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CTA New Bus Order 2020

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1 minute ago, 4CottageGrove95th said:

Not living in Chicago any longer, I have only had a few opportunities to ride the Novas (6400s or 7900s) or the newest PACE Eldorados.  As for the Proterras, they are all electric, aren't they?  And if my memory is correct, didn't CTA use a demonstrator Proterra on a few selected routes a couple of years ago??

The Proterras are electric.  There was one on display at CTA Headquarters.  But the only revenue service electric buses I've seen are New Flyer electrics 700 and 701.  The only Proterras I've ever seen in service in Chicago are the Prudential and Aon Center buses, which those companies, or rather their building property management, operates.

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1 hour ago, artthouwill said:

The Proterras are electric.  There was one on display at CTA Headquarters.  But the only revenue service electric buses I've seen are New Flyer electrics 700 and 701.  The only Proterras I've ever seen in service in Chicago are the Prudential and Aon Center buses, which those companies, or rather their building property management, operates.

You might be thinking about the design line ecosaver. I got a news video clip on my youtube of that bus. 

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1 hour ago, BusHunter said:

You might be thinking about the design line ecosaver. I got a news video clip on my youtube of that bus. 

I never saw them in service.  Apparently,  CTA wasn't a fan of Design Line.

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On 11/13/2020 at 7:08 PM, 4CottageGrove95th said:

You're right about the destination signs on the New Flyer Xcelsiors in Phoenix. I seen the newest additions to Phoenix Metro routes (40 ft. Xcelsiors) like 41 Indian School, 17 McDowell Road and a few on 44 44th Street/Tatum Rd. Yes, you can most definitely see those  "LED White" signs clearly even in bright sunlight.  But what ever CTA decides on respecting its purchase of new buses, I truly hope they DO NOT go with Gillig. For some reason, to me Gilligs just don't fit the "big-city image" of the likes of New York City or Chicago. I can't picture seeing a Gillig on the 151 Sheridan Road route or on 62 Archer or on, say 3 King Drive or 4 Cottage Grove, even in CTA livery!  And while I'm sure I'm being a bit prejudice here, I don't think they would provide the durability needed for Chicago use, especially given the city's rough winters.  

I have only ridden Gilligs (flat and BRT fronts) in Minneapolis when I visited in 2009. I thought they were comfortable. Personally I would trade all the Novas for Gilligs with BRT fronts.

BTW, up here in Rogers Park I've seen Gilligs working the INTERCAMPUS shuttle (NU maybe?) on Clark, Morse and Sheridan I think. Maybe they do fit the 'big-city image' after all.

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5 hours ago, artthouwill said:

I never saw them in service.  Apparently,  CTA wasn't a fan of Design Line.

I rode one on the #49, but they were just demonstrators nothing fancy. They were hybrid electric. It was at 74th, that was the only place it ran. They would have been ok for a small town service or something here that would use a 30 foot bus. Maybe if you wanted to save money from buying something full size they would be of use. I believe the story was they were being used in the Carolinas as a airport shuttle. They supposedly went out of business in 2013. A company called EPV bought them out. 

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On 11/13/2020 at 11:26 PM, artthouwill said:

It's generally good to small to medium sized markets.   The Twin Cities are a haven for Gilligs and have been for decades.  They hold up well in their brutal winters and the extreme desert summer heat in Phoenix.  The low floors are boxy looking, but are solid.  I hated the Phantoms,  but they were almost exclusive in the Twin Cities when I was there, save for New Flyer artics.

I think the Xcelsiors are the odds on favorite to be the next CTA order. .

When I first moved to San Diego it seemed like every time I took the bus it was a Phantom. Absolutely hated those things.

Time will tell how the Gillig low-floors do in Phoenix. They run on some very long routes with bad traffic such as the  7 - Seventh Street, 17 - McDowell, 29 -Thomas, and 50 - Camelback. However, the most recent bus order was a fleet of Xcelsiors.

I don't see CTA buying Gilligs. My guess is they buy Xcelsiors.

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11 hours ago, ChicagoNova said:

Just my personal preference: I would prefer more Novas, both 40' & 60'.

I'm sorry but no, the newer generations of Nova LFS are a handful to deal with while operating especially when not maintained properly. I'd take my chances with New Flyer seeing as the D40LFs/60LFs/LFRs have held up pretty well post rehabs. I see more #7900's at south shops than #1000's which leaves me to believe they have some underlying problems and some underlying lemons attached to them. Some problems arise are driver error but others arise from bad maintenance and fragility, it takes a skilled operator to really understand how these 4th generation novas work as far as braking systems,throttle input and suspension. I'm no mechanic but I do understand that in order to keep something moving for many years you have to take care of it otherwise they'll end up at south shops constantly or worse the BONEYARD......dun dun dun dun......🤣

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3 hours ago, YoungBusLover said:

I'm sorry but no, the newer generations of Nova LFS are a handful to deal with while operating especially when not maintained properly. I'd take my chances with New Flyer seeing as the D40LFs/60LFs/LFRs have held up pretty well post rehabs. I see more #7900's at south shops than #1000's which leaves me to believe they have some underlying problems and some underlying lemons attached to them. Some problems arise are driver error but others arise from bad maintenance and fragility, it takes a skilled operator to really understand how these 4th generation novas work as far as braking systems,throttle input and suspension. I'm no mechanic but I do understand that in order to keep something moving for many years you have to take care of it otherwise they'll end up at south shops constantly or worse the BONEYARD......dun dun dun dun......🤣

Well, for what it's worth, the Nova's "look" nice, although somewhat "dated".  But truth be told, ALMOST everything produced in this day and age is made with poor quality; from subway/el cars, to buses, to passenger aircraft, etc, you name it.  As a side not and somewhat off the subject, look at NYCTA's newest Bombardier R179 "B" division subway cars.  It seems like almost from the time they were entered into revenue service only about a year or so ago, these cars have been nothing but trouble with one major issue after another.  And the order isn't close to being completely received as far as I know.

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57 minutes ago, 4CottageGrove95th said:

Well, for what it's worth, the Nova's "look" nice, although somewhat "dated".  But truth be told, ALMOST everything produced in this day and age is made with poor quality; from subway/el cars, to buses, to passenger aircraft, etc, you name it.  As a side not and somewhat off the subject, look at NYCTA's newest Bombardier R179 "B" division subway cars.  It seems like almost from the time they were entered into revenue service only about a year or so ago, these cars have been nothing but trouble with one major issue after another.  And the order isn't close to being completely received as far as I know.

There has been and probably be manufacturing issues.  The new look GMCs (1000s, 7400s,9000s, and 9600s) had roof leaks and a/c issues.  The a/c issues were so bad, CTA ordered the 9800/1600s, 4000s, and 4400 series bus WITHOUT A/C.  We know about the 7500 series NABIs.  

University of Alabama used to have Novas for their Crimson Ride campus service.  Its been quite a while since I rode,  but the a/c worked great.  It had ro work in high 90s low 100s temperatures with high humidity.  I don't know who contracts with them, whether its VIA,  or First.

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I hope they shy away from Nova's. New York's have been the only one's I've been on with no ac issues, and that's probably cause I'm not there that often. Baltimore's, Philly's and Chicago's have all had multiple ac issues (and Baltimore's are new!). Also, not sure if its the bus or the driver, but the nova's in Philly have a notorious back door problem, be it 40ft or 60ft.  Philly's new Xcelsiors otoh are wonderful. I'm only waiting for the Proterra's to come back to service.

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2 hours ago, artthouwill said:

There has been and probably be manufacturing issues.  The new look GMCs (1000s, 7400s,9000s, and 9600s) had roof leaks and a/c issues.  The a/c issues were so bad, CTA ordered the 9800/1600s, 4000s, and 4400 series bus WITHOUT A/C.  We know about the 7500 series NABIs.  

University of Alabama used to have Novas for their Crimson Ride campus service.  Its been quite a while since I rode,  but the a/c worked great.  It had ro work in high 90s low 100s temperatures with high humidity.  I don't know who contracts with them, whether its VIA,  or First.

Yeah, I remember very well the days when getting on the "new look" GMCs after heavy rain you had to watch where you sat because some of the seats would have small puddles in them or would get dripped on. Heck, I remember when the Boeing 2400s went into revenue service there was a defect in the "resilient" wheels on that series.  There was at least one incident where to wheel hub slightly separated from the flanged tread and caused a minor derailment. I can't remember the yard that happened in.  A motorman explained to me that the "hub" on those wheels were made of a steel that was apparently too soft. Now, how true that was, I don't know. But I do remember the derailment as well as the cause.      

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