Amtrak has five locomotives that commemorate the 40th anniversary of Amtrak service and these are painted to resemble past phases of Amtrak paint schemes.
Amtrak 156 Phase I P42DC
Amtrak 130 Phase II P42DC
Amtrak 145 Phase III P42DC
Amtrak 184 Phase IV P42DC
Amtrak 822 Phase III P40DC
Amtrak currently has 396 locomotives, so seeing one of these Heritage units is interesting, especially if it’s leading the train. When one of these locomotives gets assigned to a route like the Southwest Chief, it often comes and goes several times before it gets assigned to another route. That gives train photographs several chances to catch it in different locations.
In previous videos, we’ve caught Amtrak 156 and Amtrak 822 on the route through New Mexico. Now it’s Amtrak 184’s turn pay us a visit.
Well over a year in advance of Amtrak’s 40th Anniversary, a core team of employees was formed to develop plans for celebrating 40 years of being America’s Railroad. One of the ideas was to paint current locomotives into each of the previous paint schemes Amtrak has used over the years. Blair Slaughter of Industrial Design and Matt Donnelly of the Marketing and Product Development Department collaborated to adapt the paint schemes to the current P42 locomotive car body.
There are four previous paint schemes, known as phases, and only one had ever been applied to the P42 car body previously. The goal was to keep the schemes as true to their original form, while fitting the physical design of the current locomotives so that they looked right—a task that resulted in as many as seven unique options per scheme! The favorite 2D concept for each scheme was chosen, and Matt painted scale models of the Phase I and II schemes to test the plans. More fine tuning was done after seeing the scale models before a finalized plan was made for each scheme.
Blair drew paint diagrams of the finalized plans to scale using CAD, specifying every last detail so that the employees at the Beech Grove Maintenance Facility could make the plans a reality. The paint and decal team at Beech Grove did a beautiful job of applying these schemes to locomotives already scheduled to receive paint jobs.