Index of SP Lightweight Passenger Car Models

The Southern Pacific had a number of lightweight or "streamlined" passenger cars, mostly built for specific premier trains from 1936 to 1954.  Modeling of individual cars below will have links to my modeling blogs for each car.  This page will be receiving ongoing updates.

A colorful San Joaquin Daylight today with Silver/Red, TTG, and Yellow (COSF) painted cars in the consist.

The SP was always chronically short of lightweight cars.  The SP had six paint schemes to keep up on the passenger car fleet;

General Service Dark Olive Green

General service used Challenger and Californian, also HW San Joaquin before July 1941.

Daylight (Orange & Red)

Used on Morning, Noon, Coast, San Joaquin, Sac. Dayligths and a version on the Shasta Daylight with wider orange stripe

Original Golden State (Red & Silver)

The original Golden State paint scheme with car names used until 1951-1954 when the car numbers were used instead.

Note: My model of SP 2428 is a 'weird' Golden State car, because it was painted into Daylight (the General Service standard for LW Chair Cars of 1950) and then back into Golden State colors in October 1952, but the car name that it had was given to a new chair car, so I believe, the SP 2428 would have had to keep its car number while painted for the Golden State in late 1952-53.

Sunset Limited (Silver & Red) & Revised Golden State 1953

Developed for the Sunset Limited and then the revised Golden State.

Two-Tone Gray (1954 HW General Service Scheme)

TTG used on the 1941 Lark, various Overland Route trains before 1947, 1949 Cascade, & some Starlight cars

Overland & COSF (Yellow & Gray)

Joint operations with the UP and CNW on the Overland Route used the UP's standard TTG (western) and Yellow Schemes.

To say that the SP paint shops were strained keeping up with six paint schemes and changing traffic demands is an understatement.

SP's Ranking System for Passenger Trains

The SP kept a ranking system of which trains would be protected with the best cars, and generally those trains would always have cars painted the proper color.  Other secondary trains would give up their cars to the top ranked trains, and take cars from the 3rd rank trains, which would then in turn take heavyweight protection cars.  The City of San Fransisco (COSF) and Morning/Coast Daylight were the top ranked trains, along with the Sunset Limited and Golden State, which generally had their own HW cars assigned for protection.  The 1941 San Joaquin Daylight was the lowest ranked of the Daylights until the Noon Daylight was discontinued and replaced with the Starlight in 1949, becoming the lowest ranked of the Daylight trains.  It was still very common to see the San Joaquin Daylight after 1949 with one or more cars not in Daylight colors in the consist, whether it was a HW diner, a chair car, or HW Dark Olive Green RPOs.

Joint Passenger Train Operations

I would like to remind modelers wanting to build consists for trains that ran as joint operations were mixed indiscriminately between the owning railroads.  The Golden State was a joint Rock Island and SP operation.  The Overland Route through trains were joint with the UP and CNW, this included the City of San Fransisco, Challenger, and Overland Limited.  Some of the joint operation trains did trade out food service cars at the interchange points at Ogden, Utah with the UP, and Tucumcari, New Mexico with the Rock Island.

Modeling Notes

This index should be helpful in showing the "spotting features" of the different car types and which series it is from.  I'll be listing the models that I know about, and I'll put in photos when I have them.  I plan to update this page as I have more information.  For more information about SP Dark Olive Green follow this link.  My modeling notes on the Upgrading and Detailing MTH 1939 & 1941 Daylight Cars are covered my separate blog page.  Individual cars below will also have links to my modeling blogs for each car when I post them.

Soho & The Coach Yard, and several other brass importers have brought most of these models in over the years. - I'm mostly going to focus on the plastic and "budge brass" models that can be acquired without too much trouble.

Jason Hill

Cars for 1937 Daylights & Sunbeam

T&NO Sunbeam with streamlined P-13 class 4-6-2 and consist.  This is post-war photo with the addition of the 69-BP-30-2/3.  Unknown photographer, unknown location - Inad Akeb collection

The two consists for the 1937 Daylight (Los Angeles to San Fransisco) and the two consists for the T&NO 1937 Sunbeam/Hustler were delivered.  I'm going to group these cars together as several of the cars shifted back and forth between the two trains.

SP 77-CB-1 - Combine for Daylight

The original 1937 Daylight cars didn't have the 1939 & 1941 baggage elevators next to the vestibule doors.  The two 77-CB-1s (SP 3300 & 3301) had 20ft of baggage space and the front left pair of seat space was set up as a News Agent space.  A folding conductor's desk was installed just to the rear of that.

Left side of Soho 77-CB-1 Combine, as built - unpainted Soho model.

Right side of Soho 77-CB-1 Combine, as built - unpainted Soho model.

Soho imported a model of these cars.  TCY has also imported brass models of these cars with their 1955 San Joaquin Daylight train set.  No plastic models are made for these two cars at this time (Dec'16).

Mid-kitbash of MTH 79-CB-1 to make 77-CB-1 SP 3301 by removing baggage elevator.

Kitbashing MTH or BLI 1939-built combines is possible as a high-end stand-in model.  I will be covering how to do this in a build blog post soon.

SP 77-C-Series (-1,-2,-3) Chair Cars - Daylight, Sunbeam, Challenger, Californian.

The SP's single-unit Chair Cars started with the 77-C-1s (SP 2400 & 2401) for the Daylight in 1937, but these two cars were quickly traded to the T&NO for their two 64-ACM/ACW-1 Articulated Chair Cars off the Sunbeam to increase the capacity of the Pacific Lines Daylight train sets.

SP 2436, one of the 77-C-3 Chair Cars built in 1937 for the Challenger, Athearn-Genesis 77-C-3 model.

I cover this car in my Upgrades SP 2436 (Part 1) blog post.

SP's "Golden Vein," after relettering as SP 2428 in October 1952 assigned to the Golden State in Dec'47.

The 77-C-3s were quickly scattered to the four winds in a flurry of repaints as SP scrambled to keep the various premier trains equipped with properly painted streamlined cars.

SP 2433, painted for service on the Cascade, Athearn-Genesis 77-C-3 model.

Athearn-Genesis has made a very nice model of the 77-C-series chair cars.  Unfortunately, the newest run (2015) seems to have been made with high-regrind plastic, which is very "spongy" and prone to warping or being "unstable" in structural integrity.  This materials issue effected the cars painted in General Service Green for Challenger & Californian, Golden State (Red/Silver), and the Daylight scheme.

SP 2424 painted for City of SF in 1955, Athearn Genesis model.

Six 77-C-3s were upgraded for chair service on the City of SF in 1955, they received new 41-NDO trucks for high-speed service and long distance interchange on the UP and CNW to Chicago.  The Athearn model uses roller bearing models of the original "triple-bolster" Pullman trucks, instead of the replacement trucks.

Wreck at Tortuga

The SP 2438 was scrapped after the Wreck at Tortuga on Sept 20, 1938, with the car only being a bit over a year old.

SP 64-ACM/ACW-Series (-1,-2,-3) - Artic-Chair for Daylight

SP ordered six sets of Articulated-Chair Cars (64-ACM/ACW-1) for the 1937 Daylight, SP 2403-2413.

T&NO 64-ACM-2 (odd numbers)

T&NO 501, 64-ACM-2 painted for Sunbeam

T&NO 64-ACW-2 (even numbers)

T&NO 500, 64-ACW-2 painted for Sunbeam

The four pairs of 64-ACM/ACW-2s for the Texas & New Orleans' Sunbeam, T&NO 500-507.  Two pairs were transferred back to the Pacific Lines to increase capacity of the 1937 Daylights, ex-T&NO 504-507 became SP 2453-2456 in June 1939.  T&NO 500-503 came west in 1954 and be repainted into Two-Tone Gray (TTG).

The 64-ACM/ACW-3s (SP 2414-2423) were delivered in July 1937.  Two pairs for the Californian and three pairs for the Challenger in SP Dark Olive Green.

Over the years the ACW-3s some cars were painted into Two-Tone Gray and others were painted into Daylight to protect the Daylight Pool assignments.  Two pair lasted until at least April 1953 painted in SP Dark Olive Green while in the Daylight Pool.

SP 77-D-10 - Diner for Daylight

The food service for the 1937 Daylight was provided by two dining cars, SP 10200 & 10201.

Left side of SP 10200, Soho Model unpainted.

Right side of SP 10200, Soho Model unpainted.

After the delivery of the 1939 Artic-Diners, the 77-D-10s were reassigned to the Noon Daylight and then the San Joaquin Daylight.  Then over the years of service these two diners were bounced around between many of the SP's premier passenger trains.

First in 1947, they were pulled from service on the San Joaquin Daylights to be upgraded for the new consists of the COSF until the delivery of the 1949 COSF diners.  Then in 1949 the 10200 & 10201 then worked as relief cars for the San Joaquin Daylight and Starlight's Coffee Shop-Snack cars and one was needed to work regularly on the heavyweight Imperial between Los Angeles and El Paso.

Modeling the SP 77-D-10s would be a challenge as there's no plastic models for this car.  One option could be following the example of the N-Scale Magazine and cut up a MTH or BLI Triple-Unit Diner-Kitchen and reassemble the parts to look more like the 77-D-10 and 77-D-11s.  In the N-Scale article one triple-unit was able to make one 77-D-10 and one 77-D-11.

I don't see an easy way to make the double height kitchen windows, unless the car was modeled as it would be after the lower portions of the forward three kitchen side windows were covered over in the mid-1950s.

SP 77-T-1 - Lunch Counter-Tavern for Daylight

The SP 10310 & 10311 were the original Lunch Counter-Taverns delivered with the 1937 Daylights.

Left side of 77-T-1, unpainted Soho model.

Right side of 77-T-1, unpainted Soho model.

The two 77-T-1s had an interesting life, once the SP 10400 and 10401 arrived, the 10310 and 10311 were moved to the regular second section of the Daylight.  In 1938 they were painted Dark Olive Green for assignment to the HW San Joaquin.  One of the cars was used in the relief City of San Fransisco after the train was sabotaged and detailed in 1939.  Then in 1941 the two cars were refurbished and painted in Daylight colors for the new San Joaquin Daylight entering service two months late in September 1941.

In 1947 the SP 10311 was in the consist of the San Joaquin Daylight when it hit a gasoline truck in Kingsburg.  Most of the next year the 10311 spent in the shops being rebuilt into a full Tavern (Lounge) car.  The SP 10310 followed being converted to a full Tavern (Lounge).

When the 77-T-1s emerged from the rebuilding to full Taverns they were assigned to protection service for the Daylight Pool.  The rebuilding changed the two 77-T-1s to look much more like the 1939-built 79-T-1 by removed the center windows and the access door was moved slightly to match the new half-circle bar, leaving only 3 windows at each end of the car.

SP 77-PR-1 - Parlor for Daylight

SP 3000 & 3001

The Parlors and Parlor-Observations on the Daylight were for passengers that had premium tickets for the reserved seating.  These cars were placed as the last two cars in the consists.

SP 3000 & 3001 were reassigned to the new 1941 San Joaquin Daylight.  They were removed from the San Joaquin Daylights in 1947 after the Kingsburg wreck.  The surviving Parlor that was not damaged was assigned as a protection car for the Morning Daylight parlors.

SP 77-PRO-1 - Parlor-Observation for Daylight

SP 2950 & 2951 were built as full parlors with rounded rear end.

Unpainted 1937 Daylight Observation 2950 & 2951, Soho model

In 1939 the SP 2950 & 2951 were handed down to the Noon Daylight and then in 1941 to the new San Joaquin Daylight-Sacramento Daylight.  The Parlor service to Sacramento was not as well received, so the cars were transferred to other assignments.  SP 2951 was regularly assigned to the Overland in Oakland-Sparks service over Donner.

T&NO 77-DL-1 - Diner Lounge-Observation for Sunbeam & Hustler

The T&NO ordered T&NO 950 & 951 as food service-observations for the Sunbeam and Hustler consists.

"Sunbeam" painted Soho model minus the black roof that it should have. SSW cars had silver roofs.

The 77-DL-1s were the starting point for the 77-D-11 (SP 10400 & 10401) Coffee Shops in 1938.

T&NO 77-B-1 - Baggage for Sunbeam & Hustler

The Sunbeam and Hustler consists received two new baggage cars (T&NO 650 & 651) for checked baggage on the two pocket streamliners in Texas.

T&NO 650, a 77-B-1, painted in the revised Sunset-style Sunbeam scheme

SP 1938 Daylight Cars

Postwar SP GS-4 leads  No.96, the Noon Daylight towards Los Angeles. - Eddie Sims Collection

The surprisingly successful new Daylight trainsets of 1937 were found to be insufficient for the higher than expected ridership.  So much so, that the T&NO Articulated Chair cars were swapped with the SP's Single Chair Cars (SP 2400-2401) to get more seating capacity.  This however now over-filled the food and lounge space provided by the SP 10200-series Diner and SP 10310-series Coffee Shop-Taverns!

It fact it wasn't very long before a regular second section had to be run many days, and passengers were noticeably 'put off' to see Dark Olive Green "Old" Heavyweight cars on these 'overflow' sections, and not be able to ride the 'NEW' Daylight service, for which they'd bought the tickets for!

To avoid a second summer rush of PR disaster additional Daylight cars ordered in the fall of 1937 to expand the service to trying to catch up with the demands if the original Daylight.  These four new cars would be the first step in putting together a regular third and fourth train sets to form second sections of Daylight (Nos.98 & 99), which would be put into service in early 1938, and eventually be expanded into the Noon Daylight of 1941.  I've done a blog on Modifying and Upgrading the MTH 1939 & 1941 Daylight Cars, I'll be leaving the modeling comments for those cars on that page.

SP 77-D-11 - Coffee Shop-Lounge for Daylight

The SP was surprised by the high traffic levels of the new 1937 Daylight.  The two new Coffee Shop-Lounges, SP 10400 & 10401, entered service in 1938 on the regular Daylight replacing the 77-T-1 Lunch Counter-Taverns.

Left side of SP 10400 Coffee Shop-Lounge, media blasted Soho model.

Right side of SP 10400 Coffee Shop-Lounge, media blasted Soho model.

The SP's Coffee Shops were capable of being used as diners, as the only real difference was the menus used on the train the car was working on.

Soho Brass

A Soho SP 'Coffee Shop' SP 10400/10401 with the basic painting done.

Painting a Soho SP 10400, Part 1

Modeling the SP 77-D-11s would be a challenge as there's no plastic models for this car.  One option could be following the example of the N-Scale Magazine and cut up a MTH or BLI Triple-Unit Diner-Kitchen and reassemble the parts to look more like the 77-D-10 and 77-D-11s.  In the N-Scale article one triple-unit was able to make one 77-D-10 and one 77-D-11.

SP 77-T-2 - Tavern for Daylight (First Pair)

SP ordered two new Taverns to replace the SP 10310/10311 on the overfilled Daylight.  The two new 77 foot Taverns (SP 10312-10313) were delivered in early 1938 and assigned them to the Daylight replacing the 10310 and 10311, which moved to the regular second section of the Daylight.

Left side of SP 10315, MTH model out-of-box (Stand-in for 77-T-2)

Right side of SP 10315, MTH model out-of-box (Stand-in for 77-T-2)

Unfortunately very few models, none that I'm aware of have been made for the 77-T-2 class, as all have focused on the 79-T-1 class, which were built in 1939. 

Note: I'm showing the photos above of the 24" longer 79-T-1s (SP 10314-10315), as I don't have any models of 10313-10314 to show at this time.  I'm slightly considering what it would take to kitbash one of the 79-T-1s back into a 77-T-2, not really sure its worth it.

SP 1939 Daylight Cars

The new 1939 cars form the new Morning Daylight as No.98 & 99, and the 1937 cars became the Noon Daylight, Nos.96 & 97.  My modeling page for Upgrading and Detailing MTH 1939 Daylight Cars is where I'll be putting the info on the models.

SP 79-CB-1 - Combine for Morning Daylight

The Daylights were only two years old when the first replacement cars started arriving for the new Morning Daylight.  The new 79-CB-1s were almost identical to the 77-CB-1s with the addition of the new exterior accessible baggage elevators next to the vestibule doors.

Left side of SP 3302 Combine, MTH model with replacement letter board decals.

Right side of SP 3302 Combine, MTH model with replacement letter board decals.

SP 3302 and 3303 were assigned from the beginning of their service lives on the SP to the new Morning Daylight.  The SP 3300 and 3301 were assigned to the San Joaquin Daylight in 1941 and were used as the protection cars on the Morning Daylight.

SP 79-C-1 - Chair Car for Morning Daylight

Two new 79 foot Chair Cars (79-C-1) were ordered for the Morning Daylight, SP 2439 & 2440.

Left side SP 2439, 79-C-1, relettered MTH model.

Right side SP 2439, 79-C-1, relettered MTH model.

SP 79-C-2 - Chair Car for Morning Daylight, COSF, & San Joaquin Daylight

The SP 79-C-2s were built to the same plans as the 79-C-1s.  Two new cars (SP 2485 & 2486) were ordered to expand the Morning Daylight.  Four of the new chair cars (SP 2487, 2488, 2492, & 2493) were ordered for the new 1941 San Joaquin Daylight.  Three cars (SP 2489, 2490, 2491) were ordered for service on the City of San Fransisco and were built without baggage elevators.

SP 66-ACM/ACW-1/-2 - for Morning Daylight & San Joaquin Daylight

66-ACW-1/-2 - Artic-Chair Woman (even numbers)

Left (isle) side of 66-ACW-1, SP 2448, MTH model with new letterboard decals.

Right (women's lounge) side of 66-ACW-2, SP 2463, MTH model out-of-box.

66-ACM-1/-2 - Artic-Chair Man (odd numbers)

Left (isle) side of 66-ACM-1, SP 2447, MTH model with new letterboard decals.

Right (men's lounge) side of 66-ACM-2, SP 2464, MTH model out-of-box.

SP 70-AD-1/-2 & 57-AD-1 Three-unit Articulated Diner for Morning Daylight

The SP 10250-51-52 & 10253-54-55 were the SP's final solution to the lack of food service space on the new Morning Daylight.

In January 1942, the Noon Daylight was suspended for the duration of the war.  The 10250-51-52 & 10253-54-55 were transferred to the San Joaquin Daylight.  They returned to the Noon Daylight in 1946 and then returned to the San Joaquin Daylight in 1949 and were re-equipped as Diner-Coffee Shop-Lounge.

The SP 10253-54-55 were shopped in 1954 to be converted to Hamburger Grill-Lounge.  The SP 10250-51-52 followed in mid 1954, however it was never finished because the 10253-54-55 was delayed because of union agreements for a car with a combined kitchen used in Coffee Shop and Hamburger Grill service.  The SP 10253-54-55 returned to service finally in 1956 and the 10250-51-52 never was returned to service and was stricken from the roster in 1959.

SP 70-AD-2 - Coffee Shop Unit

Left side of 70-AD-2, Coffee Shop Unit, SP 10252, MTH model

Right side of 70-AD-2, Coffee Shop Unit, SP 10252, MTH model

SP 57-AD-1 - Kitchen Unit

Left side of 57-AD-1, Kitchen Unit, SP 10251, this is my kitbashed MTH kitchen with the window replacement almost complete.

Right side of 57-AD-1, Kitchen Unit, SP 10251, MTH model out-of-the-box, with the incorrect post-war lettering.

SP 70-AD-1 - Diner Unit

Left side of 70-AD-1, Diner Unit, SP 10250, MTH model

Right side of 70-AD-1, Diner Unit, SP 10250, MTH model

SP 79-T-1 - Tavern for the new Morning Daylight (Second Pair)

The second pair were 79-T-1s (SP 10314-10315) arrived in late 1939 and replace the first pair (SP 10312-10313) on the Morning Daylight.  The 10312 and 10313 then moved to the new Noon Daylight in 1940.

Left side of SP 10315, MTH model out-of-box

Right side of SP 10315, MTH model out-of-box

During the war, starting in 1942, all four Taverns were considered to be "luxury cars" and were put into storage, allowing for more passenger moving cars to use the tonnage on the passenger consists.  The cars were not maintained well during the war, resulting in a scathing letter from management about how much work would be required to get the four cars back into working shape in late 1945.

The cars returned to the Morning and Noon Daylights in 1946 as before.

The Noon Daylight's 77-T-1s moved to the Starlight in 1949 to work with the SP 10400-10401.

In early 1950s the two rebuilt 1937 ex-Coffee Shop-Taverns were rebuilt as full Taverns (10310 & 10311) and 1938 Taverns (10312 & 10313) rotated between the Starlight, the San Joaquin Daylight, and protecting the Coast Daylight's Taverns (10314 & 10315).

The SP 10312 was dismantled in 1955 to build the new Dome-Lounge SP 3605.  The SP 10313 continued to be used as the protection car for the StarlightCoast Daylight, & San Joaquin Daylight until 1961, when it was converted to Hamburger Grill 10600.

SP 79-PR-1 - Parlor for Morning Daylight

The new 79-PR-1 class Parlors (SP 3002 & 3003) were delivered and replaced the SP 3000 & 3001 on the new Morning Daylight.  The SP 3000 & 3001 were transferred to the new 1941 San Joaquin Daylights, and protected the Morning Daylights after that.

Left side SP 3003 Parlor Car, MTH model.

Right side SP 3003 Parlor Car, MTH model

SP 79-PRO-1 - Parlor-Observation for Morning Daylight & Noon Daylight

SP 2952-2955

Left side of SP 2951 Parlor Observation, MTH model.

SP 2955 was repainted and assigned to the Shasta Daylight.

SP 1941 Daylight Cars

70-AD-3/-4 & 57-AD-2 Three-Unit Articulated Diner for Morning Daylight

In 1941 the SP 10256-57-58 & 10259-60-61 were delivered for the Morning Daylight.  The SP 10250-51-52 & SP 10253-54-55 were reassigned to the Noon Daylight with the other refurbished 1937 cars.  I'll be leaving the modeling notes for the 1941 cars on my Upgrading and Detailing MTH 1939 & 1941 Daylight Cars page.

Left side of SP 10261, 70-AD-4, MTH model

Left side of SP 10260, 57-AD-2, MTH model, correct for post-1950 rebuild

The 57-AD-2s were modified in 1950 to replace the pantry loading windows with doors.  Therefore the MTH and BLI models are really only correct for post-1950 modeling.  The 57-AD-1s were modified the same way at the end of 1951 and early 1952.

Left side of SP 10259, 70-AD-3, MTH model

Other Streamlined Trainsets

I will be working on adding the data for the following trainsets in the future.  Please be patient.

SP 1941 Lark Cars

In 1941 the SP put the new streamlined Lark into service between Los Angeles and San Fransisco.  The consist was painted in matching Two-Tone Gray with a moon & wings insignia logo painted on each car above the reporting marks.

The consist was mostly LW Pullman sleepers, which I will discuss on my Pullman & SP Lightweight Sleepers page.

SP's Lark Clubs

The Lark received a pair of 3-unit Diner-Lounge-Kitchen (SP 10274-75-76 & 10277-78-79), known as "Lark Clubs" to provide meal and lounge service for the all Pullman sleeper consist.  A heavyweight diner and lounge were used if the "Lark Clubs" were being shopped.

SP 60-P - RPO 60ft

The Lark's protection RPO, SP 4119, here modeled with a Soho car.

The SP 4117 & 4118 RPOs for the Lark were streamline styled HW cars as well.  SP 4119 was not streamlined and was assigned as the Lark's regular protection car.

Link to the Lark's assigned Pullman sleepers

SP 1947 Golden State Cars

The striking red and silver paint scheme of the originally streamlined Golden State.  The Red above the bottom of the window band all the way to the top of the roof with silver lower side panels and underbody certainly was eye catching, but didn't hold up too well in the sun of the south west.   Also with the only other equipment used on the Sunset Limited, Sunbeam/Hustler, and Golden State providing properly painted protection equipment was a real problem.  In 1953 repainting began to change the cars to the more economical Sunset Limited inspired scheme with all-silver bodies with red stripe on the letterboard.  The cars assigned to the Golden State were given a script name version of the Sunset Limited's insignia.  The Sunbeam cars were also painted out of the "Texas" Daylight scheme with silver roof and painted in the Sunset Limited-style scheme with the Sunbeam script name over the Sunset's ball and wing insignia.

All Golden State cars were given car names, not car numbers as long as they were painted in the original Red and Silver scheme.  Numbers were painted on when the cars changed to the Sunset-style scheme.

The Golden State was a joint Rock Island and Southern Pacific train, when modeling it remember that the trainsets were mixed between the two railroads, a solid consist of one railroad or the other would have been very rare.

SP 77-C-3 - Chair Cars - (Repainted 1937 Cars)

These cars were renamed to "Golden Vein" (SP 2428), "Golden Sand" (SP 2430), "Golden Lode" (SP 2431), "Golden Ore" (SP 2437) during their early assignment to the Golden State in late 1947.  They were returned to using numbers in December 1949 when the 83-C-2 and 83-C-3's were delivered and took over the numbers.

Also in 1950, the SP standardized on painting the lightweight cars in general service Daylight colors after delivery of the new chair cars for the Golden State.  This was also about the same time as they lost their car names.  However the SP 2428 was returned to the Golden State (Red/Silver) service again in October 1952, probably as a protection car.

Athearn-Genesis model of Golden State painted 77-C-3, with relettered number replacing the normal name.

I suspect was not given it's old name "Golden Vein" as that was already assigned to the new chair car assigned to the Golden State.  This is why my model of the SP 2428 doesn't have the name.  The SP 2428 was the last chair car to be repainted into the (Red/Silver) Golden State scheme, just before the new Simulated-Stainless Steel (SSS) or Sunset Limited version of the Golden State paint scheme started being applied in 1953.

SP 83-C-2 - Chair Cars

The 83-C-2s were delivered in December 1949

SP 2379, 2380 built for CoSF.
SP 2399-2401 built for Golden State, originally named "Golden Nugget", "Golden Bar", "Golden Flake" until 1954 when they're changed to using car numbers.

SP 83-D-2 - Diner for Golden State (& Overland Limited)

SP 10206-10208 for the Golden State, originally named "Golden Chalice," "Golden Viand," and "Golden Nectar."  SP 10202-10205 & SP 10209 for the Overland Limited.  These cars could be used interchangeably as the interior arrangement was identical.

SP 83-DL-1 - Diner-Lounge for the Golden State (& COSF)

Right side of SP 10403, painted in the 1953 Golden State scheme

Five cars (SP 10402-10406) were built in the 83-DL-1 class for service, three (SP 10402-10404) on the Golden State and two (SP 10405 & 10406) for the new daily City of SF consists.  SP 10402-10404 were originally named "Golden Trencher," "Golden Ladle," and "Golden Flagon."  These cars could be used interchangeably as the interior arrangement was identical.

SP 83-L-1 - Lounge-Tavern for Golden State (& COSF)

SP 2981-2986

Link to the Golden State assigned sleeper types

SP 83-C-3 - Chair Cars - (Budd)

Later SP 2369 (2nd) was very similar to the earlier 83-C-3 cars.

Built as Sunset-Golden State pool protection cars these two cars were delieved in June 1950 with natural stainless steel and red letterboard, but assigned to the Golden State and named "Golden Ore" and "Golden Sand," and painted in the Red and Silver Golden State scheme.  Renumbered as SP 2377 & 2378 in October 1952 and painted back into the Silver and Red "Sunset Limited" style paint scheme for the Golden State.  It is interesting that these cars lost their names at the same time as SP 2428 returned to Golden State assignment, suggesting that it did not receive its old name back.

SP 1949 Shasta Daylight Cars

The new Pullman-built Shasta Daylight cars are easily recognizable from their taller windows and smooth sides.  The parlor-observations assigned to the Shasta Daylight were both older cars with fluted sides and shorter windows.  However the tail cars were repainted with a wider orange stripe to match the new Shasta Daylight cars.

SP 83-BP-30-1 - RPO-Baggage

SP 5000-5002

SP 83-C-1 - Chair Cars

SP 2381-2398

SP 83-C-5 - Chair Cars

SP 2352-2358

SP 70-AD-5/6 & 57-AD-3 - Three-Unit Diner-Kitchen-Coffee Shop

SP 10262-63-64 & 10265-66-67

SP 83-T-1 - Shasta Tavern

SP 10316 & 10317

SP 1949 Cascade Cars

SP 83-BP-30-1 - RPO-Baggage for Cascade & Shasta Daylight

Originally built as baggage cars SP 6600, 6601, & 6602 assigned to the Cascade.  The cars were built with windows to allow conversion to 30ft RPO Apartment cars, which was done in 1950, '53, and '63 respectively.

SP 5011 was assigned to the Cascade in 1950, then to the Shasta Daylight by 1953.
SP 5012 was assigned to the Shasta Daylight in 1953 when it was converted to 30' RPO
SP 5013 was in Cascade service as a baggage car (SP 6602) until converted to 30' RPO in 1963.

SP 83-B-1 - Baggage

SP 77-C-3 Chair Cars - 1937-built reassigned & painted for Cascade

Athearn-Genesis 77-C-3 painted TTG for the Cascade as SP 2433.

Several 77-C-3 chair cars were assigned to the new LW Cascade in 1949.  Athearn did a fine model of these cars in their first run of 77-C-1s.  SP 2429 and SP 2430 were also offered in this scheme by Athearn-Genesis.

SP Cascade Club - Three-Unit Diner-Lounge-Kitchen

SP 10280-81-82 & 1083-84-85

Link to the Cascade assigned sleeper types

SP 1949 City of San Fransisco & Overland Limited Cars

These cars were built for the new COSF train sets, allowing the COSF to run as a daily train.

SP 80-BP-60-1 - RPO-Baggage

SP 5003 and SP 5004

SP 83-C-2 - Chair Car COSF

SP 2379 & 2380

SP 83-D-1 - Diners for the Overland Limited (& Golden State)

SP 10202-10205 & SP 10209 for the Overland Limited.  SP 10206-10208 for the Golden State, originally named "Golden Chalice," "Golden Viand," and "Golden Nectar."  These cars could be used interchangeably as the interior arrangement was identical.

SP 83-DL-1 - Diner-Lounge for the COSF (& Golden State)

Five cars (SP 10402-10406) were built in the 83-DL-1 class for service, three (SP 10402-10404) on the Golden State and two (SP 10405 & 10406) for the new daily City of SF consists.  SP 10402-10404 were originally named "Golden Trencher," "Golden Ladle," and "Golden Flagon."  These cars could be used interchangeably as the interior arrangement was identical.

SP 1950 Sunset Limited Cars

The streamlining of the Sunset Limited was SP's first venture into buying stainless-steel all-welded construction cars from the Budd Company.  Finished in natural stainless steel and a red letterboard, these cars were brilliant in the sun as it ran from Los Angeles in Southern California, through Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, and Louisiana to New Orleans.  Be aware that some parts were regular steel, and were painted Aluminum, such as the underbodies.

Be careful of the Chair Car numbering for the Sunset Limited cars... in 1951 the first batch of Chair Cars were transferred to T&NO ownership, and another batch of cars were delivered for the Shasta Daylight and Golden State.

Sorry for not having full photos for all the models of the 1950 'Sunset Limited', as I've not had the chance to photograph them!

T&NO 83-BP-30-2 - RPO-Baggage (Budd)

T&NO 220-225 originally, the cars were renumbered into the Pacific Lines 5000-series as SP 5005-5010 in 1951.

SP 83-DB-1 - Dorm-Baggage (Budd)

SP  & T&NO 303

SP 83-C-3 Chair (Budd)

Later SP 2369 (2nd) which was basically a copy of the first series built for the Sunset Limited in 1950 - Soho Model

SP 2364-2378 (1st), then to T&NO 437-449 in 1951, then to SP 2225-2237 in 1961.

SP 83-C-3 Divided Chair w/News Agent Space (Budd)

SP 2359-2363, then to T&NO 432-436 in 1951, then to SP 2220-2224 in 1961.

SP 83-D-3 - Diner (Budd)

SP 10210-10215

SP 83-DL-2 - Diner-Lounge (Budd)

SP 10407-10411

SP 83-L-2 Lounge (Budd)

SP 2987-2990

Link to the Sunset Limited assigned sleeper types

SP 1954 Additional General Service Cars

SP bought additional Pullman chair cars for the Shasta Daylight, Coast Daylight, and City of SF pool.  Additional COSF, Sunset Limited, & Golden State cars were ordered from Budd.

SP 83-C-5 - Chair Cars for Shasta Daylight & Coast Daylight

Second SP 2359-2361 for the Shasta Daylight & Coast Daylight pool in 1954

SP 83-C-4 - Chair Car for COSF, Sunset Limited, & Golden State (1954-built Budd)

SP 2469 (2nd) with GSC 41-NDO trucks - Soho model

Second SP 2362 & Second 2363 were painted yellow and assigned to the COSF.  Second SP 2364-2369 were assigned to the Golden State in natural Stainless Steel with red letterboard.  Second SP 2370-2376 were delivered for the Sunset Limited.

Reassignments of Earlier Cars in 1955

A number of changes occurred across the SP's passenger system in 1954 and 1955.  One reassignment of cars included SP 2424, 2426, 2428, 2432, 2434, 2435, and 2436.

SP 2424 as rebuilt for 1955 assignment on CoSF with GSC trucks.

In 1955 several 77-C-3s were rebuilt as 40-seat "Leg-Rest" Chair Cars for service on the City of San Fransisco (CoSF) and were fitted with GSC 41-NDO trucks, which were standard on the Overland Route trains, which would receive mechanical work in Chicago during layovers.  This upgrade of the new trucks were to help the mechanical forces in Chicago not have to be familiar with SP's Triple-Bolster design of truck, used on all the 1937, 1939, and 1941 Daylight Pool cars.

Closing and Other Links

Other Related Links:
Modeling Index SP HW Passenger Cars
Modeling Index Pullman & SP LW Sleeping Cars
Modeling Index Pullman & SP HW Sleeping Cars
MTH 1938 & 1941 Daylight Cars Upgrades & Mechanicals



  1. Great stuff Jason and thanks for taking the time to pull all this together. Sixty-four dollar question? Did SP operate any mixed locals say in Arizona, New Mexico, or West Texas similar to the Santa Fe's mixed operations out of Wellington, KS or Boise City, OK ending in 1971. Normally the Santa Fe's consist was a zebra striped GP7 or 9, torpedo boat or plain non-DB, with an assortment of freight cars and a oxid-brown combine in tow, occasionally topped off with a steel offset cupola caboose bring up the rear. I can almost visualize an Athearn SP GP9 torpedo-boat with a battered 50' outside braced boxcar, a 40' flat car loaded with pipe or agricultural tractors and a Roundhouse/MDC 60' Harriman combine bring up the rear. Thanks for any info.

    1. I would say after 1940 the mixed trains on the SP dropped off massively. Many were lost during the depression years. I know the SP did operate a coach or two on some of the branchline trains out of Bakersfield in the turn-of-the-century (1902-1908?) era when the oil in the Sunset and Kern Oilfields was struck, but I don't think that lasted past the 1920s with roads being developed, etc. There was 'Doodle-bug' operations on the SP in various places. The SP Trainline documented some of that about 15-20 years ago. In AZ there was the "Gila Monster" (iirc), which was one of the last short-haul passenger trains, it consisted of a GE 70-tonner, a Baggage-RPO, and a 60ft coach iirc. The 70-tonner puts the end of operations around 1951-1952 at least as I recall. There might have been some passenger car operations on the Kirk Branch before the Weed Sub was finished north of K-Falls during the early 1920s to handle the seasonal movement of the loggers to and from the camps over winter.
      I'm not familiar with T&NO operations, so I can't answer those areas at all really.

  2. Fabulous. Thanks for posting this extremely well-researched info. You've given me a lot of material to work with for several past projects. I am now working on Golden State. The Passenger Car Photo Index site ( has a link (dead, unfortunately) labeled "SP Budd club - lounge - in Golden State paint." Its position in the list implies that the car number is 2992 or greater. Info I've gotten from other modelers suggest that this link is a mistake; i.e., they say that SP had no Budd cars painted in the GS silver/red scheme. The number is close to the sequence you list above for the SP 83-L-2 Budd Lounge. Are you aware of any GS silver/grey Budd lounges (or any other Budd cars in that paint)? Thanks for any info.

    1. You meant silver/red Budd cars. Same question here.

    2. I'd have to go look it up. Remember that in later days the Sunset and Golden State schemes were combined with only the train name and car number to tell them apart. Two of the new Budd chair cars were painted for Golden State when new, but I don't believe that included Lounges. - Again, will have to check the SPHTS Psgr Car volumes on the matter.

  3. Fabulous information.
    Were the Silver topped Harriman Daylight cars used for the Sunset limited? If so during which period? 1940-1950?

  4. Fantastic information.
    Were the Southern Pacific Silver topped Daylight scheme Harriman cars ever used for the Sunset Limited?

    1. Actually, I just to checked that in the SPHTS books. The model has not had the roof painted yet. It should be black. SSW 'Daylight' cars had standard silver roofs. There is one SP Harriman "Instruction Car" which had a silver roof to keep the heat down in the car, but it was NOT standard and was NOT used in revenue passenger service.

  5. Hello Jason, in addition to the SP lightweight cars you discuss there are two other sources for non-brass cars: the MHP-Wright steel and wood kits put out by Richard Wright of Daylight book fame, and the Limited Editions extruded aluminum kits, which I believe are to be improved and reissued by Paul LaCiura. While the MHP-Wright cars are no longer state of the art, I am happy with my fleet for club layout use—all on D&G Trucks, of course! With care, the LE kits can be made into accurate and convincing models. If Paul LaCiura is able to make good on his announced plans, all the detail parts needed will be coming along.
    Tom Cockle


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