Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby 60 Car » Thu Sep 29, 2011 10:25 pm

OK, I found the frequency list.

This list is for the equipment programming, so the repeater outputs (which is what you want to program in your scanner) are the equipment RX channels.
The conductor channels are a "talkaround" setup, where the conductor handheld transmits on the dispatcher frequency allowing the crew to communicate with the engineer and each other while being able to hear the dispatcher. The dispatcher doesn't hear the chatter between crew members.

In case this doesn't format correctly, this is the layout;
Name - AAR TX CH# - TX FREQ - AAR RX CH# - RX FREQ

SEPTA SOUTH ROAD - 71 - 161.175 - 16 - 160.350
SEPTA SOUTH COND - 16 - 160.350 - 16 - 160.350
SEPTA YARD - 19 - 160.395 - 19 - 160.395
SEPTA NORTH ROAD SIMPLEX - 90 - 161.460 - 90 - 161.460
SEPTA NORTH ROAD DUPLEX - 90 - 161.460 - 32 - 160.590
SEPTA NORTH COND - 32 - 160.590 - 32 - 160.590
SEPTA CENTER CITY - 82 - 161.340 - 18 - 160.380
SEPAT CENTER CITY COND - 18 - 160.380 - 18 - 160.380
AMTRAK HARRISBURG - 35 - 160.635 - 35 - 160.635
AMTRAK ROAD - 54 - 160.920 - 54 - 160.920
CONRAIL ROAD#4 - 58 - 160.980 - 58 - 160.980
AMTRAK TRENTON - 60 - 161.010 - 60 - 161.010
CSX - 64 - 161.070 - 64 - 161.070

The list I have shows Conrail road #4 and 2 different CSX frequencies. Not too familiar with the shared freight operations on SEPTA controlled territory so I'm not sure where these are used.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Quinn » Thu Sep 29, 2011 10:55 pm

Franklin Gowen wrote:10:51PM -- East of here, non-Silverliner and non-AEM7 horns are sounding NOW for the Lansdowne crossings of the ex-R3 to Media/Elwyn! Ballast train??? Heads-up, people. :-D I think the sounds are for an outbound train.


Aye, it was. Spotted 523 as one of the pair leading out to Glen Mills.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Jerr » Thu Sep 29, 2011 11:51 pm

Anyone have an idea of the freight schedule on the Media / R3 line. Again this evening I heard freight at 11:05pm blazing thru.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Franklin Gowen » Fri Sep 30, 2011 2:39 am

Quinn wrote:
Franklin Gowen wrote:10:51PM -- East of here, non-Silverliner and non-AEM7 horns are sounding NOW for the Lansdowne crossings of the ex-R3 to Media/Elwyn! Ballast train??? Heads-up, people. :-D I think the sounds are for an outbound train.


Aye, it was. Spotted 523 as one of the pair leading out to Glen Mills.

Glad to know someone was able to benefit from my timely post. What time did it pass you around Primos or Secane?
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Jerr » Fri Sep 30, 2011 10:22 am

Thank you very much. I heard it return at around 2am. Any idea of a schedule so I can be waiting by the Wallingford station next time?
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Quinn » Fri Sep 30, 2011 10:40 am

Franklin Gowen wrote:Glad to know someone was able to benefit from my timely post. What time did it pass you around Primos or Secane?


Only a few minutes after you heard it. Later on when I saw your post I recalled that it came through about 11 PM as I was watching TV ;)

Jerr wrote:Anyone have an idea of the freight schedule on the Media / R3 line. Again this evening I heard freight at 11:05pm blazing thru.


There doesn't seem to be a regular schedule. I've seen the trip frequency vary in the space of any given week. You may get a heads up using the radio channels 60 Car posted, or hanging out and listening for horns in the 11:00 hour, which is generally -but not always- when they head out to the quarry. They usually pack it in for the winter by the end of October, if I recall correctly, leaving the line with wash/gel trains overnight until spring.

BuddSilverliner269 may have more information; he has run that trip, I believe.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Jerr » Fri Sep 30, 2011 10:52 am

Thank you. I'll check on those radio channels (but I don't have a radio)....and Budsilverliner about more info.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby BuddSilverliner269 » Fri Sep 30, 2011 11:34 am

Generally if the stone train is heading out to Glen Mills, it tries to get out on the branch between 9:05 and 10:05(the time between 2 locals that are due at 49th street) and if not then the next window is between 10:05 and 11:05 Im guessing. It depends how much shifting needs to be done at Race Street. There is a work train crew signing up at 8 so I dont know if its heading down there or whatever other work needs to be done but signs up at 8pm tonight. Now we are gonna go off subject just a tad but does anyone know when the local heads to Amoroso between 49th street and Angorra? The local use to handle MAB paints near Phil interlocking but thats been closed for at least 2plus years.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Jerr » Sun Oct 09, 2011 10:10 pm

Jerr wrote:Thank you very much. I heard it return at around 2am. Any idea of a schedule so I can be waiting by the Wallingford station next time?


Finally got over to Wallingford Station on the R3 to see the ballast train headed back to Phila at 12:15am. Here's a video that I shot.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IMuf_5UOoxY

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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby 60 Car » Wed Oct 26, 2011 12:20 am

In case anybody is up at this hour, the ballast train is coming east from Elwyn right now.

Just passed by Elwyn and saw the inbound signal was up and I can hear the diesels. Sounds like they're somewhere between Glen Riddle and Elwyn.

It ran last night as well, they came east around 2am.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby 60 Car » Wed Oct 26, 2011 12:52 am

Looks like they're having trouble with the lead unit coming east.

Consist was AMTK 512 & NS3031.

It sounded like they stopped for a while west of Elwyn, and they stopped in the station at Elwyn too.
Saw the crew poking around the 512 and it was not running.

Update
512 restarted and moving @1:55
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Quinn » Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:29 pm

They must have fixed the problem during the day on Wednesday. Just spotted 512 passing through Clifton on its way to Glen Mills along with 3033.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Jerr » Sat Aug 04, 2012 8:39 pm

Quinn wrote:
Jerr wrote:I observed a freight train once again passing the Wallingford station (R3) last Monday at 10pm. Can anyone tell me if this is a regular siting.....like the ballast train to Glen Mills Quarry or not. I would like to be there when she passes thru the next time. I just happened to be in my car at the RxR crossing this time. Thank you in advance for any information.


You likely spotted the ballast train. It doesn't have a regular schedule, but can run up to a few times in a week. You caught it on the early side of the timeframe in which it travels to the quarry.


Anyone know why the ballast train on the R3 is NOT running this summer. I really miss seeing her.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Quinn » Sat Aug 04, 2012 8:58 pm

I've been wondering the same thing myself. Did we ever hear why the track between Glen Mills and Elwyn went to excepted status earlier this year? Perhaps therein lay the reason why no ballast trains have been out that way. It could be a safety issue.
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Re: Ballast Train on R3 Elwyn

Postby Matthew Mitchell » Sat Aug 04, 2012 11:05 pm

Where's Amtrak putting down ballast this summer? If it's out of the region, they may be using a different source. Or the contract with the quarry may have expired and another quarry got the new contract.
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