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History: The EMD FT was a 1,350-horsepower (1,010 kW) diesel-electric locomotive produced between March 1939 and November 1945, by General Motors' Electro-Motive Division. The "F" stood for 1400 horsepower (rounded from 1350) and the "T" for twin, as it came standard in a two-unit set. The design was developed from the TA model built for the C,RI&P in 1937, and was similar in cylinder count, axle count, length and layout. All told 555 cab-equipped A units were built, along with 541 cabless booster B units, for a grand total of 1,096 units. The locomotives were all sold to customers in the United States. It was the first model in EMD's very successful F-unit series of cab unit freight diesels, and was the locomotive that convinced many U.S. railroads that the diesel-electric freight locomotive was the future. Many rail historians consider the FT one of the most important locomotive models of all time.
The first units produced for a customer were built in December 1940 and January 1941 for the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway and numbered the 100 set. These were the first diesel-electric locomotives ever produced with dynamic braking, a system developed at the insistence of the railroad and with its assistance. Initially the four-unit, coupler-equipped set featured two booster units between two cab units in the manner of the demonstrator set. The Brotherhoods of Locomotive Engineers and Firemen, however, insisted that the two cabs required two crews, so the railway had EMD produce extra boosters, and renumbered its earliest sets into four unit sets with one cab unit and three boosters. Negotiation with the unions soon rectified the situation, but as the road's earliest units were geared for higher speeds than subsequent units, these sets continued to be composed of one FTA cab unit and three FTB boosters. This is why the road had ten more FTB booster units than FTA cab units.
Electro-Motive Diesel traces its roots to the Electro-Motive Engineering Corporation, a designer and marketer of gasoline-electric self-propelled rail cars founded in 1922 and later renamed Electro-Motive Company (EMC). In 1930, General Motors purchased Electro-Motive Company and the Winton Engine Co., combining the two to form its Electro-Motive Division (EMD) in 1941.
In 2005, GM sold EMD to Greenbriar Equity Group and Berkshire Partners, which formed Electro-Motive Diesel to facilitate the purchase. In 2010, Progress Rail Services completed the purchase of Electro-Motive Diesel from Greenbriar, Berkshire, and others.
EMD's headquarters, engineering facilities and parts manufacturing operations are based in McCook, Illinois, while its final locomotive assembly line is located in Muncie, Indiana. EMD also operates a traction motor maintenance, rebuild and overhaul facility in San Luis Potosí, Mexico.
As of 2008, EMD employed approximately 3,260 people, and in 2010 it held approximately 30 percent of the market for diesel-electric locomotives in North America.
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Item created by: gdm on 2018-04-14 09:20:24
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