Kawasaki cars on north lines?

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Kawasaki cars on north lines?

Postby CTAA-Rail » Thu Jun 10, 2004 12:36 pm

I've been told that the Kawasaki cars do not operate on any of the North Station lines, but I believe I've been aboard them every time I've been on the Lowell line. Can anyone clarify?
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Postby jrc520 » Thu Jun 10, 2004 1:29 pm

nope. the kawasaki cars are the double level cars. no good due to clearance issues.
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Postby apodino » Thu Jun 10, 2004 1:38 pm

How do you figure clearance issues? The Kawasakis are the same height as the F40's? Not only that but I have been on Kawasakis on the Rockport line before. This was back in the early 90's when the cars started seeing service.

The T's arguement has always been that they are all needed for south side service. Now a handful of the existing cars can not be used away from the old colony because they have the automatic doors.

I don't buy the T's argument. Especially when bilevels are now being used on the Readville Shuttle? Thats ridiculous. You only need four single level cars to operate that, and those don't quite get filled to capacity either.

Plus the Newburyport and Lowell lines are overcrowded as it is. They need increased capacity on those lines, and if you can't add more cars to the trains, maybe you need higher capacity cars instead.
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Postby jrc520 » Thu Jun 10, 2004 2:11 pm

ah. I didn't know that that issue had been fixed.
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Postby jwhite07 » Thu Jun 10, 2004 5:04 pm

It really never was an issue, jrc. There was, back in the 1980s, a restriction on operating F40s on the Reading/Haverhill line because of low clearances at Wellington Tunnel. That was fixed, first by installing a bypass "over the top", and then by lowering the floor of the tunnel, in the early 1990s -- IIRC before bilevels became common on the North Side (for the short time they were common there).

Ridership on the South Side is far higher than that on the North Side (by like a 2/3 to 1/3 margin), so the high-capacity equipment goes where it's needed most. The busiest North Side trains rarely carry more than 900 or so passengers, and they're fairly easily accomodated on a 7-car train of single-level equipment (of course, there's only enough equipment around for a limited number of 7-car sets, so subbing a 6-car set might make things a bit tight). On the South Side, trains regularly get loads of 1400+ passengers during the rush hours on multiple lines, so that's where the high capacity stuff goes.

Apodino, the reasons you may see bilevels on the Dorchester Branch is that 1) a number of trainsets layover at Readville during the midday 2) several Franklin trains operate via the Dorchester Branch instead of the Corridor during rush hour, or 3) it's been a very bad day, and a high capacity set was used to cover a Readville shuttle.
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Postby apodino » Thu Jun 10, 2004 5:18 pm

JWwhite I understand that about deadheading to the yard in readville and the 4:30 franklin, I know about that.

However Kawasakis are regularly used on the Readville shuttle, not deadheads or anything like that. How do I know this? Simple, when they post the track for fairmount on the Solari Board at south station, usually when I look at that particular track, there has almost always been a kawasaki consist on that train. And as you well know, that has lower ridership than any other line, north or south of boston.
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Postby Leo Sullivan » Thu Jun 10, 2004 8:07 pm

Rich, capacity is important, only at certain times and in certain directions,
other than that, a train set might as well be used on the basis of operational convenience. If you watch them come in between 6 and 9 AM, you can usually tell the point of origin, by consist. After the rush hour trips unload, send 'em anywhere, just have them back, in the right place. by 4.
jwhite pretty much explained all this but, I thought it might be good to emphasize the time question.
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Postby apodino » Thu Jun 10, 2004 8:12 pm

But to use Kawasakis on the 5:03 and the 5:33 seems like a bit much to me.
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Postby CSX Conductor » Fri Jun 11, 2004 12:52 am

There is currently an equipment shortage.....get over it.
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Postby CRail » Fri Jun 11, 2004 6:27 am

This information provided by a commuter rail engineer on the north side.

Management feels ridership is greater on the south side so bilevels are not used on the north side. My first ride on a kawasaki was on the fitchburg line, so there was never an issue of height. The engines and the cars are the same height.
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Postby Diverging Route » Fri Jun 11, 2004 1:19 pm

Bi-levels were also used on the North Side about seven or eight years ago, when North Station platforms were shortened to accomodate Big Dig construction. On some of my Lowell trains, there were three bi-levels and a 500-series in place of the usual six car trains.
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Postby MBTA F40PH-2C 1050 » Fri Jun 11, 2004 1:22 pm

yea, there is a big service shortage, MBTA train #813 yesterday only had 2 bi-levels, when it usually has 1 or two more. it was:

engine---single----single---bi-level---bi-level----single----single
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Postby Diverging Route » Fri Jun 11, 2004 1:44 pm

Actually, #813 (3:45pm from South Station) is always the 2s-2b-2s consist... I ride it frequently. 815 and 817 usually have 2s-5b.

But I did seen a four-car consist on #127, the 4:00 to Rockport the other day.
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Postby ST214 » Fri Jun 11, 2004 5:34 pm

The Kawasaki's have one restriction on the North Side. THey have a speed restriction at Bradford. Otherwise, they are unrestricted. The Northside will see Kawasaki's soon. When the next order arrives, they will be tested on the Northside, like all new or rebuilt equipment is.
Hoping for a rebirth of the Screamer fleet.
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Postby ggardei » Sat Jun 12, 2004 7:56 am

I was wondering why I saw bilevel cars in the yard near Norh Station. I always thought they didn't use them on the north side. Apparently they do. One thing that I wonder is how do they get equipment from the south side to the north side.
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