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

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Model Train Help EBook

Southern Pacific TEBU

Tractive Effort Booster Unit

1600 - 1613

14 units delivered

1600 1601 1602 1603 1604 1605 1606 1607 1608 1609
1610 1611 1612 1613
1601 1601 1602 1602 1602 1603 1603

SP TEBU Walkaround

SP TEBU's (Tractive Effort Booster Unit's) are road slugs, or slaves or Mates or whatever name is fashionable these days. ie, They are cabless, engineless diesel loco chassis taking electrical power for their traction motors from an MU'ed Mother Loco(s)

The TEBU's were (re)built by SP shops (with the first [1600] by MK) from surplus U25B's, retaining the dynamic brakes. The SP TEBU's are normally placed between two GP40 Mother units, these are units that have been specifically setup, as able to control TEBU's. As of 1990, only SP GP40-2's 7940 - 7959 , and SSW GP40R's 7960 - 7967 are able to control the TEBU's.

In response to a query I posed, 'Do the SP TEBU's also act as Fuel Tenders', Bill Daniels of Tucson, Az., was kind enough to reply: "Yes, they were built with fuel transfer capabilities that allowed them to act as fuel tenders. They had the capacity to pump fuel to either or both of the 'Mother' GP40-2s that were usually attached to either end of these units."

Further information from Chris Zurek of Texas, "The TEBU's are also fuel tenders. They have fittings and pumps to supply fuel to both of the mother units. Also, there are sensors to keep the fuel equalized between all three units (the two GP40/GP40-2s and the TEBU) so there is no great difference in weight between all three."

Prototype References:

  • SP Motive Power Review 1983 - 1985 by Joe Strapac Page 70 - 6 pages of Tebu history and photo's, no plans though...
  • SP 1987/88 Motive Power Pictorial by Joe.W.Shine, Page 89.
  • SP.....into the '90's by Joe.W.Shine, Page 162. Has some good photo's of these units.
  • SP 1995 Motive Power Annual - by Bill Shippen.
  • SP in Transition - by Bill Shippen and Joe Shine.

If anybody out there has any further references, that are available to anyone, please let me know, so that I can include it here.

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This document © 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008. Richard.A.Percy

Monday, 29 November 2004