NJTransit Atlantic City Rail Line Speed Limit

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NJTransit Atlantic City Rail Line Speed Limit
Posted by alloboard on Tuesday, February 21, 2017 11:34 PM

What is the maximum speed of trains of the Atlantic City Rail Line? I thought that they went suprisingly fast like 90-100 when I was in one. They were sure faster than the Trenton to NYC NJT trains. How embarassing! Diesels run faster on a less buisier line.

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Posted by Buslist on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 11:45 AM

alloboard

What is the maximum speed of trains of the Atlantic City Rail Line? I thought that they went suprisingly fast like 90-100 when I was in one. They were sure faster than the Trenton to NYC NJT trains. How embarassing! Diesels run faster on a less buisier line.

 

 

suggest you recalibrate.

Trenton NYC is one of the fastest on the NEC @125. Some years ago ATK was planning to upgrade parts of it to 160. Haven't heard of any progress there .

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Posted by alloboard on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 12:04 PM

Yes only for Amtrak trains. The local commuter trains going to NYC are slow.

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Posted by NorthWest on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 3:48 PM

I don't think the Atlantic City Line has any form of automatic train stop, so the trains are probably limited to 79MPH. The stations are farther apart, though, so the trains spend a lot more time at their maximum speed.

The NEC line as a lot of closely spaced stops, so trains spend most of their time accelerating and decelerating rather than running at their higher top speed.

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Posted by RME on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 6:48 PM

alloboard
The local commuter trains going to NYC are slow.

When did that happen?  Even in the 1980s I regularly observed 'all-stops' locals with Silverliners routinely reaching speeds over 100mph indicated between some of the stations.  You could tell this because it was possible to ride in the rear vestibule and fold down the motorman's seatboard for an 'observation car' effect, and observe the brake gauges and speedometer directly.

Occasionally you'd see startling high speed on Atlantic City service RDC speedometers.  But that was almost certainly because some of those speedometers were Italian-car optimistic.

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Posted by conrailman on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 6:56 PM

Speed is 70 to 79, i think Atlantic City Line.

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Posted by alloboard on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 8:38 PM

Trust me they can go up to at least 90. The GP38-40 can go 100MPH The train was swaying. I remember that had to be more than 80.

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Posted by RME on Wednesday, February 22, 2017 9:04 PM

I know of no GP38 that is geared higher than 65mph, and it would rapidly run out of usable drawbar TE at its constant maximum horsepower with any appreciable passenger load long before it reached 90mph.  Some of the GP40Ps had 61:16 gears for "77mph" (in other words, essentially full track speed under the 80mph ATC requirement) but again that's a long way from 100mph.

Yes, the F40s had taller ratios (57:20 for 103mph; 56:21 for 110) but I have never heard of a GP40 having those ratios.  (You could order a GP50 with 42" wheels and 92mph gearing, but acceleration times might require a calendar in heavy commuter service...)

It's not as if the Atlantic City route is inherently slow -- at just before the turn of the century, some of the Camden-Atlantic City expresses were the fastest trains in the world.  But I don't think gambling expresses command quite the same justification that the competition back then provided... or that state-funded agencies would spend the considerable money needed to take Atlantic City service legally past 79mph when those funds could be applied to new or better service elsewhere.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Thursday, February 23, 2017 7:00 AM

The fact that the train was swaying is no guaranteed indicator of speed.  Condition of the track is also a factor.  I can remember riding a Rock Island suburban train west of Blue Island in the mid-1970's and it was swaying at 20 MPH.  This was at a time when crews received a five-page train order to cover the slow orders between La Salle Street Station and Joliet.

The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by Electroliner 1935 on Thursday, February 23, 2017 11:06 PM

My recollection of the one time I rode Amtrak to Atlantic City, the train had an ex-metroliner cab car and we were operating in push mode. The train had the PRR cab signals and we did run over 80 mph. I never left the A C station and one memory I have is of the little older ladies riding back home after visiting the casinos and counting their remaining change. Kind of sad. 

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Posted by RME on Saturday, February 25, 2017 1:10 AM

Does anyone here remember how fast the ACE (the train with the diesel on one end and the electric on the other) ran on the 'diesel' end of the route? 

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Posted by oltmannd on Saturday, February 25, 2017 6:57 AM

alloboard

What is the maximum speed of trains of the Atlantic City Rail Line? I thought that they went suprisingly fast like 90-100 when I was in one. They were sure faster than the Trenton to NYC NJT trains. How embarassing! Diesels run faster on a less buisier line.

 

80 mph is the maximum authorized speed.  The line is cab siganalled the whole way.  The original plans were for the bottom 10-15 miles to be good for 90 mph, but that was scrapped when Amtrak pulled out.  I don't know if Amtrak ever operated at 90 mph or not.  

The GP40PH-2B locomotives that were typically used for many years by NJT are only allowed 90 mph, anyway, mostly due to their weight.

The big problem with the line isn't the speeds south of Lindewold, it's the running time from Lindenwold to 30th St.  If you are commuting to Phila, it's much quicker to hop off the AC train at Lindenwold and take PATCO Hi Speed Line the rest of the way.

-Don (Random stuff, mostly about trains - what else? http://blerfblog.blogspot.com/

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Posted by oltmannd on Saturday, February 25, 2017 7:27 AM

Electroliner 1935

My recollection of the one time I rode Amtrak to Atlantic City, the train had an ex-metroliner cab car and we were operating in push mode. The train had the PRR cab signals and we did run over 80 mph. I never left the A C station and one memory I have is of the little older ladies riding back home after visiting the casinos and counting their remaining change. Kind of sad. 

 

Electroliner 1935

My recollection of the one time I rode Amtrak to Atlantic City, the train had an ex-metroliner cab car and we were operating in push mode. The train had the PRR cab signals and we did run over 80 mph.  

Amtrak typically operated with the cab car on the east end, locomotive pulling back to Phila. 

Some video here https://youtu.be/hEhb9IWH2hw

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Posted by Lansdowne John on Thursday, March 09, 2017 10:17 AM

alloboard

What is the maximum speed of trains of the Atlantic City Rail Line? I thought that they went suprisingly fast like 90-100 when I was in one. They were sure faster than the Trenton to NYC NJT trains. How embarassing! Diesels run faster on a less buisier line.

 

Very fast service

I ride this line on a regular basis and as was mentioned below Lindenwold the speeds are fast. I have timed the train out my window using mileage markers and a watch with a second hand. Most of the time at high speed I have est. Train speed as 75 MPH or so. So I would say the maximum speed is rated as 79 MPH. I also did ride this line in the old days of the RDC's and got to ride in the front cab on several occasions. Back then with limited stops and low intermediate station ridership we arrived early at Atlantic City As much as 10 minutes early. I don't know how accurate the speedometers were but I did see it hit 100 MPH on many sections of the line. 

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Posted by JL Chicago on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 12:12 PM
GP40s were rated for 100 mph per my copy of an ETT from 2001. Although I think the track MAS was 90.
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Posted by oltmannd on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 6:54 PM

Lansdowne John
Train speed as 75 MPH or so. So I would say the maximum speed is rated as 79 MPH.

Line has cab signals, so speed limit is 80 mph.

Lansdowne John
I also did ride this line in the old days of the RDC's and got to ride in the front cab on several occasions. Back then with limited stops and low intermediate station ridership we arrived early at Atlantic City As much as 10 minutes early. I don't know how accurate the speedometers were but I did see it hit 100 MPH on many sections of the line. 

Some Budd data I saw long ago showed the balance speed of a three car RDC to be somewhere around 85-90 mph.  They did zip along pretty good.  I remember riding from Ocean City to Lindenwold in 1975.  It was full throttle nearly all the time.  It felt like 85 mph or so north of Tuckahoe.

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Posted by oltmannd on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 6:55 PM

JL Chicago
GP40s were rated for 100 mph per my copy of an ETT from 2001. Although I think the track MAS was 90.
 

The GP40-2PHs are limited to 90 mph because ride quality.  

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Posted by oltmannd on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 6:56 PM

alloboard

Trust me they can go up to at least 90. The GP38-40 can go 100MPH The train was swaying. I remember that had to be more than 80.

 

Not if the crew wants to keep their job.  Speed recorders, you know...

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Posted by alloboard on Tuesday, March 28, 2017 8:42 PM

There was a branch to Ocean City? RDCs at 80-90mph seems very fast for an RED to me.

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Posted by oltmannd on Wednesday, March 29, 2017 8:36 AM

alloboard

There was a branch to Ocean City? RDCs at 80-90mph seems very fast for an RED to me.

 

The Pennsylvania-Reading Seashore Lines operated all the former Reading and PRR line in South Jersey (except for the CNJ's weedy little line to Bridgeton and Mauricetown.)  In the 1970's service was down to a handful of trains, all terminating at Lindenwold.  I think there were three to AC each day, and one combined train to Ocean City and Cape May.  The combined train split at Tuckahoe with two RDCs going to Ocean City and one to Cape May.

Between Tuckahoe and Winslow Jct, the line is flat and mostly tangent and even in the 1970's still pretty smooth.  Running wide open, the three car Budds would creep over 80 towards 90 mph.  The sort of slack attitude toward speed limits was pretty commonplace then, not like the strict adherence there is now.

The top speed of an RDC train is governed somewhat by how many cars are in the train.  The first cars has to cut the wind.

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Posted by oltmannd on Wednesday, March 29, 2017 8:41 AM

NJT_63_1024AC train at Berlin circa 1975

 

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Posted by oltmannd on Wednesday, March 29, 2017 8:42 AM

NJT_64alt_1024AC train on the main at Winslow Jct

 

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Posted by oltmannd on Wednesday, March 29, 2017 8:43 AM

NJT_65_1024Lindenwold

 

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Posted by RME on Thursday, March 30, 2017 10:35 AM

alloboard
RDCs at 80-90mph seems very fast for an RED to me.

There were places they would run them at balancing speed -- whatever that turned out to be -- where the signal system allowed.

A potential 'catch', though, is that RDC speedometers were notoriously optimistic, like those on some Italian cars, so you might easily see the needle pushing "100mph" while the train was in the balancing range indicated in a prior post.  I thought the ride for single cars in the high speed ranges was ... not as good ... as it was for longer trains of RDCs.

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Posted by RTroy on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 4:05 PM
I remember riding LIRR PJ rust bucket cars behind GP38's; wonderful sound but a very leisurely ride most of the time. But when pulled by a pair, pickup was very nice.
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Posted by oltmannd on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 4:09 PM

RME

 

 
alloboard
RDCs at 80-90mph seems very fast for an RED to me.

 

There were places they would run them at balancing speed -- whatever that turned out to be -- where the signal system allowed.

A potential 'catch', though, is that RDC speedometers were notoriously optimistic, like those on some Italian cars, so you might easily see the needle pushing "100mph" while the train was in the balancing range indicated in a prior post.  I thought the ride for single cars in the high speed ranges was ... not as good ... as it was for longer trains of RDCs.

 

I alway use the timed milepost method, grabbing a few consecutive.

 

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Posted by Deggesty on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 8:02 PM

Don, I have long understood that cab signals were as good as ATC or ATS, so far as the ICC was concerned, for allowing high speeds--with either ATC or ATS, the ICC had no restrictions as to speed (of course, track conditions and curvature will dictate lower speeds).  Does having ATC no longer allow the same speed as ATC and ATS?

Johnny

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Posted by RME on Wednesday, May 03, 2017 9:55 PM

Cab signals will not stop the train if it runs a block, which ATS does, or if it exceeds a permitted speed limit set by signals, as ATC does. 

In practice, a good ATC system will include continuous cab display, as it gives immediate notice of a restrictive condition or accident to the track structure.  But it is quite possible (and cost-saving) to have nothing but a system that stops any train that 'runs a signal'.  Whereas an unwatched cab signal is no better than a missed distant or home signal as far as the train-control order is concerned...

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Posted by Electroliner 1935 on Thursday, May 04, 2017 6:38 PM

Most Cab Signal systems incorporate a braking system that are similar to ATS. Pass a signal that is more restricting (Like Approach Medium 45 mph) while cruising at 60 mph and if the alerter is ignored, there will be an emergency brake application. And I I think if a service application is initiated, it will forstall the emergency application. I suppose some RR's did not have that.

Don, My recollection was that Pennsy's system was modified for freight at some point due to issues with emergency brake applications causing derailments until the Gunpowder crash. Otherwise I thought it was an ATC system. But the GRS ATS system could only stop a train at a block signal where the transponder (shoe) was located.

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Posted by RME on Friday, May 05, 2017 10:58 AM

Electroliner 1935
My recollection was that Pennsy's system was modified for freight at some point due to issues with emergency brake applications causing derailments until the Gunpowder crash.

My recollection was that Pennsy's system as originally built was signal-only (I don't have my references handy, but all the details involved tone modulation and subsequent avoidance of harmonics from 25Hz power) and was then given some "ATC" add-ons in the wake of a couple of accidents after the late '40s (LIRR had its own proprietary little kludge) -- I think culminating in the 'Captain' system in the 1960s. 

If I remember discussion of the Chase wreck correctly, the contemporary Conrail 'freight' setup had the alerter whistle and all, but did not have a connection with the brake system at all (it being dangerous to set train emergency on long, heavy fast freight consists as a 'penalty brake' as with default passenger use of ATS - this was a known issue with NJT's experimentation with their PTC in the '80s).

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