FM "H16-66" Locomotives (Baby Train Master)

Last revised: March 5, 2022

By: Adam Burns

The Baby Train Master, cataloged by Fairbanks-Morse as its H16-66, was the first of its six-axle, road-switcher locomotives released in the early 1950s.

Unfortunately, the model sold rather poorly although its bigger cousin the H24-66 Train Master fared relatively better.

Ultimately, just three U.S. railroads purchased the H16-66:

  • Milwaukee Road

  • Chicago & North Western

  • Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis & Omaha (C&NW)

In addition, the Tennessee Valley Authority, Alcoa, and Mexican carrier Ferrocarril Chihuahua al Pacífico purchased one unit each.

The H16-66's "Baby Train Master" name from railfans which coined the term for a few reasons:

  • Firstly, of course, was its lower horsepower rating.

  • Secondly, FM began manufacturing the model in the Train Master carbody after 1953. 

Interestingly, the company never used the "Baby Train Master" moniker to describe the H16-66. 

Today, two are in existence:

  • Former Aluminum Company of America (Alcoa) #721001 (currently under Canadian ownership and stored in Ogden, Quebec by the Canadian Pacific.  Interestingly, it was the last H16-66 ever built).

  • Former Tennessee Valley Authority #F3060 (built as #24) at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum.  She was acquired by the group in August, 20201.
The "Transition Era" from steam to diesel was an interesting time in American railroading. Here, Chicago & North Western 4-6-0 #106 works alongside Fairbanks-Morse H16-66 #150 at Emerson, Nebraska on September 12, 1953. Rail service here has since been abandoned.

H16-66 History And Background

The Baby Train Master began production in January of 1951; the first orders taken from the Chicago & North Western,  a regular buyer of Fairbanks-Morse products.

The C&NW would ultimately own the most H16-66s, 51 in all.  The original variants were virtually identical to the H16-44 except for their C-C, rigid bolster, drop-side equalizer trucks.

The H16-66 could produce 1,600 horsepower utilizing the Fairbanks Morse 2-cycle 38D8 1/8 opposed piston prime mover. 

Milwaukee Road H16-66 #552 (built as #2127) works Pig's Eye Yard in St. Paul, Minnesota during the 1960s.

Through 1953, FM continued to employ Raymond Loewy-inspired carbody recommendations on the H16-66.  While only cosmetic in nature the styling did provide for a nice look with an off-set cab and clean lines.

However, later on the company scrapped Loewy's recommendations in an effort to reduce manufacturing costs.  

FM's classification system for its diesels somewhat followed Baldwin's designation. In regards to the H16-66:

  • "H" stood for Hood unit

  • "16" was for 1,600 horsepower

  • Each 6 referred to six axles and six traction motors

During the course of production, FM carried out several changes to the model, both internal and external.  These changes were similarly performed on the H16-44, also in production at the time.

H16-66 Data Sheet

Entered Production1/1951 (Chicago & North Western #1510-1511)
Years Produced1/1951 - 7/1953
Fairbanks-Morse ClassH16-66
Engine38D8 1/8, 8-cylinder Opposed-Piston
Engine BuilderFairbanks-Morse
Carbody StylingRaymond Loewy
Length (Inside Couplers)56' 4"
Height (Top Of Rail To Top Of Cab)14' 9"
Width10' 4"
Weight287,000 Lbs
Truck TypeGSC Rigid Bolster, Drop-Side Equalizer
Truck Wheelbase13'
Wheel Size42"
Traction Motors370DEZ (6), Westinghouse
Traction Generator472A, Westinghouse
Auxiliary GeneratorYG45D, Westinghouse
MU (Multiple-Unit)Yes
Gear Ratio63:15 or 68:15
Tractive Effort72,900 Lbs at 6.3 mph (63:15) or 78,750 Lbs at 6.8 mph (68:15)
Top Speed65 mph (68:15) or 70 mph (63:15)

Chicago & North Western (CMStPM&O) #168-172, completed in July, 1953 (Contract LD150) were the final H16-66's built in the original configuration, a total of 25 units.

H16-66 Data Sheet (Train Master Carbody And Westinghouse Equipment)

Entered Production8/1953 (Milwaukee Road #2125-2127)
Years Produced8/1953 - 9/1953
Fairbanks-Morse ClassH16-66
Engine38D8 1/8, 8-cylinder Opposed-Piston
Engine BuilderFairbanks-Morse
Carbody StylingRaymond Loewy
Length (Inside Couplers)62'
Height (Top Of Rail To Top Of Cab)14' 9"
Width10' 4"
Weight295,000 Lbs (Optional up to 330,000 Lbs)
Truck TypeTrimount
Truck Wheelbase13'
Wheel Size42"
Traction Motors370DEZ (6), Westinghouse
Traction Generator497BZ, Westinghouse
Auxiliary GeneratorYG45D, Westinghouse
MU (Multiple-Unit)Yes
Gear Ratio68:15
Tractive Effort78,750 Lbs at 6.8 mph
Top Speed65 mph

This totaled 6 units, all built for the Milwaukee Road between August and September, 1953 (Contract LD153).

H16-66 Data Sheet (Train Master Carbody And General Electric Equipment)

Entered Production7/1954 (Chicago & North Western #1682-1683)
Years Produced7/1954 - 10/1958
Fairbanks-Morse ClassH16-66
Engine38D8 1/8, 8-cylinder Opposed-Piston
Engine BuilderFairbanks-Morse
Length (Inside Couplers)62'
Height (Top Of Rail To Top Of Cab)14' 9"
Width10' 4"
Weight295,000 Lbs (Optional up to 330,000 Lbs)
Truck TypeTrimount
Truck Wheelbase13'
Wheel Size40" (42" Optional)
Traction MotorsGE752 (6), GE
Traction GeneratorGT567, GE
Auxiliary GeneratorGY43A, GE
MU (Multiple-Unit)Yes
Gear RatioSee Table Below
Tractive EffortSee Table Below
Top SpeedSee Table Below

Gearing Options (GE Equipment)

Gear Ratio Wheel Diameter Maximum Speed Continuous Tractive Effort (Lbs) Continuous TE Rating Speed (MPH)

H16-66 Production Roster

Owner Road Number Construction Number Contract Number Completion Date Quantity
Chicago & North Western1510-151116L35, 16L37LD931/19512
Chicago & North Western1512-151416L275-16L277LD932/19513
Chicago & North Western1605-161016L659-16L664LD13710/19526
Chicago & North Western1611-161216L665-16L666LD13711/19522
Milwaukee Road2128-213016L693-16L695LD1539/19533
Chicago & North Western166816L696LD1517/19531
Chicago & North Western1669-167316L699-16L703LD1517/19535
Chicago & North Western (CStPM&O)168-17216L704-16L708LD1507/19535
Milwaukee Road2125-212716L757-16L759LD1538/19533
Chicago & North Western1682-168316L872-16L873LD169-27/19542
Chicago & North Western1674-167516L874-16L875LD169-18/19542
Chicago & North Western1676-168116L876-16L881LD169-17/19546
Chicago & North Western1696-169816L972-16L974LD1828/19553
Chicago & North Western169416L981LD18211/19551
Chicago & North Western1695, 169116L982-16L983LD1829/19552
Chicago & North Western1692-169316L984-16L985LD18210/19552
Chicago & North Western1700, 169916L986-16L987LD1829/19552
Chicago & North Western1901-190316L1003-16L1005LD1976/19563
Chicago & North Western1904-190616L1029-16L1031LD1976/19563
Tennessee Valley Authority2416L1157LD21610/19581
Ferrocarril Chihuahua al Pacífico50816L1158LD21411/19571
Aluminum Company Of America (Squaw Creek Coal Company)72100116L1159LD2091/19581


  • Kirkland, John F. Diesel Builders, The:  Fairbanks-Morse And Lima-Hamilton. Glendale: Interurban Press, 1985.

  • Pinkepank, Jerry A. Diesel Spotter's Guide.  Milwaukee: Kalmbach Publishing Company, 1967.

  • Schafer, Mike. Vintage Diesel Locomotives. Osceola: MBI Publishing, 1998.

Another example of Milwaukee Road's H16-66 road-switchers, #548 (built as #2129 in 1953), is seen here with other power at Savanna, Illinois in May, 1970. Roger Puta photo.

To streamline operations, FM began equipping all of its road-switchers with the "Train Master" carbody.  This increased the H16-66's length from 56' 4" to 62'.  

Ultimately, only six units, all for the Milwaukee Road, were produced carrying the new carbody and Westinghouse electrical equipment.  

Afterwards, FM was forced to find a new supplier for traction motors and generators as Westinghouse stopped supplying these products.  As a result, General Electric was chosen.

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