Guru asked in Cars & TransportationRail · 8 years ago

Do I have to take a seperate Diesel course to work on Railroad Diesel Engines vs 18 wheeler diesel engines?

I live in covington tennessee. its bout an hour north of memphis. joining the air force and want to use the GI bill to go to diesel school. Memphis has a big rail yard and was thinking of becoming a rail diesel mechanic. And how much would my salary be starting off and after a couple years how much would it be? also is there a seperate course i have to take or is available to become prepared for this job. also which rail companies go through memphis and which diesel school would you reccommend? thanks and God Bless

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  • Jay
    Lv 4
    8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Just a basic education in diesel engines should be enough to get you in. The biggest difference in the two engines is the sheer size, locomotive diesel engines dwarf truck engines. If you get in which ever carrier you hire on with will teach what you need to know. It will mainly be the differences between GE and EMD engines. As far as pay goes it depends on whether it's a class 1 railroad(Norfolk Southern, Union Pacific, CSX, BNSF, or Amtrack). They all pretty much pay the same nation wide, right now that would be around 26/hr. Starting wages will probably differ based on the railroad. I work for NS, and right now they start new hires out at 80% of full rate so about 20/hr to start. Then in 2 years you hit full rate. Smaller railroads and short lines will likely pay less. I can't help you with which diesel school because I'm an electrician. If you're going to the air force I would try to get diesel training there. Plus, most railroads hire former military. I know there are a lot of vets in my shop, and their military training is what helped get them in.

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  • Anonymous
    8 years ago

    You will not have a to take a separate course, the job training with the RR is provided by them.

    All your previous experience will be valuable for getting hired but your new employer will send you to any schools they feel necessary.

    I am not sure what a machinist on Class one railroads make now but my guess would be starting around 50K with good benefits and retirement.

    Good Luck!

    Source(s): RR engineer
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  • The principles of diesel engines are the same for trucks and trains, so there shouldn't be a lot of difference. Perhaps you should enlist for a truck mechanic MOS in the Air Force.

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