Cardinal discussion

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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby bratkinson » Thu Jun 29, 2017 5:00 pm

David Benton wrote:On the Cardinal Facebook page, a lady described her trip , where a coach did indeed substitute for the business Class cafe. So it seems they do not have a spare Cafe car. Or possibly not a spare at both end terminals.


I suspect that putting the A1 dinette/BC back on #66/67 has shortened out the available spares pool for those cars.

I rode the Cardinal CHI-WAS a couple weeks ago, the BC was the A1 dinette (unused)/BC car. I connected to #66 at WAS and was pleasantly surprised to find the A1 dinette/BC was back as the BC car on that train. I think it went to the full 60-seat BC car perhaps 5-6 years ago. I figure as the full BC car was less than 20% of the rows occupied, they opted to put back the 18-seat 'split', with the lounge part open for business. The good news is the walk to the lounge was now 10 feet or so. The bad news, almost all the 18 BC seats were filled at Baltimore. I figured as much, and took a single seat when I got on at WAS. For sleeping, though, I'd prefer to have the full seat in a 60-seat BC to myself. The trip to BOS taught me something I've been thinking for some years...the older I get, overnight in coach gets progressively more difficult. I think I'll always book sleeper from now on.
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby Morning Zephyr » Thu Jun 29, 2017 10:09 pm

Marketing 101: Consistency of Product. Marketing 102: Honesty in Product Description.

Would anyone buy a business class ticket on Lufthansa knowing that sometimes when you get on the plane with a business class ticket you get a business class seat, but that sometimes when you get on the plane with a business class ticket you get a coach seat? And that Lufthansa randomly calls these two different products the same thing, with no explanation to the customer?
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby gokeefe » Thu Jun 29, 2017 10:35 pm

I've been thinking about this and my mind turns to "Business Class" on smaller airliners where the service standards and even seat sizes can vary substantially from the jumbo jets. I don't think Amtrak is that far off in this respect from their airline brethren
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby Literalman » Sat Jul 01, 2017 5:58 pm

on the Friday closest to the Spring Equinox


Just a nitpick: it was the summer solstice, not the spring equinox. The sun stood still (that's what solstice means). Didn't you notice how hot it was? ;-)

I saw the railway historical gang at Alex that day when I boarded 125 to Norfolk.
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby dcipjr » Thu Jul 06, 2017 6:57 pm

I'm on the Cardinal next week. Does anyone know whether the sleepers on the Cardinal are still at the back of the train? Trying to plan my scenery watching. :-D
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby bratkinson » Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:32 pm

They were on the rear when I rode the Cardinal a couple of weeks ago.

I have to wonder, though, what the logic is in keeping the baggage car on the rear behind the sleepers. I've always enjoyed looking out the rear window of whatever train I'm on. From pictures I've seen, it seems that all the eastern trains have the baggage cars on the rear lately. So much for aesthetics.
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby leviramsey » Fri Jul 07, 2017 1:25 pm

The only exception there, I believe, is 448/449, where the baggage is behind the locomotives, but the sleeper is then immediately behind the baggage.
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby Rockingham Racer » Fri Jul 07, 2017 2:31 pm

There has been at least one video recently of the train with 2 baggage cars, one behind the engine, and the other on the tail end. Anomaly?
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby leviramsey » Fri Jul 07, 2017 3:00 pm

I can't imagine there's enough passengers on 448/449 to justify 2 baggage cars. Perhaps an equipment move?

(actually, how recent? Doesn't the MBTA consider anything of less than a certain length or number of axles (corresponding to a locomotive and 4 coaches) to be under light engine rules. If that's the case maybe another baggage car gets added when 448/449 runs without a sleeper.)
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby bratkinson » Fri Jul 07, 2017 4:09 pm

leviramsey wrote:The only exception there, I believe, is 448/449, where the baggage is behind the locomotives, but the sleeper is then immediately behind the baggage.


448/449 has the baggage car in the front as the train is combined with the section from New York Penn at Albany. To keep the joining/separating as simple as possible, the Boston section locomotives are used all the way to Chicago. When the train arrives from New York, the dual-mode electrics are removed and the Boston section backed into the NY section.

I haven't checked lately, but I think the Empire Builder ease of Spokane WA has baggage cars front and rear as well after combining the SEA and PDX sections of the train. Or does the Portland section use a coach baggage car?
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby electricron » Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:08 pm

The Portland section often uses a baggage-coach Superliner cars. A recent YouTube video shows the Empire Builder consist having 3 locomotives, VII baggage, 3 sleepers, dining, 2 coaches, lounge, coach, baggage-coach with wrap, and sleeper.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rFff4JN3QP0

I believe everything from the lounge to the end of the train heads to/from Portland.
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby mtuandrew » Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:45 pm

Does the Cardinal consist get turned at both NYP and CHI, or does it do this:

CHI ---- P42, coaches, lounge, sleepers, bag ---- NYP
(around the Sunnyside loop)
NYP ---- P42, coaches, lounge, sleepers, bag ---- CHI
(reverse to 14th St. Coach Yard; uncouple from head; service; couple onto rear {new head} and reverse to platform)
CHI ---- P42, bag, sleepers, lounge, coaches ---- NYP
(Sunnyside loop)
NYP ---- P42, bag, sleepers, lounge, coaches ---- CHI

And so on? It seems easier to loop at Sunnyside than to wye at 14th St.
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby justalurker66 » Sat Jul 08, 2017 10:58 am

I believe everything that isn't double ended (Michigan and Illinois Services) wyes in Chicago. It isn't that hard to do.
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby bratkinson » Sat Jul 08, 2017 7:17 pm

mtuandrew wrote:Does the Cardinal consist get turned at both NYP and CHI, or does it do this:

CHI ---- P42, coaches, lounge, sleepers, bag ---- NYP
(around the Sunnyside loop)
NYP ---- P42, coaches, lounge, sleepers, bag ---- CHI
(reverse to 14th St. Coach Yard; uncouple from head; service; couple onto rear {new head} and reverse to platform)
CHI ---- P42, bag, sleepers, lounge, coaches ---- NYP
(Sunnyside loop)
NYP ---- P42, bag, sleepers, lounge, coaches ---- CHI

And so on? It seems easier to loop at Sunnyside than to wye at 14th St.


It takes a good chunk of cleaning crew time to physically turn the seats in all the coaches. Also, reversing direction in a Viewliner sleeper would result in people travelling 'head first' while sleeping in roomettes, which is generally disliked by the public, myself included. Putting ones' head next to the toilet to travel feet first is NOT an option! Hence, wyeing or looping on Amtrak is the norm, not the exception.

However, this past May, the Texas Eagle through cars from LA were not wyed at SAS which surprised me. They were first attached to #21 from the night before, then the entire train was wyed upon departure from SAS. I've ridden this train both ways several times in the past 10 years or so and never had that happen before.
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Re: Cardinal discussion

Postby mtuandrew » Sat Jul 08, 2017 10:01 pm

bratkinson wrote:Putting ones' head next to the toilet to travel feet first is NOT an option! Hence, wyeing or looping on Amtrak is the norm, not the exception.

One more benefit from Amtrak keeping toilets out of individual V-II roomettes, and probably doing the same for the V-Is when they cycle back to Beech. (ON THE CARDINAL SEE SEE I KEPT IT ON TOPIC :P )
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