what was the name of the NY-DC train that let you sleep for several ho

Discussion in 'Amtrak Rail Discussion' started by sleepybobcat, Jun 7, 2010.

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  1. Jun 7, 2010 #1

    sleepybobcat

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    sleepybobcat

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    (sorry about the title... it got cut off....)

    In mid or early 1990s, Amtrak had a train on the NY-DC route.

    In NYP, you can board around 10pm and start sleeping in your

    roomette The train just sat in the station and didn't start

    moving until around 3AM. You can continue to sleep undisturbed

    until the train reaches DC at 6AM. If you wanted, the attendant

    would give you a wake-up call and coffee/bread/juice/newspaper

    just before Baltimore....

    Anybody remember what the train was called?

    Thanks! :)
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 7, 2010
  2. Jun 7, 2010 #2

    ALC Rail Writer

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    The Night Owl, the Twilight Shoreliner, those are two I have heard thrown around.
     
  3. Jun 7, 2010 #3

    the_traveler

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    As ALC said, those were the names, but those trains do not have names anymore - or sleepers! They are just known as "train #66" arriving NYP at 2 AM (where you must get off at 2 AM), and "train #67" (where you can not board until near 3 AM)!
     
  4. Jun 8, 2010 #4

    jis

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    What bobcat is alluding to is the NYP - WAS sleeper that was attached to the Night Owl for a period. It was for that specific car that you could get on it by 10pm and settle down in your bed. It sat in NYP until the Night Owl arrived from Boston, to which it was attached so as to arrive in WAS early in the morning. In the reverse direction the eastbound Night Owl set off the NYP Sleeper at NYP in the middle of the night and the passengers could sleep on and finally disembark by 8am or some such.
     
  5. Jun 8, 2010 #5

    Big Iron

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    I believe it was called The Executive Sleeper and was in fact attached to the Night Owl in NYP.
     
  6. Jun 8, 2010 #6

    Bill Haithcoat

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    That type of operation used to be common all over the country. They were called

    "set out sleepers". That was not the name of that train, that was the name of that type of operation.
     
  7. Jun 8, 2010 #7

    Cristobal

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    You guys back east got it made if the train trip includes several ho's. :blink:

    Sorry...

    I just couldn't let that one ride. :lol:
     
  8. Jun 8, 2010 #8

    ExtonFlyer

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  9. Jun 8, 2010 #9

    Eric S

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    Yep, Executive Sleeper (WAS-NYP) ran connected to the Night Owl (WAS-NYP-BOS).
     
  10. Jun 8, 2010 #10

    DowneasterPassenger

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    I took that train once in about 1991 and IIRC you could board any time between 10pm and the departure time.
     
  11. Jun 8, 2010 #11

    Eric S

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    Assume (for the sake of this question, I realize that it is actually far from being the case) that Amtrak has a surplus of single-level sleeping cars, could they operate a similar service today? I am not very familiar with the layout of Penn Station's tracks and platforms, but wouldn't this service essentially tie up a track during (at least the first half or so of) morning rush hour?
     
  12. Jun 8, 2010 #12

    Donctor

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    The Executive Sleeper (trains 866/867) was referred to in a few timetables as the "New York Executive" and "Washington Executive" – but it's really all the same thing.

    Does anyone know anything about train 466, the Inland Night Owl, that ran for a few months in 1992 (I think it was April thru early September)? Apparently it was a planned connection to the Montrealer's replacement, which was going to be a Boston-Montreal day train. Does anyone have additional information?
     
  13. Jun 8, 2010 #13

    ALC Rail Writer

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    Yes-- in fact it has been discussed multiple times that when the new cars arrive that this service will likely be one of the first to be restored.
     
  14. Jun 8, 2010 #14

    AlanB

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    I've heard talk of sleepers being returned to the overnight train for the entire run, but I don't believe that we'll see a setout sleeper at NYP; assuming that Amtrak does get to order the Viewliner II's.
     
  15. Jun 8, 2010 #15

    pebbleworm

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    I really like the idea of overnight trains, and set-out sleepers were pretty common in the 1930's and 40's. If the Spirit of California was still running, I'd take it twice a year.
     
  16. Jun 8, 2010 #16

    Eric S

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    Yeah, I'm familiar with the talk of adding sleepers back to the overnight train (former Night Owl/Twilight Shoreliner/Federal). But I had not heard any mention of restoring the Executive Sleeper-style New York set-out sleeper. In fact, I'd be quite surprised if it came back. I was just thinking that it was rather surprising that it lasted into the 1990s (or maybe it was late-1980s) at all.
     
  17. Jun 8, 2010 #17

    MrFSS

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    Anyone remember how popular those set out sleepers were? Did they fill them up evey night?
     
  18. Jun 8, 2010 #18

    Bill Haithcoat

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    They were fairly common into the mid 50's. At some point they began decllning sharply certainly by the mid 60's, like everything else. Sleeping car traffic was particularly hurt by the decline of business before Amtrak took over the nation's rail service. By that time the concept of set out sleepers had largely disappeared.

    It almost never happened with coaches. But I do believe in the preAmtrak days that UP's City of Los Angeles or the Challenger had a set out coach, as well as a sleeper, from Omaha to LA, on this, a CHI to LA train.
     
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  19. Jun 8, 2010 #19

    Donctor

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    In January 1994 (exact date unknown), the Executive Sleeper was pulled due to shortages associated with equipment freezing. It was restored on May 1st, and discontinued on August 19, 1994.
     
  20. Jun 8, 2010 #20

    Bill Haithcoat

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    Set out sleepers are one of railroading's secret pleasures. To arrive in your destination at 3 a .m or so, wake up for a moment, realize you are at your destination, it is a cold rain outside and all you have to do about it is roll over and go back to sleep.

    Do keep in mind that you are not a "prisoner" in a set out sleeper, you can indeed get off any time you wish,between actual arrival and 8 a.m..or so. Same with boarding.
     
  21. Jun 8, 2010 #21

    jis

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    The Brits had an interesting twist to the set out sleeper. The Cornish Riviera Express used to carry a set out sleeper for Exeter. The interesting twist was the the train did not stop to set this sleeper out. It ran non-stop through Exeter. The sleeper was set out on the fly and brakes were applied to bring it to a halt at the designated point in Exeter station by presumably the conductor on the sleeper.

    I don;t be believe they ever got the technique perfected for adding that sleeper on the fly to the Cornish Riviera Express on the trip back to London :) , so it stopped briefly to pick up the sleeper.
     
  22. Jun 8, 2010 #22

    jphjaxfl

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    Bill, Santa Fe's Super Chief had a set out sleeper from Kansas City to Los Angeles and vv up until Amtrak started. It was still operating in August, 1970 when I was on board.
     
  23. Jun 8, 2010 #23

    sunchaser

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    Did they ever do a set out sleeper for the California Zephyr or the Coast Starlight? I think it would be a great addition in SLC & SAC. In both locations & trains, they arrive late evening/early morning.
     
  24. Jun 8, 2010 #24

    Michael061282

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    I rode the Executive Sleeper a couple times from Washington in the early 90s. I don't remember how full the car was, but I DO remember the SCA telling us to lock the bedroom door and be careful once we got to NY because of the homeless in the tunnels would sometimes try and hop on, thats a quote. From what I remember, he stayed up all night and let people off the the train from about 5am onwards, most of us got off between 7am and 8am however, but he would close the doors at all other times.
     
  25. Jun 8, 2010 #25

    Bill Haithcoat

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    Yes I remember that. In fact I had an itinerary that called for boarding the Chief in KC and it was shortlyafter the KC set out sleeper had been dropped. I was disapointed.
     

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