The Bachmann O Scale EMD BL2 Diesel Locomotive Florida East Coast models the ElectroMotive Division's of General Motors BL2 Road Switcher Locomotive. The BL2 was a B-B four axle Road Switcher which used the EMD 567Bprime mover. The 567B was a 16 cylinder diesel engine that generated 1500 hp. EMD had launched the very successful F Series of diesel locomotives with the FT model, and in the Post World War II era EMD was to dominate road locomotive sales. However, the "F" Series locomotives lacked both rear visibility and did not have a place for crew members to stand outside on the locomotive. With other locomotive manufacturers such as Alco and their "RS" Series making inroads into EMD's market, a Road Switcher by EMD seemed only logical. In 1947 EMD developed the BL2 that addressed the visibility and an outside stand for crew members issues, but the attempt to make the locomotive as sleek as possible made the BL2 not the ideal Road Switcher. The limitations were evident with only 59 BL2s being built between 1947 and 1949. EMD would address these issues with the GP (General Purpose) line of Road Switchers introduced in 1953.
Road Name and History:
Florida East Coast Railway: The Florida East Coast Railway was the dream of Henry Flagler, who had made his fortune along with John D. Rockefeller at Standard Oil. Beginning in 1885 the Florida East Coast built its rail line, as the name implies, down the east coast of Florida, reaching Key West via long bridges by 1912 (A hurricane in 1935 destroyed the railroad to Key West..it was rebuilt as U.S. Highway 1). Flagler saw the potential for Florida as a tourist destination, and he developed resorts and promoted the State of Florida he had come to love. For years in the 20th Century the railroad was in the DuPont Family. New management in the early 1960s introduced two person crews and dropped cabooses- innovations now in place on all railroads. This action prompted a long strike and violence, but the FEC prevailed. Florida East Coast Railway was eventually purchased by Rail America, but is now owned by Fortress Investment Group. FEC's franchise of intermodal trains to South Florida and rock trains for the Florida construction industry have enabled the railroad to prosper on its own.
Interesting Fact: Florida East Coast Industries in a rare twist is launching Brightline, which will provide rail passenger service between Miami and Orlando. Almost unbelievable for a freight railroad!
Recommended for Ages 14 and Up.
Length: 15" Height: 4"
Navigates 0-27 curves.