Amtrak 8600 & Amtrak 8601 - dining and Automat cars

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Amtrak 8600 & Amtrak 8601 - dining and Automat cars

Postby Jers2709 » Fri Apr 04, 2008 1:10 am

Does anyone know what Amtrak 8600 and Amtrak 8601 is used for?
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Re: Amtrak 8600 & Amtrak 8601

Postby jhdeasy » Fri Apr 04, 2008 1:33 pm

Jers2709 wrote:Does anyone know what Amtrak 8600 and Amtrak 8601 is used for?


http://www.northeast.railfan.net/images/amtk8600.jpg

Amtrak 8600 was a Heritage fleet table car, used in conjunction with a buffet dining car, to provide dining service on Amtrak's Autotrain before the train was converted from Heritage to Superliner equipment. The car was converted from a Heritage fleet (former Union Pacific) coach.

http://chicago.railfan.net/cgi/photos.pl/?photo=99c11170.jpg&page=AMTK_8601

Amtrak 8601 was the Heritage fleet experimental Automat car, converted from a Heritage fleet (former Union Pacific) coach. I think the car was originally planned for use on a midwest corridor (Michigan?) train to offer a variety of cafe food/beverage choices from vending machines without the labor cost of an attendant. The "automat car" food/beverage service concept originated on the Southern Pacific as a cost cutting initiative in the 1960s.
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Postby Jers2709 » Sun Apr 06, 2008 4:38 am

Any idea if they're still in service? Saw a couple of pics of them in Phase IV paint.
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Postby cnj1524 » Mon Apr 07, 2008 7:37 am

8601 located in new jersey on the morristown & erie railroad.
http://www.jefflubchanskycpa.com/AMT860 ... DG1235.jpg
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Postby John_Perkowski » Tue Apr 08, 2008 10:17 am

As Mr Deasy points out, these were both UP cars from A-Day.

Both of these cars were aluminum structure, built either by P-S or St Louis Car Co. When Amtrak decided on Budd equipment as the final remnant of Heritage Fleet cars, I cannot see why they'd hang on to non-standard (squared) gear.
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Postby jhdeasy » Tue Apr 08, 2008 3:52 pm

The former Amtrak 8601 is still stored on the Morristown & Erie Railway in New Jersey. I'm not aware of any significant work completed on the car, or if the car has been used, during the past 4 years. It is NOT currently certified for use as a private car on Amtrak.

As for Mr. Perkowski's comments on former Union Pacific cars, not manufactured by the Budd Company, that were included in Amtrak's Heritage Fleet, allow me to point out that a group of Union Pacific low density leg rest coaches were refurbished & HEP'd for use in eastern long distance trains, serving until they were eventually displaced by Superliners and Amfleet II in the 1990s. Amtrak also had some x-UP 11 double bedroom sleeping cars cars assigned to Autotrain until that train was converted to Superliner II cars and to The Silver Meteor before the Viewliners.

In the mid 1980s thru early 1990s, the Maryland Midland Railway, later the EnterTrainment Line, owned a UP dome diner that they acquired from the Autotrain estate ... I remember the car had some problems with dissimilar metallic (aluminun and steel) corrosion. I often wondered how common that problem was with UP's cars of aluminum/steel construction.
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Postby John_Perkowski » Tue Apr 08, 2008 9:33 pm

Mr Deasy,

Trust me I understand the UP 5400/5500 series coaches, the 6100/6200 lounges, the 4800/5000 series diners, the Placid, Sun, and Star series sleepers, all had long lives on Amtrak.

I'm just surprised, when the final purge into Budd-builts began, that they even survived in company service for any length of time.

Considering much of UP's current Executive fleet is comprised of PV built from the 1950 order of 5400 series coaches, with a healthy dash of diners, domes, and sleepers, I also have to wonder about the corrosion issue.
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Postby astrosa » Tue Apr 08, 2008 10:57 pm

I don't believe the 8600 ever received Phase IV paint, only the 8601. Both were part of the 8600-8603 group of Auto Train table cars as explained above, all converted to HEP in 1983.

8600 was UP 5506, built by St. Louis Car Co. in 1960
8601 was UP 5505, built by St. Louis Car Co. in 1960
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Postby AMTK1007 » Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:23 am

the 8601 automat car was initially in captive service on trains 370/371 between Chicago and Grand Rapids, replacing the Amcafe on that train. it later was moved to the Janesville Javelin where it replaced a 1700 series baggage car that was being used to meet a requirement of a minimum of 12 axles
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Postby Met113 » Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:00 pm

AMTK1007 wrote:the 8601 automat car was initially in captive service on trains 370/371 between Chicago and Grand Rapids, replacing the Amcafe on that train. it later was moved to the Janesville Javelin where it replaced a 1700 series baggage car that was being used to meet a requirement of a minimum of 12 axles
Excuse my ignorance but what is the Janesville Javelin? Its an odd name, lol.
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Postby Gilbert B Norman » Wed Apr 09, 2008 8:25 pm

Stephen, that was the Lake Country Limited, a Chicago-Janesville WI train that was inaugurated primarily to expand Amtrak's late 90's freight initiative.

When that initiative went "adios" during the Gunn years, so did the train.
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Postby Jers2709 » Thu Apr 10, 2008 1:23 am

Where they around in '96?


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Postby Tadman » Thu Apr 10, 2008 10:16 am

I remember seeing the automat on the PM as a kid for quite a few years. For a train that didn't always get a cafe car, the automat was a nice way to guarantee some kind of food.
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Spotted

Postby jp1822 » Thu Apr 10, 2008 8:55 pm

I think I may have seen one of either of these cars on the Cardinal when the Kentucky Cardinal (now the Hoosier State truncated to Indianapolis)was in service. It was around 2000 or so and I spotted it in Chicago Union Station. Either it was one of these two cars or some odd looking private car, as it was a car I was not familiar seeing on Amtrak.
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Postby astrosa » Thu Apr 10, 2008 10:31 pm

Jers2709 wrote:Where they around in '96?


I believe that as late as 1995, Amtrak's Auto Train still consisted of a half-and-half mix between older Heritage equipment and newer Superliner II cars. I may be wrong, though, as it was one of the first trains to receive the new Superliners when they started being delivered in late 1993.

Whenever the transition was completed, that's when the 8600-8603 table cars were withdrawn from service and stored. As far as I know, 8601 was the sole exception, but I'm not sure when it became the automat car. My guess would be sometime around 1997-1998.
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