RDG Co. EMD GP7, Class RS-3, #621

Ex-Reading GP7 #621 masquerading as Ma & Pa #1506. (photo courtesy Tim Weidner)

Background & History

#621 was built for the Reading Company in May of 1953 and served for 22 years in both freight and passenger service. Known as the “Reading Geeps,” they were often referred to as the “back-bone” of the system. Some went into Conrail and others were sold off to various shortlines and railroads before the creation of Conrail. The 621 never received the later “yellow/green” paint scheme before going to the Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad in 1975. It was renumbered to 86 and later to 1506 after the Emons Group acquired the Ma & Pa. In 1997 it was sold to the East Penn Railroad and never operated. In 2003 it was bought by the RCT&HS. Time and funds permitting, it will eventually be fully-restored into its 1953 as-delivered “olive drab” scheme.

Archival Photos

Sister #613 idles at the Hagerstown Yard fueling pad?, Date unknown. (photo courtesy North East Railfan)
Sister #632 sitting in for #621, rests between assignments at Reading Yard. Date unknown. (photo courtesy J. Hunt)

EMD GP7 Specifications (as-built):
Builder: Electro-Motive Division, LaGrange, IL Engine model: 567B
Date built: May 1953 Type: 2-stroke diesel
Builder’s #: 18421 Aspiration: Roots blower
Horsepower: 1500 Cylinders: 16 (Vee)
Top speed: 65 m.p.h. Bore x Stroke: 8.5" x 10"
Weight: 246,400 Displacement: 9,072 c.i.
Tractive effort: 61,600 Idle Speed: 275 r.p.m.
Length: 56' 2" Max. speed: 65 m.p.h.
Fuel: 800 gallons Transmission: DC generator, DC traction motors
Lube oil: 200 gallons Brake system: 24 RL
Water: 230 gallons Braking: Air and dynamic
  (last updated: 1/08)