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

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Cotton Belt GP7

(C) Richard Percy old Atlas HO Scale GP7 in SSW Daylight paint. (C) Flash Blackman Atlas N Scale GP7 in Daylight paint
Lionel Cotton Belt GP-7, painted and detailed for George Nelson by local CB fan, Jack Castleberry.  The other locomotive is an Atlas Cotton Belt DASH 8-40B.  Oh, and there's also a locomotive behind the GP-7 to the left -- it's a Lionel SP GP-20. (C) Flash Blackman Atlas N Scale GP7 in Daylight paint


I used the Microscale sheet 87-50 (for the Daylight version) for my GP7, (if I recall correctly, I had to use two sheets to get enough striping), even though this sheet is really for cab units, it will work. It also has the required ST. LOUIS SOUTHWESTERN lettering, but for the COTTON BELT version, you will have to rob another sheet, 87-11 perhaps.

For a Blood Nose version, use Microscale 87-177 for the red wings, but again, the COTTON BELT lettering will have to come from 87-11.

(C) Ken Perry SSW GP7 in Bloody Nose paint

Model References:

  • Railroad Model Craftsman, May '66, - Plans.
  • Railroad Model Craftsman, June 1972, - article entitled 'St. Louis-Southwestern by Jim Boyd. Photo's of 304 in Black Widow and Blood Nose.
  • Mainline Modeler Oct. 1982 page 38 - EMD GP7, EMD's Trendsetter. GP7 history plus plans.

Modeling choices at the moment are:

  • For N Scale:
    • Arnold once made a GP7/9
    • Atlas have released a GP9 in Black Widow paint.
    • Atlas have announced the release of a Passenger GP9 aka "Torpedo Boat"
    • LifeLike made a GP18 that could be backdated.
  • For HO Scale:
    • Athearn unit has a GP7 and a 'fatso', ( but if your not fussy, it's a proven unit), that could be modified.
    • Front Range GP9's (that need backdating) are still available from various suppliers. Trains Unlimited with Athearn compatible chassis, and Proto-Power West are two that I know of.
    • A LifeLike GP18 could be backdated to a GP7 - some parts from Detail Assoc. are available.
    • LifeLike has released a GP9, that could be backdated.
    • Atlas Classic GP7.
  • In S Scale:
    • American Flyer
    • American Models perhaps a GP9
  • In O Scale:
    • Red Caboose made a GP9, and available in Black Widow, that could be backdated.
    • Lionel also made a GP7.

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

Saturday, 4 December 2004