., blah, blah.

Besides, I've lost count of the number of bright silvery Santa Fe passenger trains released by all the manufacturers through the years.  And they're not done!.......as evidenced by the most recent catalogs!  I've gotten my share, of course, but now they're......but pricier.

I doubt the idea of manufacturer involvement/support for the mail train category will ever be realized.  Certainly not a hill I'll die on, anyway.  If they solicit ideas, we can respond.  The rest is up to them.

FWIW, always...

KD

Lou1985 posted:
Hot Water posted:
Lou1985 posted:

So that does settle it. The most "freight" hauling a 3460 class would do would be on the Fast Mail on the eastern end of the system. The nice thing is the Fast Mail has no set consist. Basically any ATSF express boxcars, RPOs, or baggage cars are fine. Along with REA express refrigerator cars/boxcars or baggage/express cars from eastern roads. It should end up being an interesting train to model. 

Just remember that, unlike the Santa Fe 4-8-4s and 2-10-4s, which primarily handled the "Fast Mail", those high driveled 3460 class Hudsons could NOT handle the same large train. Thus, you will need to model a shorter/lighter Santa Fe "Fast Mail" train.

That shouldn't be a problem. I've only got room for 6-7 cars, which should be just right for a "short" section of the Fast Mail.

DSCN9559

Weaver T&P Mail Storage box car with a Weaver reefer repainted to an REA car leased from the Santa Fe. 

DSCN9560

K-Line T&P heavyweight baggage car with Weaver T&P mail storage box car.

DSCN9561

Williams factory REA heavyweight baggage car

DSCN9562

Williams heavyweight repainted with New Haven colors

DSCN9563

K-Line heavyweight baggage repainted to New Haven service

DSCN9564

K-Line factory colors with messenger windows added.  Good for the last car.  Crew had toilet facilities.  Train started at Hartford.  NH-New York City-NYC- Chicago-ATSF-Kansas City.

DSCN9565DSCN9566DSCN9567DSCN9568DSCN9569DSCN9574

Lionel and Weaver cars in another train.  These are added to our Fast Mail train when needed.

DSCN9575

GGD express reefer may be added to Fast Mail train.

John in Lansing, ILL

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