California's Railroad to the U.S. 1861 - 1996

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Model Train Help EBook

Southern Pacific E-9

New! N Scale custom painted and decaled Halloween E9A by James of Sydney

There is - for modelers - for all intents and purposes, no external differences (other than RR options) between E-8's and E-9's. The differences were mostly mechanical, stronger traction motors, more powerful engines and larger steam generators.

One thing that will need adding to most LifeLike models of E9's will be a 48" pan-top dynamic fan to the blank center roof panel. LifeLike for some strange reason missed this completely. even as an option... and SP E9A'a had this fan.

A model of an E-8, is therefore quite acceptable as a stand-in for the E-9.

All units received red/gray paint starting late 1958.

Some of the more 'outstanding' changes are:

  • 6048 and 6050 received full Black Widow paint in 1958, but only wore it for a short time.
  • 6048 also received an F7 nose in 1967, complete with F7 numberboards.
  • 6051 was painted in the Halloween paint - this likely didn't last very long at all...
  • 6052 was given a set of UP style 'airfoils' over the winterization hatch - Utah Pacific 83.

No E-9's were renumbered in the systemwide renumbering of 1965.


  • N Scale
    • Kato has made N Scale E-8's recently, certainly in Daylight paint.
    • LifeLike has also made E-8's
  • HO Scale
    • Rivarossi has had HO Scale E-8A's for a long time, decorated in Daylight paint and some other scheme.
    • LifeLike E-8A in Daylight paint.
    • LifeLike E-8A in Blood Nose.
    • The older LifeLike E8/9 model has one serious deficiency for the SP modeler - it has no dynamic fan! A Details West 143 48" cap-top fan must be cut into the center roof panel.

    • LifeLike has re-released the E8 this time both in E8A's and E8B's. Of course SP had no B units...
    • Westside Model Company made a good E-9 model in HO, brass. Open frame motor, etc. Top head light only, easily modified to add lower headlight in front door.
  • S Scale
    • American Models E-8
  • O Scale
    • I am not aware of any models, probably made in brass tho'


  • Kalmbach's Diesel Locomotives Cyclopedia Vol-2 page 76 E8/9A/E8/9B plans, no SP photo's.
  • SP Dieselization by John Bonds Garmany
  • Extra 2200 South Issue 59, Jan/Feb/Mar 1977 - 1976 SP Roster Part VI
  • SP Motive Power Annual 1972 - Passenger E-Units article.
  • SP Historic Diesels Vol.3 E-Units and Pass. F's

Information for this page was also contributed by Tony Thompson and Tom Jones III.

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