Critters

My friend Russ gave a talk at the last COHS conference on "cage switchers", C&O switching locomotives that had cage like railings on the cab end, and during the talk he dwelt for some time on the MU equipped cage switchers, and how rare they were.  Upon seeing the Ingalls diesel that I made for Frank, he commented that he preferred "critters", preferably with side rods, so I constructed this "MU Cage Critter" for him, based on a pair of MU cage switchers that he hadn't known about:

In reply, Russ wondered where the driving wheels came from, so I informed him that they were from a pair of PM Berkshires, and that now there were a couple of PM 2-2-4's wandering around out there somewhere:

Russ went on to comment that the Cage Critter had too many wheels, and that to a purist a true "critter" would have 6 or fewer wheels.  "Purist Indeed" I harumphed, and went back to my computer to come up with this:

Introducing the All New 2003
Critter II
Featuring:
Special, High (and we do mean HIGH) Visibility Cab Design
Protective Safety Cage
MU Capability
Escher-type Steps
Easily Able to Replace Old-Fashioned 2-2-4 Type Locomotives
(after all, it has 3 times as many driving wheels)

 

 

Later I made something a little more "critter like", and lettered it for Russ' Coal Run RR: