Chessie system f unit

Chessie system f unit DEFAULT

Discussion relating to the B&O up to it's 1972 merger into Chessie System. Visit the B&O Railroad Historical Society for more information. Also discussion of the C&O up to 1972. Visit the C&O Historical Society for more information. Also includes the WM up to 1972. Visit the WM Historical Society for more information.

  by Indianarailfan

Does anyone know if their was any Chessie System Color C&O F Units?

  by cw cabin

There were none. :(

  by Ken S.

Bachmann made one back in the days of manufacturers offering locomotives and cars in just about any paint scheme they could think of. The B&O FP45 and SDP40 from Athearn come to mind.


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Before you get too harsh with this Model Power Chessis F2-A, it does sport one feature that has a prototypical basis. In Jerry Doyle's book, "Chessie System Diesel Locomotives," the author notes that Chessie's 4101-4112 GP40-2 diesels received silver trucks as an experiment. So, our Model Power F2-A may be following this experimental practice perhaps. Below is an example of a silver trucked Chessie diesel.

Cox delivered its line of Hong Kong-made HO-scale model trains beginning in 1974 and continued through 1977. Chessie System paint was applied to the Cox EMD F3-A and GP9 diesels. The Western Maryland rostered 28 EMD F7-A units in the mid-'70s and over a dozen F7-B's, but none made it into Chessie System colors.

Cox gave B&O ownership credit for its F3-A model and it carried roadnumber 1937.

This Bachmann Chessie F9-A from the late '80s/early '90s gets the nod for poorest attempt at reproducing the road's famous paint scheme. Bachmann went through a period of minimalist paint jobs for some models during the late '80s and early '90s. In addition to this two-tone Chessie F9-A, Bachmann also offered a red and gray semi-warbonnet Santa Fe F9-A and a modestly painted Union Pacific F9-A.

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 The Chessie System began as an "affiliation" in 1963 when the C&O purchased the B&O railroad. Both railroads continued to operate independently with very few changes. The main reason for the continued separation was the long standing tax incentives held by the B&O. On the outside however, one would think the B&O had actually acquired the C&O. Both railroads had adopted the simplified blue and yellow scheme with logos on the ends and initials on the sides. The main difference was the C&O painted the front hood yellow. All letterheads showed the two logos side by side with the C&O logo slightly imposed over the B&O.

 No changes to equipment where made either. Both used their own numbering systems until 1964 when GP35s where purchased using the C&O's system of using the model number to designate the locomotive class. During 1966 and 1967 the entire roster was renumbered to a unified system, including the Western Maryland which was owned and controlled by th B&O. The Central of New Jersey and Reading where also controlled by the B&O at that time and had been renumbered in 1964 to avoid any conflicts. The CNJ had also adopted a similar blue and yellow scheme. With the purchase of SD40's in 1967, the yellow was dropped from the C&O units.

 In August of 1965 the C&O/B&O intended to merge with the N&W and further renumberings ocurred in both railroads, as well as the adoption of blue and yellow by the N&W. When merger talks ended in 1971 the N&W changed its scheme to black and white with simple NW lettering. When the C&O/B&O began merger procedings in 1971, the Reading petitioned to be included, but was unsuccessful. The WM which was already owned by the B&O was included. In 1972 the Chessie System paint scheme with the Chessie cat logo was adopted. The WM did not begin consolidation into the Chessie System until 1973 and continued to operate it's own sales department even after much of its mainline was considered redundant and abandoned. The WM continued to use the red, white, and black paint scheme until 1975 when a chop nosed GP9 was renumbered and painted in Chessie colors.

 The WM maintained its fleet of first generation Alcos and F Units until its shops in Hagerstown where closed in 1976 and repairs transfered to Cumberland, MD. Chessie did not maintain them with the same standards and operated them until trade-in or major failure. None of them were ever painted Chessie. With the loss of WM engines, many C&O GP9's where transfered to the WM, as the C&O often transfered older engines to the B&O. Many blue and yellow units only received a relettering of WM on the side. Other idle units where also leased to western railroads like the Santa Fe and received SF style Roman lettering in the 1980's. When C&O subsidiary Chicago, South Shore and South Bend received 10 new units, its blue and yellow C&O GP7's where returned and transfered to the B&O Chicago Terminal Railroad. The CSS&SB had renumbered them into the 1500's and they kept those numbers until the arrival of the GP15T's.

On November 1, 1980, Chessie System and Family Lines became the CSX Corporation, initially just a holding company. On January 1, 1983, Family Lines became Seaboard System, and new orders of SD50s where consolidated with the Chessie System numbers. As units received the Seaboard System paint and numbers they began losing their original identities. In 1986 the two companies began consolidation into the new CSX paint scheme ending the Chessie System era. The WM was merged into the C&O on May 1, 1983. The B&O was merged into the C&O on April 30, 1986. The C&O itself was merged into CSX Transportation on July 1, 1986. At that time over 75% of the Chessie System engines had been painted in Chessie colors. While numbers were allocated for first generation diesels in CSX, many were never painted or renumbered. Some GP9's received spray painted numbers, or simply had the first digit blanked out. CSX later chose not to repaint all of its second generation diesels, as they were soon to be retired. Some received the orange and black maintenance of way scheme. Now very few engines still operate in Chessie System paint and even fewer in blue and yellow.


Nostalgia & History > The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"

Date: 06/21/18 06:51
The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: Roadjob

Once Chessie got its paws firmly in place corporate wise, it began replacing the older B&O power on a large scale. Between 1974 and the end of the 70s, the road obliterated the B&O F units, any stray Alcos, Fairbanks Morse, and GP7s and 9s, though a bunch of them held into the 80s. The Western Maryland F units hung around for a bit longer in the 70s only because of the superb shape the Hagerstown shop people kept them in. By the early 80s, Chessie was mostly a GP40-2 road.

top...S4 and sisters along with a mixed bag of power await the last rodeo in Baltimore in 1974

middle...dead line at Cumberland...1975 doubt where these F units at Cumberland were heading, with that little NAP destination on them. 1975

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Date: 06/21/18 08:09
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: refarkas

Thanks for sharing these "Goodbye-old-friends" photos.

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Date: 06/21/18 09:06
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: santafe199

Man, oh man! The stories those old Fs could tell...


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Date: 06/21/18 09:16
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: OldHeadRailroader

They got rid of the F units and Geeps early. CN still uses GP-9s lol!

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Date: 06/21/18 11:09
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: bridgeportsub

And CSX got rid of AC 6000's and Progress Rail is cutting some of them up.Go figure.


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Date: 06/21/18 12:19
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: OldHeadRailroader

CSX is getting rid of all their power and railroad lmao.

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Date: 06/21/18 12:40
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: rev66vette

The "NAP" stenciled on the units in the last photo denote their destination with the torch at Naporano in Newark, New Jersey.

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Date: 06/21/18 13:58
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: ClubCar

Thanks for the memories Roadjob. I will say this: there were several B&O F units that got over to the Western Maryland during the mid-70's and when they came back on the B&O, those engines purred. The WM worked on them in their Hagerstown shops and in speaking with a Chessie System engineer friend, he said that they were in their best shape in many years. For the record, the last Western Maryland F units to be retired from the Chessie System were units 7157 (originally WM 59) and 7163 (originally WM 65) and they were retired in the beginning of 1980. The only WM F unit to survive is WM 236 which operated until 1979 as Chessie 7170. And of course none of the F units were ever painted in Chessie colors.
John in White Marsh, Maryland

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Date: 06/21/18 14:54
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: krm152

They actually got rid of the good stuff.

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Date: 06/21/18 20:07
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: CSX602

Those were the older less reliable units... and some of us preferred the look of the Chessie GP40-2s along with the WM Circus GP40s, C&O GP39s and SD40s, and B&O sunburst GP30s.

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Date: 06/22/18 04:32
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: Roadjob

All depends on what you grew up with. The F unit in tandem was efficient reliable, and required minimal maintenance compared to the steam engine. I am sure young fans today would say that the GP40-2 became less reliable than the current crop of super power.

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Date: 06/22/18 08:02
Re: The purge....Chessie getting rid of the "junk"
Author: march_hare

I first visited Cumberland in the spring of 1975, and the area around the turntable was full of dead E- and F-units. Evodently, they were being stripped of parts prior to their trips to the scrapper.

One of the roundhouse guys saw me shooting the dead power, and asked me, totally deadpan, whether I was waiting for the Indians to attack.

The "WTF??" must have been obvious on my 17-year-old face, because he smiled and noted that "they've pulled all the covered wagons up in a circle." Years later, I still laugh at that one.

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System unit chessie f

Chessie System

Chessie System, Inc. was a holding company that owned the Chesapeake & Ohio Railway (C&O), the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad (B&O), the Western Maryland Railway (WM), and several smaller carriers.

Headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, the Chessie System was the creation of Cyrus S. Eaton and his protégé Hays T. Watkins, Jr., then president and chief executive officer of the C&O. A chief source of revenue for the Chessie System was coal mined in West Virginia. Another was the transport of auto parts and finished motor vehicles.

The signature symbol of the Chessie System was its "Ches-C", a large emblem incorporating the outline of the C&O's famous "Chessie" the kitten logo. C&O had been popularly known as "Chessie System" since the 1930s, and a version of the image of the "Chessie" mascot kitten used in advertising earlier in the C & O's history. The Ches-C was emblazoned on the front of all Chessie System locomotives, and also served as the "C" in "Chessie System" on the locomotive's flanks, and on other rolling stock.


Chessie System was incorporated in Virginia on February 26, 1973, and it acquired the C&O (which controlled the other companies) on June 15. The three railroads had been closely related since the 1960s. C&O had acquired controlling interest in B&O in 1962, and the two had jointly controlled WM since 1967.

On November 1, 1980, Chessie System merged with Seaboard Coast Line Industries to form CSX Corporation. However, the Chessie image continued to be applied to new and re-painted equipment until mid-1986, when CSX introduced its own paint scheme.

The former SCL railroads were merged into the Seaboard System Railroad in 1982, but the three Chessie System railroads continued to operate separately until 1983, when the WM was merged into the B&O. In April 1987, the B&O was merged into the C&O. In August 1987, C&O merged into CSX Transportation, a 1986 renaming of the Seaboard System Railroad, and the Chessie System name was retired.

List of railroad subsidiaries[edit]

The Chessie System itself did not own any locomotives or other rolling stock; rather, equipment would be placed on the roster of one of the three component railroads. While all three companies shared a common paint scheme of yellow, vermillion, and blue, actual ownership of the equipment was denoted by the reporting marks C&O, B&O, or WM.

Famous locomotives[edit]

Chessie had four famous diesel-electric locomotives in its fleet:

  • B&O 1977 (EMD GP40-2) was meant to celebrate the B&O's 150th anniversary (this locomotive became B&O 4100 and B&O 4163; for a short time there were two B&O locomotives numbered 1977)
  • B&O GM50 (EMD GP40-2) was painted gold to celebrate GM-EMD's 50th anniversary as a diesel locomotive manufacturer (GM50 got repainted in 1984 and became B&O 4164)
  • B&O #3802: EMD GP38 named the All American Locomotive by Trains in 1982 (now restored at the B&O Museum)
  • B&O 4444 (third to last GP40-2 owned by Chessie, last unit was B&O 4447) was the locomotive that pulled Ronald Reagan's 1984 presidential train through Ohio.

The Chessie System operated and exhibited a former Reading Company T-1 class 4-8-42101 on a national tour as the "Chessie Steam Special," beginning in 1977 in celebration of the B&O's 150th anniversary. The 4-8-4 had previously been used as one of three locomotives pulling the American Freedom Train. The train was painted in the Chessie System motif and consisted of the locomotive, two tenders, and eighteen to twenty passenger and baggage cars. The locomotive was severely damaged in a fire in March 1979 while stored in a Chessie System roundhouse. It has since been cosmetically restored to its American Freedom Train paint scheme, and is on static display at the B&O Railroad Museum in Baltimore, although has been exposed to the elements for a majority of its time there.

Recently, the Lake Shore Railway Historical Society acquired C&O 8272, a GE B30-7, in 2017 and it has been restored in the Chessie System paint scheme and currently resides at the Lake Shore Railway Museum.

Heritage Unit[edit]

In 2015, CSX recognized its heritage and gave a handful of locomotives predecessor logo decals. CSX AC4400CW 366 and C40-8W 7765 both received Chessie System Decals. 366's decal is the "Chess-C" and 7765 has the "B&O" logo. However, 366's decal was removed due to fire damage.

Further reading[edit]

  • Ori, Dave (2006). Chessie System. MBI Railroad Color History (1st ed.). Voyageur Press. ISBN .

External links[edit]

Chessie System 1
TB Diamond wrote:... Do not own a scanner and have no way to post any of these, however. ...
You could send them my way - they say you can't take it with you! :wink:
Slides don't last forever, so you might try to get some scanned.

I met one of the nicest people I've known in my life at the B&O Lincoln Park (Rochester) roundhouse - the head mechanic, Leo. The crewmen knew him as "Fido." I met him inspecting road power in 1972. He let me photograph most anything that I cared to, or follow him around as he serviced the units. Heading into an F7's engine room, "ya don't have to be scared, just don't touch nothin'."

Cab and engine room, road number unknown, 1973: ... id=1362394 ... id=1362395

One of the last B&O F units I found in Rochester was late 1975, with a nice mix of paint jobs. ... id=1362396

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