Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby chrisf » Tue Jul 12, 2016 10:19 am

dbperry wrote:I have to assume they mean leased power. No other way to get there for power. But as for coaches, that's a mystery. I would assume any spare coaches anywhere would be sucked up by SEPTA. Maybe rehab of the MBB's?

A couple paragraphs above in the WGBH article is this: "Keolis will be required to raise the minimum number of functioning locomotives they have on hand every weekday from 81 to 90."
Surely the T owns at least 9 engines that aren't currently in service but can be rehabbed. According to the NETransit roster there are plenty of -2Cs which are out of service and there's an RFP for a rehab program for at least 10 of them.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby ohalloranchris » Tue Jul 12, 2016 10:47 am

I guess the bigger question, how long before we see these units in service? I assume rehab will take a while. Still curious to see what the coaches will be...
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby chrisf » Tue Jul 12, 2016 11:02 am

Keolis has supposedly had a significant backlog of coaches that need to be serviced, so it wouldn't seem too difficult to make some headway on that if the maintenance crews are working 7 days a week instead of 5. Given that the T is still in the RFP phase of a rehab program for the F40s, it seems likely that will be a while. At least unlike with the Kawasaki rebuild program, these engines are already out of service, so sending them out shouldn't make service worse in the interim.
The Boston Herald article on this topic (http://www.bostonherald.com/news/local_ ... _extra_66m) says:
"• Adding nine more locomotives and 12 more coaches the MBTA already owns to the daily fleet Keolis operates, at a cost of $4.2 million...." So it would appear no outside equipment will be leased or purchased.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby Diverging Route » Tue Jul 12, 2016 11:22 am

NETransit says:

Potential locomotive overhaul program: In June 2016, the MBTA requested letters of interest from firms that may be interested in overhauling a minimum of 10 F40PH-2C and F40PHM-2C locomotives. The MBTA may issue an RFP for a program in August 2016. As part of a presentation to the MBTA Control Board in June 2016, MBTA staff identified a potential program to remanufacture 10 locomotives, overhaul 10 locomotives, and replace major components on 10 locomotives (30 locomotives total).
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Tue Jul 12, 2016 12:43 pm

Sounds like a confusingly worded press release. The extra funds seem to be for addressing the repair backlog that's now ballooned to such massive proportions that the shop can't keep up. Those -2C's aren't retired or in long-term mothballs, just so hopelessly buried in the repair queue that drastic action has to be taken to expedite. Based on the Fleet Plan, the full 40 units of HSP-46's + a fully operational -2C fleet should've been plenty of power to feed the whole system stably while allowing for 10 of the worst-condition Geeps to be retired and parts-harvested to keep the other 15 units in stable shape. Nothing has changed with the numbers requirements for running the full system. It's strictly a matter of the -2C's being in orders-of-magnitude worse condition than anyone ever anticipated. As long as they don't dawdle on appropriating the FY18-19 funds to RFP the next massive 40+ unit replacement locomotive order that has to happen by 2022 before the -2C's and Geeps can no longer be plausibly band-aided, simply sending in the cavalry to get the units operable and semi-stable for their age should roll back the recent/surprise attrition and get the numbers requirements back in line with the Fleet Plan for running a stable system.

I'd be interested to see how extensive the refreshes are going to be. 1056 and 1062 seem like they got very little work other than replacements for dead prime movers. Rehab would have to be a little more intensive than that to stabilize MTBF for another 5 years. On the other hand, can't see the bang-for-buck of doing full-on midlife overhauls to F40PH-3C spec for 15-year life extensions like Metro North and Metra did with their fleets. If that next mega-order of replacements is still going to happen for the 2020-22 range, they'll be getting rid of nearly all of them anyway even with the fresh rebuilds. This is still a system that's largely outgrown the performance limitations of 3000 HP units under rush-hour load and is in need of a perma-fix solution for the half of the fleet that isn't 3600-4600 HP.


How bad is the coach backlog right now, in terms of stuff that's just day-to-day in the repair line? Since NETransit only drills down in enough detail to list long-term OOS units like the K-cars out for rebuild and the couple accident victims, are the 'unreported' units being cycled through for regular maint now so far behind that the shop is buried? Stuff like HVAC prep for summer season...wasn't that one of the tasks they were really huffing-and-puffing to complete on-schedule the last 2 years? Are they appropriating money to expedite the 1600's signal retrofits so they finally have the flex to run south? It doesn't seem to be MBB-related, because had things gone according plan car availability should've been survivable while the K-cars were out even with the MBB's being yanked from service. The MBB numbers have been pared back again over the last 2 weeks (now 6 trailers, 12 cabs) to about their lowest level ever, so the problem doesn't seem to be too many in long-term storage but rather some sort of worsening disruption in the shop cycles of the other non-retiree makes.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby BandA » Tue Jul 12, 2016 10:51 pm

This article touches on different points than the Herald.http://www.masslive.com/news/boston/index.ssf/2016/07/massachusetts_agrees_to_more_m.html
The current contract requires the vendor to keep 81 locomotives in repair, and the changes would boost that number to 90. The changes Pollack described would add 12 coaches to the fleet Keolis must keep in repair, bringing the number of coaches up to 420.

Pollack said it is typical for firms to be required to have a cushion of vehicles kept in repair in excess of the amount needed for service.

"In the contract they kept it tight at 81. We're just increasing it," Pollack said.

"In order to have really 67 every day we need to have a larger spare ratio," said Dubourdieu.
No way they should need a 34% spare ratio for locomotives. The old ratio was 21% Are they hoping to run additional service? Or are we acknowledging the abysmal MTTF rates? Or has BET been understaffed & they are staffing up to where they should have been all the time?

I assume the "additional" coaches are MBBs. They were awesome when they were new with the 2+2 reversible seats.

Interest rates are still so low that they should be applying for fed grants and ordering new equipment.

Maybe they can buy some slightly used Silverliner V's from SEPTA for the Providence line ;)

Do they really need exclusively high-horsepower engines on all lines? Does every line have enough passengers to require 6+ bilevels?
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby Backshophoss » Tue Jul 12, 2016 11:04 pm

About every route has standee issues,the more cars online,standees will finally sit down,conductors and assit conductors can check tickets.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby Komarovsky » Wed Jul 13, 2016 7:23 am

The plan to rehab power looks to me as at the very least a hedge against not getting the money for the F40/GP40 replacements in a few years.

Best case this gives the T some breathing room to retire power as the new power is brought in and shaken down. This would help hedge against issues like the T had with the 46s early reliability/manufacturing defect.

Worst case scenario, no money is allocated for power and this is a hedge against having to do the same rebuild with even more worn equipment.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Wed Jul 13, 2016 1:21 pm

I doubt loco repairs that are short-term and geared solely towards backstopping their spare ratios has any correlation with the funding timetable for the next Really Big Locomotive Procurement™. It's S.O.P. with 21st century rolling stock that it takes 5-6 years to go from RFP to contract to delivery to warranty mods and net a full in-service fleet of brand new power. That's the new normal even for the stuff that works right. So if the funds for 50 brand new replacement locos were appropriated tomorrow, the Geeps and -2C's would still have to last in-service until 2020 and not be fully gone off the property until 2022. The only way to speed up any of that timetable is. . .

. . .IF the fleet unification angle makes it legal for them to skip the usual RFP/bid process and go straight to MPI for another stet HSP-46 production run
. . .IF MPI is even interested in another HSP-46 production run, and not too preoccupied at the moment design-building Tier 4 versions of its full freight lineup
. . .IF the T can get an expedited FRA waiver to order another HSP-46 production run of the current/stet Tier 3 make, without MPI having to chew up the clock and additional resources designing a brand new Tier 4 variant
. . .IF the light is at the end of the tunnel on warranty mods of the current order so specs for the new production run can be frozen solid and the production line restarted.

Too many if's, and two biggie legal exemptions (the open-bid skipping, and the FRA waiver) they have to score wins on with state and federal regulators. Without that unlikely sequence breaking perfectly in their favor, it's just not physically possible to get 50 more new locomotives in full service and the -2C's and Geeps fully retired in less than 5 years. So if the old stuff is going to have crap-and-declining reliability, they have to do what it takes to fatten the fleet cushion for a period of no less than 5-7 years by backstopping the shop's capacity and doing a preemptive maint burst.


If the FCMB were anticipating not being able to pay for that 50-locomotive order that can't happen in less than 5 years, Pollack's statements wouldn't merely be talking mere component repair and expansion of the cushion. They'd instead be RFP'ing out for a full-on midlife rebuild or remanufacture of the -2C's into like-new F40PH-3C's a la Metro North & Metra, going for the full 12-15 year life extension at like-new's MTBF, bringing in an armada of temp lease power so the -2C's can get shipped offsite for months at a time to a faraway rebuild factory, and using that full-scale rebuild to lower the necessary cushion of required spares so they can further pare the rebuild-unworthy Geeps. That doesn't appear to be what they're doing, as these appear to be repairs not rebuilds and expansion of the spares cushion anticipating that old stuff is going to retain old stuff's poorer MTBF.


As for the coaches, 12 isn't very much. So I still wonder pending confirmation if that's just a backstop for the shop line of Pullmans, Bombardiers, non-rebuild K-cars, and Brokems rather than doing anything more extensive to a relatively small % of the MBB fleet. The in-service MBB's have fluctuated by greater numbers than 12 in the last several months, with a dramatic reduction counterintuitively coming in just the last 2 weeks coincident with this proposal. The K-cars are out exactly 12-at-a-time for rebuild, and with the 700's about to surpass the halfway point of those numbers should normalize by the 12-car count Pollack cites without any action on the MBB's. Maybe they're talking another mini-CRASP program on the Bombardiers to move the needle on spares availability, or dipping into the cab-deactivated 1600's to backstop the CTC's with cushion so if any MBB's need to be rotated in for cushion it's just the simpler trailers (and maybe just the non- power door trailers at that)?

Some key bit of info is missing from that statement re: what's driving that expansionary spares ratio and seeming contradiction in the sharply increased number of recently mothballed MBB's. Is it because the shop is too day-to-day backed up with MTBF needing a boost, or are they truly talking dipping into the storage pool (and if so, why does the storage pool keep continually increasing if the plan is now to raid it)?
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby octr202 » Wed Jul 13, 2016 2:26 pm

We might be missing something simple here. I suspect Keolis's original bid was based on a fleet of X locomotives and Y cars. I wonder if this is basically just the legal/contractual moves to pass them some extra funding, with the requirement that those numbers are now X+9 and Y+12. This could likely have way more to do with accounting than specific rolling stock...as nice as it might be to see the older OOS units go out for a full top to bottom rebuild.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby BandA » Mon Jul 18, 2016 5:41 pm

Seems like they are missing an opportunity to get a quickie-refurb of some of the MBB coaches, paid for by desperate SEPTA. According to the Silverliner V thread, they are paying Maryland $1,600 per day per car to rent 5 coaches. This quickie work would have to be done by an outside group (?P&W?) since BET is apparently backlogged. These could come back in time for winter.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Mon Jul 18, 2016 7:43 pm

SEPTA needs stuff today, not 3 months from now. P&W's small shop isn't on speed-dial; their work testing the HSP-46's was scheduled many months in advance. Mass Coastal/CCCR is in the middle of a rebuild of their freight power; they're still borrowing our Screamer leasers to patch themselves through the summer. It's far easier said than done to get instant help in one's own backyard when all these small freight railroads have SGR projects of their own keeping them plenty busy. All of the stored MBB's have missed several regular inspection cycles including the annual springtime HVAC prep-for-summer chores. So they're not plug-and-chug on a moment's notice, and if BET is so emergency-level backed up with work they're going to strain under load at even giving SEPTA an assist with prep-for-service.

Plus, all the spare coaches in the world don't matter to SEPTA if they can only scrape together 5 or 6 electric locos to run them. The power shortage is looking much more pessimistic than it was those first couple days as NJT is tapped out, MARC is tapped out, and digging into the stored Amtrak AEM-7AC's isn't a trivial matter with some of them raided haphazardly for parts during their time in storage and facing a laundry list of small fixes before they can be made operable. MARC was able to send them another infusion of coaches because they're sitting on a surplus of trailers at the moment. The non-cabs on their new Bombardier MLV fleet are nearly all in-service, their K-car rebuild program is Bombardier-contracted and doesn't begin in earnest until the MLV's are completely done, and they've still got their junky old gallery cars on active reserve to substitute on the Brunswick Line so they can raid the MARC IIB fleet. MARC's probably got more cars still to give if SEPTA can pry another loco, and after that it's probably on to CDOT and the active reserves for the SLE fleet. Since it doesn't look SEPTA is going to be able to score more than a handful more electric locos total, in all likelihood they're never going to get far enough down the spare coach call list to hit up the T.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby R36 Combine Coach » Mon Jul 18, 2016 8:04 pm

F-line to Dudley via Park wrote: Since it doesn't look SEPTA is going to be able to score more than a handful more electric locos total, in all likelihood they're never going to get far enough down the spare coach call list to hit up the T.
In the event of a prolonged Silverliner V outage, an available diesel or two could be used with MBTA coaches in limited diesel service out of 30 Street Lower Level on the PRR lines. And of course, there's the RL1.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby F-line to Dudley via Park » Mon Jul 18, 2016 8:36 pm

"An available diesel or two" in limited service? That doesn't exactly move the needle meaningfully on the all-world severity of their power shortage. Them phoning up the T is still a hypothetical that's at least a half-dozen more loaner locomotives and MARC + CDOT trainsets worth of active-service loaner coaches away. And it's not a call they can make until they know the extra power is in-hand, because all those stored Silverliner V's have gobbled every inch of space in their yards. They have nowhere to stockpile extra coaches to lay in wait for the next +1 locomotive they can pry loose from somebody and get in-service. Nor does Amtrak have the space with all the new Sprinters and Viewliners undergoing warranty mods and all those reserve Heritage bags and dead locos stuffing their mid-NEC facilities full. Right now SEPTA's having an agonizing time scraping up each +1 locomotive. You're talking many weeks and/or months before they ever reach the point of having enough locos to 1) call the T, 2) sort out the logistics of prep-for-service, and 3) do the prep-for-service. It's an utter waste of their time and resources to make arrangements for coaches they have no power--or hope of quick power--to operate, and nowhere to store while they hope and pray for power.


This is not like flicking a light switch. That's the apocalyptic part of this SLV debacle; scrambling replacements is not at all as easy at it looks. The physical options are extremely limited, and very slow to fling together for what they can scrape up. People seem to think mothballed equipment is totally plug-and-play. Well...aren't we seeing right here and now in doomsday fashion how completely not-at-all-true that is in the real world? There's no armada of AEM-7AC's and HHP-8's churning heading north out of Bear Shops after a week's worth of OT shifts from Amtrak's ace maintenance staff. No available power means they're too many steps ahead of themselves trying to acquire the coaches that are somewhat more available. Heaven and earth are being moved to give SEPTA loaner equipment, but moving heaven and earth isn't quick or without its real limits. Right now those limits are so severe the T isn't even Top 4 or 5 on the emergency call list. Chances are incredibly slim that any of those MBB coaches down at Seaview are going to move this year. Incredibly slim.
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Re: Retirements and Disposition of CR Equipment

Postby KevinSun242 » Wed Aug 10, 2016 5:23 pm

Saw the big line of MBBs at BET yesterday being moved by a GP40, I think 1126. Anyone know where those were moved off to?
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