Southern Pacific #1423

Technical Data

BuilderGM EMD, La Grange, IL
Build Number7314
Frame NumberE1045-29
Wheel ArrangementB-B
Gross Weight123 tons


  • 1949, built new as Southern Pacific No. 1423
  • 1965, renumbered by SP to No. 1951
  • 1972, rebuilt by the SP Houston Shops and upgraded to NW-2E
  • Renumbered by SP to No. 1335
  • 1986, retired by SP
  • Purchased by Parr Terminal Railroad, Richmond, CA (date unknown) and renumbered to No.1402
  • 2000 (November), donated to the PLA by Parr Terminal
  • Restored to original SP Tiger Stripe paint scheme and number
  • 2001 (July), in service, Niles Canyon Railway, Sunol, CA

The Pacific Locomotive Association has returned to service on the Niles Canyon Railway one of Southern Pacific’s first diesel switchers. The 1000HP type NW2 was built in 1949 by the General Motors Electro-Motive Division as SP No.1423.

SP No.1423 was part of a second batch of 40 NW2’s delivered in 1949, with 23 going to the Pacific Lines (1403-1425) and 17 going to the Texas & New Orleans (72-88). In 1965 the locomotive was renumbered to No.1951 and painted in the SP gray and scarlet.

In 1972, SP decided to add postwar NW2’s to their rebuild program and the No.1423 was rebuilt at the Houston Shops. In September 1972, the locomotive was upgraded to an NW2-E and renumbered to No.1335.

The locomotive was retired from the Southern Pacific in 1986, and eventually ended up at the Parr Terminal Railroad of Richmond, California. Parr Terminal operated the locomotive until 1998 and then donated it to the Pacific Locomotive Association in 2000.

The locomotive arrived at the Niles Canyon Railway during December of 2000 and a seven month rebuild was begun. Association Volunteer Ken Asmus led the work, some of which included: removing and having the blowers rebuilt, top end work on the engine, a complete air brake system rebuild, new traction motor cabling installed, and other electrical work.

As part of the restoration, the locomotive was backdated to its original appearance by replacing the sealed beam headlights, installing a single chime air horn and a new bell. The final touch was painting the locomotive in the black and orange Southern Pacific “Tiger Stripe” paint scheme as it was delivered from EMD.

The No. 1423 has been operating on Niles Canyon Railway on a regular basis since July 2001.

SP #1423 as its later SP #1335 seen here in Brisbane, CA on October, 1979. Photo by and used with permission by Rob Sarberenyi

SP #1423 pushes restored SP caboose #1101 on a little caboose hop to pick-up our MOW Build East team for a ride back to Brightside yard for a thank you lunch. 03.05.2022
Photo by Chris Hauf – Used with permission
SP #1423 pulls a weekend Niles Canyon Railway train ride seen here just east of Farmer’s Crossing along Highway 84 about a mile from reaching Sunol. 02.13.2022
Photo by Chris Hauf – Used with permission
SP #1423 pulls a weekend Niles Canyon Railway train ride from Sunol through the late winter flowers. 02.13.2022
Photo by Chris Hauf – Used with permission
#1423 enters the Sunol station platform to start a day of rides. 02.10.2024
Photo by Chris Hauf – Used with permission