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Business Cars on Western Inspection Trip


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#1 Agent

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 02:07 PM

I caught the eastbound California Zephyr at Agency, Iowa today with the heritage sleeper Pacific Bend, Viewliner sleeper New River, and the theater inspection car American View on the end.  The order of Amtrak #6(11)'s Superliners was reversed so the trans dorm connected to these single-level cars.  These three were on an Amtrak inspection train that was mentioned in another thread earlier this week.

 

Also, this #6 had a friendly engineer.

 


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#2 Palmetto

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 02:14 PM

The 3-car inspection train made news when it ran south on the BNSF Oregon Trunk Sub.  Some thought it was a detouring Coast Starlight.


Edited by Palmetto, 13 June 2018 - 02:14 PM.


#3 Seaboard92

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 04:25 PM

It was originally supposed to go on the Starlight. But I guess whatever officer tour it was on had to stick to schedule so it got rerouted. Kinda hypocritical they won't let us run charters off network but they will run a three car deadhead move off network (yes I know it was forced by a tunnel closer) but they could do what we PV people have to do. Going from Seattle to The Bay Area. No problem go via Chicago.

It should be noted that when it was on the rear of 7 going to Seattle. That the Government Affairs officer for Seattle was spotted on board.
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#4 cpotisch

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 05:01 PM

I didn't know they ever ran the Trans-Dorm at the back. That means that the railfan window was aiming forward, allowing passengers to look straight ahead! I do wonder what they're doing with New River, since the only use for it is on the east coast...


Edited by cpotisch, 13 June 2018 - 05:03 PM.

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#5 Seaboard92

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Posted 13 June 2018 - 05:31 PM

I didn't know they ever ran the Trans-Dorm at the back. That means that the railfan window was aiming forward, allowing passengers to look straight ahead! I do wonder what they're doing with New River, since the only use for it is on the east coast...

Sleeper space for invited guests, and crew.
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#6 cpotisch

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 07:57 AM

 

I didn't know they ever ran the Trans-Dorm at the back. That means that the railfan window was aiming forward, allowing passengers to look straight ahead! I do wonder what they're doing with New River, since the only use for it is on the east coast...

Sleeper space for invited guests, and crew.

 

Why is it that whenever Amtrak is running a special train or train car, they always have to run one in Phase III? It's not an accurate representation of the whole fleet, so I find it surprising that they always have to show up their Phase III anomalies.


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#7 Seaboard92

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 07:58 AM

 

I didn't know they ever ran the Trans-Dorm at the back. That means that the railfan window was aiming forward, allowing passengers to look straight ahead! I do wonder what they're doing with New River, since the only use for it is on the east coast...

Sleeper space for invited guests, and crew.
 
Why is it that whenever Amtrak is running a special train or train car, they always have to run one in Phase III? It's not an accurate representation of the whole fleet, so I find it surprising that they always have to show up their Phase III anomalies.

Phase III is the eventual goal of the entire network. IVb should be getting phased out for IIIb one day.
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#8 jis

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 08:06 AM

Yeah, the plan has been to use Phase III for the National network, so in some sense it is representative of where the National Network will be some day. As we know, state corridors are now free to choose their own livery, and NEC will remain with Phase IV and Acela special livery. No one knows what the replacement fleet for Amfleet Is will look like at this time (well someone within Amtrak might, but there has been no public word on whether that opportunity will be taken to rebrand and upgrade service or such).



#9 Maglev

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 10:02 AM

That means that the railfan window was aiming forward, allowing passengers to look straight ahead!

It gives you a nice view of the roof of the locomotive!


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#10 jis

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 10:19 AM

 

That means that the railfan window was aiming forward, allowing passengers to look straight ahead!

It gives you a nice view of the roof of the locomotive!

 

All this while you get to ingest the aromatic, health enhancing, exhaust of the locomotive too :P


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#11 bcanedy

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 10:51 AM

The vents on the baggage car roof block the view, so it’s mostly the exhaust you get to enjoy.
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#12 railiner

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 11:02 AM

Apparently, in consists like this, it is more necessary for the crew to access the rear of the train then the baggage car, still on the front.   The passenger's in the business cars certainly don't need access to the rest of the train.    So why is it necessary to even have trans-dorm's?   Do crews really need access to the baggage cars between stops?

The original purpose of transition cars (on former Santa Fe trains), was to allow the regular mix of Hi-Levels and standard cars.   Now the only standard level cars in that situation are the baggage cars.  Unless they revive the practice of having Train Baggagemen, what need is there for that?  Occasional deadhead cars don't need access enroute....


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#13 cpotisch

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 11:06 AM

Wait a second, how did they have access to the baggage car? What's the point in having the Trans-Dorm at the back if the cars it connects to are private?


Edited by cpotisch, 14 June 2018 - 11:07 AM.

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#14 Ryan

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 11:18 AM

Clearly Amtrak thought it more important to have the people on the company trip access the train than it was to be able to access the baggage car while in motion.
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#15 Maglev

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 11:22 AM

The cars weren't private.  Wouldn't the occupants have eaten in the dining car?


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#16 Seaboard92

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 11:38 AM

The cars weren't private.  Wouldn't the occupants have eaten in the dining car?


I believe American View has the facilities to cook for a small party of travelers. Same with the Pacific car they had with them. Don't quote me though because I haven't been on those.
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#17 jis

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 11:40 AM

Maybe the Amtrak staff were required to eat standard passenger chow instead of spending money on their own gourmet food service, and service staff?


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#18 Triley

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 12:43 PM

Wait a second, how did they have access to the baggage car? What's the point in having the Trans-Dorm at the back if the cars it connects to are private?

Clearly Amtrak thought it more important to have the people on the company trip access the train than it was to be able to access the baggage car while in motion.

Maybe the Amtrak staff were required to eat standard passenger chow instead of spending money on their own gourmet food service, and service staff?

Or how about needing access to the brake hose at the rear of the train for brake tests, and any potential reverse moves? Speeds things up without having to stop the train and give enough time for the conductor to pass from the rear of the train to the revenue part of the train, both before and after heading to the rear.


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#19 cpotisch

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 12:48 PM

 

The cars weren't private.  Wouldn't the occupants have eaten in the dining car?


I believe American View has the facilities to cook for a small party of travelers. Same with the Pacific car they had with them. Don't quote me though because I haven't been on those.

 

I'm pretty sure American View does as well. Not sure about the Heritage Crew Dorm though...


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#20 Ryan

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Posted 14 June 2018 - 01:08 PM

American View does, but it is fairly small. It may not have been able to support the number of people for the duration of the trip.

We don’t know, but the people that decided to assemble the train certainly do, and decided accordingly.
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