Dual control stand

Dual control stand refers to the North American practice of some railroads to have two control stands (a "control stand" is a diesel locomotive subsystem which integrates all engine and brake functional controls within the operational radius of the locomotive engineer's left forearm from his/her customary seating position, facing forward at all times) in the cab of a hood unit locomotive, one on either side facing opposite directions to allow operation either long hood or short hood forward at all times). This practice was largely used by the Norfolk and Western, as well as Southern Railway, during the 1960s and 1970s, but could also be found on select Erie Lackawanna, Reading, Penn Central and Western Pacific locomotives during the same time period

The rationale for having two control stands was to put the engineer on the proper side of the locomotive regardless of the direction of travel; this would reduce the need to turn the locomotive at a terminal.

Present railroad practice is to operate two or more locomotives in "multiple unit" configurations, with the "front" locomotive pointing "front", and with the rear-most, or all rear locomotives facing "rear". This practice eliminates "turning of equipment".

List of locomotives built with dual control stands


  • Paul K. Withers (2007). Norfolk Southern Locomotive Directory 2006-2007. Withers Publishing.
  • Larry DeYoung (2004). Erie Lackawanna SDP45s - Sept/Oct 2004 Diesel Era. Withers Publishing.
  • Joseph A. Strapac (1997). Southern Pacific Historic Diesels, Volume 4. Shade Tree Books.
  • Joseph A. Strapac (1999). Southern Pacific Historic Diesels, Volume 6. Shade Tree Books.
  • Joseph Strapac (1984). Western Pacific Diesel Years. Overland Models.

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