Southern Pacific 9010
SP 9010: Changes to Appearance 1964-68
Robert J. Zenk
On this page is what we know about the visible changes to SP 9010 over its four-year lifetime in locomotive service.
Thus far we've uncovered few maintenance or shop records specific to this unit that would help us back this study with dates. Thanks to such photographers as Gordon Glattenberg, Richard Oed and Otto Baumgartner, we have some striking images of SP 9010. Renumbered as SP 9113, the locomotive was captured on film a little more often, but the overall photo record is still spotty, and photos of 9010 are still a rare treasure.
It's our goal to completely document every significant modification received by SP 9010 through its service life on the SP (and beyond). This is a forensic process, and to determine the "mods history" we're using the artifact itself as our first source, then the photographic records of this particular unit, anecdotal recollection and various personal collections, and finally the photos we have on hand from the rest of the ML4000C'C' hood unit fleet. Modifications to SP 9010 are listed in roughly chronological order, as near as we can determine.
Sometimes it's just our best guess at the moment. This page will change and grow as new information is uncovered.
RAISED M.U. BOXES - 1964
RAISED EXHAUST STACKS - 1964
Note: This one is a bit nebulous. From photographs we know that unit 9009 was delivered with the "countersunk" stack and butterfly flaps (see drawing), and that unit 9016 headed west in a group of four new units, the last four delivered, all showing the raised assemblies.
At present, we believe that this was a factory line mod to the second delivery batch, SP9010-9017.
Inspection of the exhaust assemblies on 9010 indicate that the extended pipe was a manufactured part, and not an SP shop mod.
LOW UPTAKE POSITION
RAISED UPTAKE POSITION WITH EXPOSED BUTTERFLY DOORS
VERTICAL-WINDOW SIGHT GLASSES - 1964
These appear to have been factory installed on SP9010-9017, and retrofitted by the SP to 9003-9009. But we are still listing them as a "possible" mod until documentation surfaces that 9010 left the factory this way.
REFLECTIVE STRIPING ON SANDBOXES - 1964
PLATFORM LIGHTS - 1964
These were added front and rear, over the center platform area. The front example was removed when ballast weights were added. (See item 8 below.)
RENUMBERING - 1965-66
The fleet renumbering that saw SP 9003-9017 become SP 9106-9120 (and SP 9010 become SP 9113) took place in November of 1965. A document entitled "Cross Reference Tabulations For Reclassifying and Renumbering of Locomotives", Project M-113 was dated November 18, 1965 and came from the Office of System CMO in San Francisco under a cover letter dated the day before.
It took some time for the paint "patches" to be applied to all units. We have photos of 9010 still carrying its original number as late as April of 1966. For illustration purposes, this shot of SP 9117 shows the memorable and characteristic appearance of the physical renumbering process.
LOWERED CAB WINDOWS AND VISOR - 1965-66
The most dramatic change to the unit's appearance came some time in early 1965. An aluminum sun visor was screwed to the overhanging windshield brow (which also serves as an air plenum for cab fresh air intake). The area of the sliding operator's windows was lowered by almost nine inches, to combat the ingress of rain and blazing summer sun.
We have reason to believe that SP 9010 was the pilot program "guinea pig" for this fleet modification, based on this photo taken in March of 1965 by a German Roseville shop tech. None of the pieces seen here were adopted in the permanent application to SP 9010.
BALLAST WEIGHT AND HANDRAIL MODS - 1966
Weights were bolted and welded to the front platform area, and the front handrails were raised to match. A platform light was also added, to replace the previously-applied unit covered by the weights.
CAB ROOF VENT WITH DEFLECTOR - 1966
The time frame for this modification isn't certain - this vent may have been applied either before or in conjunction with the "R7" shopping. (See item 14 below.)
EXTERNAL HEAT EXCHANGERS - 1966
Also unclear is whether SP 9113 operated with these components before the full "R7" shopping in December of 1966. The photos show both visual possibilities.
EXHAUST CENTERING APPLIANCES - 1966
When the exhaust pipes were raised so the outlet was above the hood top level, unexpected oscillations were apparently a consequence. A damping spring assembly inside the hood at the base of the pipe was apparently insufficient, so these fascinating Rube-Goldberg-like rooftop contraptions were installed to further damp those motions. (Click here to watch "kicking the pipe" video!!)
From at least April of 1966 as SP 9010, and for an indeterminate time as SP 9113, our artifact sported a Nathan model M-3 air horn. The visual spotting guides are the short-radiused flares of the horn ends, and the level mounting of all three horns across the bracket. (Note also the half-band of sunshade paint on the large upper rear cabside window, and the recent "patch" numbering.)
SP 9113 reverted to the standard Nathan P-series at the "R7" shopping in December of 1966.
"R7" SHOPPING AND FINAL APPEARANCE CHANGE - 1966
In addition to internal modifications and general overhaul, four units (SP 9107, 9113, 9116, and 9120) received distinctive outward appearance changes over the winter of 1966-67.
SP 9113 was released on December 2, 1966, showing the following visual modifications:
RADIATOR HEADER TANK ENLARGEMENT
MULTIPLE AXLE DRIVES (9107 PICTURED)
RELOCATED HANDBRAKE (9107 PICTURED)
Every photograph we study turns up a new detail. And when we find new information in new photos, and then return to the old ones - - even more info surfaces as though it had been hiding in the shadows, waiting. Keep checking these pages as the research and restoration of SP 9010 continues ...
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