RDC: The Budd Rail Diesel Car Donald Duke

ISBN: 9780870951039

Published: July 1st 1990


278 pages


RDC: The Budd Rail Diesel Car  by  Donald Duke

RDC: The Budd Rail Diesel Car by Donald Duke
July 1st 1990 | Hardcover | PDF, EPUB, FB2, DjVu, AUDIO, mp3, ZIP | 278 pages | ISBN: 9780870951039 | 5.36 Mb

The self-propelled rail motor car was nearly extinct by the time the Budd Company’s Red Lion plant near Philadelphia rolled out a new concept during September 1949. The firm announced to the railroad world that it had something that might save the day for branch line, suburban and commuter rail service. The newcomer, dressed in stainless steel, and looking like a streamlined Vista-domed coach, was Rail Diesel Car No. 2960. Budd called this speedy self-propelled train, bristling with the latest rail innovations, simply RDC.Within a period of 15 years, Budd’s success with stainless steel articulated and conventional streamlined cars had placed the firm in second place among America’s passenger car builders.

From the time of the Pioneer Zephyr, until the first RDC was built, Budd had produced over 2500 distinctive cars. It was stainless steel, “shot-welding,” and aggressive management that pushed Budd to the forefront.How did a giant automobile parts manufacturer get into the railroad car business?

It began in 1923, just after Budd designed and built the first all-steel automobile body. They also had worldwide sales of a wheel-disc safety rim. It was at this time that Budd entered into a join venture with Michelin et Cie of France, as a courtesy, experimenting with rubber-tired trains.

It turned out to be a complete failure, but as an outcome teh “shot-welding” process was developed, which formed stainless steel bodies without rivets. This led to the Pioneer Zephyr, stainless steel railroad cars, and eventually to the RDC.RDC: The Budd Rail Diesel Car by Donald Duke and Edmund Keilty is the complete story of this unique railcar, from its conception to current status.

This book discusses how the cars were built, their controls, and the various railroads that purchased them. Also considered is the RDC-9, a blind-powered trailer car built for the Boston & Maine. The design changes of 1956 are considered, as well as modifications and rebuilds by Morrison-Knudsen. There is a section about stainless steel and the “shot-welding” process, and a biography of the late Edward G. Budd.

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