Canadian National GP9RMs and Slugs Now Available From Rapido Trains

Between 1981 and 1994, the Canadian National Railway rebuilt 310 of their GMD-built GP9s into 7000-series GP9RM road units, 7000-series yard units and 64 YBU slugs paired with 7200-series GP9RM slug mothers. Rapido Trains is now offering all three major variations of these GP9RMs reproduced in HO scale.

Canadian National GP9RMs and Slugs Now Available From Rapido Trains

HO Scale (1:87)In contrast to EMD’s elegant streamlined E and F-series locomotives, the GP series was the multipurpose utilitarian workhorse that soon proved even more popular to railroads due to its greater ease of use in bidirectional switching operations and direct access to mechanical components.  Building on the success of its pioneering GP7 introduced in 1949, the GP9 was an even bigger hit for GM’s Electro-Motive Division. Between 1954 and 1959, 3,626 GP9s were produced for railroads of all sizes in North America. An additional 646 GP9s were built by General Motors Diesel, EMD’s Canadian subsidiary, for a total of 4,257 GP9s produced when Canadian production ended in 1963

As the GP9 fleet got on in years, many roads chose to rebuild their GP9s from the wheels up with modernized electrical and mechanical components instead of purchasing new power for low speed local work.  The Canadian National Railway was one of these railroads.  Between 1981 and 1994, the CN rebuilt 310 of their GP9s into GP9RMs.  Asides from the aforementioned upgrades, CN’s modernization program also included completely new cabs, chopped short hoods, new carbody air filters where the dynamic brake sections once were and much more.  CN’s GP9RM rebuilds were divided into three classes – 4000-series road units, 7000-series yard units and 7200-series slug mothers paired with 200-series YBU yard slugs.

Rapido’s 4000-class GP9RMs feature snow plow pilots on both ends and the classic “Stripes” livery.

Now available from Rapido Trains are GP9RMs representing those units rebuilt from the original phase II GP9 locomotives, with details corresponding to the earliest rebuilds, right on up to the last releases from this group. Notable features include either Blomberg and Flexicoil trucks where appropriate, voluminous underbody details, full LED lighting including engineer’s control stand, hybrid metal handrails and much more. Starting in 1994, CN applied Belt-Pack remote control systems to the 7200/200 series locomotives. Some of these new features included extra antennas and blinking strobe lights, which are fully replicated on the late-version 7200 series slug mothers from Rapido.  Paint and lettering variations include the CN “Stripes” scheme as well as standard CN “Noodle” in both early and late versions for the yard engines and YBU slugs.

DC+DCC+Sound locomotives equipped with ESU Loksound 5 decoders carry a suggested MSRP of $349.95 while DC+DCC-ready Silent models are $239.95.  Mother+Slug sets are $669.95 equipped with DC+DCC+Sound, or $439.95 for DC+DCC Silent pairs.  Available now at your favorite dealer or direct while supplies last.

Rapido Trains, 500 Alden Road, Unit 21 Markham, Ontario L3R 5H5, Canada;1-855-572-6917;

As with its prototype, numerous electrical and control connections define the pilots of these YBU slugs.  As with its GP9RMs, Rapido’s HO scale YBU slugs also feature a fully functional powered drivetrain, with all wheels driven and providing electrical pickup.

This article was posted on: June 10, 2024