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Classic Train Questions Part Deux (50 Years or Older)

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, August 17, 2021 8:52 AM

OK.  Don't out-think youself.  Grab the obvious on this one:

 

All the cities below have electroc rail-public-transit, but can be divided into two catagoies, excluding any airport people-movers,  funiculars, and cable-cars:

Catagoy One:

New York City, Hoboken, Newark. Trenton, Phhildadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, Chicago, Denver

Catagoy Two:

New Orelans, Atlanta, Kenosha, Little Rock, Miami, Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Detroit, San Diego, Portland, Seattle.  Sacramento, St. Llouis, Dallas, Houston, Salt Lake City.

Boston is a matter of interpretation, but sometime in the future will almost certainly be in the first catagory.

San Francisco and San Jose may be currently in the second catagory but will (hopefully) shortly be in the first catagory without question.

Difference between the two catagories?

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Posted by rcdrye on Tuesday, August 17, 2021 10:31 AM

The Mon and Duquesne inclines have a track gauge of 5 ft.

All of the interurbans that connected with Pittburgh's streetcar system were also Penn Gauge, so end-to-end connections were not a problem.  

69th street in Philadelphia has incompatible Penn gauge systems, and gauge-incompatible third rail systems all sharing a station.

 

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Posted by daveklepper on Wednesday, August 18, 2021 4:15 AM

You will enjoy my lstest LVT posting (give it some timje).   Thanks for your confirmation, and you should be ablr to answer the latest question easily.

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Posted by daveklepper on Sunday, August 22, 2021 11:30 AM

Atlanra's MARTA Sp?) rapid transit and its streetcar are the same gauge and share another imortant technical characteristic. 

Chicago's CTA and its METRA also share the same gauge but differ in this other characteristic (enough) to put Chicago's public transit in a different ctagorythan Atlanta.

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, September 5, 2021 8:01 AM

Bumping this.

The electrical characteristics of the MARTA systems may share a common voltage, but the pickup systems and the loading height are both, to my knowledge, radically different.  That leaves me out of the water before asking whether only CTA and METRA 'Electric' are the things being compared in Chicago.  Someone else will have to winkle out the 'key' details here.

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Posted by daveklepper on Sunday, September 5, 2021 8:46 AM

You are telling me that it is not worth your bother to look at the other systems listed and put what you find to work to answer the question?

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, September 5, 2021 2:34 PM

daveklepper
You are telling me that it is not worth your bother to look at the other systems listed and put what you find to work to answer the question?

Oh, no!  I'm saying I looked and looked and remained stumped.

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Posted by daveklepper on Monday, September 6, 2021 2:51 AM

Has Rc  given it a try?

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Posted by rcdrye on Monday, September 6, 2021 7:31 AM

Both CTA and Metra Electric are physically connected to the rest of the american rail network. CTA used to have several connections - the only remaining one is at the 63rd St yard. with NS for material delivery.  Metra Electric's connection allows NICTD to use Metra to Randolph St. "Millenium Station".  CTA's 600 volt third rail is obviously not directly compatible with Metra's 1500 vdc overhead, though in the long-forgotten past the South Shore had a couple of freight motors that could be set up to run on 600 volts.

Both Metra and CTA have clearance diagrams slightly smaller than standard, which require the use of gauntlets for freight equipment to clear high platforms.

If Cleveland (missing from both lists) were categorized it would be easier to figure out the boundaries.

It's amazing to look at how many cities have added both light and heavy rail systems in the last 50 years.  Quite a few cities have added both.

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, September 6, 2021 3:32 PM

It might be interesting to tally up the systems that have no rail connection with the general system of transportation, BUT that run on previous railroads and have physical crossings or co-location with active trains.  Perhaps a firsthand example is in Memphis, where the downtown loop has repurposed a stretch of the old IC riverfront line's double track, in fact crossing what is the active Amtrak main on the north end at grade, but at no point to my knowledge crossing over or switchable to it. 

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, September 6, 2021 4:01 PM

.

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Posted by daveklepper on Wednesday, September 8, 2021 3:58 PM

Cleveland is in the second catagory today/

At one time it would have been in the first catagory IF the Union Terminal electrification had included commuter service.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Thursday, September 9, 2021 10:10 AM

rcdrye

Both CTA and Metra Electric are physically connected to the rest of the american rail network. CTA used to have several connections - the only remaining one is at the 63rd St yard. with NS for material delivery.  Metra Electric's connection allows NICTD to use Metra to Randolph St. "Millenium Station".  CTA's 600 volt third rail is obviously not directly compatible with Metra's 1500 vdc overhead, though in the long-forgotten past the South Shore had a couple of freight motors that could be set up to run on 600 volts.

Both Metra and CTA have clearance diagrams slightly smaller than standard, which require the use of gauntlets for freight equipment to clear high platforms.

CTA's clearance diagram is quite a bit smaller than standard.

IC's suburban line also connects with the parallel IC freight and passenger lines at several locations.  This allowed Chicago West Pullman & Southern to operate on the Blue Island branch to service the International Harvester plant near Halsted Street.

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 rcdrye on Thursday, September 9, 2021 11:28 AM

It looks like the categories were:

1. "heavy" , "rapid" and "light" electrification, with commuter service.  San Francisco and Boston both have projects underway.

2. "rapid" and "light" or with systems like Pittsburgh which (now) has characteristics of both.

CRT handled interchange freight on behalf of CMStP(&P) on the North Side Main Line and the Evanston and Skokie branches.  Evanston and Main Line customers lasted into the CTA era. There the clearance issue was mainly the high-level platforms, but the third rail made for restrictions.  Gauntlet track on the Main Line and both branches solved the platform problem, along with having no third rail on Main Line track 1 between Howard and Granville.

CRT and CTA shared track with CA&E's interchange freight from Laramie to Bellwood on the Garfield Park line.

CRT and CTA had historic connections on most of the major branches to receive rail, ties and other material.  The 63rd st lower yard connection is (or was) the last of those.  Because the former connection from the C&NW(UP) line between Mayfair and Evanston has been abandoned new cars are delivered to Skokie Shops by truck.

CRT even had lines that were tight enough to restrict the use of certain types of its own equipment.  5000- and 6000-series cars could not operate west of Laramie on the Lake Street line before November 1962, because they would not clear the island platform station houses on the street-level line. 

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Posted by daveklepper on Thursday, September 9, 2021 10:00 PM

You got the right answer, with the first catagory having two distinct electrification systems and the second only one.

Boston really belongs in the first catagory, because Amtrak provides no commuter service, and all the T's Purple service is desiel-powered.

New York has the New Haven and NJT electrifications, in addition to the DC used by everone else.

Cicago's METRA and CTA electrifications are not, at presentm compatible, even if equipment could be designed for that purpose.

Look forward to your question.

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Posted by daveklepper on Monday, September 13, 2021 10:06 AM

Still waiting for rc's question.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Monday, September 13, 2021 10:20 AM

rcdrye

CRT even had lines that were tight enough to restrict the use of certain types of its own equipment.  5000- and 6000-series cars could not operate west of Laramie on the Lake Street line before November 1962, because they would not clear the island platform station houses on the street-level line. 

 
The subway that connected Logan Square with the Kennedy median was especially tight.  CTA installed bars over the windows on 6000-series cars assigned to the West-Northwest line to prevent injuries to passengers.
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 rcdrye on Monday, September 13, 2021 3:19 PM

CSSHEGEWISCH
The subway that connected Logan Square with the Kennedy median was especially tight.  CTA installed bars over the windows on 6000-series cars assigned to the West-Northwest line to prevent injuries to passengers.

CTA also took all of the roof equipment (poles, trolley boards, ventilators) off the roof of former 4000 series "plushies" assigned to work service on the Kennedy line.

 

This large lake had two floating railroad bridges crossing it in the latter part of the 19th century.  One of them was replaced by a conventional swing bridge, the other remained a "floater" until the USRA took it out of service during WW I.  The bridge was never replaced.  Name the lake and the railroads involved.

 

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Posted by Overmod on Monday, September 13, 2021 6:58 PM

rc, the Lake Champlain floating bridges was a quiz question at least once before...

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Posted by rcdrye on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 6:24 AM

Considering It was my question the last time I'll withdraw it and try something different...  Give me an hour or so...

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Posted by rcdrye on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 8:02 AM

In a series of surprising moves, as this once premier western train was downgraded one of the partners not only kept up its standards but also rebuilt equipment to assign to its portion of the train's run.  Even as the train was reduced to a seasonal offering the equipment and service standards remained high, though the railroad was not known as being particularly passenger-friendly.

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Posted by daveklepper on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 8:53 AM

Was it an SP train, interlined with another ralroad?  Were not all western railroads passenger-friendly until sometime after WWII, when the SP lost that adjective?  The Western Pacific then became unfriendly.  I could not find seasonal trains for, either, but maybe I did nlot look hard enough for the SP.

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Posted by rcdrye on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 9:34 AM

So far, so good. The train was seasonal for a couple of years in the 1960s.

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 9:46 AM

I suspect it involves a mighty fine road, a road to ride.

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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 10:07 AM

With that last hint, I will say that it was the "Arizona Limited".

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 rcdrye on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 10:22 AM

CSSHEGEWISCH

With that last hint, I will say that it was the "Arizona Limited".

 

The Arizona Limited was discontinued mostly due to World War II.  The train I'm looking for was better known as a heavyweight that was eclipsed by a streamliner.

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Posted by Overmod on Tuesday, September 14, 2021 9:35 PM

Wouldn't have anything to do with a 39 3/4 hour train to rival the Super Chief that was stillborn when the ICC order of 1947 made the timing impossible?  That Hank Snow wrote a song about?

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Posted by rcdrye on Wednesday, September 15, 2021 6:09 AM

You're overthinking a bit.  The train was a premier run before streamliners were even thought of.

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Posted by ZephyrOverland on Wednesday, September 15, 2021 11:34 AM

Would this be the San Francisco Overland? After losing its Chicago-Omaha schedule and its Chicago cars, UP eventually downgraded its portion of the train to an Omaha-Cheyenne local. SP's portion got a new lease on life as being, in essence, the San Francisco connection to the City of St. Louis, still operating with a full compliment of cars and services. Eventually, it existed in name only for several years when it was combined with the City of San Francisco.

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Posted by rcdrye on Wednesday, September 15, 2021 1:16 PM

Good to see you back, ZO!  Yes, the SF Overland was kept to a high standard, even receiving two of SP's home-rebuilt dome cars in the mid 1950s.  Summer-and-holiday only for its last two seasons, it carried the St. Louis and Denver cars until the "City of Everywhere" rework by UP broke the connections.  The mostly daytime schedule was outfitted with a coffee shop car instead of a diner.  The train was discontinued early enough to miss the Automat Buffet.

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