In the third of Pentrex’s three-volume series about the incredible Alco diesel, the Century models show their muscle. These 251-powered locomotives were the last group produced by Alco before operations ceased in 1969. Montreal Locomotive Works continued to build these Alco-designed diesels until selling to Bombardier, which carried the torch until 1988. The progression of models built by these three companies is followed in chronological order to bring our series to a close (see list below).
The search for sleek Century behemoths took us throughout North America. Surviving Alco C415, C420, C424, C425, C430, C628, C630, and C636 locomotives are viewed on main lines, shortlines, and industrial operations. MLW’s RS37, C630M, M630, M636, M420, M420B, M420R, M420TR, and M420TR2 diesels lug, chug, and put on fantastic shows in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Bombardier LRC, M424, and HR616 units bring the series to an end.
Our show concludes with a narrow-gauge DL535E diesel working in California’s Imperial Valley. Isolation makes it a rare catch for all but the most hardy Alcophile. You’ll see the unit hauling cars of raw material across 27 miles of desert. The newest 251-powered diesel in the U.S. is a fitting end to our celebration of the enduring Alco diesel.
|C-424||Morristown & Erie|
Belt Railway of Chicago
|C-420||New York, Susquehanna & Western|
Arkansas & Missouri
|C-628||National Railways of Mexico|
|C-625||Mohawk, Adirondack & Northern|
New York & Lake Erie
Detroit & Mackinac
Wabash & Ohio
|C-630||Reading Co. Technical & Historical Society|
Cape Breton & Central Nova Scotia
|M-630||National Railways of Mexico|
|C-430||New York, Susquehanna & Western|
Morristown & Erie
|C-415||industry at Huntington, WV|
|M-640 *||CP Rail|
|M-420TR||Roberval & Saguenay|
|LRC||VIA Rail Canada|
|HR-412, HR-616||Canadian National|
|DL-535E||U.S. Gypsum (Plaster City, CA)|
|* Still photo only|