• Amtrak’s Growing Pains with Siemens Locomotives

  • Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.
Discussion related to Amtrak also known as the National Railroad Passenger Corp.

Moderators: GirlOnTheTrain, mtuandrew, Tadman

  by mcgrath618
 
ApproachMedium wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 12:55 pm
rcthompson04 wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 7:47 am It should be noted that two of Amtrak’s best performing routes (two of the four with over 90% OTP) in terms of OTP use Siemens trains. The trains seem more than capable of running Harrisburg to Philadelphia and Milwaukee to Chicago.
Yea two routes that regularly have two locomotives because ONE is not reliable.
I have never seen a second locomotive on a Hiawatha, at least not with the Chargers. The Keystones only get a second Sprinter when the Metroliner cab goes kaput.
  by rcthompson04
 
mcgrath618 wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 2:11 pm
ApproachMedium wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 12:55 pm
rcthompson04 wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 7:47 am It should be noted that two of Amtrak’s best performing routes (two of the four with over 90% OTP) in terms of OTP use Siemens trains. The trains seem more than capable of running Harrisburg to Philadelphia and Milwaukee to Chicago.
Yea two routes that regularly have two locomotives because ONE is not reliable.
I have never seen a second locomotive on a Hiawatha, at least not with the Chargers. The Keystones only get a second Sprinter when the Metroliner cab goes kaput.
It is very rare to see a Keystone with two locomotives and it is almost always due to a shortage of Metroliner control cars. Usually it is two Sprinters bookending a set of Amfleets with a cafe car in the middle for Wifi. It is the route you would expect to see problems IMO... some of those trains are doing quazi-commuter runs (less than 10 miles between many stops).
  by photobug56
 
I've heard over the years that some locos, whether Diesel or DM, are better suited to commuting runs (short distance between station) while others are better for LD trains, both due to electrical systems (like the motors) and gearing. So a given loco would be best with 2 'models' or option sets depending on planned use. Do I understand correctly?
  by E-44
 
Truck hunting goes all the way back to the John Bull, PRR's P5, early Virginian (later CR's problem) E-33 and GE's E-60 as noted earlier all suffered from it. There was an interesting, albeit inconclusive, study back in the 1970's trying to outline the math for the geometry of flanged wheel on current rail profile. The working conclusion "Hunting is an inherent characteristic and will inevitably occur with all conventional railway vehicles." was disappointing to read. I find that hard to accept with modern computer modeling tools available.

The study
  by scratchyX1
 
ApproachMedium wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 12:55 pm
rcthompson04 wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 7:47 am It should be noted that two of Amtrak’s best performing routes (two of the four with over 90% OTP) in terms of OTP use Siemens trains. The trains seem more than capable of running Harrisburg to Philadelphia and Milwaukee to Chicago.
Yea two routes that regularly have two locomotives because ONE is not reliable.
Brightline does 2 locomotives for reliability, right?
Or both used for better acceleration?
  by rcthompson04
 
photobug56 wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 3:59 pm I've heard over the years that some locos, whether Diesel or DM, are better suited to commuting runs (short distance between station) while others are better for LD trains, both due to electrical systems (like the motors) and gearing. So a given loco would be best with 2 'models' or option sets depending on planned use. Do I understand correctly?
My understanding is that on the Amtrak and SEPTA Sprinters have gearing differences handled in the computer programming. Supposedly the SEPTA versions handle frequent stops better, but have a lower maximum speed. The only physical differences are paint and Amtrak having a bathroom.
  by frequentflyer
 
Some of us remember when the Genesis replaced the F40. Oh the wailing from engineers and railfans, "the units load slow", "the Genesis ride horrible", "Genesis are ugly, and "GE will never outlast an EMD". Almost 30 years later of Genesis pulling millions of passengers with outstanding reliability considering the abuse the Genesis endure, we are making the same arguments against Siemens.

The Genesis had teething problems too.
  by rcthompson04
 
frequentflyer wrote: Tue Jun 28, 2022 8:42 am Some of us remember when the Genesis replaced the F40. Oh the wailing from engineers and railfans, "the units load slow", "the Genesis ride horrible", "Genesis are ugly, and "GE will never outlast an EMD". Almost 30 years later of Genesis pulling millions of passengers with outstanding reliability considering the abuse the Genesis endure, we are making the same arguments against Siemens.

The Genesis had teething problems too.
Correct. I was not railfanning back then, but every thing I read is how horrible the Genesis locomotives were when first introduced. I don't think the AEM-7s had as many complaints.
  by NortheastTrainMan
 
rcthompson04 wrote: Mon Jun 27, 2022 3:54 pm It is very rare to see a Keystone with two locomotives and it is almost always due to a shortage of Metroliner control cars. Usually it is two Sprinters bookending a set of Amfleets with a cafe car in the middle for Wifi. It is the route you would expect to see problems IMO... some of those trains are doing quazi-commuter runs (less than 10 miles between many stops).
Shortage, in most cases this is due to the cab car malfunctioning. In my limited experience and from what I see on YouTube, there seems to be a steady amount of Keystones running with ACS-64s on both ends, with one coupled to a Metroliner Cab Car. I rode one to NYP that was nearly two hours late, then passed another Keystone with two Sprinters. Again, I don't ride Keystones or Amtrak super often, so my empirical data might not be as keen as others. It's not a frequent occurrence, but not rare as say spotting the Corridor Clipper or something like that.
  by NortheastTrainMan
 
photobug56 wrote: Sun Jun 26, 2022 11:20 pm DM's are, IMHO, a necessary evil - in my experience. I live in diesel (what I used to call rust bucket) territory on Long Island. The trio of rebuilt FL9AC's were in some ways amazing - fairly fast, wonderful to look at, but according to LIRR people I talked to back then, had bleeding edge technology, but most importantly, the inverters didn't get enough ventilation and easily fried. Not being cheap, MNCR, which controlled the parts flow to LIRR, was very stingy on replacements. And it didn't help that LIRR cannibalized one of the 3 (2 needed to operate an 8 car train) for parts, so if one broke down, the train was out of service. But they were meant to give LIRR experience, though I'm guessing LIRR learned nothing from them, including the need to provide proper PM. Plus instead of going with known DM's, regardless of known faults, they ordered 23 DM's, and 23 DE's from a company created by politicians (from what I was told). Junk from day 1, at least one burnt down, another had to lose it's 3rd rail gear and inverter, and they've been breaking down ever since. FYI, as I understand it, instead of selling the FL9AC's, they scrapped them. 20 some years later, they don't have enough, never did, and while MNCR ordered new DM's, as I understand it LIRR did not.
Sidenote, I always wondered what P32s would look like on LIRR. Hopefully they get the DM version of the SC-44 Charger, or whatever Siemens variant they go with.
  by RandallW
 
photobug56 wrote: Sun Jun 26, 2022 11:20 pm Plus instead of going with known DM's, regardless of known faults, they ordered 23 DM's, and 23 DE's from a company created by politicians (from what I was told).
By "company created by politicians" do you mean EMD and Siemens? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EMD_DE30AC_and_DM30AC (By the time this contract was let, EMD was no longer manufacturing locomotives in the USA, but had been partnering successfully with Siemens on the traction control and HEP on the SD70MAC series locomotives).
  by STrRedWolf
 
8th Notch wrote: Tue Jun 28, 2022 5:02 pm Time will only tell, the same argument sure cannot be used for the HHP8s…
They were going to be used as cab cars, right?
  by WhartonAndNorthern
 
RandallW wrote: Tue Jun 28, 2022 8:01 pm
photobug56 wrote: Sun Jun 26, 2022 11:20 pm Plus instead of going with known DM's, regardless of known faults, they ordered 23 DM's, and 23 DE's from a company created by politicians (from what I was told).
By "company created by politicians" do you mean EMD and Siemens? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EMD_DE30AC_and_DM30AC (By the time this contract was let, EMD was no longer manufacturing locomotives in the USA, but had been partnering successfully with Siemens on the traction control and HEP on the SD70MAC series locomotives).
Super Steel, Schenectady is what he's referring to. They also botched the job on the Turboliners
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