As I work through the cabinet collection, the next E6 locomotive to be upgraded with Soundtraxx Tsunami 2 DCC/Sound, LEDs, and Sergent couplers is Kansas City Southern #4.  Like all EMD E6 locomotives previously described, this too is a Broadway Limited Imports model (circa 2013?).

After upgrading eight such BLI units, this one went very smoothly and very quickly – a Friday evening to remove the coupler & modify the coupler box, carefully lift the body, disconnect the wiring (& snip the connectors off), remove the factory decoder, mount the new decoder, and a Saturday evening to solder the connections, test the unit, program the DCC address, install the coupler, mount the body, program the decoder (using JMRI DecoderPro), test again, and take photographs.  Oh yes, and have some fun running her around the engine terminal!


Representative of the pre-war railroad era of “Modernism”, the EMD styling group designed a unique and attractive paint scheme; one that would be used to identify the KCS for years to follow.  However, this scheme was evolutionary – the first KCS E-units were painted in a lightning stripe scheme and the nose logos had changed a few times, even with the arrow pointing the opposite way.

KCS bought the EMC E3 Demonstrator (EMC s/n 822, August 1938) in 1939 and renumbered her to KCS 1.  They followed this up with purchases of two more production E3 models (both A-units) KCS 2 (EMC s/n 938, August 1939) and KCS 3 (EMC s/n 1034, June 1940).  The last pre-war E-units (also as A-units) were very similar E6 KCS 4 (EMD s/n 1431) and KCS 5 (EMD s/n 1432), delivered in January of 1942.  Since America was fully involved in the Second World War at this time, EMD E6 production was halted after filling all pre-war orders – sixteen A-units for the Louisville & Nashville, the last of which was delivered in September 1942.


I don’t have much more info on these interesting locomotives, other than they primarily headed the KCS premiere 1940 streamlined Southern Belle (Kansas City – New Orleans).  This train was composed of both new Pullman-Standard lightweight cars and KCS-rebuilt heavyweight cars (initially three sets each).


In a Morning Sun book (the Illinois Central Through Passenger volume, I think), I read that these engines were renumbered into the 20-series in January 1942 – they were renumbered this way, but maybe not at that time as KCS 4 & 5 were only delivered that month.

Here are more pictures of KCS 4…