Chesapeake & Ohio 2-8-8-2 "Chesapeake" Locomotives of the USA

Class Details by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media

Class H-7 (Locobase 312)

Data from C&O 9 - 1936 and C&O 12 - 1946 Locomotive Diagrams supplied in May 2005 by Allen Stanley from his extensive Raildata collection. For the Baldwins, see DeGolyer, Vol 75, pp. 93+. (Thanks to Chris Hohl for his 28 November 2012 email that pointed out the gap in numbering by the C&O.) First 25 H-7 built by Alco as works numbers 64952-64976 in December 1923. The first, 1100 arrived in December 1923, 1101-1103 in January, 1104-1110 in February, and 1111-1124 in March. When the C&O renumbered the class in 1926, for some reason the railroad replaced 1124 with 1540 and 1100 with 1541; the rest of the class received 1542-1564 in order.

The latter 20 (numbered 1570-1589 from the start) came from Baldwin in 1926 (works numbers 58922, 58950, 58964-58966 in January, 59052-59058 in March, 59110-59113 in April, 59174-59177 in May).

Known as "Simple Simons" or "Simons" (according to C&O Power) because they operated as simple-expansion articulateds, unlike the earlier compound Mallets. Firebox had combustion chamber that added 145 sq ft (13.45 sq m) to direct heating surface area and the boiler had an Elesco K-54 feed water heater. When delivered, boilers were pressed at 205 psi. All four cylinders were supplied through 12" (305 mm) piston valves.

The Baldwin H-7as were credited with slightly higher weight on drivers, larger heating surface (6,580 sq ft). Cylinder horsepower for all was 4,092 hp.

By 1935, all of the H-7s were fitted with several thermic syphons that contributed a total of 165 sq ft (15.3 sq m) to the direct heating surface area. The result is shown in the specifications.

Alexander (American Locomotives, 1950) notes that H7 pulled 9,500-ton trains over 113-mile run from Russell, Kentucky to Columbus, Ohio in 5 hours. Averaged 4,400 miles per month until displaced by the 2-10-4s in Ohio and the 2-6-6-6 Alleghenies in the rest of the territory. 30 of the fifty were later leased to the Union Pacific. By then the fireboxes had been fitted with 167 sq ft of thermic syphon as shown in the specs.

Specifications by Steve Llanso of Sweat House Media
Locobase ID312
RailroadChesapeake & Ohio (C&O)
Number in Class45
Road Numbers1100-1124/1540-1564, 1570-1589
Number Built45
Valve GearWalschaert
Locomotive Length and Weight
Driver Wheelbase (ft)15.75
Engine Wheelbase (ft)58.08
Ratio of driving wheelbase to overall engine wheebase 0.27
Overall Wheelbase (engine & tender) (ft)104.70
Axle Loading (Maximum Weight per Axle) (lbs)65,200
Weight on Drivers (lbs)493,070
Engine Weight (lbs)567,500
Tender Loaded Weight (lbs)376,340
Total Engine and Tender Weight (lbs)943,840
Tender Water Capacity (gals)21,000
Tender Fuel Capacity (oil/coal) (gals/tons)25
Minimum weight of rail (calculated) (lb/yd)103
Geometry Relating to Tractive Effort
Driver Diameter (in)57
Boiler Pressure (psi)215
High Pressure Cylinders (dia x stroke) (in)23" x 32" (4)
Tractive Effort (lbs)108,547
Factor of Adhesion (Weight on Drivers/Tractive Effort) 4.54
Heating Ability
Firebox Area (sq ft)632
Grate Area (sq ft)112.20
Evaporative Heating Surface (sq ft)6580
Superheating Surface (sq ft)1849
Combined Heating Surface (sq ft)8429
Evaporative Heating Surface/Cylinder Volume213.80
Computations Relating to Power Output (More Information)
Robert LeMassena's Power Computation24,123
Same as above plus superheater percentage29,430
Same as above but substitute firebox area for grate area165,774
Power L117,508
Power MT626.26



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