Southern Pacific 3100
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (December 2009)|
|Southern Pacific 3100|
3100 is the only GE U25B still in working order.
|Builder||GE Transportation Systems|
|AAR wheel arr.||B-B|
|Gauge||4 ft 8½ in (1435 mm)|
|Operator(s)||Southern Pacific Railroad|
|Number(s)||7508, 6800, 3100|
|Current owner||Orange Empire Railway Museum|
|Disposition||Operates in excursion service|
Southern Pacific 3100 is a GE U25B diesel-electric locomotive now on permanent exhibit at the Orange Empire Railway Museum in Perris, California, USA. It is notable as being the only U25B still in operating condition.
Built in 1963 by General Electric under construction number 34700, it was shipped from GE's Erie, Pennsylvania, locomotive assembly plant to the Southern Pacific Railroad on March 29, 1963. It entered service in April and was assigned to the Los Angeles Freight Pool with Taylor Roundhouse as its maintenance point.
The locomotive was first numbered SP 7508, then renumbered SP 6708 during the railroad's 1965 general renumbering. After a period of storage in the early 1970s, the U25B was moved to the Sacramento General Shops in 1975 for a complete rebuilding, one of only two U25B's so done. The work included upgrading the prime mover with later GE U33-compatible parts, a complete rewiring of the high- and low-voltage electrical systems, the installation of an AAR control stand and a new number - SP 6800. It was released from Sacramento on September 29 and returned to service.
The U25B became a "goodwill ambassador" for the railroad in 1976 when it was painted in an elaborate red, white, and blue color scheme in celebration of the nation's bicentennial, one of four Southern Pacific locomotives so painted. The others were Daylight Express 4449, EMD GP40P-2 3197, and EMD SD45T-2 9389. After the bicentennial celebration, it was repainted in the standard red and black SP color scheme. In late 1977, 6800 was assigned to local and hauler service in the Los Angeles Basin, primarily working out of Taylor Yard in Los Angeles and West Colton Yard. In June 1979, it received its final renumbering as SP 3100. In and out of storage for the rest of its time with the railroad, 3100 was finally retired on December 17, 1986, and sold serviceable to Levin Metals in Colton on January 22, 1988. On February 2, 1988, 3100 was donated in operable condition to the museum.
3100 is fully certified to run on any of the nation's railroads and is frequently used as motive power for off-site work trains.