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Amtrak's 40th Anniversary Loco's

Well over a year in advance of Amtrak’s 40th Anniversary, a core team of employees was formed to develop plans for celebrating 40 years of being America’s Railroad. One of the ideas was to paint current locomotives into each of the previous paint schemes Amtrak has used over the years. Blair Slaughter of Industrial Design and Matt Donnelly of the Marketing and Product Development Department collaborated to adapt the paint schemes to the current P42 locomotive car body.

There are four previous paint schemes, known as phases, and only one had ever been applied to the P42 car body previously. The goal was to keep the schemes as true to their original form, while fitting the physical design of the current locomotives so that they looked right—a task that resulted in as many as seven unique options per scheme! The favorite 2D concept for each scheme was chosen, and Matt painted scale models of the Phase I and II schemes to test the plans. More fine tuning was done after seeing the scale models before a finalized plan was made for each scheme.

Blair drew paint diagrams of the finalized plans to scale using CAD, specifying every last detail so that the employees at the Beech Grove Maintenance Facility could make the plans a reality. The paint and decal team at Beech Grove did a beautiful job of applying these schemes to locomotives already scheduled to receive paint jobs. All four locomotives are complete and will be used throughout the system, so be sure to look out for one of our Heritage units the next time you ride Amtrak!


Not seen very often down here in South Florida, #66 the Phase II P42DC Amtrak Heritage unit made a long overdue appearance on the point of PO91. Tipped off by Mike and group email posts, I would make arrangements to catch the unit who's paint BTW has held up well.



Running about 35 minutes behind, PO91 heads south towards the Distant to Seaboard. Other then the lead unit #66 on the point, the train also illustrates what normally of late happens to the Meteor and the Star starting in January until April. The consist is run backwards and the reason is simple. The Lake Shore Limited consists is run in reverse to combat view liner plumbing freeze ups during the a fore mentioned months. Since the Lake Shore shares train sets with the Crescent, Star and Meteor, all of the train sets are reversed.