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EMD SD40-2c
MoPac Diesel Power - Second Generation

Dave Franz photo postcard/T. Greuter collection

In 1976, the first two orders of SD40-2's equipped with Dynamic Braking - called SD40-2c to distinguish them from MP's typical 40-20 - arrived in the Jenks blue Screaming Eagle paint scheme - numbered in the 3200 series (#3221-3235) after MP's typical SD40-2s. Later they were renumbered to the 6000 series (#6005-6019) as two more orders, one in 1979 and one in 1980 joined the fleet (#6020-6073). 

The MoPac bought these units to meet the requirements of pool power with the UP and DRGW for coal service. Dynamic brakes enhance a locomotives ability to handle the mountain grades with long coal trains.They were assigned to the Coal Service over Tennessee Pass, Colorado on the D&RGW line. The early 6000-series also came with Gyralights and rotary beacons, a definite departure from standard MoPac equipment.

MoPac's Coal-hauling Dash 2's
By Tuch Santucci - MoPac Engineer

I was told the SD40-2C's were planned for service on both the Burlington Northern and the Rio Grande. If you look at them carefully, you will observe three different fuel fillers on each one. The Grande did not use a standard size fuel filler on their units and the MoPac SD40-2C's needed the compatible size to make this work without having to resort to an adapter. The Grande is not alone here either. The Chicago, South Shore and South Bend also uses a different size fuel filler on their fleet of GP38-2's. Some Southern Railway units also had different sized fillers as well.

A few other facts about these units, they were ballasted out heavier than the regular SD40-2's. In fact, one order of them (cannot remember which one now) tipped the scales at 417,400 lbs. All of the SD40-2C's were heavier than the rest of the fleet which made for better riding units. Their heavier weight on drivers also allowed for slightly higher wages as we were compensated for weight on drivers in our pay scale.

The very first order in addition to the nose mounted oscillating light (which made a figure 8 pattern so that the light never raised directly in front of the Engineer's eyes) also included roof mounted beacon lights. Most of them had the revolving type, but at least one of them had the later BN and Milwaukee Road ""bubble gum"" style that did not rotate, but rather used four lamps that flashed in sequence to simulate a rotating effect.

The oscillating light had a three position toggle switch that allowed the Engineer to stop the motion of the light, to inch it or to just let it do its normal sweep.

A General Diesel Foreman at Yard Center told me during my Hostling days at Yard Center Diesel that the SD40-2C's were actually built to BN specifications.

These units spent a great deal of time on the BN. In the 1977-80 BN Annual, there are several photos of SD40-2C's including the 3227 (with roof beacon clearly visible), 3219, 6001 with the BN style numerals clearly displayed and a poor job of blanking out the original road number, the 6002, 6003 and 6004 along with an undisclosed unit.

The 3216-3220 were actually assigned to the BN for maintenance for a time. The 3217 became the 6001 at Alliance, NE hence the BN style numerals. This unit eventually was redone by MoPac forces with the number displayed in the middle of the car body and the BN style numerals blanked out. By 1980, the paint was beginning to fade and the BN style numerals were bleeding through a bit. 

It was mentioned in a previous post about the radio being multi-channel. In 1976, there was no such creature as the 97 channel railroad radio. MoPac was ordering units with a four channel system that used two components; a power pack which actually was the radio and a separate unit mounted above the control stand with the speaker, microphone, volume controls and channel selector. Some of these units used faceplate mikes while others had a separate handset akin to a telephone. These units were connected by wiring from the power pack to the decoder on the control stand. The power packs were mounted in the nose. 

The SD40-2C's used a variant of this radio system. In addition to the four channel selector knob, there was another knob marked "Channel Cluster." What this knob did was provide four separate banks of channels marked A, B, C and . A had four different channels, B had another four and C still another four and D yet another four. This allowed radio channels for the required MoPac, BN, UP, DRGW, CNW, MILW and Southern frequencies.

By 1978, the "in dash" radios were being phased into service as required by AAR clean cab rules. This had the new radios mounted inside a space provided for them in the control stand just above the automatic brake valve. All new power the MoPac purchased beginning in 1978 were equipped with the new style radios. These units were self contained and require no separate power pack. The standard was four channel units on most new MoPac power at first and 16 channel models on the SD40-2C's. Later, a version was purchased with 20 channels. By 1983, the 97 channel radio was quickly becoming the standard.   

If you look in employee timetables from 1982 and later, you will notice a section in the special instructions that show the channel designations for the multi-channel radios in use on the MoPac.

All units were eventually retrofitted for the new radios with mounting brackets placed on top of the control stand above the automatic brake valve for units not equipped for the new style radios. 


Primed with Power - the 1970's-'80's

click on the thumbnails for a larger image

  the SD40-2c

SD40-2c EMD 7/76 4/80 74 units

MP 3227 was among the second order of the MP's SD40-2c engines in September '76 - 'c' for coal. These locos were ordered specifically for Wyoming coal service (BN's mainline across Nebraska was occasionally used to access the coal-rich state - Wyoming's coal became important in the '70's for it's cleaner burning qualities). Rated at 3,000 hp, the 40-2c's unique features from other MP 40-2's included dynamic brakes, mars lights, and a roof flasher. - Later models only included dynamic brakes and were numbered into the 6000- series. - © copyright George Elwood photo, used with permission.

MP 3228 -a new SD40-2c heads up the KSA (Kansas City-San Antonio) train near Buffalo, Kansas. This order of SD40-2s are the only SD units on the MoPac to have dynamic brakes, purchased primarily for unit coal service; September 1976 - Dave Franz photo, from a postcard/T. Greuter collection

MP 6002 - Now renumbered into the 6000-series (to make room for additional standard SD40-2 purchases), one of the first of MoPac's 40-2c's is doing what it was meant to do - hauling a mile long train of coal cars. This one is in pool service followed by three Burlington Northern units; 6/21/79 - © copyright Glen Beans Photo, used with permission.

MP SD40-2c #6007
- with GP15 #1693 at Sosan Yard in San Antonio, Texas in 1981 - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

MP 6019 - rear perspective - © Brian Paul Ehni photo, used with permission.


MP 6022 - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

MP 6038 - parked on the East Fuel Track as viewed facing north at Yard Center Diesel. 1990 - "Tuch" Santucci Photo - J.D. Santucci Photo

SD40-2 Control Panel

MP 6044 - The control panel for MoPac SD40-2c #6044 - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

MP 6045 - With the growth in MoPac's loco roster, it was neccasary to renumber the SD40-2c into the higher 6000 -series. What a change of scenery as this unit is seen west of her usual prairie stomping grounds, working on the Rio Grande with an APEX coal haul at Minturn, Colorado in July, 1984 - © copyright Railblazer Photo

MoPac SD40-2c #6046 - leads a Southbound freight into Sosan Yard in San Antonio, Texas in 1988. - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

MP SD40-2c #6052 - is seen at the diesel facility at Centennial Yard in Fort Worth, Texas in 1984 - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

SD40-2C 6056 - basking in the sun at Yard Center Diesel February 1989. This unit is only eleven months newer than the 3268, yet the Screaming Eagle decal has fared much better against the elements and sun over the past nine years. This unit would become UP 3956 when it received a new paint job in a couple of years. - J.D. Santucci Photo

MP SD40-2c #6060 - is seen in Fort Worth, Texas in 1986. - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

SD40-2c #6060- this time at Yard Center Diesel 1983. - J.D. Santucci Photo

MP 6062 - unique view of another SD40-2c joined by lead unit DRGW 5395 and another unidentified MoPac unit. The Rio Grande and the MP had a long history of cooperation. The shared assignment is stopped at Minturn, Colorado in July, 1984 with a train of APEX coal - © copyright Railblazer Photo

MP 6070 - these SD40-2c's pull through a sanding facility at Fort Worth, Texas in February 1984 - Mike Bledsoe Photo/Jay Glenewinkel Collection.

MP SD40-2c #6071 - leads two UP units in this 1988 photo in San Antonio, Texas. - Jay Glenewinkel Photo

MP SD40-2c #6072 - crosses the diamonds at Tower 105 in San Antonio, Texas in 1987. - Steve Schuman Photo/Jay Glenewinkel Collection

Featured Photographers:
Glen Beans, Paul De Luca, Jay Glenewinkel, J. C. T., Steve Rude, Daryl Favignano Collection, J.D. Santucci, Bob Yanosey, Train Nutz, George Elwood, Railblazer, James E. Gilley collection, Elden Baker, Ronald Estes, Chris John, Dave Franz, and Lee Berglund

Missouri Pacific Diesel Power by Kevin EuDaly

Every effort has been made to get the correct information on these pages, but mistakes do happen. Reporting of any inaccuracies would be appreciated.

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 l Last Update to this page: 18 April, 2008
          All images & text 2000-2008 T. Greuter / Screaming Eagles, unless otherwise noted. All Rights Reserved.