TS2016 Free Loco: Union Pacific EMD SD60M

Written by: Gary Dolzall

The Electro-Motive SD60M in classic Union Pacific livery. UP’s SD60Ms introduced the “North American cab” design to the U. S. railroad scene in 1989.

The Union Pacific classic liveried Electro-Motive SD60M is the first of many great free pieces of content for all owners of TS2016!

Gary Dolzall takes a look at the Electro-Motive SD60M and shares the history of the locomotive

In 1984, Electro-Motive introduced a new line of diesel locomotives named the “60 Series, and with it came a new prime mover, EMD’s two-stroke 710-series diesel power plant offered in 12-, 16-, and 20-cylinder versions.

A keystone of new EMD’s “60 Series” was the six-axle (C-C), 3,800-horsepower SD60, which would utilize the 16-cylinder version of the 710G3 power plant. Construction of SD60s began in 1984 and the standard model featured EMD’s “Spartan” style angular cab design that had been in vogue on most EMD locomotives since the early 1960s. While U. S. railroads continued to purchase EMD locomotives with this cab design, in Canada a more streamlined cab with console controls – variously called the “safety cab” or “comfort cab” – was becoming the new standard. This enhanced cab design finally made its way to the U. S., in the late 1980s, and EMD first applied what it label as the “North American cab” to an SD60 order placed by Union Pacific. Reflecting the change in design from a standard SD60, the new Union Pacific units, first delivered in 1989, carried the designation SD60M.

The initial version of the SD60M – those built from 1989 until mid-1991 – used a three-piece windshield design (and are known as Phase I units). From mid-1991 onward, a two-piece windshield design (Phase II) was used. Union Pacific, as it turned out, was not only the first buyer of the SD60M but also the largest purchaser of the Phase I model, putting 184 such units (UP6085-6268) to work. Burlington Northern was also a buyer of the Phase I SD60M, with a fleet of 50 “white-faced” units, and the Soo Line added five SD60Ms to its large fleet of standard SD60s. All three owners put the SD60Ms to work on heavy-haul mainline freight duties, often lugging unit coal or grain trains.

The notable Phase I SD60M is available for Train Simulator wearing the colors of its largest owner, Union Pacific, and featuring freight-hauling career scenario on Sherman Hill out of Cheyenne and Laramie. Wearing the classic UP livery the units wore when delivered, the SD60M provides a perfect complement to the excellent range of other Union Pacific modern mainline diesels available, including the EMD SD70M, SD70Ace, and GE ES44AC.

In addition to being regulars on the Sherman Hill route, the Union Pacific SD60Ms are a perfect fit for other routes such as Cajon Pass and Donner Pass (Donner became a Union Pacific line in 1996 when Southern Pacific was merged into Union Pacific). You can find numerous scenarios at the Steam Workshop featuring the SD60M on those Train Simulator routes.

Historic in that they introduced the “North American cab” to U.S. railroading, and still on active mainline duty across Union Pacific’s massive rail system, the SD60M is an ideal locomotive to put to work in TS2016, whether your choice of route is Sherman, Cajon, or Donner – or better yet, all three! – Gary Dolzall

The EMD SD60M is a six-axle (C-C) diesel rated at 3,800 horsepower and features the three-piece windshield design of the Phase I SD60Ms. All photos and screenshots by the author.

The view ahead is both clear and somewhat unique from the SD60M North American cab, which features a console-style control stand and represented a transitional step between traditional diesel control stands and the advanced electronic displays of today.

Included scenarios for the UP SD60M are set on the Sherman Hill route, and in “Rest and Rehabilitation,” a trio of SD60Ms hurry stacks eastbound from Laramie.

The SD60M joins a variety of modern Union Pacific power ready for service on TS2016 routes, including the GE ES44AC and EMD SD70M.

In addition to being perfectly suited for duty on Sherman Hill, the Union Pacific SD60M will serve well on routes such as Cajon Pass and Donner Pass. UP 6141 (above) leads a covered hopper train on the east slope of Donner Pass; and SD60M 6153 (below) heads a Powder River coal unit train on Cajon Pass near Victorville.

East- and westbound freights meet at Hermosa Tunnel on TS2016’s Sherman Hill route, in just one example of the experiences that await when you take the throttle of the Union Pacific EMD SD60M.

For all owners of TS2016, Your free loco will automatically download through Steam and added to your library.


Gary Dolzall

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