Take the METRA survey....

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Take the METRA survey....
Posted by CMStPnP on Monday, December 23, 2019 11:36 PM

Please tell them to abandon those ridiculous Gallery car design and enter the 21st Century, finally.    They should go with the Bi-Level Siemens cars they use in Germany (half the seats face forwards other half backwards......no flipping of seats), they could then at least have better ride quality on higher speed corridors as well as share a pool of spare parts with Amtrak Midwest, which seems to also be standardizing on Siemens.

http://trn.trains.com/news/news-wire/2019/12/23-metra-launches-survey-on-features-for-new-railcars

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, December 24, 2019 6:24 AM

The survey (on surveymonkey.com) is provided directly from the link in the Newswire post.  It has some weird priorities and a couple of outright lies (for example that walkover seats would preclude USB or synthesized-AC charging ports  or armrests).  I thought there was also some inherent bias in the default ordering of some of the items combined with the relative difficulty of ordering them and then keeping them ordered, at least on an iPhone.  I have AT&T U-verse Wi-Fi internet where I am and the page access crashed so many times I abandoned the effort and will have to wait to get in using a better browser.

EDIT: got in and finished.  I mentioned that both USB and 60Hz power with battery backup for HEP interruptions were important things to provide, and that good broadband download access to large numbers of clients was a perceived priority (adding that they could bill for improved upload bandwidth, especially if they establish some kind of 'business class' for commuters.

I was amused by the cupholder question, but it does have to be said they would be useful.  Interesting to consider how tray-tables might be implemented in a number of potential walkover seat designs (e.g., under the backrest pad and frame on both sides, with one table opening on articulated arms to either direction interlocked with the back latch) although I rated tray tables comparatively low for commuter trains.

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Posted by charlie hebdo on Tuesday, December 24, 2019 8:59 AM

CMStPnP

Please tell them to abandon those ridiculous Gallery car design and enter the 21st Century, finally.    They should go with the Bi-Level Siemens cars they use in Germany (half the seats face forwards other half backwards......no flipping of seats), they could then at least have better ride quality on higher speed corridors as well as share a pool of spare parts with Amtrak Midwest, which seems to also be standardizing on Siemens.

http://trn.trains.com/news/news-wire/2019/12/23-metra-launches-survey-on-features-for-new-railcars

 

Hooray!!! 

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Posted by CMStPnP on Thursday, December 26, 2019 10:18 AM

Overmod
 Interesting to consider how tray-tables might be implemented in a number of potential walkover seat designs

Why do they need walk over or flippable seats?    Most transit systems abandoned those a long time ago.     Amtrak Chicago-Milwaukee runs just fine with half the coach seats facing backwards and the other half forwards.    Mid point of the car they have a pair of seats facing each other.     You know what?    Travelers have grown so used to the setup there is no longer a preference for forward facing or rear facing seats.   Folks are just happy with a seat and window.

Thought the cup holder option was rather humourous given the tray option.   I think with paper straws.......far fewer people are going to order soda's to go because the damn straw has a life span shorter than the fizz in the drink.....lol.

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Posted by Overmod on Thursday, December 26, 2019 6:28 PM

CMStPnP
Travelers have grown so used to the setup there is no longer a preference for forward facing or rear facing seats.

Back in the day, everyone I'd talk to despised even the idea of having to ride backward, especially on a faster train (this was in the era when Silverliners routinely exceeded 100mph on local runs).  I am QUITE certain that if you asked people even today if they 'prefer' to ride backward when there is a sensible alternative, you'd see reversible seats become a preference again.  Note that whole generations of kids have grown up seeing Captain Scarlet's SPV or spending their early riding career in rear-facing seats, and understand how much more accident survival comes with them -- but you do NOT see anything but extremely optional seats in private vehicles, even in minivans, that can even be turned around for family games or light conferences.  

The issue here is a little different: how to provide METRA with all the putative advantages of a precast irreversible seat in a walkover ... no one's going to make a horizontally-turnable approach work correctly with short seat tracking and current 'turn' circumstances ... and not involve either excessive cost or increased chance of failure or sabotage/vandalism.

The tray tables are a place to put devices on stands, or rest laptops so you can work conveniently on them or lay out papers that don't fly everywhere when you move, not just as places to rest your food or drink.  Having cupholders that 'fold' out of these when down is something many automakers have built -- and that I've seen fail in a great variety of pathetic ways, often with very few 'iterations' and with careful handling.  The problem is that putting them anywhere that doesn't fold into a thin form factor requires them to take up lateral space in the seat structure that takes away from the sum of seat widths plus aisle space in the car.  You will NOT want them on the backrest structure somewhere, whether or not the track has horizontal-alignment or cross-level 'issues' anywhere...

A proper degradable straw is made of a plastic-like material either similar to starch (which is basically 'engineered' polymerized sugars) or a chitin derivative.  It will only biodegrade over a period of months, and certainly won't deform or split when being recklessly 'tapped' out of its wrapper or bent after insertion in the drink.

I see no reason to tolerate wretched compromise in design when there are, in fact, reasonably cost-effective approaches to do it right.

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Posted by CMStPnP on Thursday, December 26, 2019 9:23 PM

Overmod
I see no reason to tolerate wretched compromise in design when there are, in fact, reasonably cost-effective approaches to do it right.

They are using paper straws in the bar of the Dallas Hyatt Regency where I waited most of the time for my train to arrive in Dallas.    It's connected to both the Amtrak station and platform via an underground tunnel.    Much better waiting area.    Anyways, they were attempting paper straws, two to a drink but the paper was not faring very well or lasting very long before the straw went limp.

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Posted by charlie hebdo on Saturday, January 4, 2020 12:12 PM

Back to the Metra survey about new railcars:

https://chi.streetsblog.org/2020/01/03/whats-your-metra-railcar-redesign-wish-list/

The article mentions these new Sydney, Australia cars:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sydney_Trains_A_%26_B_sets

https://nswtrains.fandom.com/wiki/Sydney_Trains_A_and_B_Sets

These are double-deckers, electric,  but they could be ordered as u powered sets. 

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