• Current Military Rail Operations

  • A general discussion about shortlines, industrials, and military railroads
A general discussion about shortlines, industrials, and military railroads

Moderator: Aa3rt

  by RailVet
I've never been to NSB Kings Bay but I recall hearing somewhere that most of its rail movements were on-base only and not so much to the interchange. That might explain the rusty rail.

The same was true at NB Kitsap (formerly NSB Bangor). Five years ago I visited the base and the head of rail ops told me they mainly did on-base movements and rarely interchanged anything.
  by sdmuleman
The Bangor base does occasionally interchange cars, as does PSNS. PSNS probably has more traffic than Bangor but in both cases most movement is internal. PSNS probably has internal rail movements at least 2-3 days a week on average moving various large components around within the yard. PSNS has 2 or 3 center cab GE switchers that are most commonly used and a new diesel/hydraulic unit that doesn't seem to get much use - may be reliability issues or may be operator preference, I'm not sure.
  by RailVet
A recent visit to Letterkenny Army Depot found the two Army GE 80-tons (USA 1674 and 1685), supposedly sold last year, are still there. They're stored outside and a Pennsylvania & Southern shop employee said they're fired up a few times a year but they don't go anywhere. He thinks the P&S may have bought both of them but isn't sure. Anyway, they're still there and show no signs of going anywhere. Although they're still marked for the US Army they are apparently not Army-owned and haven't been for some time. Given the P&S's other non-ex-military EMD motive power on site, the two GEs are excess to the site's current requirements and instead the EMDs are used. An employee said they'll occasionally haul loads for the Army but its seems to be mostly a commercial enterprise now on what used to be an Army depot. There's still an Army presence but it's greatly reduced from its Cold War days.

That day also included a visit to Naval Support Activity Mechanicsburg. Five of the six cabooses/escort cars (901 through 905) filled the enginehouse while 900 was out on the road with a train somewhere. The two GE 80-tons, USN 65-00364 and 65-00385, were sitting outside in front of the enginehouse. They're no longer used and instead the base has two "shuttlewagons" that moves rail cars as necessary. One of the locomotives has been used as a parts sources for the other but I'm not sure which one that was, and from the outside both look intact. Expect the owning department to seek to unload the two locomotives to get them off their books. Apparently Naval Shipyard Norfolk in Portsmouth, VA, has expressed interest in them. That base already had two such locomotives and but would like to have them as parts sources.

The cabooses/escort cars will be retired in the years to come and replaced with larger, boxcar-sized cars which will be roomier for those riding on them. There's no firm timeline on their retirement and of course it all depends on Navy spending priorities in the coming years.

Almost all of the tracks leading to the warehouse areas on the base have been lifted and the one or two tracks remaining in there appear to be out of service. In fact, much of the base doesn't appear to be used. During the middle of the day there didn't seem to be that many people going out for lunch or doing much of anything. Tall weeds could be seen everywhere, along with buildings that appeared to be empty. The area around the enginehouse is full of junk and tall weeds, and initially one might assume this is an unused or abandoned part of the base. It is indeed used, but housekeeping appears to be nil.
  by riffian
Railfan Magazine Loconotes lists the following current Fort Carson, Colorado roster:
GP9 4611
GP40-2 4653
NRE Gensets 6506 and 6512

Also lists GP10 4617 sold to Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum and in turn leased to Tyner Terminal at Enterprise Business Park.
  by riffian
This is as up to date roster of 80 ton GE's as I could assemble from a variety of sources. The 80 tonners were completely rebuilt at Hill AFB with Cummins engines and new brake systems during the time frame 1987 to 1992. They were numbered 1636 to 1692, not inclusive. There were approximately 30 left in 2017 with six transferred to the USAF with the same numbers. Units that I can confirm existed at that time are listed, with dispositions of those known.

1640 and 1681 sold to New Hope Valley Railroad PA;
1642, 1647, 1649, 1658, 1676, and 1692 to North Louisiana and Arkansas RR;
1650, 1679, Clear AFB, AK, one to Napa Valley RR, the other?;
1659 active at Hawthorne Army Ammunition Plant, NV;
1668 active at Beale AFB CA;
1644, 1671 Shaw AFB SC - Inactive, Disposition?;
1674, 1685 Letterkenny PA, inactive, sold?;
1663 was still listed as active, but I have no further info as to location.

Still leaves about 13 (more or less) unaccounted for, as well as 1663.

Units transferred to USAF with no change in number: 1644,1650,1663,1668,1671 and 1679.

Additions and corrections would be greatly appreciated.
  by riffian
Further :

1638 - Railtown, (Calif State Park) Jamestown, CA

1654 - Rochester and Genesee Valley Railroad Museum, Industry, NY.
  by scratchyX1
The Track mobile was out at APG. It looks like there is a massive tie replacement program going on, south of Maryland Blvd. Every other tie was replaced. One of the yard tracks have been ripped out. And for a week, there was a beaten up heavyweight army medical car sitting in the yard. I don't know where it went. As for as I can tell, nothing has gone north of Maryland Blvd in over a decade.
  by fromsuncook
Thank you to everyone who keeps this thread going with occasional updates.

I recall rail activity at many places I was stationed over the years 72-96. Many interesting vehicles appeared on flatcars at Wright-Patterson AFB in the early 90s. I also recall from W-P that an agency tore up the tracks before all rolling stock was removed. Oops. Interesting to hear where rail activity still happens.
  by Jeff Smith
I visit Fort Stewart, GA every couple of months; I haven't seen anything in about a year, but before that I used to see flats at their rather long sidings. Power must be stored in the engine house; haven't seen that in a while either.
  by riffian
Another rebuilt 80 tonner sold - 1655 from Travis AF Base, CA to Calif State Railroad Museum, Sacramento.
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