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Friday, November 30, 2012

12-11-30 PHOTOS: Flushing Line HD

A week after Thanksgiving I was back in the Windy Apple to see a Broadway Play and seeing as how I would have some time to kill on a weekday I decided it was a good time to check out some hurricane Sandy damage and also grad some HD footage of an express run on the Flushing Line before said line was ruined through the removal of railfan windows. A few years ago I had gotten some standard def video of the same run, but with a new camera in hand I just couldn't resist trying to preserve the experience of riding at the front of a 7 express train before it was lost forever.

Of course I took some photos as well, but this is going to mostly be a video post as most of the photos ended up being from a walk across the Brooklyn Bridge.

We begin in Hamilton, NJ as a pair of ALP-46 hauled multi-level Push-Pull pass eachother in the station. Cab car 7047 is headed towards NYC while #4607 pushes the other set towards Trenton.

Now I choose not to get on that train because it was a local and even though most sane railroads would use push-pulls on expresses and MUs on locals I don't believed anyone has ever accused NJT of being sane.

While then waiting for the express to show to Amtrak AEM-7 #907 blasted through with a regional en-route to New York.

I eventually made it down to the recently flooded Boweling Green station and was impressed by the lack of any apparent damage or basement smell. I even got some good photos of the still functional, yet usually unattended US&S Style C panel type unit lever interlocking machine at the south end of the platform. Click here for detail on the model board.

I also got some video of the panel working in automatic mode as (5) train move in and out of the station.

While crossing the Brooklyn Bridge I cause a fuel barge heading north up the East River powered by the Jill Reinauer.

I walked to 4th Ave in Brooklyn where I managed to catch an eastbound R42 (C) train departing the station.

From there I caught an (A) to Times Square where I then transferred to a 7 Express, which had just started running, and I proceeded to video the entire 24 minute ride which you can see here. The video even kicks off with a crossover move at the TSQ terminal.

Heading back to Midtown like a schmuck on the (7)local. Here we exit the Flushing tunnel portal with another outbound R62 about to be swallowed up.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

12-11-21 PHOTOS: Thanksgiving Everything

For my a traditional thanksgiving not only includes Turkey and family drama, but also a trip around the Philadelphia region in Chuchubob's Elder-mobile on the day before Thanksgiving to catch the mildly expanded Amtrak and SEPTA rail services. In 2011 we had set our sights on trying to track down some Silverliner II/III cars, but with those retired we were not free to go elsewhere because if there was one thing that we knew we would not run into it was Silverliner II's.

The trip began at Burlington South RiverLINE station and proceeded up and around Trenton to West Trenton where we would get lunch and catch the SEPTA / CSX action on the Trenton Line. Next we headed south to Morrisville, PA to take pictures of NJT, SEPTA and Amtrak trains crossing the Delaware River before finishing up with a trip to the Woodbourne SEPTA station again on the Trenton Line.

You can catch the entire set of photos here which includes some additional photos of signals and such I took while driving to and from New Jersey.

We begin on the day before the day before Thanksgiving I went off to see a bargain basement Sixers game and caught this little race between a PATCO train and a northbound NJT Atlantic City Line train.

The next day I started out at Burlington South Park Ride Station where we arrived in time to catch a northbound train. The interlocking just north of the station has been modified with an extra dwarf signal on the passing track resulting in the original home signal displaying Approach Medium for the dwarf's Medium Clear.

RiverLINE DMU #3501B soon arrived and departed the station.

Here is a video of the Medium Clear signal and #3501 taking the diverging route onto the single track street running through Burlington City.

Despite some rollers hanging out nearby in the Burlington Bristol Bridge parking lot Bob and I were surprisingly not harassed.

We tried to get ahead of the train to get a picture crossing the bridge at Bordentown, but alas arrived just a few seconds too late.

Finally reaching West Trenton a train of Silverliner V's soon arrived with #858 in the rear position.

Lots of CSX freight moves in the mid-day when SEPTA dispatchers will actually give them the railroad. As soon as 858 cleared the main the westbound signal at CP-TRENT was pulled up for a straight movement and soon enough CSX ES44AC #940 and AC4400 #442 rolled through with a train of aluminum ore hoppers.

Not long after that the signal came up again to Approach indicating a following CSX movement. Well boy where we surprised when we saw a 6 car train of Silverliner II cars behind a pair of CSX geeps on their way to the scrap yard in North Jersey. The one year we stopped looking for Silverliner II's they found a way to come to us despite the notable handicap of being retired.

I went to video due to the backlighting, but thanks to an inconsiderate friend I suffered a camera malfunction. Fortunately my B camera was there to record all the action.

After lunch I emerged from the restaurant just in time to catch another CSX freight train going by while SEPTA Silverliner IV car #332 waited in West Trenton yard for the trip back to Philly.

On the way to the Morrisville Amtrak stop we swung by the Morrisville freight yard where a lineup of NS freight power was hanging out by the driveway. This included SW1001 #2103.

GP38-2 #5285

And SD60 #6566.

From there we swung by the SMS yard in the Penn Warner Industrial park where Baldwin DS4-4-750 #102 was waiting her next call to duty. #102 was built around 1950 and is still going strong.

First over the bridge was an eastbound Amtrak Keystone train with #953 in the push position. No, #953 has not been retrofitted with a diesel engine because what looks like an exhaust plume is actually the heat spilling off the dynamic brake resistor grids as the train brakes aggressively for the stop at Trenton.