No more GM's to be built in Aust

 
  piepants Chief Train Controller

Location: Newcastle
Freight employees at Cardiff just got called into a meeting where they announced that no new standard or narrow gauge locomotives will be built by Downer in Australia. instead, they are going to purchase locos built overseas by EMD and act as the sole Australian seller and maintainer of these locos. what this means is:

- Most likely TT126 will be the very last TT class loco built.
- there are four more GT46Ace locos that have been purchased by GWA in the LN51 contract, these are already partially built at Cardiff
- 6 more GT46Ace units will be built, but have not been sold yet. After that its the end of the line for locomotive manufacturing at Cardiff, which will be used solely for rework and commissioning of WTP (waratah) and maintenance of locos.

Downer and EMD have been very quiet on exactly where their new locos will be built due to "commercial sensitivity", but I don't think it will be very hard to guess where this "off shore location" will be, since this all comes down to cost cutting...

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  jmt Deputy Commissioner
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p
Another nail in the coffin for Australian manufacturing.... "EMD will manufacture the locomotives at one of its new low cost overseas facilities."

Can't say it's a surprise though. :/
  UP9372 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Banned
Another nail in the coffin for Australian manufacturing.... "EMD will manufacture the locomotives at one of its new low cost overseas facilities."

Can't say it's a surprise though. :/
"VRfan"


Sticking some bits together mainly from major components built overseas is hardly manufacturing. Besides leaves more room to get on with the Waratah project and possible extensions. I would not cry about it too much.
  BDA Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney
Guesses painted red and supplied with fortune cookies .
  piepants Chief Train Controller

Location: Newcastle
UP9372, sure the "major bits" like the prime mover, generator and traction motors are made overseas, but currently the underframe, cab, bogies and other major structural components are built in Australia and it all gets assembled at Cardiff. There's a huge amount of local work that goes into one of these locos.

it hasn't really come as a surprise to anyone at Cardiff anyway. Things have been a bit shaky on the freight side of the workshop for a few months, and given Downer can't compete with the Chinese on cost, this seems like the only viable compromise.

At least in the short term, nobody at Cardiff will lose their jobs just yet.
  jmt Deputy Commissioner

It looks like Progress Rail is set to recommence EMD loco assembly in South Africa

Barlow Group is the long established Southern African Cat agent

http://www.engineeringnews.co.za/article/new-venture-to-make-diesel-locomotives-in-sa-for-local-african-markets-2012-06-25

Strange that Barlow have come into the picture, as PR had a working arrangement with RRL-Grindrod, the company that ended up in possession of the tooling, jigs, and drawings from the old GM port Elizabeth loco plant, closed in the mid 1980's.

PR supplied the mechanicals and electrics for the 22 GT26C clones that RRL-Grindrod produced last year, plus the 7 or so that are currently under construction

Another example of PR manufacturing in a low wage country
  SPSD40T2 Chief Commissioner

Location: Platform 9-3/4 and still waiting !!
Certainly pulls into focus the whole notion of locomotive building inthis country. Will UGL go it alone effectively ?.  Will someone like SSR  act as a fillip with X class clones  (or whatever they are ).   Will someone  see a niche to build new/or refurbish frames  ( fromsomewhere and drop  Power modules on them ?

Kinda sad to see the lineage of Aussie GM's come to a halt.  But thats business I guess
  KRviator Moderator

Location: Up the front
Is Avteq going to have another go? Their VL's use GM technology don't they?
  Big J Assistant Commissioner

Location: In Paradise
Is Avteq going to have another go? Their VL's use GM technology don't they?
"KRviator"


I thought that Avteq are no longer trading.

I think a terrible shame particularly for the former Walkers factory at Maryborough. The 4000/4100/PN/8300 have been a success and was a world first narrow gauge AC traction DEL. I am sure that there was significant Austrlain design involved in this and so we will loose this capacity.

We will be stuffed when China decides to cool off. What will we revert to, shearing?

A crying shame and as a previous poster stated PR has form for this.


  BDA Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney
No , we'll have all these inflatable Green jobs that don't exist .
  M636C Minister for Railways

Technically there haven't been any GM locomotives built anywhere for quite some time since GM sold EMD.

The most recent design of "EMD" locomotive came from NREC in the USA anyway and we can have as many more of them as we like.

One of the reasons that the mining boom hasn't "filtered down" is that all the Pilbara locomotives are built in the USA wheras until the late 1980s these were all built locally.

When you import your most profitable product, why not import everything?

M636C
  Draffa Chief Commissioner

Neo-libertarian economics at it's finest.  Australia can dig stuff out of the ground, everybody else can value-add.
  Draffa Chief Commissioner

I think a terrible shame particularly for the former Walkers factory at Maryborough. The 4000/4100/PN/8300 have been a success and was a world first narrow gauge AC traction DEL. I am sure that there was significant Austrlain design involved in this and so we will loose this capacity.
"Big J"
This sheds some light on the reasoning as to why they announced they were not interested in bidding for the next generation of QR Citytrain.
  GT46C-ACe Assistant Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
http://indianarailroads.org/board/index.php?topic=7793.msg77045#msg77045

Not sure I believe it, it can't possibly be cheaper to build in 'Muricah vs China?
  fleabag Assistant Commissioner

Location: Perth
Well CBH's new locos were built in America, so they must be competitive. Massive unemployment in the US must be putting downward pressure on wages there. And now, of course, they are exporting some of those unemployed to work in the Pilbara...
  jmt Deputy Commissioner




To gain an idea what Australian industry is battling against, take a look at the
minimum wage table at
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_minimum_wages_by_country
For China
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_minimum_wages_in_China_%28PRC%29

If we take an average of US$200 per month for China, and compare it to South
Africa, South Africa is only US$17 per year more

So South Africa would be a no brainer for Cat, Note the difference in wages between Brazil
and Mexico, South Africa sort of slots in-between.
  GT46C-ACe Assistant Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
They've already been building in Mexico and just recently started building in Brazil...
  arctic Deputy Commissioner

Location: Zurich
When you consider the cost of the "kit" from EMD was almost as much as what EMD were selling a USA domestic locomotive for, its not surprising at all. IIRC and a few years ago now (when EMD was EMD) the kit price was about $3MUSD to which EDI added $2MAUD for local work. A US domestic diesel at that time was about $3.5MUSD.
  Toddy Train Controller

Is it known whether the TT/SCT/LDP and the 4100/83 type locomotives will just now be built overseas to the same specifications or will they be gone forever and we get american designed locos now?
  poppins122325 Chief Train Controller

Location: Hunter Valley
Makes me think whats going on over at UGL right about now,

From someone who works outside the industry im not sure of there setup with GE and UGL so i cant really comment but with that now coming in is it possible that UGL could head this way next ?
  M636C Minister for Railways

Makes me think whats going on over at UGL right about now,

From someone who works outside the industry im not sure of there setup with GE and UGL so i cant really comment but with that now coming in is it possible that UGL could head this way next ?
"poppins122325"


Like Downer, about half of UGL's locomotive business is for the Pilbara (ES44DCi units for Rio Tinto, all of which are built by GE).

I would guess that the costs of building local units would be the same as Downer.

So they could probably import locomotives to a local design from GE at a cheaper price than they could build them here.

I guess we wait and see, but if Motive Power, CSR and NREC get more local orders, UGL might have to import more from GE.

M636C
  GT46C-ACe Assistant Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
One would have to assume the deal between Downer and EMD would involve the IP and tooling/jigs necessary to build the GT42CU-ACe and GT46C-ACe locomotives. I doubt we'll get an AC version of the 'Ugly Ducks' as a replacement for the GT46....hopefully the lower cost now should entice more operators over to the GT46 but the cab issue needs sorting.
  Shacks Ghanzel

Location: Sir Big Lens of the Distant Upper Hunter
hopefully the lower cost now should entice more operators over to the GT46 but the cab issue needs sorting.
"GT46C-ACe"

A few weeks ago I spent a fair amount of time shunting with a 92. My right shoulder and wrist became rarther sore from the odd and un natural angle my arm had to be at to operate the controls. This week I have spent a heap of time shunting with TT's and WH's with no soreness at all. The controls are located in a much better position IMO. The only thing I would change would be the screens, they would benifit from being tilted a bit. They are a much better cab for me.
  BDA Chief Commissioner

Location: Sydney
hopefully the lower cost now should entice more operators over to the GT46 but the cab issue needs sorting.
"GT46C-ACe"

A few weeks ago I spent a fair amount of time shunting with a 92. My right shoulder and wrist became rarther sore from the odd and un natural angle my arm had to be at to operate the controls. This week I have spent a heap of time shunting with TT's and WH's with no soreness at all. The controls are located in a much better position IMO. The only thing I would change would be the screens, they would benifit from being tilted a bit. They are a much better cab for me.
"Shacks"


I have not shunted with a 92 but spent many shifts over the last 15yrs shunting with NRs . There are all sorts of detail differences between 92s and NRs and I'm told the throttle quadrant position is one of them . The brake controllers are different to and it'd be interesting to hear what Hunter Bulk crews think of them .

Interesting times ahead for EMD products , will be interesting to see how keen to please OS manufacturers want to be .
UG has the chance to see if it can be the standout in Australian locomotive manufacturing and if they want to keep the business they are going to have to keep improving their product .   

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