Union Pacific Streamliner 3rd Train

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This page was last updated on May 15, 2023.

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(Portions of this Streamliner timeline are included as part of the larger UP Passenger Service Timeline)

3rd Train (M-10002)

M-10002 (1936-1947)

May 16, 1936
M-10002 entered revenue service as the "City of Los Angeles." This is the first train to have two power units, and to have power units that can be uncoupled from their nine-car fully-articulated train.

M-10000, M-10001 and M-10002 had the same car body cross-section, with tapered sides.

Tapered sides, 11'-5" overall height (same as M-10004)

Dates Service
May 15, 1936 to December 25, 1937 City of Los Angeles
December 25, 1937 to February 21, 1938 (removed from COLA service)
February 21, 1938 to August 18, 1938 City of Los Angeles, joining the 7th Train to provide "Every Third Day" service
August 1938 to June 1939 (stored)
June 1939 to July 1941 City of Portland
July 1941 to April 1942 (stored) (In August 1941, car 10403 was transferred to the 4th Train, in City of Portland service; renumbered to CP-408)
April 12, 1942 to March 1943 Portland-Seattle Connection, Trains 457-458
March 13, 1943 3rd Train retired. (Car Names, Numbers and Consists, by Robert Wayner, 1972, page 140)
March 1943 to December 1946 (stored)
March 1943 three cars scrapped: 12201, 10404, 12760
March 1943 Cinema transferred to the 4th Train
February 1946 Boulder Canyon transferred to 4th Train
1947 Last remaining car, 10301, scrapped
December 1946 to December 1947 The two-unit power set was sold in December 1946 to Northrop-Hendy Company.

Jeff Koeller wrote the following about the assignments of M-10002 and the 3rd Train, after leaving COLA service in December 1937, and before entering COP service in June 1939.

The COLA M-10002 and the 3rd Train made its last WB trip leaving Chicago on 12-23-37 (one day early to accommodate those patrons who wished to spend Christmas in Los Angeles) and arriving at Central Station in LA on the 25th. It was then taken out of service for rehabilitation at Omaha. During this interval, the 3rd Train substituted for M-10001 on the City of Portland run from 1-28-38 to 2-15-38, probably with M-10004 (off the now idle COSF 4th Train) as motive power.

On February 21st, 1938, the 3rd Train was restored to COLA operation establishing "Every Third Day" service. UP ads, on the rear cover of the timetable of the same date, plus in local newspapers verify this date, with an illustration of M-10004 along with the new E2 LA-1. I also have a photo of the 3rd COLA powered by M-10004 at SP's Watsonville Junction in early March 1938, detouring via Ogden-Oakland-LA over the SP due to the March 1938 Southern California floods. By May 1938, M-10004 was photographed substituting on the City of Denver, so M-10002 had been restored to the 3rd train by that time. M-10004 was subsequently renumbered to LA-4 and assigned to the new "revised" 4th Train which replaced the 3rd Train in COLA service on 8-18-38.

On 3-28-39, the 3rd Train with M-10002 replaced M-10001 on the City of Portland run. This lasted until August 1941, when the revised 4th Train bumped the 3rd Train from COP service, itself having been superseded by the new COLA 9th Train on 8-3-41. (Jeff Koeller, email dated May 15, 2023)

Consist (1936-1947)

M-10002(A) 1200 HP motor
M-10002(B) 1200 HP motor
12201 baggage, mail
12760 baggage, dormitory-Kitchen
10301 Diner-lounge
Santa Anita 11 section
Boulder Canyon 11 section
Cinema 11 section
Mormon Trail 7 bedroom, 2 compartment
10403 48 seat coach
10404 38 seat buffet-coach

The two-unit power set M-10002 was sold in December 1946 to Northrop-Hendy Company, a joint venture of Northrop Aircraft Company and Joshua Hendy Company formed to advance the development of turboprop aircraft engines. The M-10002 was used as test bed for non-aircraft applications of Northrop Hendy's Turbodyne 10,000 horsepower turboprop aircraft engine. The experiment was abandoned and the two-unit set of locomotives sat on a spur at Northrop Aircraft's plant at El Segundo, California, until they were scrapped in December 1947. (Trains magazine, October 1957, page 25, with photo)

(Read more about M-10002 at Northrop-Hendy)

UP's M-10002 At Northrop-Hendy

(Posted to the UtahRails.net blog on April 22, 2014.)

I've been doing some research about when Union Pacific started using its Gothic lettering, which in turn has resulted in several updates to the information I've found about UP's Streamliners.

While looking at some of the dispositions of the Streamliner cars, I recalled that I never did find more of the story about M-10002, the first City of Los Angeles, being sold to Northrop-Hendy in California, supposedly for gas turbine development.

After spending a couple hours with various online searches, I found that the Northrop-Hendy Company was an equal joint company owned by Northrop Aircraft Company and Joshua Hendy Company. There's a whole story about both the history of Northrop, and the history of Hendy, but the combination was formed to pursue Hendy's development of a turboprop aircraft engine. The initial use was for an upgrade to the B35 bomber aircraft proposed by Northrop.

In 1948, Northrop-Hendy was spun off as the Turbodyne Corporation to continue development of its 10,000-horsepower XT-37 turboprop engine. In 1950, at the direction of the Secretary of the Air Force, General Electric bought the patents, name, and technical data of Turbodyne, and continued the development of the company's turboprop aircraft engine, although the engine itself was still in development and had not yet seen any field testing.

Back to 1947. Union Pacific's William "Bull" Jeffers was the president of the railroad and was looking for a modern equivalent of the single-unit high horsepower that the company had seen in its 6,000 HP Big Boy steam locomotive. He first tried buying a pair of Baldwin's "Centipede" monsters, but the order was canceled in April 1947 because 18 months after the order was placed, Baldwin had not yet started construction.

When news of the Northrop-Hendy 10,000 HP turboprop engine reached the aviation press, it likely caught Jeffer's attention. The M-10002 and its cars (known as the 3rd Train) had already been removed from service in March 1943. Some cars were reassigned and others were scrapped. The two-unit locomotive was officially retired in December 1946. There is a note in Kratville's Union Pacific Streamliners book (page 98) that in 1947 "the two power units were sold to Northrup-Hendy Co. [sic]"

Other railfan sources all show the same information, that the locomotive was sold to Northrop-Hendy. I decided to look at the Trains magazine DVD, and found the attached, from the October 1957 issue, page 25.

The following comes from the October 1957 issue of Trains magazine:

Experiment that died -- Passers-by at Northrop Aircraft's El Segundo (Calif.) plant in 1946 were startled to see once 'latest thing on rails' sitting on a weed-covered spur. Northrop-Hendy Company, a subsidiary of Northrop Aircraft, was experimenting on A and B units of Union Pacific's No. M-10002 in connection with a coal-burning gas turbine. The units, once on City of Los Angeles, were cut up for scrap in December 1947 after experiments were abandoned.

(View the photo and news item from the October 1957 issue of Trains magazine)

The real reason comes from online newspaper research. In the April 14, 1947 issue of the online Sandusky Register-Star-News newspaper, I found a note that mentioned both Turbodyne and Union Pacific: "Their application to airplanes, as well as to other uses, has been studied, and currently a study is being made of the use of the Turbodyne as a locomotive power for railroads, in cooperation with William M. Jeffers of the Union Pacific."

I'd sure like to find out if the locomotive was actually sold, or if UP simply loaned it them. I hate it when research only asks more questions, instead of answering them.

When GE bought the interests of Turbodyne in 1950, I suspect that it would have included all projects like this 10,000-horsepower XT-37 turboprop experimental project. It may not have been classified, but getting access to it would put any researcher up against what any company would consider proprietary. I did a lot of research back in 1988-1990 about UP's and EMD's development of turbochargers. I hit a brick wall when it came time to get better information about EMD's turbocharger design.

Searches for the history of Hendy found that the Joshua Hendy Company was located in Sunnyvale, California, just north of San Jose. It was originally known as the Joshua Hendy Iron Works, building some of the first sawmills on the West Coast, and became very successful supplying mill equipment to the rapidly growing mining industry. The facility at Sunnyvale furnished large industrial equipment for dams, such as gates and valves. The company built large engines for marine vessels during World War I, and continued this role during World War II, including supplying the engines for Liberty ships. After the war, supplying large industrial equipment continued as the company's focus, and in 1947 the Joshua Hendy Iron Works was sold to Westinghouse Corporation to give that company access to the Hendy designs and capability. Throughout the postwar period, Westinghouse used the Sunnyvale facility to provide large and complex military systems, as well as large industrial projects. In 1996, Westinghouse sold the plant to Northrop Grumman, which renamed it Northrop Grumman Marine Systems.

Back when I was working for Uncle Sam, I had a chance to visit what was then the Westinghouse facility at Sunnyvale. Westinghouse had built Peacekeeper (MX) ICBM launch canisters, over 90 feet long and 15 feet in diameter, that were installed in 50 Minuteman ICBM sites in Wyoming. In the early 1990s, we were asked to look at the tooling, jigs and fixtures used to manufacture the launch canisters to determine if we wanted to store it someplace, or let Westinghouse simply scrap it. We were given a nice long tour of the entire Sunnyvale facility because they wanted to impress us with their capability. I recall that the large buildings were all WWII vintage heavy timber construction, with some of the largest metal fabrication machines I have ever seen. As a journeyman boilermaker, I really do appreciate big metal. They literally could make anything. Back in one corner was a set of steam locomotive drivers they were storing for a local restoration group, and in another area of the same building was a completely self-contained ultra clean room used to acclimate the precision high-speed drive gears for Navy nuclear submarines.