Baldwin "S-8" Locomotives
The Baldwin S-8 was meant to replace its DS line, notably the DS-4-4-750
(but also including the DS-4-4-660 and DS-4-4-1000) and offered roughly
the same horsepower on a similar frame and axle setup.
The switcher itself
was not considerably different from its earlier counterpart although it
did feature an upgraded prime mover
of the same version used in the DS-4-4-750.
Perhaps the most
noticeable change with the S-8 was merely its designation, as the Baldwin Locomotive Works
looked to simplify its earlier classification system of complicated numbers,
dashes, and letters. Overall, the S-8 was not particularly successful although its successor, the S-12, did see decent sales.
One railroad which never wavered on Baldwin was the Pennsylvania; the PRR was a loyal buyer of steam locomotives practically from its inception and continued supporting the company until the end.
It acquired a small roster of six S-8's. Today, at least two S-8s are preserved; U.S. Pipe & Foundry #37 at the Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum and Medford Corporation #8 at the Southern Oregon Chapter, NRHS.
Rock Island S-8 #803 carries out switching chores at an unknown location in September, 1963. Baldwin's switchers had a simple and clean elegance. Roger Puta photo.
The Baldwin S-8 switcher line debuted in 1951 featuring the builder's updated 606ANA prime mover.
The locomotive could produce 800 horsepower using a B-B truck
arrangement (two axles per truck).
Overall Baldwin meant for the S-8 to
be used in standard yard service although sales never truly
materialized. Railroads still preferred more powerful models and the company had a difficult time finding orders for any of its lightly powered designs like the VO660, DS-4-4-750, and the S-8.
Of course, this was not
unique to Baldwin. The American Locomotive Company, for instance, also
saw only lukewarm sales for its small switchers such as theS-1, S-3, and S-6.
At 46 feet in length the S-8 was nearly identical to the DS-4-4-750 using the same basic frame and design (end cab and long trailing hood). The one operational standout, aside from its extra 50 horsepower was the additional tractive effort; 59,550 pounds starting and 34,000 pounds continuous.
This gave the locomotive the ability to pull a string of loaded cars with relative ease while being agile and light enough (just 99 tons) to be used almost anywhere.
Because of this, several industries found the S-8 to their liking. In any event, the switcher was one of the builder's first models to feature a much more simplified classification using a letter for the motive power type (switcher) and the starting digit (8) referring to the horsepower rating (800).
Escanaba & Lake Superior's only S8 acquired new, #102, is seen here Wells, Michigan during 1979. Doug Kroll photo.
By the time production had ended after only a few years in 1953 Baldwin
was able to sell 63 total units (54 A units and 9 B units/calves) to a
wide range of buyers.
I railroads purchased the S-8, such as the Pennsylvania and Rock
Island, as mentioned above many buyers turned out to be industrial
operations like mining and steel companies.
These included the American Rolling Mill Company, Oliver Iron Mining Company,
Sharon Steel Corporation, Sloss-Sheffield Steel, US Pipe and Foundry, US
Steel, Weyerhaeuser Company, and Youngstown Sheet and Tube.
Interestingly, before the Cuban trade embargo was implemented Baldwin
also sold two S-8s to United Railways of Havana.
As John Kirkland notes in his book, "The Diesel Builder: Volume Two," the S-8 was essentially the DS-4-4-750 with an additional 50 horsepower and dropping the prime mover's designation from 606NA to simply 606.
Baldwin S-8 Data Sheet
|Entered Production||3/22/1951 (Pennsylvania #8994)
|Engine||606, 6-Cylinder In-Line
|Engine Builder||De La Vergne
|Length (Between Coupler Pulling Faces)||48'
|Height (Top Of Rail To Top Of Cab)||14'
|Truck Type||GSC Rigid Bolster, Drop-Side Equalizer
|Traction Motors||362D (4), Westinghouse
|Traction Generator||480F, Westinghouse
|Auxiliary Generator||YG42A, Westinghouse
|Tractive Effort Rating||33,600 Lbs at 8.3 MPH.
|Top Speed||45 MPH
Baldwin S-8 Production Roster
||Baldwin Serial Number
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1200A||7||75243||7/29/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1201A||8||75244||7/31/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1202A||9||75245||8/27/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1203A||10||75246||8/27/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1200B||11||74247||7/29/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1201B||12||74248||7/31/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1202B||13||74249||8/27/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1203||14||74250||8/27/1951|
|Pennsylvania-Reading Seashore Lines||6006||15||75253||5/16/1951|
|New Orleans Public Belt||50||16||75251||5/10/1951|
|New Orleans Public Belt||51||17||75252||5/16/1951|
|Sharon Steel Corporation||3||20||75421||3/10/1952|
|Sharon Steel Corporation||4||21||75422||7/31/1952|
|Sharon Steel Corporation||5||22||75423||8/2/1952|
|Sharon Steel Corporation||6||23||75424||8/21/1952|
|Sharon Steel Corporation||7||24||75425||2/13/1953|
|Sharon Steel Corporation||8||25||75426||2/16/1952|
|Sharon Steel Corporation||9||26||75427||8/28/1953|
|Sharon Steel Corporation||10||27||75428||8/28/1953|
|LaSalle & Bureau County||8||28||75429||10/23/1951|
|Youngstown Sheet & Tube||703||29||75430||11/30/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1204A||31||75488||10/31/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1205A||32||75489||11/29/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1206A||33||75490||11/29/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1204B||34||75491||10/31/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1205B||35||75492||11/29/1951|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1206B||36||75493||11/29/1951|
|Youngstown Sheet & Tube||800||37||75494||3/17/1952|
|Youngstown Sheet & Tube||801||38||75495||3/15/1952|
|Youngstown Sheet & Tube||802||39||75496||3/18/1952|
|Youngstown Sheet & Tube||803||40||75497||3/20/1952|
|American Rolling Mill Company||1151||45||75527||12/12/1951|
|Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific||802||46||75683||9/9/1952|
|Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific||803||47||75684||9/9/1952|
|Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific||804||48||75685||9/10/1952|
|Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific||805||49||75686||9/10/1952|
|Chicago, Rock Island & Pacific||806||50||75687||9/12/1952|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1214A||51||75692||6/5/1952|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1215A||52||75693||6/6/1952|
|American Rolling Mill Company||1152||53||74988||10/30/1952|
|Youngstown Sheet & Tube||804||54||75163||2/10/1953|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1214B||55||75696||6/5/1952|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1215B||56||75697||6/16/1952|
|Youngstown Sheet & Tube||805||57||75332||2/10/1953|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1216A||58||75834||7/1952|
|Escanaba & Lake Superior||102||59||75700||8/21/1952|
|United Railways Of Havana||8001||60||75719||6/19/1952|
|United Railways Of Havana||8002||61||75720||6/19/1952|
|Oliver Iron Mining Company||1216B||63||75836||7/1952|
- Foster, Gerald. A Field Guide To Trains. New York: Houghton Mifflin, 1996.
- Kirkland, John F. Diesel Builders, The: Volume Two, American Locomotive Company And Montreal Locomotive Works. Glendale: Interurban Press, 1989.
- Pinkepank, Jerry A. Diesel Spotter's Guide. Milwaukee: Kalmbach Publishing Company, 1967.
- Solomon, Brian. Baldwin Locomotives. Minneapolis: Voyageur Press, 2009.
New Orleans Public Belt Railroad S-8 #51, acquired new in 1951, is seen here at the company's engine terminal in New Orleans, near the Mississippi River waterfront, during the 1960's.
One particular note of interest about the S-8s were
the nine cow-calf sets purchased by Oliver Mining. A photo of one example is featured above, giving you an idea of what they looked
like; Oliver was the only buyer to request such a setup (it
also ordered other cow-calf sets from Baldwin).
The units were numbered
1200A-1206A, 1214A-1215A/1200B-1206B, 1214B-1215B and the mining company had on
order a tenth set but later canceled this after it was already
completed. Baldwin then retrofitted the B unit with a cab and resold it
as a standard S-8.