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Question about that light!


DHayward

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What light you ask? Well, I've noticed on all MBTA buses up here, RTS and New Flyer, have small yellow lights located on the passenger side front of the units. Mostly whenever I see them, they are turned on.

 

Now, I may answer my own question here.. but I overheard a supervisor talking to my driver saying to put 'the retarder on.' Now correct me if I'm wrong, but a retarder is used to slow the bus down... part of the breaking system..

 

Could this light have anything to do with it? I mean, how could the supervisor know this system wasn't on from a few yards away?

 

If you dont know what I am talking about, I have a picture of it..

 

986882250_1e3d4224f9.jpg

 

Above the headlights.

 

Better view:

 

986908502_bf9c9237f1.jpg

 

Close up:

 

1925315951_df4c0e6fb0_o.jpg

 

Thanks,

Dillon

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We have them here, and that is what it is for. When the retarder is on, the light is off. When the retarder is off, the light is on. This way supervisors (dispatchers, and Road Control) know if you are doing what the rules state. They have to be off in bad weather, and on in good. They don't bust your balls though if you leave it on in bad weather, especially in artics. It is hell to stop them in bad weather. MTA would rather have it left on, but the union says they want them off. Their claim is the bus wheels can lockup and skid out of control. The MTA doesn't think so, and are right in this case. I have drove OTR coaches in bad weather with retarder on, and did better with it on than off.

 

It is apart of the braking system, and is used so there is less wear on the brakes. There are several types of retarders, which is almost the same as a Jake brake. Jake Brakes make a bus or truck make that loud rumbling sound when slowing down. Some retarders do to. Some retarders don't make any sound, but have that little psh sound when they cut out. Most TA's have just have an on and off switch. The ones that were in the charter buses I drove, had different levels of intensities 1-4. At its lowest (1), you had to press the brake to get it to work. 2nd level through 4th, you just release the accelerator, and it would come on without pressing the brakes.

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Excellent! I was hoping you would catch sight of this thread, because I knew I could get a good answer..

 

Thank you!

 

Btw.. The "Jake Brakes".. are those the same things as the engine brake? I know on semi-tractor trailers.. or thought.. that that rumble was the engine brake?

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Excellent! I was hoping you would catch sight of this thread, because I knew I could get a good answer..

 

Thank you!

 

Btw.. The "Jake Brakes".. are those the same things as the engine brake? I know on semi-tractor trailers.. or thought.. that that rumble was the engine brake?

Ya, Jake Brake is just a certain type or just brand of brakes I think. I love NJT's MCI with the Jake Brake, it just makes an awesome sound.

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Excellent! I was hoping you would catch sight of this thread, because I knew I could get a good answer..

 

Thank you!

 

Btw.. The "Jake Brakes".. are those the same things as the engine brake? I know on semi-tractor trailers.. or thought.. that that rumble was the engine brake?

 

Same thing. Alot of coach buses with the Jake Brake make that same exact rumble.

 

Retarders and Jake Brakes are both engine brakes. They just work differently.

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