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Friday, September 24, 2010

10-09-24 PHOTOS: Sevens and ACES

Last autumn both the economy and business at the Atlantic City casinos were still in the pits so the financial viability of the NY-ACL ACES service was being increasingly called into question. Therefore I felt it was incumbent upon me to fuck over the $35 and actually try the service on a one way trip from New York City to Atlantic City followed by a quick ACL line train back to Lindenwold. Because I wasn't about to simply waste my time taking Amtrak to NYC then the ACES train straight to AC, I planed some activities around the only interesting thing remaining on the NYC Subway, namely the railfan window equipped 7 train.

Now I was hoping to carry out a nice photograph line survey with shots of all the stations and signals, but the weather was less than cooperative being overcast and misty so therefore while I was able to get photos I was unable to check off the whole definitive line survey box. Still it;s subway stuff and there's a lot of people who will drool those sorts of pics so here there are along with a few video clips, what I could manage from the side of the ACES train and what I could get in Atlantic City.

The entire set of photos are located here in chronibetical order.

We begin in the underground portion of the 7 with some video of my train departing the Tines Square terminal, crossing over to the correct track and continuing to 5th Ave.

We continue from 5th Ave to Grand Central.

Now a year earlier I had taken video in the Steinway Tunnels between Grand Central and Jackson Ave and again from Jackson Ave to Hunters Point so I won't bore you with them again. But I did get some new footage as we exited the tunnel portal and traveled from Hunter's Point to 45 Road passing two inbound 7 trains in the process.

And then from 45 Road to Queensboro Plaza. The general idea was that with suck sucky light it would be best to capture some video for a playlist I will eventually compile convering the entire express run. Because there is no express service before Queensboro Plaza I could shoot the video on a run of the mill local train such as this. In this segment we pass another inbound 7.

Waiting at the 420 signal at Queensboro Plaza we encounter both an outbound N train departing from across the platform and a 4th inbound 7 train diving down to the lower level.

Time for some more video as we pull out of QB Plaza (N train still adjacent to us) and take the take the switch to the local stop before finishing up at 33rd St.

Just short of 46th Street we pass the 5th inbound 7 of the journey.

And a 6th approaching Woodside.

Here we see the somewhat recently closed tower at 65th St.

Another inbound 7 passes us while waiting at 75th Street.

And an 8th is making its stop at Junction Blvd.

Another disused tower at 103rd St.

At 103rd I am back on the video to capture trackage that would not be included on the express run.

While at 111th I am passed by an R62 trainset headed into the yard.

Back on the video my train travels from 111th St to Citi Station past the still active 111th St tower, an inbound yard move from Flushing and an inbound local 7 train departing Citi Station.

At Willets Point/Citi Station I encounter the 10th inbound 7 train since leaving Hunters Point.

I took the reverse trip off, but did stop at Woodside to capture this photo of inbound and outbound local 7's about to pass eachother at 69th St. The former 65th St interlocking is in the foreground while the crossovers at 74th St that replaced it are far in the distance.

So, onto the ACES part of the trip. The train seemed to be well patronized, but it was hardly what I would call a sell out. The food service vendors were doing a brisk business selling $7 beers, but again I don't know if it was covering costs. Here we are passing the Metutchen field switch where 138Kv transmission lines branch off the NEC to serve the 25MW frequency converter adjacent to a PSE&G Substation. Unfortunately because of that damn stimulus the high quality PRR switchgear was being replaced with something new and probably made in China.

At SHORE interlocking we had about a 20 minute wait for the crew to change ends and for several Amtrak and SEPTA trains to pass us before we could be given the railroad onto the ACL. Here is one of the two opportunities I got for a good photo of SHORE tower, built 1896.

Arriving in AC here was the GPS wrap-up of the run.

Our diesel engine, NJT P40 #4802 with AC Line geep #4213 in the background.

Our train was then given a signal to pull forward and re-fuel the P40 at the AC fuel pad.

It returned shortly thereafter and pulled forward so that our electric engine, ALP-44 #4409, was even with an unknown Comet IV cab car on the adjacent track.

Ultimately my train home was the one headed by #4213 with C-IV cab car #5016 in the trailing position.

Well that's it for this little excursion. Tune in next week as I finally get around to posting my photos from the 2010 SEPTA Transit Rodeo.

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