• Federal, Night Owl, Twilight Shoreliner (Trains 65, 66, 67)

  • 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

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  by fairlane57
 
So....Does The Federal Have Sleepers Yet?

Was this question asked recently on this Forum?

I'm actually curious if the sleepers have been returned yet. This is the closest thing to the Night Owl/Montrealer I can recall.

  by Gilbert B Norman
 
Both the name and the Sleeper are adios; no scheduled date of return.

  by AmtrakFan
 
Would be nice but I don't think anytime soon.

AmtrakFan

  by DLSIZE
 
And to think that I have been mouring the loss of the Exective Sleeper for 10 years.....guess that won't be coming back any time soon :-D
  by Patrick A.
 
Hello All,
As I was booking another Acela trip to Washington I noticed somehting rather odd. Looking at the first departure from New Haven is train 67, which is the all night train along the corridor (Clocker), leaves at 12:26AM and arrives at Washington at 7AM giving a travel time of 6hrs and 34 min, and hour longer than the other regional trains which pass through New Haven. My questiion is why does this happen? Is there exterme padding for freight ops, or is it because Amtrak wants to elongate the ride to have more people buy sleepers?

Thanks,
Patrick
  by TomNelligan
 
Patrick A. wrote:Is there exterme padding for freight ops, or is it because Amtrak wants to elongate the ride to have more people buy sleepers?
The answer is sort of the latter -- for a longer ride -- although there are no longer sleepers on those trains, just coaches. Trains 66 and 67 are primarily scheduled to accomodate overnight travel between Boston/Providence and Baltimore/Washington, with an after-dinner departure and an early morning arrival in the tradition of many overnight trains of days gone by. There would be no point in going any faster because it would be inconvenient for most passengers to be dropped off a couple hours earlier, before anything in the city was open, and even though you're sitting in a coach the slower schedule does allow more time for sleeping. And since they also serve as the last train of the night out of Boston and Washington for passengers to closer, intermediate points, it would be inconvenient for those riders to leave those cities later in order to provide a faster ride with the same endpoint arrival times.

  by gprimr1
 
I believe the train lays over for a full hour in NY.

I think it also provides an early departure for Virginia.
  by Ocala Mike
 
No sleepers on this train, Patrick; reserved seat coach and business class only. #67 leads the league in dwell times (59 mins. at NYP, 20 mins. at PHL, and another 30 mins. at WAS). Bring an extra pillow, and catch some z's!

Reminds me of the old State of Maine express that took around 9 hours through the night to go from NY (GCT) to Portland, Maine via New Haven RR and Boston & Maine when I was a youngster.


Ocala Mike

  by The_Rockaway_Kid
 
Question: did this train undergo schedule reduction after the electrification, or did it keep the same time and speed?
  by jp1822
 
Oh - where to start with this one. This train is the perfect train that Amtrak can convert into a "hotel on wheels." But they've not continued this opportunity. The train used to operate with 2 Viewliners. Then it was reduced to 1 Viewliner sleeper - and finally none!

As far as I know, there was always a NEC train offering sleeper car service from Washington DC to Boston - during the Amtrak years etc. It was only in 2003 (as Warrington was leaving and Gunn was taking the helm) or so that the Viewliner sleeping car was pulled off of #66/67.

Amtrak suffered a number of train wrecks involving Superliner trainsets, so some shuffling had to be done. The Cardinal lost its Superliners and gained single level equipment with #66/67 (aka the Federal, Night Owl, Twilight Shoreliner) losing its sleeper.

Although I never took it, I was around when they had the "Executive Sleeper" waiting for this train at New York Penn Station. As I recall, you could board the sleeper at New York Penn Station around 9:00 p.m. and when the train came through at 2 or 3 a.m., the "Executive Sleeper" was hooked on to the consist and people were taken away to Washington DC or Boston.

If Amtrak wanted to restore Viewliners to the NEC (#66/67) I think they could. At a given time, there were no more than roughly 40 (out of 50) Viewliners in service at a given time. Granted, Amtrak was stretched to the limit with its Viewliners at one time - with the Superliner wrecks, Viewliner winter problems etc. But some Superliners have been repaired and all the Viewliners are back in service - or in overhaul/maintenance program. But now one has to consider that Amtrak has decided to retire the Heritage Dorm Crew Cars and put the crew in the Viewliners, rather than freeing the Viewliners up for revenue space. In addition, schedules have been adjusted that there are no longer same day turns at Sunnyside, that could free up a trainset (i.e. the Silver Meteor). Silver Meteor was inbound to NYC around 10:00 a.m. and then would be turned and depart outbound from NYC at 7:00 p.m. Now the outbound departure is at 3:00 p.m., thus eliminating a same day turn and necessitating an extra single level trainset with at least TWO Viewliners.

The overnight sleeper market was there from Washington DC to Boston. The couple of times I took the service, the sleeper was full. And the price was comparable to that of Acela First Class, only you just got a room and snack/refreshments - not the full meal service in Acela Express First Class. So if the sleeper service was a drain - you might as well consider Acela Express First Class a drain too.

Then there's the issue that the NEC overnight Viewliner was interchanged with the Lake Shore's Boston section Viewliner for eventual servicing to Florida. Amtrak could certainly add and subtract a deadheaded Viewliner at Washington DC for serving in Florida.

There's nothing more that strikes a nerve with me than (1) the Cardinal not operating with Superliner equipment terminating in Washington DC - with its extra capacity in coach and sleeper especially and (2) no overnight sleeping car service on the NEC.

  by Jersey_Mike
 
Train 66/67 have to serve the commutation markets of Boston and DC. This fixes them into a certain slot for the tail ends of their run.

  by Noel Weaver
 
Jersey_Mike wrote:Train 66/67 have to serve the commutation markets of Boston and DC. This fixes them into a certain slot for the tail ends of their run.
There is ample commuter service into both Boston and Washington and
there is no need for 66 and 67 to be scheduled for that purpose. Having
said that, commuter hours are often a convenient arriving time for people
using an overnight train as well but commuters should not be considered
in trains of this nature.
I think they should find a way to provide sleeping car service on these
trains.
Noel Weaver

  by Robert Paniagua
 
Trains 66/67 are neede for Boston people to meet Amtrak Trains 68/69/70 and 63/63, both of those trains that originate to/from Canada, MTR and TWO respectively. I took 67 to 63 and 64 to 66 going from BOS-TWO and back via NYP and it was a success. I got to my connections without problems, especially going to Toronto, since I got the waiting room at NYP which stayed open for all of us that needed to access that train and for the others that needed to go from 67 to Adironcdack and back to 66 to BOS.

  by TomNelligan
 
The_Rockaway_Kid wrote:Question: did this train undergo schedule reduction after the electrification, or did it keep the same time and speed?
The Boston-Washington overnight schedule hasn't changed significantly since the train was the New Haven Railroad's Federal. As noted elsewhere, speed isn't the issue with this run.
jp1822 wrote:As far as I know, there was always a NEC train offering sleeper car service from Washington DC to Boston - during the Amtrak years etc. It was only in 2003 (as Warrington was leaving and Gunn was taking the helm) or so that the Viewliner sleeping car was pulled off of #66/67.
That's 99% true... everything but the "always". Actually, the Federal was a casualty of the 5/1/71 transition to Amtrak, and for a brief time in 1971 there was no overnight train between Boston and Washington. However it was soon restored as the Night Owl and has been running in one form or another ever since.

  by jhdeasy
 
Amtrak Regional trains 66 and 67 are the only trains that will handle a PV between BOS and NYP in either direction. That means their scheduling is based on a maximum speed of 110 MPH.
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