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strictures

4 car Yellow Line train

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I saw a 4 car train on the Swift last night around 7:30 PM.  Is this common when there's snow?  Or is it a rush hour operation I just never saw before?  I know that's the maximum train length at the Dempster platforms.  The train was almost empty when I saw it cross Main St.

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13 minutes ago, strictures said:

I saw a 4 car train on the Swift last night around 7:30 PM.  Is this common when there's snow?  Or is it a rush hour operation I just never saw before?  I know that's the maximum train length at the Dempster platforms.  The train was almost empty when I saw it cross Main St.

There is stuff in the books about more wheels keep the tracks clear at crossings, but that was an articulated car, but maybe twice as many wheels are even better.

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2 hours ago, Busjack said:

There is stuff in the books about more wheels keep the tracks clear at crossings, but that was an articulated car, but maybe twice as many wheels are even better.

Plus if there's any issues with the motors and the snow or any icing issues you have a backup duece in case you should get stuck. Cars take a lot of abuse in the winter on the swift, you can see that just looking at the cars.

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For snow operation and to keep more traction. 

The first 2 cars in the chosen direction are used in service due to limited 2 car berthing at the Skokie stations, especially at the Dempster terminal.

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10 hours ago, Juniorz said:

For snow operation and to keep more traction. 

The first 2 cars in the chosen direction are used in service due to limited 2 car berthing at the Skokie stations, especially at the Dempster terminal.

Notwithstanding what @strictures said about the platform length, since the door controls are in the cabs, how can they control which cars are used, unless there was someone acting as the "conductor" in car 2 or 3?

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2 hours ago, MTRSP1900-CTA3200 said:

Also assuming they use the same turn back track at Howard the Purple Line Shuttle uses. I think the Yellow Line turn back at Howard is only two cars long. 

Nothing restricts which track is used to turnback at Howard, other than where the tower directs it to.   In addition, the turnback at Dempster is also long enough for four cars & maybe five, as that's how long that Santa train is.  But I've never seen Santa at Dempster, so if it were too long for the turnback, there's the crossover between Searle & Main to send it to Track 1.

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1 hour ago, andrethebusman said:

All L cars have "isolation switches" where control of doors ends at that car. Does not affect propulsion, just door control.

I remember hearing that an operator overran the platform somewhere and they just cut out the front doors to mitigate the effects of their goof. Thanks for confirming those switches exist.

 

3 minutes ago, strictures said:

Nothing restricts which track is used to turnback at Howard, other than where the tower directs it to.   In addition, the turnback at Dempster is also long enough for four cars & maybe five, as that's how long that Santa train is.  But I've never seen Santa at Dempster, so if it were too long for the turnback, there's the crossover between Searle & Main to send it to Track 1.

Except that I was referring to the physical length of the turn back that the Yellow Line uses, which looks like it only holds 2 cars. The Purple Line shuttle turns back further south, where there is more track.

And the turn back at Skokie is 4 cars long. When the holiday train (it’s actually 7 cars long) is run on the Yellow Line they break up the train into two car sets. The flatcar isn’t used.

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On 2/11/2018 at 10:03 AM, Busjack said:

Notwithstanding what @strictures said about the platform length, since the door controls are in the cabs, how can they control which cars are used, unless there was someone acting as the "conductor" in car 2 or 3?

 

On 2/11/2018 at 12:27 PM, andrethebusman said:

All L cars have "isolation switches" where control of doors ends at that car. Does not affect propulsion, just door control.

It's called a door cut out. You have to use the MUDC (Multiple Unit Door Control) key to lock the doors from the inside that are not berthed on the platform. This is standard for troubleshooting defective doors.

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On 2/11/2018 at 2:02 PM, MTRSP1900-CTA3200 said:

I remember hearing that an operator overran the platform somewhere and they just cut out the front doors to mitigate the effects of their goof. Thanks for confirming those switches exist.

 

Except that I was referring to the physical length of the turn back that the Yellow Line uses, which looks like it only holds 2 cars. The Purple Line shuttle turns back further south, where there is more track.

And the turn back at Skokie is 4 cars long. When the holiday train (it’s actually 7 cars long) is run on the Yellow Line they break up the train into two car sets. The flatcar isn’t used.

I can tell you I DID see a 5 car Christmas train  -- with the Flat Car in the Center -  probably December 2005 on the skokie Swift.   

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January 2019  -- Again 4 car trains are in service in the snow.  I'm sure the public has also seen these trains.. and have to wonder why everyone is packed  standing room only - (during rush hour) - into two cars while 2 cars are completely empty.   

Does any one know if the platforms at Dempster will be Extended to berth 4 cars??.   It seem logical as often as I've seen 4 car trains this month and that Oakton Street is long enough to already berth longer trains.   

Also this past Friday.Jan 25 2019... I watched as a 4 car train pulled into the SOUTHBOUND station at Dempster.  Since they were only using the rear 2 cars for passengers... the front of the train was far enough forward beyond the station to trigger the signal at Niles Center Road.  Thus for over the next 5 minutes... traffic was blocked as the signals were operating ...while the train just sat at Dempster.

 

Edited by jazzman

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7 hours ago, jazzman said:

January 2019  -- Again 4 car trains are in service in the snow.  I'm sure the public has also seen these trains.. and have to wonder why everyone is packed  standing room only - (during rush hour) - into two cars while 2 cars are completely empty.   

Does any one know if the platforms at Dempster will be Extended to berth 4 cars??.   It seem logical as often as I've seen 4 car trains this month and that Oakton Street is long enough to already berth longer trains.   

Also this past Friday.Jan 25 2019... I watched as a 4 car train pulled into the SOUTHBOUND station at Dempster.  Since they were only using the rear 2 cars for passengers... the front of the train was far enough forward beyond the station to trigger the signal at Niles Center Road.  Thus for over the next 5 minutes... traffic was blocked as the signals were operating ...while the train just sat at Dempster.

 

I'm going to guess that you are referring to the Yellow Line.  Your first paragraph didn't make that clear.  The probable reason is to help clear the rails of ice and to better ensure that at least one car has contact  with the third rail.  Also it would be difficult to load four cars at Howard and expect to only open the front two cars at Dempster.  For safety reasons, its better to only load 2 cars, even if packed.

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Sorry ---  Yes,  I was referring to the Yellow Line.    And I understand operating 4 cars to clear the rails and only using 2 cars for Passengers because of Dempster Street Station size and the operations of the Doors.

I also asked a general question... Does any one know if the platforms at Dempster will be Extended to berth 4 cars,  Since both Howard and Oakton Stations can berth 4 car trains. 

As often as I've seen 4 car trains operating, I would think being able use all 4 cars in actual revenue service would be a better financial use of operating them, even if just for limited use ,  considering Mileage, plus the cars have their interior lighting on and I assume are also heated as well.

 

 

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3 hours ago, jazzman said:

Sorry ---  Yes,  I was referring to the Yellow Line.    And I understand operating 4 cars to clear the rails and only using 2 cars for Passengers because of Dempster Street Station size and the operations of the Doors.

I also asked a general question... Does any one know if the platforms at Dempster will be Extended to berth 4 cars,  Since both Howard and Oakton Stations can berth 4 car trains. 

As often as I've seen 4 car trains operating, I would think being able use all 4 cars in actual revenue service would be a better financial use of operating them, even if just for limited use ,  considering Mileage, plus the cars have their interior lighting on and I assume are also heated as well.

 

 

The platform is about 245 ft, a 4-car consist is about 200 ft long, is that not enough clearance?

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1 hour ago, NewFlyerMCI said:

The platform is about 245 ft, a 4-car consist is about 200 ft long, is that not enough clearance?

It's been awhile since I've been there,  but if my memory serves me correctly, the inbound platform can berth 4 cars but the outbound (end of the Line) platform only berths two.

To try to answer Jazzman, there might have been talk about extending the platforms in association with proposals to extend the Yellow Line either to Golf Mill or to Northbrook Ct.  Since neither project will happen, neither will a platform extension occur.

63rd and Cottage Grove could use a 60 to 75 ft platform extension to the east.  Not sure if that will happen, but I think that would happen before Dempster  based on the layout of the Dempster Sration.

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If I misunderstand, please excuse me but I'm surprised that uniform platform length along the line has not been addressed before. Every Winter since opening in 1964, traction issues and the need for using door cut-outs limit the use of 4 car in-service trains? I know single and articulated cars were used for years. So how many cars were added to the one car in-service trains in snow/ice storms, one, two, making them two or three car consists? 

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15 hours ago, i8itall4u said:

If I misunderstand, please excuse me but I'm surprised that uniform platform length along the line has not been addressed before. Every Winter since opening in 1964, traction issues and the need for using door cut-outs limit the use of 4 car in-service trains? I know single and articulated cars were used for years. So how many cars were added to the one car in-service trains in snow/ice storms, one, two, making them two or three car consists? 

Until the 1990s, the Skokie Swift didn't have third rail operation.  It had electrical wiring and the rail cars had pantographs similar to what you see on the Metra Electric.  The last set of cars that had this setup were cars 3441 through 3456.  These cars still have the roof boards on them though the pantographs are long gone.  I forget the actual year the Yellow Line transitioned to third rail operation.

As long as I can remember, this line as a CTA. route has been a two car operation, but that doesn't mean that it hasn't operated with one or three of those single cars before.  More recent history has had them operate the married pairs.

In recent years it's been CTA policy to operate longer trains on all of their train routes (except Pink) during snowstorms or extremely cold weather.  Red, Blue, Orange, and Brown get 8 cars.  Green and Purple get 6 cars.  Yellow gets 4 cars.  This line is still the most susceptible to weeather related service interruptions and suspensions.

 

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On Thursday, February 07, 2019 at 10:28 AM, artthouwill said:

 This line is still the most susceptible to weather related service interruptions and suspensions.

Is that simply because of the two car trains? Or is there also something about the right of way?

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