SD45

5302 5331 5333 5335 5337 5338 5339 5342 5344 5345
5346 5347 5348 5349 5350 5351 5352 5353 5354 5355
5357 5358 5359 5360 5362 5364 5394 5401 5402
photos contributed by: Evan Werkema, Gregg Fuhriman, Tom C. Jones, Chris Kinoshita, Bob Reyff, Hank Suderman, John Sjolander.

ATSF SD45 5394

SD45 5394 was Santa Fe's first red and yellow unit. It was released from the San Bernardino shops on August 7, 1985. One day later, SP released their first repaint, SD45R 7551. Both units wore the experimental scheme modelled by 5394 above, with white "SP" or "SF" lettering instead of yellow, four red noseband stripes instead of three, and a black roofline that came to the bottom of the radiators grills instead of just the dynamic brake grill as on the final scheme.


ATSF SD45 5401
Photo by John Sjolander, Cajon Pass, CA, September 1985.

The second Santa Fe repaint, SD45 5401, emerged in early September 1985. The only change from the original scheme was yellow lettering instead of white.

SP SD45R 7551
Photo by John Sjolander, Cajon Pass, CA, September 1985.

SP eventually modified 7551's paint scheme so that it had yellow instead of white initials, so its final paint job was essentially identical 5401's initial scheme in the photo above (with SP lettering instead of SF, of course).

On September 19, 1985, Santa Fe released a third and final version of the SPSF scheme on SD45 5402. In addition to changing the number of noseband stripes from four to three and raising the level of the black area on the long hood, the noseband was lowered slightly so that it passed below the nose-mounted headlights on SP units instead of through them. The lights would have made it difficult to put full SPSF initials on the noseband, as 7551 illustrates.

By the end of September 1985, both ATSF 5394 and 5401 had been repainted once again into the final version of the SPSF scheme. SP's 7551, on the other hand, merely traded its white lettering for yellow and served out the rest of its SPSF days in this nonstandard scheme.


ATSF SD45 5345


The SD45 rebuild program was drawing to a close when Santa Fe started dabbling in red and yellow paint, and only the 5394, 5401, and 5402 came from rebuilding in SPSF colors. Nevertheless, quite a few earlier units made it back to the paint shop for the final version of the scheme, such as the 5345 above. It's interesting to note that none of the 12 SD45's Santa Fe rebuilt with 3500 hp 16-cylinder engines (5426-5437) were repainted, nor were any of Santa Fe's SD40's (5000-5019), which use the same engine rated at 3000 hp.

Like the SD39's, SDP40F's, early SD45-2 rebuilds, and early SF30C's, the SD45's rebuilt during 1985 (5381-5404) carried dual Snyder and Buckeye fuel fillers for servicing on both Santa Fe and SP.


ATSF SD45 5362

When EMD units were repainted in SPSF colors, they were usually equipped with new white-on-red number boards, the classification lights were removed from the nose, and the intake shields were removed if the unit had them. SD45 5362 was an interesting expection to the rule; all it got was the new paint! As the saying goes, there's a prototype for everything!


Red Line - Seperator
Black Line - Seperator

Last modified: September 23, 2008


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