Different shades of CP SD40-2's

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by SD90, Feb 8, 2004.

  1. SD90

    SD90 Active Member

    I mixed the paint just a bit different for each one of these. I wanted to try to make them all look a bit differnet from each other, but I don't think it is very noticable. I'll decal them and see what they look like after that.


  2. Arlaghan

    Arlaghan Member

    They look slightly different... well, the one in the middle does anyway... besides, I think you achieved the effect that they were "supposed" to be painted the same but never are... when you weather them, it might make even more of a difference.
  3. Matthyro

    Matthyro Will always be re-membered

    I would guess that CP has colour codes that manufacturers have to use but just leave them in the sun for a while and I am sure fading does make locos look slightly different.
    It will be intersting to see your locos with decaling Mike
  4. OwenCPR

    OwenCPR Member


    Do you know when CP started using ditch lights on its locos? I'd like to start building up a few SD40s (the originals from 1967 in the Tuscan of course) but also like to have ditch lights operating (have to take advantage of some of the other functions of the DCC decoders!). May have to take some licence and pretend that they had them back in the late 60s!

  5. TinGoat

    TinGoat Ignorant know it all

    If I recall...

    Canadian railroads used ditch lights right from the beginning of the deisel era... I've seen many Canadian F-units with ditch lights, so SD40-2's would have them for sure...

    The railroads in the U.S.A. didn't start to use ditch lights until much later...
  6. SD90

    SD90 Active Member

    Sorry I didn't get back to you Owen, I don't know exactly when they started using ditch lights, but I know they have been around as long as I can remember!

  7. hemiadda2d

    hemiadda2d Member

    I dunno about Canada, but FRA required auxillary lights (ditch lights) deadline of 1994-95.

    The following in a clip from an email from Al Krug, a hogger for BNSF in Sheridan, WY:
    "In the 1980s the BN started replacing the yellow bubblegum flashers on
    the cab roof with deck mounted strobe lights on the front of their
    locos. But I don't think many SD40-2s got them. Mostly the LMX 8500s and
    BN GP40s, 50s. The ditchlights replaced the strobe lights on those that
    had them but the strobes met the FRA requirement for "ditchlights" (the
    FRA does not call them ditchlights, that is a Canadian term, the FRA
    calls them auxilliary lights) so the strobes lasted on some units a few
    years after the 1994-95 FRA deadline for ditchlights. I believe the
    first SD70MACs in 1994 were the first units built with ditchlights."
    Maybe that will help!
  8. OwenCPR

    OwenCPR Member

    Ok, now I'm confused (which is easily done!)

    I have the CP Anthology of photographs by Nicholas Morant which shows the early SD40s in Tuscan colours but with no ditch lights, and the later SD40s and 40-2s in more modern Action Red with Ditch lights. Also I've not seen any F units in the earlier period with lights.

    Hence the following questions:

    1. Do the Kato SD40s (not the 40-2s) in action red have such lights or would I have to install them separately (as well as painting them the early tuscan colours)?

    2. Does anyone have any pics of the F units with Ditch lights for reference purposes?

  9. hemiadda2d

    hemiadda2d Member

    My best advice to you is to check a proto photo for the particular unit you are modeling. Take special note of the date the pic was taken.
  10. TinGoat

    TinGoat Ignorant know it all

    Me and my big mouth....

    I was surfing through the Canadian Pacific Railway Locomotive Roster and Photo Archives and realized that the ditch lights didn't start to appear on the F-Units until the late 70's.

    So as I ponder this further, I think that Canadian National started using ditch lights first and Canadian Pacific followed. Then the U.S. railroads after that....

    I also think that the regular duties of a locomotive help to determine the installation of ditch lights.

    I think that road engines get them, but yard engines don't....

    Canadian Pacific 4616 SD-40 with ditch lights

    Canadian Pacific 4602 SD-40 without ditch lights

    Canadian Pacific SD-40's 5400-5414 all have ditch lights, but the photos are all from the 80's and 90's...

    Canadian Pacific 5500 shows 3 pictures, dated 1975, '86, '96 and '97... 1975 doesn't have ditch lights, but the rest of the pictures show them....

    So it looks like ditch lights started being used in the late 70's and early 80's...

    For F-Units with and without ditch lights look here...
  11. SD90

    SD90 Active Member

    This is the locomotive that was on the far right in the first picture.


    Attached Files:

  12. OwenCPR

    OwenCPR Member

    Nice Mike,

    Thanks everyone re the replies on Ditch Lights....may have to fudge them on the earlier diesels or start building a modern fleet!
  13. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    I've just gone through a pile of picture books (Canadian Pacific in the Rockies and associates) and as best I can tell, CP started adding ditch lights in 1977. There are early 1977 pix without and late 1977 pix with. (of course, you can't be sure as it may have taken years to modify the whole fleet.)
    I can't find a pic of an F unit with ditch lights.
    I can't find a pic of a grey & maroon diesel with ditch lights.
    I have pictures of red hood units without ditch lights.
  14. OwenCPR

    OwenCPR Member

    Thanks David

    Have decided to remain faithful to the proto and not install ditch lights - still, it seems a shame to not utilise all of the extra functions of the 3rd generation decoders!!!! Am not about to switch eras though....still like the Tuscan colours too much!
  15. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Maybe not ditch lights, but a lot of diesels have a light under the cab so that the crew can tell if the loco is moving or not. It points down onto the ties.
  16. OwenCPR

    OwenCPR Member


    Were those lights present on the early first / second generation diesels (Ie prior to 1970?)
  17. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    The under cab lights? Not sure, but I think so.

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