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 Post subject: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 2:08 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 8863
Location: Somewhere north of Prescott, AZ on the Santa Fe "Peavine"
It's been called to my attention that the very last pre-Amtrak passenger cars in regular Amtrak revenue service* are rolling out their absolute last miles on Eastern trains such as the Crescent and Florida trains:

A reported seventeen Budd diners in the 8500-series, built between 1948 and 1955, will be replaced shortly (possibly by the end of 2016) by 25 incoming Viewliner diners. With all (or nearly all) of the Budd baggage cars already having been replaced by 70 Viewliner baggage cars, this should spell the absolute, final end for the classic pre-Amtrak fluted-side Budd cars, or for that matter ANY pre-Amtrak cars, in regular revenue service..........*

Has anyone appealed to Amtrak for any of these cars for preservation? Or are these cars expected to fetch top dollar for commercial use, dinner train service, etc.? It would be nice if at least one of these cars was retained in final Amtrak patina.........

*(.......... with, of course, disclaimers. Amtrak is, for now, retaining one full-length ex-Great Northern dome and one "Pacific Parlor" car in rotating seasonal service. In addition, a couple other pre-Amtrak survivors, heavily rebuilt, linger in the state-owned Amtrak fleets of California and North Carolina.)


Last edited by Alexander D. Mitchell IV on Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 2:42 am 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:52 pm
Posts: 914
Hi,

Gad I feel old. I was born in 1955 and rode some of the last pre-Amtrak passenger trains.

I recall riding Amtrak in the early 1970s and wanted to ride behind a GG1 leaving riding a Metroliner MU for the future that never got done.

I believe one unmodified Metroliner MU exists in Strasburg. I hope some of the Amtrak Heritage fleet cars are preserved.

Doug vV


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 2:44 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 8:44 am
Posts: 643
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
A discussion on Trainorders (which I can't find now) indicated that Amtrak is not very keen on preserving these last heritage diners or selling them to anyone who might put them back into mainline service. Not sure how that affects possible museum or tourist line acquisition.

A number of them were "tubed" back in the late '90s and have had the interiors completely replaced. Aside from the carbody itself, there's not much original about them.

Speaking of NCDOT, I've been very impressed with what I've seen of their rebuilds of '50s-era rolling stock, much of it Amtrak castoffs. They are tasteful and attractive inside and out.


Amtrak's full-length dome is ex-GN #1391 "Ocean VIew" now numbered #10031.

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Last edited by davew833 on Wed Nov 16, 2016 2:49 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 2:47 am 
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Joined: Mon Aug 05, 2013 2:42 am
Posts: 1688
Location: Seattle, WA - Land of Coffee
Alexander D. Mitchell IV wrote:
Amtrak is, for now, retaining one full-length ex-Hiawatha dome and one "Pacific Parlor" car in rotating seasonal service.

As Dave said, the full dome is actually of GN Empire Builder heritage, the #10031 Ocean View. And, unless something has changed recently, the ex-AT&SF El Capitan Hi-Level "Pacific Parlour" cars are still in service on the Coast Starlight. Regarding these cars, there were originally 6, 5 were rebuilt/refurbished as the "Pacific Parlour" cars for the Starlight, and 4 of those 5 are in service. The fifth car has not been in the train set/consist rotation for some time, and by now is probably a parts source for the others.

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:08 am 

Joined: Sun Mar 24, 2013 11:29 am
Posts: 57
RR Museum of PA was in talks with Amtrak about getting a diner car but that was 2 years ago


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:12 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 8863
Location: Somewhere north of Prescott, AZ on the Santa Fe "Peavine"
Yep, my sleep-deprived "oops" on the other Pacific Parlor cars and the GN heritage of Ocean View.

But somehow, to the mind of this Easterner, a Santa Fe bilevel doesn't count here. >;-)

Another online roster reports the active HF diner total is down to eleven.

I fully admit I should expect to find nothing "original" in any Amtrak HF car left--if for nothing else, HEP conversion. However, that's sort of beside the point. These cars have now spent twice as long in Amtrak service (45.5 years!) than the oldest one spent in original ownership (1948-1971). It would be nice if at least one were preserved as an example of what things looked like under Amtrak. I'm imagining a day when we point in the galley and say "can you imagine they used microwaves to heat their food? how quaint!" just as we do now with the survivors that used pressed-wood-fiber logs for oven heat..........

RR Museum of Pa. can make one good case: the originals were built by Pennsylvania's Budd Co. If any of the survivors are ex-SAL/ACL or SR, page the North Carolina Transportation Museum as well, or another "southern" rail museum.....


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 10:41 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 1:51 pm
Posts: 8863
Location: Somewhere north of Prescott, AZ on the Santa Fe "Peavine"
I've received a message back-channel from someone I trust to be in a position to know, with a warning to any wannabe diner preservationists:

Quote:
The remaining diners have severe kitchen end frame rot, particularly at the joints between the stainless and carbon steel. Basically an advanced version of what killed the C.P. Huntington Chapter car years ago.


So if anyone wants to save a last Amtrak diner, they may have to do immediate remediation and stabilization work, as well as not park it outside for twenty years.......


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 11:04 am 

Joined: Wed Aug 25, 2004 4:18 pm
Posts: 445
Location: Illinois
The Heritage diners mostly are now stored in Chicago, either next to the shop facility, or under the post office. You can see them when you take Metra to Chicago from the south or west.

There are still a handful of Heritage baggage cars in Amtrak service from what I understand - they may well outlast the diners by a few weeks/months.

Chris


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 11:32 am 

Joined: Thu Feb 26, 2009 3:07 pm
Posts: 506
Location: B'more Maryland
davew833 wrote:
A number of them were "tubed" back in the late '90s and have had the interiors completely replaced. Aside from the carbody itself, there's not much original about them.


But that does not make them less historically significant.


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 12:23 pm 

Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2013 10:17 pm
Posts: 85
In the old MU yard along I95 in Wilmington, DE. Is 3 pre-Amtrak baggage cars. They're obviously OOS as they've sat there for many months now. I'd also be interested in a list of surviving diners and their heritage, if anyone can or has made one.

- Christian B.

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Wed Nov 16, 2016 2:05 pm 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 7:25 pm
Posts: 1881
Quote:
I'd also be interested in a list of surviving diners and their heritage, if anyone can or has made one.


I think there is a thread out there with this information. Maybe Ted (Rainier Rails) can find it for us.

Wesley


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 2:44 am 

Joined: Mon Aug 23, 2004 8:44 am
Posts: 643
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
I cribbed this from another website (courtesy RGDave) It's from 2014, so there might be some changes.

AMT # Origins

8502 CB&Q 198 Silver Cuisine, AkSerBen Zephyr 1952
8504 CB&Q 195 Silver Restaurant, California Zephyr, 1948
8505 NP 458, North Coast Ltd. 1958
8507 NP 463, North Coast Ltd. 1958
8509 NP 460 or 459, North Coast Ltd. 1958
8510 CB&Q 193 Silver Café, California Zephyr 1948
8512 PC 4563, NYC 463 1948
8519 ex NYC, had been in Silver Star wreck
8521 SOU 3306 Merry Young, Crescent 1948
8524 SOU 3309 Harvest Inn, 1948
8527 SP 10212, Sunset Ltd. 1950
8528 SP 10213, Sunset Ltd. 1950
8530 PC 7143 PRR Molly Pitcher, Congressional 1952
8531 CB&Q 4737 Silver Bit, Denver Zephyr 1956
8532 CB&Q 4739 Silver Halter, Denver Zephyr 1956
8550 NP 462, North Coast Ltd. 1958
8551 CB&Q 194, California Zephyr
8552 NP 461, North Coast Ltd.
8553 PC 4552, NYC 452
8558 SOU 3307, 1948
8559 SP 10210, Sunset Ltd. 1950

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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 4:14 am 

Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 10:52 pm
Posts: 914
Hi,

When Southern expected to abandon the Crescent in 1978, I rode one last time. According to my consist notes, diner 3311 was in the northbound train from Atlanta to Charlotte (?) where I got off and returned on the Southbound to Birmingham, AL with diner 3306 as far as Atlanta and 3309 from Atlanta to Birmingham.

Two of the three are in your list. Wow.

Of course, Amtrak and Southern extended the abandonment date a year (1979) to allow for Amtrak to come up with a take over agreement with Southern.

Doug vV


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 9:00 am 

Joined: Sun Aug 22, 2004 11:12 am
Posts: 484
Location: Somewhere off the coast of New England
Cjbdiesel wrote:
In the old MU yard along I95 in Wilmington, DE. Is 3 pre-Amtrak baggage cars. They're obviously OOS as they've sat there for many months now. I'd also be interested in a list of surviving diners and their heritage, if anyone can or has made one.

- Christian B.
Christian,
Be careful about using terms of art such as OOS.
I pass the cars which you're referring to regularly. Rather than being Out-Of-Service per se I believe that they are assigned to Track as storage units.
GME


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 Post subject: Re: The Last Amtrak Heritage Fleet
PostPosted: Thu Nov 17, 2016 11:22 am 

Joined: Wed Apr 24, 2013 10:17 pm
Posts: 85
Trainlawyer wrote:
Cjbdiesel wrote:
In the old MU yard along I95 in Wilmington, DE. Is 3 pre-Amtrak baggage cars. They're obviously OOS as they've sat there for many months now. I'd also be interested in a list of surviving diners and their heritage, if anyone can or has made one.

- Christian B.
Christian,
Be careful about using terms of art such as OOS.
I pass the cars which you're referring to regularly. Rather than being Out-Of-Service per se I believe that they are assigned to Track as storage units.
GME


Noted.

- Christian B.

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http://www.strasburgrailroad.com


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