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Nostalgia & History > MKT units at the Port of Houston


Date: 01/16/22 07:03
MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: gcm

May 88
A couple chopped GP7 units move the lineup for a SP and Santa Fe customer get together at the Port of Houston.
The two engines to be displayed (posted before).
Cotton Belt GP30 5006 was retired and kept in Pine Bluff.
Santa Fe 3447 was a GP35 or GP39-2u ?

Gary








Date: 01/16/22 07:07
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: 3rdswitch

Great catch. Most Santa Fe Geeps had a high or low headlight, not both? Unusual catch.
JB



Date: 01/16/22 08:15
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: Sterned

3447 was a  GP39-2u
It looks like other pics show the extra headlights.

another example of a similar unit a 3445 GP39-2u with double headlights that I found a picture of only the front lights were on

Since the rebuild date on this is may 88 and that is when this picture came from I assume they eventually removed the top headlights?

I am guessing they put the new ones on the hood and left the originals not connected?

The cotton belt looks like a simular light configuration where only the front lights worked and they kept the top lights
 



Edited 13 time(s). Last edit at 01/16/22 08:46 by Sterned.



Date: 01/16/22 08:19
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: Roadmaster

According to Cinthia Priest's The Santa Fe Diesel, Volume 2, Santa Fe rebuilt 50 GP39-2's in Cleburne and numbered them 3400-3449. They were all units from Santa Fe's 2nd order of GP39-2's, built in 1975 and numbered 3617-3668. Two were wrecked before the rebuilding program was initiated. Several, I do not know how many, had the headlight installed in the nose during rebuilding, while the headlight on the cab remained in place. Priest's book shows a picture of 3439 on 12/2/87, and it does not have the nose-mounted light. Pictures of 3440 and 3449 in her book show them to have the nose-mounted headlights, so maybe 3440-3449 had headlights in both places. I've found photos of 3441, 3442, 3443 and 3445 online and they had both headlights. 3449 was the last locomotive rebuilt at Cleburne.

SF30B/B23-7 6419 also had headlights in both positions; I remember catching it leading a train into Sealy (TX) and I saw both headlights, though only the headlight in the nose was lit.

Matthew Dittert



Date: 01/16/22 08:48
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: atsfgp40x

The Santa Fe rebuilt 10 units with dual headlights, 3440-3449 and these were the last GP39-2 rebuilt. The 3640 had been wrecked and was not part of the rebuild program. It became a one-unit class. 



Date: 01/16/22 08:56
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: UP951West

Good to see a slide of SSW 5006  . I saw it in East Waco yard once . Thanks for sharing, Gary . 



Date: 01/16/22 09:16
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: Evan_Werkema

The dual headlights were a test that ultimately led to Santa Fe adopting nose-mounted headlights and slowly retrofitting older power accordingly.  GP39-2's 3440-3449 came from rebuilding at Cleburne with both sets of lights while SF30B 7200 was retrofitted a few months after release but before it was renumbered 6419.  Both sets of headlights worked, but the switch only allowed one set to be turned on at a time.  After Santa Fe formally adopted the nose-mounted position, the upper sets were gradually removed.

Sterned Wrote:

> Since the rebuild date on this is may 88 and that
> is when this picture came from I assume they
> eventually removed the top headlights?

The rebuild date on ATSF 3447 was January 1988.

> I am guessing they put the new ones on the hood and left the originals not connected?

Can't do that.  If the lights are there, they have to be functional or it's an FRA defect.

> The cotton belt looks like a simular light
> configuration where only the front lights worked
> and they kept the top lights

The Cotton Belt unit is a different situation.  The nose-mounted pair of white lights is the fixed headlight while the pair between the numberboards is an oscillating Pyle Gyralite.  The fixed headlight was the minimum legal requirement for locomotives, while the Gyralite was an optional extra that gave a "pulsating" effect, providing extra warning to motorists, pedestrians, other railroad personnel, etc. down the track.  The red light in the nose was also an oscillating light that came on during emergency brake applications. 



Date: 01/16/22 10:46
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: refarkas

There truly is a prototype for everything. There are also double stacks, boxcars, and passenger cars!
Bob



Date: 01/16/22 13:24
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: texchief1

Nice shots, Gary!

RC Lundgren



Date: 01/16/22 13:56
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: Sterned

Evan_Werkema Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> The dual headlights were a test that ultimately
> led to Santa Fe adopting nose-mounted headlights
> and slowly retrofitting older power accordingly. 
> GP39-2's 3440-3449 came from rebuilding at
> Cleburne with both sets of lights while SF30B 7200
> was retrofitted a few months after release but
> before it was renumbered 6419.  Both sets of
> headlights worked, but the switch only allowed one
> set to be turned on at a time.  After Santa Fe
> formally adopted the nose-mounted position, the
> upper sets were gradually removed.
>
> Sterned Wrote:
>
> > Since the rebuild date on this is may 88 and
> that
> > is when this picture came from I assume they
> > eventually removed the top headlights?
>
> The rebuild date on ATSF 3447 was January 1988.
>
> > I am guessing they put the new ones on the hood
> and left the originals not connected?
>
> Can't do that.  If the lights are there, they
> have to be functional or it's an FRA defect.
>
> > The cotton belt looks like a simular light
> > configuration where only the front lights
> worked
> > and they kept the top lights
>
> The Cotton Belt unit is a different situation. 
> The nose-mounted pair of white lights is the fixed
> headlight while the pair between the numberboards
> is an oscillating Pyle Gyralite.  The fixed
> headlight was the minimum legal requirement for
> locomotives, while the Gyralite was an optional
> extra that gave a "pulsating" effect, providing
> extra warning to motorists, pedestrians, other
> railroad personnel, etc. down the track.  The red
> light in the nose was also an oscillating light
> that came on during emergency brake
> applications. 

Great info thanks!



Date: 01/16/22 17:56
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: WrongWayMurphy

SSW 5006 is still in Pine Bluff.   The guts under the long hood were removed and used elsewhere
so it is currently a "dummy" lokie.



Date: 01/16/22 18:22
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: railstiesballast

That "gathering" may be the SP's introduction of early double stack cars.



Date: 01/16/22 19:05
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: Evan_Werkema

railstiesballast Wrote:

> That "gathering" may be the SP's introduction of early double stack cars.

The novelty hadn't worn off yet, but by 1988, both SP and Santa Fe had been running double stacks in regular service for a few years.



Date: 01/17/22 11:03
Re: MKT units at the Port of Houston
Author: SP1984

These shots are fantastic! The juxtaposition of an SSW GP30 and the SP double stack car is what really gets me - what a great scene to capture on film. This is the 3 unit double stack that ACF built for SP in 1977 to test the articulation method, a single unit car had been built by ACF earlier to test the container double stack method. SP awarded ACF with an order for the production model 5 unit cars in 1982.



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