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MR&T heritage fleet diesel locomotive roster in HO scale

By Cody Grivno | July 4, 2022

Meet Milwaukee, Racine & Troy locomotives from the 2014 heritage fleet

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Photo of seven HO scale diesel locomotives on scenicked model railroad

MR&T heritage fleet diesel locomotive roster

Photo of seven HO scale diesel locomotives on scenicked model railroad
MR&T heritage fleet diesel locomotives: All seven of the Milwaukee, Racine & Troy heritage units were gathered for a group photo at Williams Bay, Wis., before entering service.

MR&T heritage fleet diesel locomotives: The Milwaukee, Racine & Troy, Model Railroader’s staff layout, has been around for more than 45 years. Similar to many full-size railroads, the freelanced MR&T has changed paint schemes on its diesel locomotives over the years. Following the lead of two Class 1 railroads, I developed a seven locomotive “heritage fleet” for the MR&T in 2014.

The original story on the MR&T heritage fleet appeared in the January 2014 MR. The excerpt below is from my article “A look back at the MR&T’s heritage fleet” in the December 2020 issue of MR:

In 2005 and 2006, Union Pacific unveiled six full-size locomotives decorated for railroads it merged with. In 2012 Norfolk Southern upped the game and debuted 20 units painted for predecessor roads to celebrate its 30th anniversary.

As Model Railroader prepared to celebrate its 80th anniversary in 2014, it seemed like an appropriate time to develop a heritage fleet for the MR&T.

The previous MR&T paint schemes were natural choices, but two units didn’t seem like much of a fleet. Then I looked in the display cases in the MR&T layout room and had an “aha!” moment. Why not use paint schemes from previous project layouts? That added the Kinnickinnic Ry. & Dock Co., Seaboard Central, and Turtle Creek Central to the mix. I also threw former Kalmbach librarian George Drury’s MR&T passenger scheme and the Troy & Northern into the mix.

Photo of seven HO scale diesel locomotives on white background.
Two showcases in the MR&T club room feature historic models from the layout’s past. Cody adapted the paint schemes on these units to fit General Electric Dash 8-40B and Dash 8-40BW road locomotives.
Photo of seven HO scale diesel locomotives on white background.
Photo of blue and white wide-cab HO scale locomotive on white background
Milwaukee, Racine & Troy no. 1175 is one of two Dash 8-40BW diesel locomotives in the heritage fleet. The locomotive is decorated in the MR&T’s Amtrak Blue scheme used from 1979 to 1988.
Photo of blue and white wide-cab HO scale locomotive on white background
Photo of blue and white HO scale locomotive on white background
Dash 8-40B no. 1101 is painted in the MR&T’s Amtrak Blue and Reefer White scheme. The paint scheme was used from 1989 to 2003.
Photo of blue and white HO scale locomotive on white background
Photo of gray, blue, and orange HO scale locomotive on white background
Kalmbach librarian George Drury’s passenger locomotive scheme served as the inspiration for Dash 8-40B no. 1121. Around the same time Don Manlick of DM Decals found the artwork for this scheme and made fresh decals. This was a huge time saver, especially when lettering the long hood.
Photo of gray, blue, and orange HO scale locomotive on white background
Photo of orange, gray, and red HO scale locomotive on white background
The Troy & Northern was a fictional short line on both versions of the Milwaukee, Racine & Troy. The railroad had one locomotive, a hand-me-down Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe CF7 painted in a Milwaukee Road-inspired scheme.
Photo of orange, gray, and red HO scale locomotive on white background
Photo of red and blue wide-cab HO scale locomotive on white background
Past magazine project layouts inspired the remaining paint schemes in the heritage fleet. Dash 8-40BW no. 1150 is decorated for the Seaboard Central, which was featured in MR in 1985.
Photo of red and blue wide-cab HO scale locomotive on white background
Photo of red and black HO scale locomotive on white background
The Turtle Creek Central was the subject of HO scale project railroads in 2003 and 2005. Microscale set MC-5001 includes the “Route of the Dashing Turtle” slogan found on the long hood.
Photo of red and black HO scale locomotive on white background
Photo of three HO scale diesel locomotives in various paint schemes on white background
Atlas produced two Milwaukee, Racine & Troy heritage units in HO (shown) and N scales, as well as the railroad’s Operation Lifesaver engine. Dash 8-40BW no. 1175 is named the Andrew P. Sperandeo to honor the designer of the current MR&T.
Photo of three HO scale diesel locomotives in various paint schemes on white background

To see a list of paint and decals used on each locomotive, please watch the following video.

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