Thursday, October 06, 2005

Motive Power - Serie Ae 8/14 (SBB)

Prototype: Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) class Ae 8/14. (1´A)A1A(A1´)+ (1´A)A1A(A1´)wheel arrangement, built starting in 1931.

Use: Heavy freight trains on the Gotthard route. Model: Era IV.

The rail lines in Switzerland with their grades, tunnels, bridges, and curves are a special challenge for the locomotives that travel over them. Mastering the 240 kilometer / 150 mile Gotthard line in particular demanded extraordinarily powerful locomotives over the years. A freight locomotive, the Crocodile, became famous on this line. The largest and most powerful locomotives were however the three class Ae 8/14 electric locomotives. They were developed in the 1930s just for the demanding requirements of this steeply graded line. Each of these double locomotives had a weight of 240 metric tons. The 8 traction motors for the locomotive gave a starting tractive effort of 50 metric tons and an hourly output of 7,500 horsepower that was transmitted by the proven Buchli drive system from the Ae 4/7.


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