SP SD40M-2 8691 Joins the Fleet
Today's package at the front door contained a gorgeous model from Athearn Genesis in the form of Southern Pacific SD40M-2 8691. The SP had purchased 133 used six-axle locomotives that were all rebuilt by Morrison-Knudsen to "SD40M-2" mechanical specifications. The host locomotives were primarily SD40s and SD45s, however a few were rebuilt from unique SDP45s.
The SDP45 was the passenger adaptation of EMD's 20-cylinder, 3,600 horsepower SD45. 52 of these locomotives were built between 1967 and 1970. Distinguished from the freight SD45 by a longer frame, bigger fuel tank, and a distinctive square end to the long-hood behind the flaired radiators for steam generator equipment, the SDP45 is easy to spot. Only 18 SDP45 (10 Southern Pacific and 8 Great Northern) locomotives were built to serve as passenger locomotives. The Erie Lackawana purchased 34 of these locomotives with concrete ballast in the rear section instead of steam generator equipment to utilize the larger fuel tanks to reduce the need for fueling events en-route.
Of the 133 SP SD40M-2s numbered 8574-8706, the 8691 was one of the few rebuilt from an SDP45. The SP 8691 was built as EL 3654 in June of 1970. I was actively railfanning the SP when the SD40M-2s were delivered as new, so I could not pass up the opportunity to purchase one. And a beautiful model it is!
The above image of EL 3654 shared by Fred Stuckman (Credited to Sturges & Folsom) on rrpicturearchives.net is linked to the posting on that site. The below image is of the same locomotive rebuilt as SP SD40M-2 8691 as shared by Jeffrey Streiff on rrpicturearchives.net. This image is linked as well.
In keeping with the SP theme of this order, also included in this equipment delivery were two InterMountain FMC 5283 Cuft Double Door boxcars. The models purchased were SP 244617 and SSW 67483. Both of these cars are welcome additions to the fleet.
The SP 8691 is the third "EsPee" locomotive I have purchased, enough to make a respectable consist. Pictured below is the consist: SSW SD45T-2 9383, SP SD40R 7372, and SP SD40M-2 8691. A fine looking trio!