The Rivet Counter series DASH-9 continues to set new standards for railroad and road number specific detail, factory applied detail parts, lighting effects, and sound in N Scale.
Road Number Specific ScaleTrains
- Era: 2000-present, series 4300-4598, built 1-12/99
- Era: 2000-present, series 5000-5169, built 4-8/04
- Road numbers 4434, 4519, 4562, 4596 and 5017
- Ex-BNSF Heritage II repainted to Heritage III
- GE Safety cab with “gull-wing” roof profile, low headlight, and four (4) side windows
- Operating front deck mounted LED ditch lights
- Short snowplow with open doors
- 5-step stepwells
- Narrow profile end handrails
- Octagonal antenna dome
- Motive Equipment Inc. (MEI) ME7000 HVAC Unit
- Late angled engine cab profile with tri-fold power assembly access doors
- Late non-flanged exhaust stack housing
- High-mounted rear sandfiller
- Early lifting lugs on ends of radiator wings
- Separate air tanks with lower mounting brackets
- Fuel tank mounted steel bell
- Dual fuel fills per side
- Paint color matches Tru-Color Paint color TCP010 Black
Rivet Counter DASH 9-44CW Locomotives Also Feature
- Several different road numbers
- Printed and LED lighted number boards
- Four (4) cabs
- “Gullwing” with three (3) side windows
- “Gullwing” with four (4) side window
- Standard safety cab with low headlight
- Standard safety cab with high headlight
- Dayton Phoenix (DPG) Model 280620 or Motive Equipment (MEI) ME7000 HVAC Units
- GE Hi-Ad trucks with separately applied brake cylinders and air plumbing
- Nose door with or without window
- Four (4) step or five (5) step stepwells
- Narrow or wide profile end handrails
- Early (curved), late (angled) or late (angled) with “tri-fold” power assembly access doors engine cab profile
- Early flanged or late non-flanged exhaust stack housing
- Early or late lifting lugs on ends of radiator wings
- Low or high rear sand filler
- Separate air tanks with lower or upper mounting brackets
- Three (3) types of fuel fills per side: single; dual; dual with rear fill blanked
- GE “nub” pattern walkway tread
- Accurately profiled frame with separately applied plumbing and cabling
- Detailed cab interior with floor, rear wall, seats, and desktop
- Tinted cab side windows
- “Bathtub” exhaust silencer
- 5,000 gallon fuel tank
- Factory-applied detail parts: wire grab irons, snowplow, trainline hoses, 3-hose MU clusters, MU cable, uncoupling levers, windshield wipers, mirrors, sunshades, air tanks, fuel tank mounted bell, brake wheel, exhaust stack, and more
- Semi-scale Type E knuckle couplers – Micro-Trains compatible
- Body mounted coupler box – accepts Micro-Trains 1015/1016 type couplers
- Motor with 5-pole skew wound armature
- Dual flywheels
- All-wheel drive
- All-wheel electrical pick-up
- Directional LED headlights
- Printing and lettering legible under magnification
- Operates on Code 55 and 80 rail
- Durable packaging safely stores model
- Minimum Radius: 9 ¾”
- Recommended Radius: 11”
DCC & sound equipped locomotives also feature
- ESU-LokSound Next18 Select Micro DCC and sound decoder with “Full Throttle”
- Cube-type speaker
- Accurate FDL-16 prime mover and auxiliary sounds, horn, bell, and more
- Operates on both DC and DCC layouts
DCC equipped locomotives also feature
- ESU Next18 Micro DCC “motor only” decoder
DCC & sound ready locomotives also feature
- Operates on DC layouts
- DCC ready with Next18 connector
* Note: some sound and lighting functions on DCC & sound-equipped versions are not operable using DC
The N Scale GE DASH 9-44CW is made under trademark license from General Electric Transportation.
General Electric wrestled the title of top domestic locomotive builder from EMD during the late 1980s with their Dash-8 series. GE once again positioned themselves to shakeup the locomotive world yet again less than a decade later. Entering the 1990s, GE completely revamped their locomotive lineup by utilizing customer feedback, learning from experience gained from previous locomotive series, and improvements in technology.
A single C44-9W demonstrator unit, numbered 8601, made its debut in 1993 (and later became C&NW 8601). While similar at first glance to predecessor models like the C40-8 and C40-8W, the Dash-9 series featured a few notable physical differences. Built on a slightly longer platform that allowed for a massive 5,000 gallon fuel tank, Dash-9s also featured thicker radiator “wings” at the rear of the carbody. This is usually the quickest way to differentiate them from previous models.
Thanks to its long production span and customer options, small detail differences could be noted between various customer orders. This includes changes with HVAC system vendors (the large “A/C” box behind the cab on the conductors side), engine cab profile, radiator lifting lugs, hood end, trucks, fuel tank, stepwells, operator’s cab, and even handrail profiles.
The C44-9W proved to be extremely popular over its production span with over 3,500 locomotives being sold new to ATSF, BC Rail, BNSF, CN, C&NW, NS (including 100 spartan cab equipped versions, nicknamed “Top Hats”), QNS&L, SP, and UP.
NS was an important customer with over 1,000 Dash-9s on the roster. They preferred customized models in the form of 100 spartan-cab equipped, 4,000hp C40-9s (nicknamed “Top Hats”) and numerous examples of safety cab-equipped versions rated at 4,000hp, and designated as C40-9Ws. All C40-9/Ws would eventually be uprated to 4,400hp with their designations changed accordingly.
Over the years, the Dash-9s could be found in a variety of assignments. Santa Fe’s C44-9Ws were delivered in the famed red and silver “Superfleet” scheme and could be found hurtling across the southwest with hot piggyback trailer and container trains in tow.
Southern Pacific’s units were some of the first new six-axle power on the beleaguered railroad’s roster in more than a decade. They were pressed into a variety of assignments ranging from hot intermodal trains to coal and iron ore drags.
Chicago & North Western’s units made their debut in flashy “lightning stripe” livery and handled numerous assignments during their brief tenure before being absorbed by Union Pacific.
The Dash-9 series remained in production until the early 2000s when it was superseded by GE’s “Evolution Series” ES40/44-series models. Age has begun to catch up with the earliest C44-9W and related models so some railroads are storing and/or rebuilding these veteran units. NS’s oldest units, the spartan-cab C40-9s, are being rebuilt with the latest GE safety cab for increased crew comfort and safety plus AC-traction for increased performance.
Originally built in the early 1990s, some of BNSF’s former Santa Fe fleet are also in the process of being rebuilt with AC-traction to extend their service lives and improve their performance.
Built over a long timeframe, and proving to be a solid, upgradeable platform, the C44-9W family of locomotives including rebuilds is sure to remain a fixture on today’s railroads for the foreseeable future.
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