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Unarguably Handsome in Dress Blue

December 29, 2010

Of all the paint schemes that have departed, Santa Fe’s “dress blue” stands out as being unarguably handsome.

This scheme made its debut on GP20’s and SD24’s that the Santa Fe received in the summer of 1960. The pinstripes and the bold “Santa Fe” on the hoods marked a sharp departure from the austere black with silver “zebra stripes” that had adorned all Santa Fe switchers and road switchers since the late 1930’s.

Santa Fe EMD SD45-2 locomotive

Sant Fe SD45-2 5645 at Denver, Colorado on July 1, 1978

It was a short-lived scheme. The yellow & blue warbonnet design took its place beginning in mid-1972.

By the 1978 date of the above image, the Santa Fe had re-painted the majority of its fleet into the warbonnet scheme, making the 5648’s dress blue colors an endangered species.

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