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Sumitomo/Siemens Contract for 137 Cars (former bi-levels)

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This press release seemed to have gotten missed. and it's pretty big one, as it contains a nice render of the cars. From Nippon-Sharyo:

Nippon Sharyo and Sumitomo Corporation receive the Contract Award for 130 Bi-Level Passenger Cars from Caltrans and IDOT

November 6, 2012

On November 6th, 2012, The California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) awarded the contract for 130 High-Speed Bi-Level Passenger Railcars to be built by Nippon Sharyo and the prime contractor Sumitomo Corporation of America (SCOA). The contract includes a base order of 130 railcars for $352 million along with an option to purchase an additional 300 railcars for $898 million, bringing the contract total to $1.25 billion.

20121106.jpg

peter

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Interesting design. I do like the window design up top, though downstairs looks odd (as there are two sets of doors and I'm used to seeing bilevels with just a single set). Also just wondering, but is that a cab car being depicted on the end there? It looks like it.

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I do like the window design up top, though downstairs looks odd (as there are two sets of doors and I'm used to seeing bilevels with just a single set). Also just wondering, but is that a cab car being depicted on the end there? It looks like it.

 

You need to spend more time in California, home of the 2-door bilevel!

 

Yes, I'm sure that's supposed to be a cab car.

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Interesting design. I do like the window design up top, though downstairs looks odd (as there are two sets of doors and I'm used to seeing bilevels with just a single set). Also just wondering, but is that a cab car being depicted on the end there? It looks like it.

It is a cab car, and California Cars all have two doors per side.

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This press release seemed to have gotten missed. and it's pretty big one, as it contains a nice render of the cars. From Nippon-Sharyo:

Thanks for finding. Should have looked for the N-S press release when the contract was signed. For those interested, the webpage with the N-S press release and render image is here.

 

What we get from the N-S press release is the total cost of the 300 car option is $898 million or $3 million per car. A lot less than the $4.5 million, albeit loaded with overhead, spare parts. placeholder price for bi-levels stated in the Fleet Strategy plans.

 

If Amtrak were to order 150 or 200 coach cars with seats configured for LD trains as part of a Superliner I replacement order via the option, that would cost from $450 to $600 million. Amtrak would have to place a separate Superliner I replacement order for sleeper, diner, sightseer lounge, trans-dorm cars based on the the bi-level corridor car frame.

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This press release seemed to have gotten missed. and it's pretty big one, as it contains a nice render of the cars. From Nippon-Sharyo:

Thanks for finding. Should have looked for the N-S press release when the contract was signed. For those interested, the webpage with the N-S press release and render image is here.

 

Are these cars for corridor services? Looks like existing Caltrain Gallery cars (that were also manufactured by Nippon Sharyo) but with two doors instead of one.

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They're primarily for Midwest Corridor services (Like the Wolverine) and a few are going to Cali.

 

peter

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Are these cars for corridor services? Looks like existing Caltrain Gallery cars (that were also manufactured by Nippon Sharyo) but with two doors instead of one.

Yes. These are called the bi-level corridor cars. Of the current 130 car order, 42 will be going to California and 88 will be used on the Illinois, Michigan, Missouri corridor trains.

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Yeah, the headlights, horn and window wiper are a dead giveaway.

On the current California bi-levels, the horn is mounted on the roof, dead center, unlike the low mounting shown here. I would question whether this low mounting would provide sufficient sound projection. The roof mounting does make for an overall height of right at 17 feet zero inches, since the roof height is 16'-2".

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Are these cars for corridor services? Looks like existing Caltrain Gallery cars (that were also manufactured by Nippon Sharyo) but with two doors instead of one.

These are not Gallery Cars. They are bi-levels like the Amtrak California Cars, And yes, they are meant to be used in Corridor trains and not LD trains.

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Yeah, the headlights, horn and window wiper are a dead giveaway.

On the current California bi-levels, the horn is mounted on the roof, dead center, unlike the low mounting shown here. I would question whether this low mounting would provide sufficient sound projection. The roof mounting does make for an overall height of right at 17 feet zero inches, since the roof height is 16'-2".

 

Actually that isn't quite true. There are 3 different California Cab Car designs out there. Some have the horns on the roofs others, have them embedded down below like the NS-render.

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Yeah, the headlights, horn and window wiper are a dead giveaway.

The wiper and headlights I got. I didn't know if the horn was some sort of spare electrical hookup.

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Not sure I like the angled appearance too much. When leading it probably won't be too bad, but if they ever had to put another car off the end of the cab car, it wouldn't look that great in my opinion unless the other car were a cab car, and even that would look a little funny. Don't get me wrong, I'm firmly in the function over form camp, but there is an advantage to having a flat cab car. Then again, I also think the boxy Metra/South Shore new Highliners are some of the best looking modern trains around...

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Yeah, the headlights, horn and window wiper are a dead giveaway.

On the current California bi-levels, the horn is mounted on the roof, dead center, unlike the low mounting shown here. I would question whether this low mounting would provide sufficient sound projection. The roof mounting does make for an overall height of right at 17 feet zero inches, since the roof height is 16'-2".

 

Actually that isn't quite true. There are 3 different California Cab Car designs out there. Some have the horns on the roofs others, have them embedded down below like the NS-render.

 

Correct!

 

15045_santa_barbar_surfliner.jpg

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Yeah, the headlights, horn and window wiper are a dead giveaway.

On the current California bi-levels, the horn is mounted on the roof, dead center, unlike the low mounting shown here. I would question whether this low mounting would provide sufficient sound projection. The roof mounting does make for an overall height of right at 17 feet zero inches, since the roof height is 16'-2".

 

Actually that isn't quite true. There are 3 different California Cab Car designs out there. Some have the horns on the roofs others, have them embedded down below like the NS-render.

 

There's only two types, California cars and Surfliner cars, Cal cars have the horn on the roof, Surfliners have it at ear level as pictured.

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There have been three batches made. First batch (6000 series) are made by Alstom, have a roof mounted horn, and are in the AmCal paint. The second and third batches (8000 series) are made by Bombardier, have the embedded horn, the first set of 8000s are in AmCal, the last set in Surfliner & AmCal.

 

Peter

 

Photo comparison:

http://www.trainweb.org/chris/photos/cze13.jpg

http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2295/5827064779_75c8b79462_z.jpg

http://acm.jhu.edu/~sthurmovik/Railpics/12-06-13_CAPITOL_CORRIDOR/Amt_6962-Oakland.jpg

Edited by PerRock

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Not sure I like the angled appearance too much. When leading it probably won't be too bad, but if they ever had to put another car off the end of the cab car, it wouldn't look that great in my opinion unless the other car were a cab car, and even that would look a little funny. Don't get me wrong, I'm firmly in the function over form camp, but there is an advantage to having a flat cab car. Then again, I also think the boxy Metra/South Shore new Highliners are some of the best looking modern trains around...

 

I suspect that in operation of the current California Cars, they've seen no reason to put another car behind the cab car. Metrolink in SoCal also has rounded their new cab cars (and in my opinion, it's a better looking design than this wedge).

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Not sure I like the angled appearance too much. When leading it probably won't be too bad, but if they ever had to put another car off the end of the cab car, it wouldn't look that great in my opinion unless the other car were a cab car, and even that would look a little funny. Don't get me wrong, I'm firmly in the function over form camp, but there is an advantage to having a flat cab car. Then again, I also think the boxy Metra/South Shore new Highliners are some of the best looking modern trains around...

 

I suspect that in operation of the current California Cars, they've seen no reason to put another car behind the cab car. Metrolink in SoCal also has rounded their new cab cars (and in my opinion, it's a better looking design than this wedge).

 

There's a key difference between the two cab designs. The Metrolink design does not allow any pass through from the cab car to another car. The N-S cab cars, even with the slightly angled cab ends (assuming they ultimately get built that way, and they're not just artistic license of who ever made the image for the press release) will still allow pass-through to the next car.

 

There are numerous occasions where cab cars get coupled to additional coaches. The Del Mar season is one example.

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There have been three batches made. First batch (6000 series) are made by Alstom, have a roof mounted horn, and are in the AmCal paint. The second and third batches (8000 series) are made by Bombardier, have the embedded horn, the first set of 8000s are in AmCal, the last set in Surfliner & AmCal.

 

Peter

 

Photo comparison:

http://www.trainweb....hotos/cze13.jpg

http://farm3.staticf...5c8b79462_z.jpg

http://acm.jhu.edu/~...962-Oakland.jpg

 

I thought the 8000 series cars were made by Morrison Knudsen and rebuilt by Siemens. I've been on them, and I could have sworn I saw a Morrison Knudsen plate near the door.

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There have been three batches made. First batch (6000 series) are made by Alstom, have a roof mounted horn, and are in the AmCal paint. The second and third batches (8000 series) are made by Bombardier, have the embedded horn, the first set of 8000s are in AmCal, the last set in Surfliner & AmCal.

 

Peter

 

Photo comparison:

http://www.trainweb....hotos/cze13.jpg

http://farm3.staticf...5c8b79462_z.jpg

http://acm.jhu.edu/~...962-Oakland.jpg

 

I thought the 8000 series cars were made by Morrison Knudsen and rebuilt by Siemens. I've been on them, and I could have sworn I saw a Morrison Knudsen plate near the door.

 

Correct.

 

M-K built the 8000 series California Cars and went bankrupt halfway though, forcing the bonding company to finish the order as Amerail. Alstom then bought Amerail and later built the 6000 series Surfliner cars. The Surfliner cars are divided into three groups, 6xxx cars for Amtrak Pacific Surfliners pool, 6x5x cars for Caltrans contribution to the Pac Surfs pool, and 6x6x cars for Caltrans to join the California cars in the Capitol Corridor / San Joaquins pool.

 

California cars have the horn on top, Surfliners down low.

 

http://on-track-on-l...surfnames.shtml

http://on-track-on-l...-newsurfs.shtml

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Yeah, the headlights, horn and window wiper are a dead giveaway.

On the current California bi-levels, the horn is mounted on the roof, dead center, unlike the low mounting shown here. I would question whether this low mounting would provide sufficient sound projection. The roof mounting does make for an overall height of right at 17 feet zero inches, since the roof height is 16'-2".

Actually that isn't quite true. There are 3 different California Cab Car designs out there. Some have the horns on the roofs others, have them embedded down below like the NS-render.

There's only two types, California cars and Surfliner cars, Cal cars have the horn on the roof, Surfliners have it at ear level as pictured.

Duly noted. Thank you. All the ones I have seen and taken note of have been on runs between Emeryville and Fresno and have had the center roof mounted horn.

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There's a key difference between the two cab designs. The Metrolink design does not allow any pass through from the cab car to another car. The N-S cab cars, even with the slightly angled cab ends (assuming they ultimately get built that way, and they're not just artistic license of who ever made the image for the press release) will still allow pass-through to the next car.

 

There are numerous occasions where cab cars get coupled to additional coaches. The Del Mar season is one example.

 

Cab cars with pass-through/diaphragms are rarely (if ever) good-looking.

 

(maybe the danish and Dutch example constitute an exception here, but that's also a matter of taste)

 

But they are extremely useful as they allow cab cars to be used as intermediate cars if the need arises.

 

Thus function triumphs over form.

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MARC's cab cars look almost undistinguishable from the regular trailer cars.

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