Longer & Longer consists

Discussion in 'Amtrak Rail Discussion' started by Pastor_Mac, Jun 18, 2018.

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  1. Jun 18, 2018 #1

    Pastor_Mac

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  2. Jun 18, 2018 #2

    MikefromCrete

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    Depends on whether the routes in question have double track or sidings long enough to fit the longer trains.
     
  3. Jun 18, 2018 #3

    amtkstn

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    BNSF has been running these for quite some time on the transcon.
     
  4. Jun 18, 2018 #4

    cpotisch

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    As long as that is, that doesn't even come close to what has been done before. Record is more than 24,000 ft. As was said, it depends on the length of the sidings, but I certainly can't see it being beneficial to Amtrak.
     
  5. Jun 18, 2018 #5

    AmtrakLKL

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    CSX's average train length is up 13% year-over-year to an average of 7,200 feet. Where I operate, the average siding length is about 7,100ft. It was pretty painful for a while, having a 12-14,000 ft freight run right in front of you with multiple set-outs and pick-ups enroute with no way to get around. To CSX's credit, they finally changed the schedule of the offending freight to ensure it almost always runs well after Amtrak is through.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 18, 2018
  6. Jun 18, 2018 #6

    Palmetto

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    This has become one of the big problems with the Canadian. Apparently, in many parts of single-track territory, the passenger train is the only one that will fit in most sidings these days.
     
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  7. Jun 19, 2018 #7

    railiner

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    How do they manage when two opposing long freights meet?

    Maybe they should just run the Canadian right behind one of the "priority freights"....don't think it would take much longer to get over the road, then what it does at present... [​IMG]
     
  8. Jun 19, 2018 #8

    CCC1007

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    A so called “saw by” maneuver can be used to have two trains too long for the siding pass each other at one.
     
  9. Jun 19, 2018 #9

    cirdan

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    Maybe longer freights means fewer freights, so fewer sidings required.
     
  10. Jun 19, 2018 #10

    railiner

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    How does that work? Seems like you would have to cut one of the trains in order to do that, as was recently shown here on another thread. With trains that long...would be kind of tough, wouldn't it?
     
  11. Jun 19, 2018 #11

    CCC1007

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    While the maneuver would take too long to describe adequately, but the linked page below does a good job of describing it.
    http://www.sdmrra.org/Odds-n-Ends/saw_bye.htm'> http://www.sdmrra.org/Odds-n-Ends/saw_bye.htm
     
  12. Jun 19, 2018 #12

    railiner

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    The question is...how long does all of that take with two very long freights?
     
  13. Jun 19, 2018 #13

    cpotisch

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    I've had that thought, though I feel like there is a limit as to how long they could make their freight trains without completely clogging up the entire network. I suppose that if a a freight train already can't fit into any of the sidings, then there wouldn't be any harm in lengthening it, and they could possibly reduce the number of freights. Likewise, if they extend trains that could barely fit into sidings, by even one car, it wouldn't be able to fit anymore, and you probably couldn't reduce the total number of trains. So I feel like it would really vary wildly, depending on how much you extend it and how long the trains already were.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 4, 2019
  14. Jun 19, 2018 #14

    CCC1007

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    Up to several hours.
     
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  15. Jun 19, 2018 #15

    me_little_me

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    Does it matter? The westbound Amtrak train is already on a siding east of this as other westbound freights are pushed ahead so they too can perform this maneuver. So Amtrak has too wait even longer? Let them sue! We can clog it up in the courts for 10 years or until our lobbyists can convince the president to unilaterally disband Amtrak. [​IMG]
     
  16. Jun 21, 2018 #16

    anir dendroica

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    I've never seen a double saw-by in practice, and I can't imagine it's used except in emergencies or in the event of dispatcher error. Some railroads limit the length of trains in one direction so that, say, all of the southbounds can fit in the sidings. Other railroads just run extra-long trains in "fleets" between yards long enough to hold them, and avoid running equally long freights the other direction at the same time.

    All in all, longer trains also means fewer trains (hence cost savings on crews for the freight RRs), and fewer trains means fewer meets for Amtrak. So, if done well, longer freights could actually have some benefit to Amtrak.
     
  17. Jun 21, 2018 #17

    KmH

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    Fortunately, our system of government doesn't allow a POTUS to "unilaterally disband Amtrak".

    Little of the legislation the sitting potus had/has wanted enacted by congress has been.
     
  18. Jun 22, 2018 #18

    railiner

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    Reminds me of the David Stockman, Office of Management and Budget era, in a way......
     
  19. Jun 24, 2018 #19

    Thirdrail7

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    However, that only works on paper. In reality, you have longer trains that break down, run slower, aren't nimble and block the routes. There is a definite increase in pull aparts, broken knuckles and emergency applications. Now, you have a lone person walking a two+ mile train, attempting to find and possibly repair a defect on the main line.

    The delays can stretch on for hours.
     
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  20. Jul 31, 2018 #20

    daybeers

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    What I don't understand is why doesn't management realize that they're actually losing money on these trains breaking down instead of saving money combining them? Just corporate America I guess...
     
  21. Jul 31, 2018 #21

    MikefromCrete

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    What makes you think they're losing money on the trains? There may be a breakdown here and there, but in general, longer trains mean more cash to the bottom line. And that's all today's railroad executives care about.

    To heck with service and shippers and general public.

    t
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 31, 2018
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  22. Jan 19, 2019 #22

    Thirdrail7

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    The northbound Auto Train took a 3' hit after a 12,000ft+ freight train pulled apart....and this was near a facility with help nearby. This is definitely increasing, especially with PTC jostling the train.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 19, 2019
  23. Jan 23, 2019 #23

    cocojacoby

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    You know with mid train DPUs, a train could be broken before the DPU.  Then the first half goes to the next siding.  The second half then will catch up with the first half, reattach and off they go.

    Fantasy?  Maybe right now but probably not in the future with autonomous DPUs being run from the lead unit!
     
  24. Jan 23, 2019 #24

    Inlander

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    Yes this is sadly so true lengthy delays are now the normal mode of operation. The timetable even has a disclaimer warning about the delays! 
     
  25. Jan 23, 2019 #25

    cpotisch

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    Welcome to AU! :)

    I will say that the word “now” seems a bit generous. The Canadian has had horrific, routine delays (many of more than 24 hours) for many years. :unsure:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 23, 2019

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