Empire Service (New York State)

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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby Jim Kaufman » Tue Dec 04, 2018 5:08 pm

There is a reason behind the seating on NYP-ALB trains, especially heavy travel times (i.e., PM trains out of Penn)...crew likes pax to know where they will "open up" RHI/HUD/ and the few that are getting off at YNY/CRT/POU. So when they say (as I used to load my trains): RHI-HUD front of train, ALB to rear. The reason? RHI-HUD are easy to unload from front of train, RHI near stair and elevator; HUD near station doors (taxi) and parking lot; ALB near escalators. PLUS, in days rear end crews had radios...easier to stop/start trains with hand signals at RHI-HUD.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby Jim Kaufman » Tue Dec 04, 2018 5:10 pm

Last line should read: ...BEFORE rear end crews had radios..."
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby SRich » Mon Jan 21, 2019 11:58 am

A small question, why doesn't has the empire service like te keystone service a cabcar at the rear of the train, the need to change the locomotive is then no more...
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby Amtrak706 » Mon Jan 21, 2019 11:59 am

Because it’s not needed. The trains have to use the turnaround loop at Sunnyside to access the yard, and there is a wye at Albany. There aren’t enough Metroliner cabs to outfit the Empire trains anyway, and even if there were enough, there is no way to control the diesel/electric mode switchover from a cabcar, it has to be done in the P32 cab.
Last edited by Amtrak706 on Mon Jan 21, 2019 12:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby SouthernRailway » Mon Jan 21, 2019 12:30 pm

Why are Amfleet Empire Service trains scheduled for around 5 1/2 hours between NYC and Syracuse, but the Lake Shore Limited is scheduled for 7 hours?

I can see a padded schedule eastbound for the LSL to make up for delays further west, but shouldn't it take the same time north/west between NYC and Syracuse as other trains, more or less?

I was about to tell a relative to take the LSL in a sleeping car, even during the day, but an extra hour and a half is pushing it when it's so easy to fly.

Thanks.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby Amtrak706 » Mon Jan 21, 2019 12:56 pm

Because the LSL has to combine/split itself at Albany with the NY and Boston sections. And then the dual mode needs to be added or removed from the NY section. It ends up taking a surprisingly long time to do all this.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby Jeff Smith » Mon Jan 21, 2019 1:03 pm

Also posted in Brightline: viewtopic.php?f=208&t=168630&p=1497559#p1497559

Random question, as improvements to the corridor continue or are pondered, and Amtrak seeks to replace its Amfleet I’s:

The Brightline train sets are led by a variant of the Charger (SCB-40). NYS and Amtrak are looking to replace the P32’s with a modified SC-44 including third rail shoes (presumably over/under for all NYS roads).

Wouldn’t a modified Brightline set and business model be a good fit for Empire Service? Better yet, change providers to Brightline as an operator?

Amtrak would continue to operate the LD’s.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby 35dtmrs92 » Mon Jan 21, 2019 1:23 pm

Do we have confirmation that Amtrak/NYS are specifying compatibility with both over and under running third rail on their P32 replacement? I'm also curious what the speed limit will be on third rail. If that replacement loco can maintain 80 mi/hr in third rail mode, a lot of doors get unlocked; I'm thinking Albany-Montauk service via NYP, for one.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby Jeff Smith » Mon Jan 21, 2019 1:29 pm

That’s not a bad idea but the LIRR is pretty cramped as it is, at least until the third track project sorts itself out. Re: third rail, AFAIK the idea was a joint bid and common specifications for easier/joint maintenance and inter-operability.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby Amtrak706 » Mon Jan 21, 2019 2:34 pm

Third rail dual modes are not designed for prolonged or high speed operation in electric mode. Catenary is many thousands of volts, allowing for a lower current and enabling enough power for a locomotive to accelerate a train to come through one pantograph and this one point of contact. Third rail is significantly lower voltage, 750VDC I believe, and therefore requires high current to get enough power across. This is why all trains that use third rail for their main power source are EMUs, as they can distribute the load out to several shoes throughout the train. P32s, DM30s, and FL9s cram as many third rail shoes as possible onto their trucks but it is still quite the load and is susceptible to heavy arcing and constant losses of power as the locomotive traverses gaps in the third rail due to switches, etc. This is why the dual mode locos have a relatively low max speed in electric mode, and why they switch off as soon as possible (e.g. Metro-North P32s turning on the diesel as soon as they are out of the Park Avenue tunnel instead of all the way to Harmon. LIRR is no different so max third rail speed is not really a problem as the loco would only be in third rail mode where absolutely necessary anyway.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby SouthernRailway » Mon Jan 21, 2019 2:36 pm

Thanks, Amtrak706--your posts are super-helpful and informative.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby benboston » Mon Jan 21, 2019 10:23 pm

Jeff Smith wrote:Also posted in Brightline: http://railroad.net/forums/viewtopic.ph ... 9#p1497559

Random question, as improvements to the corridor continue or are pondered, and Amtrak seeks to replace its Amfleet I’s:

The Brightline train sets are led by a variant of the Charger (SCB-40). NYS and Amtrak are looking to replace the P32’s with a modified SC-44 including third rail shoes (presumably over/under for all NYS roads).

Wouldn’t a modified Brightline set and business model be a good fit for Empire Service? Better yet, change providers to Brightline as an operator?

Amtrak would continue to operate the LD’s.


Yeah, NYS could/should sell the rights to running and operating the Empire Services to Brightline. Brightline would definitely do a better job at it.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby electricron » Tue Jan 22, 2019 2:00 am

They could, but they will not. Here's why. The railroad corridors Empire Service trains used are not owned by Brightline, or the Florida East Coast Railroad, which exists in Florida and will exist in California/Nevada. Most of the rail corridors in New York State are owned by CSX, which by law has to allow Amtrak on them - they do not have to allow anyone else on them.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby benboston » Tue Jan 22, 2019 9:44 am

I understand that, but Brightline could threaten to make their own corridor and in doing that they will generate lots of negotiating power.
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Re: Empire Service (New York State)

Postby DutchRailnut » Tue Jan 22, 2019 9:48 am

lets stop fantasy land , make their own corridor?? even brightline and virgin don't have enough money.
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