Remembering the 01400s

Discussion relating to commuter rail, light rail, and subway operations of the MBTA.

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Postby astrosa » Wed Jan 12, 2005 2:27 am

I realize this is kind of an old post by now but it's still a worthwhile one, since many of us are young enough that we barely remember the 01400s if at all.

I was watching the commute scene in Good Will Hunting today, and I noticed that the interior of the train Will was riding in looked very clean and new, but it also featured gray wall paneling with all-black floor tiles, and the bulkheads at the ends of the car were painted red. By comparison, all the photos I've seen of the cars in service show cream-colored wall paneling and bulkheads with a mixed pattern of tiles on the floor. Since I know the car shown in the movie was actually one of the surviving work cars, did they refurbish its interior specially for the film, or was that gray-and-red color scheme actually used while the 01400s were still in service?

By the way, a lot of people have mentioned remembering the way the lights would go out whenever there was a gap in the third rail. In this scene in the movie, it happens a bunch of times and actually adds a neat effect as Will stares out the window thinking. Matt Damon doesn't know how lucky he was to get an exclusive ride on those cars!
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Postby RailBus63 » Wed Jan 12, 2005 9:34 am

After rebuilding, the 01400's had powder blue wall and door paneling with the area around the side windows painted to match. All but two of the cars had bright red end paneling and the seats were painted the same color. The exceptions were the first two cars rebuilt - 01450 had powder blue end paneling and bright red seats, and 01455 had red-orange end paneling with the seats painted to match. Floors were black tiling. Not sure if any repainting was done after those four cars entered work service.

astrosa wrote:I realize this is kind of an old post by now but it's still a worthwhile one, since many of us are young enough that we barely remember the 01400s if at all.


You folks are making me feel old!

JD
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Postby astrosa » Wed Jan 12, 2005 2:22 pm

Powder blue, you say? Interesting... looking at the movie again, I can sort of see that, but it's very subtle and mostly just looks grayish.

Here's a photo of 01455's cab - I wonder if that's the same interior color, though it looks more greenish in this shot. Also, do you think the cab interior would have also been the original cream color before rebuilding?
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Postby Robert Paniagua » Thu Jan 13, 2005 6:57 am

When I rode on them, they sported blue interiours and their ends were tartar red. However, the floor was light beige coloured with some diamonds in dark colour. Although some could have had all-black floor like NYCTA's cars. I also remember the inspector's side window with the ATO box and the right side (motorman's side) window was actually openable from the inside and when I looked in the cab from the passenger area, there was a bus-style farebox too.

This was to collect fares in the 60's when they first came out and there was no token booth clerk on duty.
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Postby RailBus63 » Thu Jan 13, 2005 9:36 am

I rode in the cabs of 01400's a few times while they were still Bluebirds and never saw a farebox. The opening window was on the driver's side and was designed with onboard fare collection in mind - I believe these cars were also set up to have only the door closest to the cab open to force passengers to pass the cab and pay their fare. Early photos show an extra set of poles near the cab - I'm not sure when they were removed.

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Postby Ron Newman » Thu Jan 13, 2005 10:41 am

I rode lots of these in the 1970s and don't remember ever seeing a farebox.

I don't miss them. They were noisy and uncomfortable, screeched like hell on curves, and had no air conditioning.
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Postby RailBus63 » Thu Jan 13, 2005 12:50 pm

I miss them. They were loud and could be hot in the summer, but they were great crowd swallowers. Back when I was a Red Line commuter, I can recall many times when a Silverbird would arrive at North Quincy packed to the gills and unable to take on any more passengers, but if a train of Bluebird/Redbird 01400's arrived, they always had room for a few more.

They were always a great ride in the subway back in the days when the line had wayside signals instead of cab signaling. The motorman would wrap it up leaving Andrew and absolutely rocket down the tunnel to Broadway. You could stand at the left-side window at front and watch, your view unimpeded by any big silver cabinet. A terrific ride for young rail buffs!

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Postby Robert Paniagua » Thu Jan 13, 2005 1:58 pm

I rode in the cabs of 01400's a few times while they were still Bluebirds and never saw a farebox. The opening window was on the driver's side and was designed with onboard fare collection in mind - I believe these cars were also set up to have only the door closest to the cab open to force passengers to pass the cab and pay their fare. Early photos show an extra set of poles near the cab - I'm not sure when they were removed.

Jim


Oh, I though I saw a farebox in one of them, but when they first came out in 1963. I saw a photo of two operators in the cab and even showed a farebox and this photo can be found in the Images of America series, "The Red Line, Bridging the Charles from Alewife to Braintree", and when you go towards the end of the book, then it shows the farebox.

However, by the time you got to hitch the cab rides (wish I had one on those units :-)), they must have removed them as you said, so I'd say in the mid 60's shortly after they arrived for revenue service.

And yes RailBus, you're not the only one that misses them a bunch, as you can see my sig, I miss seeing them too, since they gave me the nice reminder of riding the NYCTA cars (R10/R27-30 & R33/36), and the 01400s were nearly identical to the NYCTA units. However, there's still that workcar train sitting in the yard, maybe when the MBTA is through with them instead of selling them for scrap, they should give them to Edaville to stand for display. Of course if the remaining 01400 train were to go there, they wouldn't be able to run since Edaville's gauge is only 2 feet long, but they can be used for display!
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Postby astrosa » Thu Jan 13, 2005 3:52 pm

OK, so how do these compare with everyone's memories? (Robert, the tiles you described are the older pattern, which I've used in my version of the original cream-colored interior.)

Image
Image

I guess I'll probably need to add more blue, it came out looking grayer than I thought.

Also, I've made a couple of MP3s of the sounds as I currently have them set up. Feel free to listen and give me your opinions (and be sure to turn the volume up!). You may notice a couple of issues, since the door sounds are from an 0600 and the horn is from an 01600, but this is all still a work in progress:

In-cab sounds
External sounds

Now you can see why I've been picking everyone's collective memories...
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Postby RailBus63 » Thu Jan 13, 2005 7:24 pm

I'm looking at a photo of the interior of #01417 taken in Feb. 1990 as I type this. As I wrote in a previous message, the side door and wall panels are powder blue, as are the window surrounds. The area under the seats is unpainted (silver) metal. The area over the doors and lighted maps and the carcard rack above the windows is also unpainted metal. The ceiling is white, and the fans have a metal trim around them. The floor is black with a mottled white pattern. Hope that helps.

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Postby hebron_hapt » Thu Jan 13, 2005 8:36 pm

I'm old enough to remember when the Bluebirds (they NEVER looked right painted red, IMHO) were brand new, replacing the "Dr Zhivago" cars. Honestly, aside from the bench seating I don't miss them. True, they were crowd swallowers, but they were hot, loud, and had bone-jarring rides.

I remember when the South Shore extension opened, and there were severe third rail icing problems. I lived 1/2 mile from Wollaston Station in the 1970s, and I remember the sky lighting up at night from the acring. The South Shore line routinely closed down during icy periods, until third rail heaters were installed. The Ashmont line didn't experience the same icing, because the third rail wasn't as wide as it was on the Quincy line.

Remember those funky concrete ties, two blocks of concrete connected by a bar? What were they thinking??

Rarely did a bluebird see revenue service on the South Shore line. The bluebirds were considered too "plebian" for the suburban line. In fact, for a long time the silverbirds had seats much like commuter rail seats. No transverse seating. Those cars were like Cadillacs when compared to the bluebirds. They were retrofitted with transverse seating in the 1980s to increase capacity. Turned them into cattle cars.
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Postby Robert Paniagua » Thu Jan 13, 2005 9:13 pm

I'm looking at a photo of the interior of #01417 taken in Feb. 1990 as I type this.

You got that photo link so that we can all see it? That would be great of you do...............

(Robert, the tiles you described are the older pattern, which I've used in my version of the original cream-colored interior.)

Yeah, that was the 1960's pattern, although I recall seeing that pattern I described while I was riding some 01400s, but I've also seen the newer black floor on the 014s during other rides. That same black floor was also installed in NYCTA's R32, R38 and IRT R62 and even some R62As, replacing a similar floor pattern that most 01400s sported during their early days.
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Postby astrosa » Fri Jan 14, 2005 1:23 am

Jim, as Robert said, it would be a great help if I could just see the photo you have. Still, I do appreciate you taking the time to describe everything in detail, and obviously I now have a few more changes to make. I can picture a powder blue, but I'm having trouble getting it to actually come out that way.

Thanks again to everyone who has helped figure this out.
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Postby RailBus63 » Fri Jan 14, 2005 8:29 am

I don't have a scanner yet, but I'll see if I can find a place that scans slides this weekend.

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Postby Robert Paniagua » Fri Jan 14, 2005 2:06 pm

Ok, that's good then. And be sure to post it here too.
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