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GP7 630

GP7 630 at Birmingham, Alabama in October 1967
GP7 630

GP7 630 at Birmingham, Alabama in October 1967.

The locomotives are in the Mechanical Department’s locomotive service tracks area at East Thomas Yard. The locomotives are sitting southwest of the turntable and former steam engine roundhouse converted to diesel shop. The building in the background is the crew locker and shower room. Across the parking lot to the northeast is the yard office and tower.

GP7 630 was built on February 20, 1952 and delivered to the railroad on March 1, 1952. This unit was among 96 similar units built at EMD’s Cleveland, Ohio plant. The Frisco’s other 32 GP7L units (128 in total) were built at EMD’s plant in La Grange, Illinois. The unit would ultimately be repainted in the mandarin orange and white scheme. It was retired on December 18, 1979. This locomotive was among the last 20 GP7L units on the roster when the remaining group was sold to Precision National Company (PNC). It was ultimately scrapped.

Behind the subject locomotive is an unidentified NW2 phase V unit (SLSF 260-265). The significant spotting features in this view include the single taper hood top to the cab front and the absence of side sill frame falsies inboard of the step wells. Frisco’s other NW2 units were phase IV (SLSF 250-259). These units featured a two-step hood top (taper then horizontal) to the cab front and had side sill frame falsies, downward extensions, inboard of the step wells.

We can narrow the identification of this specific locomotive to most likely unit 262, 263 or 265. Photographic evidence indicates units 260 and 264 had small flagging equipment boxes on the walkway below the front radiator intake. Unit 261 spent almost its entire life assigned to Wichita, Kansas.

The view is looking north.

Special thanks to Mark Davidson.

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