Long Live EMDs “Tear-Drop” Window Locomotive Cabs

NS-31T-12-10-2015 (5)

This “head-on” view of ex-Union Pacific (now Norfolk Southern) SD90MAC #7317 perfectly shows off the “tear-drop” window design that has remained a staple of EMD locomotives since the 1960s. And depending on one’s own point-of-view, the dreary setting may be eerily symbolic of the #7317’s future.


With Norfolk Southern currently in full swing rebuilding entire generations of diesel locomotives, now would be a good time to look back and appreciate all that we still have with some of those old classics that many of us loved in the 80s and 90s.

It was Union Pacific that ushered in the wide-cab concept on American railroads with its EMD dual-engined “DD” locomotives in the sixties. History was made again in the eighties (and again it was Union Pacific that made it) when General Electric introduced the Dash 8-40CWComfort Cab.” EMD responded with later versions of its 1960s style wide-cab design on diesels like the GP60M, SD60M, SD70M, SD75M, and all of their variants, all the way up through the SD80s and 90s.

All through those decades EMDs “Tear-drop” window design remand essentially unchanged, and it wasn’t until the SD70ACe with its ultra-boxy cab design that EMD said goodbye to tradition in the mid-2000s. And as we say goodbye to many of the locomotives we knew in the twentieth century, it’s nice to know that there are still plenty of examples of the cab designs we knew from back then.

EMDs wide-cab with its unique 2-piece window configuration has always been a favorite of mine and has even been adapted on certain GE wide cabs (most notably, those of the Canadian National).

Many Canadian National GEs (like the ES44DC #2235 seen below) have adopted EMDs unique 2-piece “Tear-drop” window design and configuration. Also notice the Conrail style red class lights on the nose…. And in contrast to the photo above, the bright green, spring time foliage is also symbolic of #2235’s immediate future.


Long Live EMDs Tear-Drop Window Locomotive Cabs

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Author:Railfan AC

AC is a U.S. Air Force Veteran, a long haul trucker, a transportation enthusiast and a lifelong lover of trains. AC's mission is to travel America documenting American railroading in the 21st century while educating those who want to know about the importance the railroads play in our daily lives including, but not limited to, the movement of goods, services and more.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply