WSH wrote:To the engineers out there; what that heck are you guys doing in these cabs? I've worked in 20+yr old construction equipment that has better condition operating cabs. Most of these cabs in the photos are very beat up. What's the main factor that contributes most to these cabs looking like they do?
The "Abused" looking cabs i have found comes down to two problems, either alone or in tandem.
1. The peeling paint and overall grimy look is the RR simply not taking the time to keep the cabs clean and painted. Most loco's will not see a shop for anything more then typical fuel/sand/fluid check. It's only at 92 day test cycles that they will ever be pulled off the road and actually get "shopped". But a loco not pulling a train is simply not earing money for the company so visits to the shops are kept at the bare minimum. To properly clean a cab, including wiping down the walls and ceilings, scrubbing the floor, disenfecting the toilet compartment, etc, etc and THEN, having to prep (sand, mask, remove certain items, prime) and then paint a cab is NOT something you can do in a few hours. That is easily a days work without anyone interfering in the cab. So needless to say, it rarely will be done. That is why if you notice on virtually all new locomotives, there are very little painted surfaces. Go inside any modern GE or EMD and you will find Vinyl covered ceilings and plastic covered walls. Rubber floor matting with vinyl trim. The only painted surfaces are generally the control stand and the back cab wall. This is all done to simplIfy upkeep and keep the locomotive looking like new. All the plastic wall coverings are dyed in the cab interior color. So there is no need to ever paint them. And it's much more durable. I even see stainless steel panels in many units in locations where people put there feet up on walls. All these surfaces are easily wiped down and stay looking like new alot longer. The back walls have little if anything to mask when it does come time to touch up paint.
2. The other big issue is the people IN the cabs. The crews. And quite frankly, they are without question, the biggest offenders.
Where do i begin?. The "road grime", the grey/black dirt that covers walls, ceilings and everything else is caused primarily by crews leaving windows and doors open on trailing units. Sand, diesel exhaust and dirt expelled from other engines in the consist end up leaving this mess everywhere. How lazy do you have to be to not close windows and doors when leaving a loco? Drives me nuts. Next is the people putting there feet on the walls, seats, control stand/desks and window. NASTY. Once again, a bunch of animals who have the mentality that because it is not there own, it's perfectly ok to abuse it. It's not just the dirt that hurts the cab appearence but also the abrasiveness of sand and other coarse grains that scratch up the surfaces. I see windows all the time on older style cabs with deep gouges from sand trapped in boot soles and worse yet, steel ice creeper spikes. Then you have dirty jackets hung on hooks that add grime to the walls as well as gloves left on surfaces. And then you have the trash. Once again, a bunch of lazy animals who cannot be bothered to use a trash bag. Nothing worse then getting on power and having to spend 10 minutes cleaning up some lazy SOB's trash. The worst is the idiots who eat sunflower seeds and pistachios and spit the shells on the floor. People have no respect for anything. We have ben getting brand spankin new GE's over the past months and already they have signs of crews simply not caring about anything. Writing on walls, and in almost every instance it's just stupid nonsense. It's sad that people cannot show respect not just for the equipment that is our livelihood, but respect for other crews who have to spend 12 hours on those loco's as well.
So there you have it, why are so many cabs NASTY? See above....