GE B36-7

Purchased by Conrail to power its hotshot piggyback trains, these sixty units spent many years doing just that. Built in 1983, with 3,600 horsepower and GE's floating bolster trucks, the fleet survived (minus four or five units due to wrecks) right until the split in 1999. While the remaining 55 or 56 units saw brief service on CSX and NS, their new claim to fame is in Brazil, where 44 have been rebuilt into BB36-7's featuring a four foot frame addition on each end of the locomotive to clear and extra two axle truck for narrow gauge EFVM.

TV-4 rolling through Altoona station on the evening of July 26, 1987.

Here a westbound Mail-3 rolls through the semi-famous Route 53 crossing in Cresson PA. This view was taken from around the corner from the iconic shot though, providing a somewhat different angle on this popular location.

GP40-2 3392 leads TVLA-6 up the main at West Haverstraw, NY
GP40-2 3399 leads TV-80 on its Friday only southbound trek on the River Line. Hoppers were set out for Orange Rockland Gas & Electric..
Mail 9 westbound on track two at View... Conrail's 9th birthday...
Conrail B36-7 5000 is trailing on a westbound TV train at Cresson, PA in 1986. The trio of B36s have just notched out and are doing their best to put an ALCo to shame.
Conrail B36-7 5000 is seen trailing on a westbound TV train at Mifflin, PA in 1993.
CR B36-7 5000, less than a year old, rests in lines of power at Harrisburg in April, 1984.
CR B36-7 5000, less than a year old, rests in lines of power at Harrisburg in April, 1984.
TVLA-7 with B36-7 5001 meets TV204 with CNW 5070 @ West Haverstraw, NY
CR 5002 at Bloomington, IL May 9, 1999. Todd Pendleton photo, Chris Howe collection
5002 (B36-7) shown at JLS in Altoona, PA pn May 26th, 1994. Terry Nardella photo, collection of Steve Ondik.
Conrail B36-7 5002 is seen leading an eastbound TV train through Bethlehem, PA
Conrail B36-7 5003 is seen leading a westbound auto parts train at Lewistown, PA in 1992.
CR 5004 & 5048 are seen on RR-282 at Conemaugh, PA on 8/20/98.
CR 5004 is seen on RR-282 at Conemaugh, PA on 8/20/98.
B36-7 5006 leads an eastbound past the Berea tower in 1991. The NS unit in this picture had earlier come up the 4-C line with a short train with a Schnabel car.
Westbound Conrail freight led by 5006 at Waterloo, IN in July 1996
CR 5007 is on the point of ALHB at CP-BURN in Allentown, Pa 11/1994
The Bryan local with the 5008 for power poses on the bridge over the Tiffin river in Stryker, OH back in March 1996. This is the same engine that I got on a RR241 a month earlier by Van Wert, OH.
What you often get when you "wipe the throttle" on a GE. B36-7 5009 has a little "heartburn" with TV-9 at MP 139 in Hinsdale, MA. on Sept.3, 1993.
ML 401 rolls west through Waverly on the Tier. 91 racks trail the three GE's.
Conrail B36-7 5011 is trailing on an westbound TV train crossing the Little Conemaugh River on the viaduct between South Fork and Mineral Point in 1984. The train must have been a heavy one, since there are helpers ahead of the trio of B-boats serving as road power.
CR 5013 is seen at Hagerstown MD on 2/11/98.
CR 5013, another CR EMD, and a DRGW SD40T-2 powers a southbound UP coal train south of Tuscola, IL on December 18, 1997. This train came from the Nipsco plant in Wheatfield, IN as it was a unit train of NORX cars.
B36-7 5014 leads westbound BOSE at MP 129 in Becket, MA. on July 25, 1992.
BOSE continues past MP 129 in Becket, MA. on July 25, 1992. ConRail, like it's predecessors, had a proclivity for using the B&A as a testing ground for new power. The New York Central borrowed a set of German built Krauss-Maffei diesel hydraulics from the Rio Grande back in the '50's to test on this route. The combination of tonnage, grades, and curvature proved to be more than the, relatively, delicate diesel hydraulic drive could handle. And, of course, in 1926 the world's first 2-8-4 steam loco, Lima's "Super Power" A-1 would be named after these hills in western Massachusetts. The Boston & Albany would acquire 60 of them and adopt Lima's designation as their class....A1a, A1b, and A1c.
B36-7 sisters 5015 and 5056 lead a westbound freight along the Chicago Line near Palatine Bridge NY

Buffalo line, CP Stoney - Dauphin, Pennsylvania, USA
April 23, 1994
B36-7 5015
With a pair of B36-7s bracketing a CSX SD50 and a CR U23B bringing up the rear, a classic Conrail (and PRR, if you add the position signal) scene is captured on the Buffalo Line back in '94.
Photo by Don Kalkman III

Wrecked CR 5016 is seen at Altoona, PA on 6/7/97.
Conrail 5018 leads Eastbound BRSE-1 on track #1 near MP 120.2 in North Kingsville, Ohio.
CR 5019 is seen leading a WB at Altoona PA on 10/5/97.
CR 5019, 6767 & 6427 are seen on PILA-6 at Antis, PA on 1/26/99.
Conrail B36-7 5020 is leading a westbound TV train through Cresson, PA in 1986.
Conrail B36-7 5021 is seen leading a long Mail9H at Rockville Bridge on 10/20/1990
TV-3M drops downgrade through Lilly, Pa
Plenty of blue here. From the 3 blue units, the bright blue sky, and the dark blue building in the background. CR 5022 leads a USS-323 loaded coke train that originated at the Clairton Coke Works. The train is on the Mon Line at West Homestead, PA. This area has been highly developed commercially and is now known as the Waterfront.
A lengthy train of Clairton coke rolls west on the busy Fort Wayne Line.
TV-202 kicks up the snow as it runs wrong main and passes the double semaphores at 318.
B36-7 5024 leads a mixed lash-up with ML482 at the summit in Hinsdale, MA. on Sept. 26, 1998. UP SD40-2 3326 trails. GE B36-7's were never common on the B&A. CR tried them out on the Boston line when they were new, as they did with the B40-8's, but must have come to the conclusion that the high horsepower 4 axles weren't suited to the grades and curves of the route.
ML 401 rolls west with 98 racks behind three GE's on a typically gloomy Southern Tier day.
CR 5025 eastbound through Lebanon, PA. Brian Saul photo

Like the GP40-2, the B36-7 was suited to hauling lighter, faster trains. Here, three of them charge up Horseshoe Curve in the late spring of 1986.

CR 5025 is seen on LAPI-5X at Altoona, PA on 1/26/99 .
TV-LA makes its daily except Monday run to Chicago and west.
Conrail B36-7 5027 is seen leading a westbound freight around Horseshoe Curve in 1993. The presence of the auto frames on the head end means this train could have been ALPI-F.
Conrail B36-7 is seen leading a barrage of other GE units westbound through Port Royal, PA in 1986.
CR 5031 Leads a westbound intermodal by MP 125 on Conrail's Chicago Line.

Like this site?

If you're a fan of Conrail, and you find this site useful, please consider supporting The CRHS with a donation or membership.

Want more CRHS content? Join our mailing list to keep up with what's going on with the society.