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ctrain

R44 Early Retirement?

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I'm all for an early retirement if we can get one. 40 years is just too long to run cars for me. I'm a railfan with little patience to deal with seeing the same car for 40 years. I like a fleet that changes frequently because of the addition of new cars. However the next new car BETTER show SIGNIFICANT differences form the R160 in either design, equipment or both.

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40 years is a good life span for any train type. The R27/30s were retired prematurely as they couldn't have a/cs installed. Just because the train is old, it doesn't mean it must be replaced when keeping it a few years longer would be cost effective.

 

Seeing the trend from the R143 to R160, I really doubt it espeically if the same companies Kawasaki and/or Alstom gets the contracts.

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I'm all for an early retirement if we can get one. 40 years is just too long to run cars for me. I'm a railfan with little patience to deal with seeing the same car for 40 years. I like a fleet that changes frequently because of the addition of new cars. However the next new car BETTER show SIGNIFICANT differences form the R160 in either design, equipment or both.

This isn't an "early" retirement. The oldest R44s are 39 years old, and railcars are built to last 40 years. People are only saying it's an "early" retirement because they were supposed to be retired a few years later.

 

And if a transit agency is replacing subway cars every, say, 20 years, that's not good considering they are losing out on a lot of money replacing railcars that are only living through half their useful life...

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Exactly, the longer a train retires = the longer the value it retains. Now with a constant 'patchwork' job performed on these cars, there's no need to retire a train after 20 years or give them a total overhaul. New trains are expensive and the MTA has no money left.

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I thought that the Penn Central Arrow I (Comet IB as MUs) was what drove St Louis out of business as those MUs only ran for 1 or 2 years.

 

The R44`s drove the St.Louis Car Company out of business.;) The company was losing money for every car built.Also the cars at first were subject to technical bugs and bad wiring.Door wiring were built tight and compact causing overheating and fires.

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That's why I get the impression that the whole "R44 structural flaw" thing is a massive foam. Since the Capital Plan is cut, the R179s will not come until maybe after 2015. Note currently that the number of Jamaica R42s they just retired combined with the remaining Phase I R32s equal to the number of trains made up with the R44s. This R44 inspection is all just a "final peak" at their current slate vs. the original state of retiring the R44s via the 2 options of the R160 order. And because of this, everyone else is overreacting because almost everyone hates the R44s and also because the R44s are one of the most hated of the current fleets (excluding T/Os that operate them). If they go, then oh well since the original slate is still on the tossup. To all those wanting the R44s to go, don't get your hopes too high.

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American products can never be good as long as there are unions for each industry. In my opinion, every company specialized in a specific field. Budd was always known for railroad as stainless steel was exclusively used for the Amfleets and the MUs of NJT and SEPTA. The R32 contract was only successful because it innovated stainless steel into the subway for durability (same with SEPTA's Broad St fleet). ACF was always known for making freight train cars such as hoppers, which are still in production today after producing the R28. St Louis Car Co was always known for their reliable PCC trolleys that ran on many systems, but all their subway cars were of mediocre quality one way or the other though they were best with the R38 and R44 (both in my opinion). Pullman Std. was always known for building commuter railcars such as famous Comet I, which lasted for well over 40 years (avg American Railcar life is 30 years). When they attempted their subway cars, they couldn't even produce their rightful trucks and trusted on a "no name" that led to a disaster.

 

All I can say is that, at least they still used American Propulsion Systems and DC Traction Motors through the R68/A. I am still puzzled as to why WH is no longer making their E-CAM propulsion systems and gave up on innovating AC Traction motors for the NTTs. On the other hand, GE still stands to manufacture freight train components but like WH, it never turned to innovate AC Traction Motors.

 

Westinghouse left the transportation and electronics business in 1997 and became a media focused organization renamed CBS Corporation.

 

The R68s when new had many problems and among them was its faulty Westinghouse Cam Electro-Pneumatic Propulsion under the car. In 1999, as a part of SMS to make these cars better, they got Adtranz E-Cam Propulsion which is all electronic (Adtranz is the German Company who made the Propulsion for the R142A and R143 which was sold to Bombardier a few years ago). The R68s are now among the best cars in the subway system thanks to that work.

 

Also, the R62As and R68As got Adtranz E-Cam Propulsion during SMS like the R68s.

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That's why I get the impression that the whole "R44 structural flaw" thing is a massive foam. Since the Capital Plan is cut, the R179s will not come until maybe after 2015. Note currently that the number of Jamaica R42s they just retired combined with the remaining Phase I R32s equal to the number of trains made up with the R44s. This R44 inspection is all just a "final peak" at their current slate vs. the original state of retiring the R44s via the 2 options of the R160 order. And because of this, everyone else is overreacting because almost everyone hates the R44s and also because the R44s are one of the most hated of the current fleets (excluding T/Os that operate them). If they go, then oh well since the original slate is still on the tossup. To all those wanting the R44s to go, don't get your hopes too high.

 

They have not finished the survey with the R44s so they could still go, things can change at any time.

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Westinghouse left the transportation and electronics business in 1997 and became a media focused organization renamed CBS Corporation.

 

The R68s when new had many problems and among them was its faulty Westinghouse Cam Electro-Pneumatic Propulsion under the car. In 1999, as a part of SMS to make these cars better, they got Adtranz E-Cam Propulsion which is all electronic (Adtranz is the German Company who made the Propulsion for the R142A and R143 which was sold to Bombardier a few years ago). The R68s are now among the best cars in the subway system thanks to that work.

 

Also, the R62As and R68As got Adtranz E-Cam Propulsion during SMS like the R68s.

Thanks for the correction. Also, the T/A currently acknowledges the R142A and R143 Propulsion/Traction Motors packages under Bombardier even though Adtranz developed them.

 

They have not finished the survey with the R44s so they could still go, things can change at any time.

And doesn't the survey come before inspection? See everyone, this only implies that the original slate is the tossup and that the R44s needing immediate attention to "structural flaws" is all foam.

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Bombardier for the time being is not an option after the "problems" on the R142 and M7/A orders. I'm hoping for Siemens to build the future rolling stocks for the MTA in the future as they are one of the newest versatile RR companies out there presently. But then again money is all that matters, which was why Kawasaki was chosen over other companies. Remember one thing, "Asian products are cheap but durable (until around 20 years)."
What are you talking about? The reason they go to Kawasaki to make cars is because they did a great job with the R62 as well as the R68A. They have a reputation of building quality cars which continues to this day with the R160B. The R62s were the among the best IRT cars back in the 90's in terms of MDBF and still perform well to this day. The R62As took some time to get to the level of the R62s in terms of reliablity. The R68As were solid cars from the start and as much as I love the R68s, it took a few years for them to get to the level of R68As in terms of reliablity. The R142As when released instantly were strong performers and it took time for the R142s to get to that level. The R143s and R160Bs as far as I know have had no problems mechanically or structurally. Just because Kawasaki is Asian does not mean it's cheap.

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What are you talking about? The reason they go to Kawasaki to make cars is because they did a great job with the R62 as well as the R68A. They have a reputation of building quality cars which continues to this day with the R160B. The R62s were the among the best IRT cars back in the 90's in terms of MDBF and still perform well to this day. The R68A were solid cars from the start and as much as I love the R68s, it took a few years for them to get to the level of R68A in terms of reliablity. The R142As when released instantly were strong performers and it took time for the R142s to get to that level. The R143s and R160Bs as far as I know have had no problems mechanically or structurally. Just because Kawasaki is Asian does not mean it's cheap.

Yes, but every car bid that was won did depend on the most reasonable price (the lowest of them all). I'm sure other people will get the impressions of "cheap but durable" since us American consumers use basic products such as clothing (even ones with exceptional quality like suits) made in Asian countries. Since the R62 order, note that MTA constantly wanted Kawasaki to this day with the R160 perhaps for the same reason. The only reason that the MTA used another company for each large order was because Kawasaki doesn't want to supply them all. In other words, they are avoiding the bullet should an order become a disaster. Also when I say cheap, I only meant in terms of cost but never meant that they are prone for breakdowns in the long run.

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Whatever new train/contract the city comes up with they should award it to either Komatsu or Hitachi, cause they know how to build a solid machine.

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Whatever new train/contract the city comes up with they should award it to either Komatsu or Hitachi, cause they know how to build a solid machine.
Komatsu makes railcars? Heck why don`t we have Hyundai-Rotem make railcars for us.:)

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Komatsu makes railcars? Heck why don`t we have Hyundai-Rotem make railcars for us.:)

 

The bottom line considers reputation as well. When Kawasaki was chosen, it had exceptionally built rapid transit trains for Japanese Rapid Transit Systems for many years. Rotem is still pretty new in terms of reputation around the world and SEPTA is perhaps the first to test them out with the Silverliner Vs (though they are commuter trains). For the R160A, the T/A chose Alstom b/c it partially built the R68s which are presently the best trains on the B Division for many people like me.

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That's why I get the impression that the whole "R44 structural flaw" thing is a massive foam. Since the Capital Plan is cut, the R179s will not come until maybe after 2015. Note currently that the number of Jamaica R42s they just retired combined with the remaining Phase I R32s equal to the number of trains made up with the R44s. This R44 inspection is all just a "final peak" at their current slate vs. the original state of retiring the R44s via the 2 options of the R160 order. And because of this, everyone else is overreacting because almost everyone hates the R44s and also because the R44s are one of the most hated of the current fleets (excluding T/Os that operate them). If they go, then oh well since the original slate is still on the tossup. To all those wanting the R44s to go, don't get your hopes too high.

It was more than a "final peek". If they find significant structural problems in the R44s, then there are enough R160s yet to enter service to indirectly retire the vast majority of the R44 fleet. They don't need to wait for the R179. No one's making things up here because they have a hatred for the R44s - I know I'm not (especially considering the R44/R46s are my favorite cars).

And doesn't the survey come before inspection? See everyone, this only implies that the original slate is the tossup and that the R44s needing immediate attention to "structural flaws" is all foam.

Survey = inspection=examination

They're looking for potential structural flaws that would make keeping the R44s over the R32s and R42s a prudent decision or not.

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Komatsu makes railcars? Heck why don`t we have Hyundai-Rotem make railcars for us.:)

 

I don't know I was just throwing some names out there :)

But my job has a few Komatsu's & Hitachi's and they run 100%

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And doesn't the survey come before inspection? See everyone, this only implies that the original slate is the tossup and that the R44s needing immediate attention to "structural flaws" is all foam.

 

As I said earlier: The survey is being done by System Safety NOW. Much like when you discover a crack or a leak in your home, this "discovery" of the twisting carbodies does not mean anything catastrophic now, but it will someday if left unchecked. Hence the survey is done now to find out how long these cars can run for and make an educated decision as to what to do with them next. All options are on the table as far as they are concerned, so it does NOT mean if the R44's will be retired early that new cars will "definitely" come in, nor does it mean that old cars will "definitely" stay around...it means absolutely nothing whatsoever until the system safety survey is complete and a decision is made.

 

Anything else anyone attempts to tell you or anyone else about the "R44 problem" beyond that is 100%, pure, unadulterated, pasturized, homogenized, bullshit.

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As I said earlier: The survey is being done by System Safety NOW. Much like when you discover a crack or a leak in your home, this "discovery" of the twisting carbodies does not mean anything catastrophic now, but it will someday if left unchecked. Hence the survey is done now to find out how long these cars can run for and make an educated decision as to what to do with them next. All options are on the table as far as they are concerned, so it does NOT mean if the R44's will be retired early that new cars will "definitely" come in, nor does it mean that old cars will "definitely" stay around...it means absolutely nothing whatsoever until the study is complete and a decision is made.

 

Anything else anyone attempts to tell you or anyone else about the "R44 problem" beyond that is 100%, pure, unadulterated, pasturized, homogenized, bullshit.

Thank you for solidifying my point that everything is in the tossup!

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As I said earlier: The survey is being done by System Safety NOW. Much like when you discover a crack or a leak in your home, this "discovery" of the twisting carbodies does not mean anything catastrophic now, but it will someday if left unchecked. Hence the survey is done now to find out how long these cars can run for and make an educated decision as to what to do with them next. All options are on the table as far as they are concerned, so it does NOT mean if the R44's will be retired early that new cars will "definitely" come in, nor does it mean that old cars will "definitely" stay around...it means absolutely nothing whatsoever until the system safety survey is complete and a decision is made.

 

Anything else anyone attempts to tell you or anyone else about the "R44 problem" beyond that is 100%, pure, unadulterated, pasturized, homogenized, bullshit.

 

LOL

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As I said earlier: The survey is being done by System Safety NOW. Much like when you discover a crack or a leak in your home, this "discovery" of the twisting carbodies does not mean anything catastrophic now, but it will someday if left unchecked. Hence the survey is done now to find out how long these cars can run for and make an educated decision as to what to do with them next. All options are on the table as far as they are concerned, so it does NOT mean if the R44's will be retired early that new cars will "definitely" come in, nor does it mean that old cars will "definitely" stay around...it means absolutely nothing whatsoever until the system safety survey is complete and a decision is made.

 

Anything else anyone attempts to tell you or anyone else about the "R44 problem" beyond that is 100%, pure, unadulterated, pasturized, homogenized, bullshit.

 

It's too bad that show "Fifteen Seconds To Disaster" or whatever ended on National Geographic. We wouldn't want an episode like that happening anytime soon!

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Are these surveys being conducted as a result of what happened at Tottenville some time back?

 

No, Tottenville was caused by human erroe.

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No, Tottenville was caused by human erroe.
but the train suffered structural damage as a result,and it may have prompt them to get some structural engineers to check things out.

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but the train suffered structural damage as a result,and it may have prompt them to get some structural engineers to check things out.

 

No, one thing has nothing to do with the other. In fact, the SIRT R44s are in better shape then the ones on the (A).

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We'll see if the engineers determine that the R44 on SI are in significantly better shape. While they aren't used as much as the mainline cars, they are exposed to the elements substantially more.

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