Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

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Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby CP-4070 » Wed Nov 02, 2016 8:03 am

Hi guys,

I was wondering if anyone can help to identify the cars that both, Conrail and Penn Central FL-9s pulled out of GCT. I am looking for information on model railroad cars to model them and also for some photo sources to allow realistic weathering of these run-down cars. All I found so far a photos that have the loco's front shown.

Here is a sample of the cars I mean.

http://donsdepot.donrossgroup.net/dr0001/bl773.jpg

Thanks a lot!

Andrew
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Re: Cars that PC and CR FL-9s pulled

Postby Noel Weaver » Wed Nov 02, 2016 1:24 pm

Up until the end of the New Haven Railroad on January 1, 1969 FL-9's could have pulled almost anything the New Haven Railroad owned coaches, parlor cars, bar cars, diners, grills, sleepers etc. They also pulled various Pennsylvania Railroad equipment on through trains running between Boston and Washington. After January 1, 1969 FL-9's were very common on Harlem and Hudson Line trains with old New York Central HW coaches plus some LW coaches that were rebuilt for commuter services. Later on with state support they pulled a really ragtag assortment of equipment from all over the place especially on the Harlem and Hudson. As state support increased new "Bomb" cars were purchased for the NY - Poughkeepsie trains and New York - Danbury trains and a good number of FL-9's lost their steam generators for HEP units in order to provide for heat, AC and lights in the new cars. They also pulled various types of Amtrak equipment in and out of both Grand Central Terminal and Pennsylvania Station until both Amtrak and Metro-North finally decided on new GE's that were capable of third rail operation for these trains in and out of New York City. During their 45 plus years of life they pulled almost anything with wheels as long as it was not restricted from running in third rail territory in and out of New York. Some of them also ran on the Long Island Rail Road for a period so I guess you can add that to the mix here too.
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Re: Cars that PC and CR FL-9s pulled

Postby Otto Vondrak » Wed Nov 02, 2016 4:06 pm

CP-4070 wrote:I was wondering if anyone can help to identify the cars that both, Conrail and Penn Central FL-9s pulled out of GCT. I am looking for information on model railroad cars to model them and also for some photo sources to allow realistic weathering of these run-down cars. All I found so far a photos that have the loco's front shown.


Budd Streamlined Coaches - ex-NYC and various other roads, too

Osgood-Bradley 8600-series coaches: http://rapidotrains.com/ho-new-haven-8600-coaches/

ex-Reading "Wallstreeter" Coaches acquired from SEPTA by Connecticut DOT for New Haven Line service - http://www.railpictures.net/images/d2/4 ... 494082.jpg

When the Delaware & Hudson cars were replaced with Amtrak equipment in 1974, NYSDOT reassigned them to commuter trains: http://www.dominionrailvoyages.com/jhd/ ... county.jpg

This book is worth getting:

http://morningsunbooks.com/products/met ... 16-small-i

So is this one:

https://www.amazon.com/Metro-Norths-Hud ... 0965136450

And this one:

https://www.amazon.com/Commuter-Trains- ... 0915276453

This one will really answer all of your questions, covers the history of FL9s from start to finish, many photos:

https://www.amazon.com/Diesels-Park-Ave ... 9656304004

-otto-
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby TB Diamond » Wed Nov 02, 2016 7:47 pm

FL9 units were utilized in freight service on occasion L/1960s. Photographed a w/b Penn Central freight train on the West Shore crossing East Henrietta Road in Henrietta, NY, May, 1969.

Train was lead by PC GE U33B 2947 with two FL9 units trailng in the power consist.
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby Noel Weaver » Wed Nov 02, 2016 8:45 pm

FL-9's also pulled freight trains on the New Haven at various times. One book that I can not recommend is the book "Diesels on Park Avenue", it has a lot of errors in it.
I did a list of them a few years ago but it may have gotten lost in a move. In any event the FL -9's had a very interesting history. At one time or another I ran all 60 of them.
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby CP-4070 » Fri Nov 11, 2016 5:58 am

Thanks guys for the great feedback! I must say that I own all of the books mentioned but somehow I didn't manage to find respective models so far, apart from Rapido's 6800s. Given on the new and very helpful information, I was able to find out some models.

Another question goes into the paint of the FL9s in those days. At some pictures, the once yellow noses look so faded out, that they appear to be white. Having never seen this locos in that shape in real life, I was wondering if some of them really were "white" or if that is an effect based on the quality of some photographs back in the day?

Given the fact that my Rapidos shall get this run down appearance, I am also still looking for an information about how to fade out the bright yellow paint of the FL-9 models. The only method I came across so far is to simply put the shells into the sun for... 1 year?

Any thoughts?

Thanks and best wishes, Andrew
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby CP-4070 » Mon Nov 14, 2016 5:13 am

Just found the answer to the "white" nose question:

https://mw2.google.com/mw-panoramio/pho ... 888666.jpg

Best wishes, Andrew
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby MACTRAXX » Mon Nov 14, 2016 6:18 am

CP4070: All this was from the faded paint used on the FL9s for the 1970s era MTA/PC color scheme.

Good memories from the pictures posted by Otto. This shows a good variety of the car fleet used in passenger service up to and in to
Metro North from the 1980s and before.

There were three FL9s that were rebuilt for the LIRR to be used for a dual-mode run Penn Station-Port Jefferson during the 1990s.
The 10 prototype C1 cars (this train normally ran with 8 cars) were used on this train with FL9s on each end.
The third unit was kept in reserve and later became a parts unit to keep the other two in service.
These FL9s were retired and returned to MNCR to be scrapped back around the year 2000 along with the retirement of the 10 oddball C1 cars.

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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby NYCRRson » Tue Nov 15, 2016 10:02 pm

I can't add much about PC and Conrail, but those FL9's where used by Amtrak in "Empire Service" between Niagara Falls/Buffalo and NYC for a few years (late 1980's or early 90's I think).

You could always tell when an Amtrak train with an FL9 went by the defect detector because it would call out an ODD number of axles. "25 axles, no defects" (or 29. or 33) was a common call from the defect detector. Five axles for the FL9 and then 5, 6 or 7 Amfleet cars (4 axles each) along for the ride.

Of course, there could have been a regular freight train that lost it's last axle along the way and had an odd axle count....

Cheers, Kevin.
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby Old & Weary » Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:05 am

Thanks Kevin. Around l990, I saw one of the FL9's in the Amtrak stripe scheme leading a westbound Empire service train. I was about a quarter mile away on a snowy day and never saw another one although I was frequently crossing tracks for work in those days or taking pictures. Don't think I have seen any pictures of one on a train west of Albany either. Was going to post something here earlier but thought I'd be assaulted by naysayers.
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby CP-4070 » Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:01 pm

Coming back to passenger cars, hauled by PC and CR FL-9s: I am sure, that the one or other have seen them pulling former Delaware and Hudson cars. Some of them I once red were set on fire by vagrants. Would they have been these cars in D&H paint scheme?

http://rapidotrains.com/ho-scale-lightweight-coach/

I have some of the LIRR cars of this production. Would they also have gone into Grand Central Terminal? If yes, what lettering would they have had above the windows instead of the Long Island tag?

Sorry for these silly questions :-D

Best wishes, Andrew
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby NYCRRson » Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:47 pm

Well, PC did absorb all of the FL9's from the New Haven back in 1969. And they did operate them on trains into/out of GCT for a few years until Amtrak came into being in 1971. But I doubt they had time to paint one in PC black ? They were probably left in faded NH colors.

I'm not sure CR ever actually owned/operated any FL9's. Not exactly sure of the dates but I don't think CR actually operated any commuter trains into/out of GCT ?

Amtrak "long distance" service out of GCT started in 1971, 5 years before CR even began.

I think all the commuter trains where turned over to the Metro North folks before Conrail even existed ?

Conrail did operate some commuter passenger trains into/out of Philadelphia in the late 1970's (I have a ticket stub to prove it). But that ended very soon after CR existed (4/1/1976). I don't think you will find a photo of an FL9 painted for CR hauling passenger cars (with any paint scheme) into/out of GCT.

To make a short answer; I doubt that you will find a picture of an FL9 painted in PC colors hauling cars into/out of GCT, but one could exist. I suspect that a few FL9's with faded NH paint had a quick makeover where the NH name was covered over and a quick PC name sprayed in it's place. But that would not be a full PC color paint job.

I also doubt that you will find a picture of an FL9 painted in CR colors hauling cars into/out of GCT, I am very doubtful that any FL9's were ever painted in CR colors. The only colors Conrail used for passenger equipment was bright blue and a brown color used for the "executive special".

You can probably find pictures of FL9's painted in Amtrak colors hauling Amfleet cars into/out of GCT, I have seen such units with my own eyes, there is probably a picture somewhere.

Hope that helps. Penn Central and Conrail had no money back in those days. Painting the train cars to match the current owner was a very low priority.

Cheers, Kevin.
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby chrisf » Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:45 pm

NYCRRson wrote:I'm not sure CR ever actually owned/operated any FL9's. Not exactly sure of the dates but I don't think CR actually operated any commuter trains into/out of GCT ?
... I don't think you will find a photo of an FL9 painted for CR hauling passenger cars (with any paint scheme) into/out of GCT.

To make a short answer; I doubt that you will find a picture of an FL9 painted in PC colors hauling cars into/out of GCT, but one could exist. I suspect that a few FL9's with faded NH paint had a quick makeover where the NH name was covered over and a quick PC name sprayed in it's place. But that would not be a full PC color paint job.

I also doubt that you will find a picture of an FL9 painted in CR colors hauling cars into/out of GCT, I am very doubtful that any FL9's were ever painted in CR colors. The only colors Conrail used for passenger equipment was bright blue and a brown color used for the "executive special".

You can probably find pictures of FL9's painted in Amtrak colors hauling Amfleet cars into/out of GCT, I have seen such units with my own eyes, there is probably a picture somewhere.

Indeed, Conrail painted some FL9s into blue, with the yellow nose. Here, in this example is #5007: http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... ?id=778089
5007 again in GCT: http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=2902083
5018 in blue with the yellow nose: http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... ?id=759819
Penn Central mostly used a different shade of blue with the yellow noses but at least 5011 was painted into a full black PC paint job: http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPi ... id=4390842
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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby mackdave » Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:47 pm

Get a copy of Walter E Zuiig Jr.'s book "Metro-North in Color." It has all your answers. PC and Conrail FL-9's, etc.

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Re: Penn Central and Conrail trains pulled by FL9s

Postby TomNelligan » Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:57 pm

NYCRRson wrote:To make a short answer; I doubt that you will find a picture of an FL9 painted in PC colors hauling cars into/out of GCT, but one could exist. I suspect that a few FL9's with faded NH paint had a quick makeover where the NH name was covered over and a quick PC name sprayed in it's place. But that would not be a full PC color paint job.


There were plenty of patch jobs, but several FL9s also received full PC black paint with lettering and logo in 1969 before the blue/yellow scheme took hold on the Metropolitan Region (PC's predecessor to Metro North). You'll find photos of the black dip jobs as well as all the other NH/PC/CR/MN transition paint schemes in my now-ancient Commuter Trains to Grand Central Terminal book that Otto kindly referenced above, which, if I say so myself, is worth the four bucks it apparently goes for these days!.

https://www.amazon.com/Commuter-Trains-Central-Terminal-Quadrant/dp/0915276453
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