The SD70ACe is Electro-Motive Diesel's hope for the future. While designed to meet the Environmental Protection Agency's Tier-2 emissions requirements that took effect on January 1, 2005, this replacement for the SD70MAC also has a higher purpose: to recapture the lead in North American locomotive sales that EMD lost to General Electric in 1987.
Under the hood beats a third-generation model 710 diesel with 4300 horsepower; only slight modifications were needed to make the existing model 710 meet new emission standards. With 5000 such motors in service worldwide and a reputation for dependability, EMD reasoned that shop crews would prefer familiar technology.
Other than the prime mover, however, virtually every element of the SD70ACe has been re-thought to create a 21st century locomotive. Ergonomics were a prime consideration. The engine's angular nose offers the crew far better visibility than most other locomotives, and the cab is comfortable for engineers of almost any size. Digital screens provide a range of information on what is happening both inside the locomotive and out on the road. The cab easily accommodates a crew of three - an important factor in a modern world without cabooses. And there is, of course, a cupholder for the engineer.
The SD70ACe also offers, in EMD's words, "outstanding improvements in maintainability." All electrical wires are on the right side of the locomotive and all piping is on the left, with most pipes and wires routed under the frame so they can be serviced by a man standing outside the engine - rather than crawling around at the bottom of the engine room. And the time between service intervals has been doubled, from every three months to every six months.
After a year of testing on the road and at the Association of American Railroads' test track in Pueblo, CO, the first SD70ACe's ('e" stands for "enhanced") were delivered to CSX Transportation in 2004. Today they are rostered by nearly every North American Class 1 railroad. At the present time, mainline American railroads generally maintain dual fleets of locomotives. AC power is used for heavy coal hauling and hotshot intermodal traffic because AC traction motors offer higher starting tractive effort with the same horsepower. Less expensive, traditional DC power is used for more mundane duties. But with the SD70ACe, Electro-Motive hopes it may have the 21st Century successor to its 1949 Geep - a locomotive that can be nearly all things to all railroads.
Signature Series models feature professionally weathered finishes by a master modeler with more than 30 years of modeling experience. The resulting finish ensures that these new Signature Series models will look right at home on any fully sceniced and weathered layout.
All models will be airbrushed weathered, using special proprietary techniques designed to capture subtle natural processes that show details previously only obtainable using chalks and pinpoint washes.
No two finishes will look exactly alike so that you may have numerous models of the same engine, each with its own unique finish.
All models will be flat sealed to allow handling and use of smoke fluid.
These unique offerings provide a level of customization never before offered by a major model railroad manufacturer and are an excellent solution for those who have either not had the confidence to attempt weathering techniques or simply don't have the time to do it themselves. Most importantly, these professionally weathered models can withstand the rigors of operation while mimicing the real-life look needed to recreate a world class model railroad.
Did you know?
IntelliTrain, an option on the SD70ACe, uses cellular and GPS technology to allow a railroad's maintenance department to monitor operating conditions and problems as they occur out on the road - making diagnosis and repair considerably easier.