Beech Grove Round II

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Seaboard92

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Trip Planning

For starters in August we entered into an agreement to buy the railcar Pacific Park at Beech Grove, IN from it's owner. This trip we are making now is related to getting the car ready for work. At the end of the report I'll post more about the car and the plans for the car.

The planning for the last trip of 2020 started in November. My friends and I floated dates starting in October for our second trip to Beech Grove. Honestly we regretted putting it off to December as the first two days were too cold to get a lot done. With the new tri weekly schedule in effect it makes it very difficult to get around on national network trains.

Usually I would take the Crescent to Manassas and connect to the Cardinal there after having breakfast in town. When you want to do a work week starting on Monday it eliminates taking the Silver Meteor because it doesn’t run north on weekends.

So that left me with having to overnight in DC on the way to Beech Grove. Which left me with three options.
  1. The Palmetto with two nights in DC
  2. The Carolinian with one night in DC
  3. The Silver Star with one night in DC
My initial plan was to take the Capitol Limited to Waterloo, IN and ride with my friends Patrick and Nigel the rest of the way into Beech Grove but the Cardinal ended up being significantly cheaper which surprised me. But the issue was still how do I get home because option one would have me spending another night in DC, option 2 I could take the Crescent then drive thru dear alley in the middle of the night, and option 3 right back home.

Further into this planning my other friend Brian decided he would want to ride with me. So he booked a flight to DC so he could ride the Cardinal with me. Now that I had a friend to split the cost of the roomette with on the Cardinal I decided to splurge on the Silver Star for my first and final legs of the trip. Normally I would board at Camden because it is closest to where I live but I needed to check a bag so Columbia won my business this time.

Coming back I would take the Blue Water and the Capitol Limited from the Midwest.

Day Zero

I woke up at the same time I normally would wake up on my day off which is about ten am planning to pack in the morning. I pulled my suitcase out in the morning but that was about the only progress I made. At seven PM five hours after my goal to be finished with packing tools I started gathering from my tool collection. It only took an hour to have all of my tools gathered in the old army tool bag my dad gave me from his days in the service.

I didn’t start packing my actual suitcase till 11 and finished at 12:30 after careful consideration of the weather in Indy. I am not used to long prolonged exposure to freezing temperatures outside. The Silver Star leaves Columbia a few minutes after four and I wanted to make sure I left my house at 2:30 so I had extra time to make it to the station.
 

Seaboard92

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Day 1: The Silver Star and package pickup

After watching a few TV shows to stay awake it was time to leave my house. I didn’t see the point in going to bed and risk over sleeping the train. So I left on time at 2:30 AM for what is normally a 21 minute drive. When I drive home from the theater I work at it normally takes me 21 minutes to get from downtown to my house late at night.

In order to keep myself entertained on the drive in I counted how many cars were on the road. Between my house and my office I passed a grand total of 3 where I normally would pass about 300. By the time I reached the station I passed 40 cars in what would normally be over a few thousand. I would identify the road I take into the city but it’s a local short cut that I want to keep a secret. We all have a nice shortcut like that we want to preserve in every city.

I checked my tool bag with my neighbor who is the station agent at the Columbia Station so we caught up a little bit about our lives. I’ve known Johnny for ages so we had a lot to catch up on. Then I went out to the platform to wait for my train. With covid around i try to avoid large indoor gatherings which the waiting room was. While waiting for my train Norfolk Southern 62R passed by with its fifty loads of rocks from the upstate town of Pacolet to the low country Town of North Charleston.

Shortly after that my train arrived from the south and I boarded and settled into my room. I put the lower bed up and took the upper down. That way my large suitcase could fit on the floor and I enjoy the top bunk anyway on a viewliner. The train arrived thirteen minutes early into Columbia so by the time it left I was settled in my room on the right side of the train. For the next hour I would enjoy seeing my home passing me by.

Everyone always talks about the California Zephyr or the Cardinal as having the best scenery but in my opinion nothing beats your home town. Seeing the areas you grew up as a child rushing by your window. On the way out of town I could see the Adluh Flower building lit up where I took photos for prom in 2012. Then we curved around the Columbia Canal and the Millwood Cemetery as we gathered speed on our journey north.

Shortly thereafter we crossed Columbia College Drive a road I frequented when I dated a girl at Columbia College the all girls school in our city. Then under Fairwold where a connection should be made from the R Line to the S Line to help end train congestion in downtown. After that we passed Decker Blvd where I spent many an afternoon eating at the Longhorn or pursuing the nearby shopping mall with my mother and grandmother as a child.

Still the train rumbles north as we pass by Windsor Lakes where I had pool parties as a child, then we pass the commercial sprawl that I grew to love as an adult looking back on my childhood. On my side the Lowe’s my train layout was constructed from, my first job at Publix, the Chick Fil A my school did fundraisers at, and my current office. Then we passed by the soccer fields I learned to play soccer at before passing Sandhills the newest shopping plaza in Columbia.

It was a titanic flop of a development but it is my childhood. Going to see movies, or get books from the bookstore. Now we have a Ukrainian grocery store there that I like. After that we passed thru the coffee smell that permeates every object in Pontiac as we pass by Pontiac Foods and the place I learned to skate next to it. Then around a few corners and we go past my hometown. Not that there is much to see at four twenty six in the morning. Still there is nothing nicer than seeing your hometown pass by your windows. Then we crossed under the route I went to high school everyday.

We wouldn’t pass by my alma mater but we parallel the road I took. Shortly after we popped by the Lugoff Station where CSX bases F765 before jumping across the Wateree River and pulling into Camden my normal station two minutes early. I waited to go to sleep until we passed my old Vet’s office at Dusty Bend. Then I went to sleep for a few hours.

I woke up as we were approaching Cary and decided I should get ready for a fresh air stop in Raleigh which I normally don’t take advantage of. We arrived 11 minutes early into Raleigh which led us to having a thirty minute stop. I had ample time to walk the 1,000 ft to the head end of the train. The new platform reminds me a lot of Rochester and Albany on the Lake Shore.

After photographing our headend and the skyline I noticed on our rear was a brand new Viewliner II sleeper in service. Turns out I was on the maiden revenue run of the new cars. My car was in Bay View/Big Otter River a Viewliner I sleeper. After reboarding I walked to the new diner for breakfast and was turned back. Eventually my attendant came by and took care of my breakfast order while I set my laptop up to watch West Wing. When I was a sophomore in college I started watching the series but never made it to the finale and with Netflix removing the series I was intent on finishing the series.

I calculated at the beginning of December I needed to watch 7 episodes per day to finish the series by the deadline and somehow I managed to get it down to 3 episodes per day by the time of my trip. After the trip it was back up to 8. I enjoyed the series as we rumbled along the North Carolina Railroad to Selma, and then up the Atlantic Coastline to Richmond.

I took a brief break from the series at Richmond to enjoy the stretch stop. We arrived 17 minutes late so I was intent on making it a fast stop but I was told I could take my time as they were removing a non mask wearer in Richmond. We departed 29 minutes late. I got a guided tour of the new Viewliner II sleeper which was mostly empty.

The crews find it strange how there is no linen closet on the new cars, and how the new mattresses can’t be folded easily because they are thickest in the middle. None of them like the design of the handicapped room with the toilet in the middle of the room, and a sink almost on the bed when it is down. They do like the paneling though. I don’t understand how you can have a sleeper without a linen closet though. That makes absolutely no sense.

After that I had the mystery meat for lunch and a Mac and Cheese before settling in for another episode. As we neared DC I talked to my best friend Ryan on the phone for a bit as I prepared to detrain. Lucky for me I didn’t unpack in the room so I had little to pack up. After that it was a quick ride into the station. I walked up to the head end to watch the locomotive switch which took so long I actually didn’t watch them finish it.

For starters I was cold, and secondly Brian was meeting me and I didn’t want to keep him waiting too long. So once I saw it wouldn’t be No. 642 leading I walked up and into the station. I met Brian right where I came up and we decided to get lunch at Cafe Berlin just down the street from the station.

Café Berlin has a lovely outdoor seating area with propane heaters that we made ourselves comfortable in. This restaurant has always been a go to for me when I’m in the district and it isn’t uncommon to have a senator sighting. Malcolm who was busy decorating a tree when I arrived joined us about thirty minutes after we sat down. I had my usual the Jägerschnitzel and we had a great time.

I brought everyone up to speed on what our work plan would be for Beech Grove, and what all our goals were. After that was taken care of we just caught up on everything going on in our lives. And I’m 2020 who would have thought we would have a lot to discuss. After lunch we went back to Malcolm’s apartment so I could get rid of my luggage before we went back out to visit the National Christmas Tree.

I have always loved visiting the National Christmas Tree ever since I learned it has a G scale model railroad. Due to the pandemic the model railroad wasn’t there but it is always enjoyable to look at the state trees that circle the National one. There was quiet a crowd out to look at the trees so we weren’t there for a long time before we went down to pick up a package in Alexandria. Our train ran express by Arlington Cemetery before taking us to King Street.

We went and grabbed our package and then went back on the other metro across the Potomac on the bridge. Then we went back to Malcolm’s ordered some dinner and sat down to watch Borat II subsequent moviefilm. The movie is funny just because it doesn’t feel like it could have been real but we know it was.

After that I took a shower and went to bed.
 

Seaboard92

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92 At CLB.jpg
The Silver Star Train No. 92 arriving at Columbia, SC

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The Silver Star No. 92 at Raleigh, NC

Downtown RGH.jpg
The Raleigh, NC Skyline from the platform

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The CSX Roanoke Rapids local in Weldon as we crossed overhead.

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The Silver Star No. 92 at Richmond Staples Mill

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The James River at Richmond

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The new Viewliner II Sleeper at Richmond

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The Silver Star at Washington

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The Acela departing Washington

NER at WAS.jpg
A Northeast Regional at Union Station
 

Seaboard92

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Day 2: The Cardinal



The night before we were talking about where to get breakfast before taking the train and I suggested one of my favorite DC Local places the Market Lunch at Eastern Market. It’s a place I’ve loved since my professor Dr. White introduced me to during a school program here. We walked to Union Station and Brian and I checked our luggage for the Cardinal before taking a bus to Eastern Market. We checked our bags so the two of us would have leg room in our roomette.



The Market Lunch almost always has a massive line on Pancake Day (Saturday, Sunday Only) the rest of the week it isn’t as busy. They open at nine and we were there right at nine and we’re No. 5 in the line. We then enjoyed their amazing pancakes before heading back to Union Station. We were back at Union Station by 10:15 and went to wait in the Club Acela after looking at some sights inside the terminal. I took advantage of the soda fountain and had several lemonades before it was time to board the train.



The train started boarding at 10:35 and we said goodbye to Malcolm and walked to the train. The locomotive had already been added so after photographing it briefly we walked back to our sleeper. Today’s train had three coaches, a cafe, our sleeper, and a baggage dorm. Once we settled into the room I called Amtrak reservations to pay for a reservation for the trip home from DC.



It was taking so long I gave my number knowing we would get disconnected the minute the train would depart. I was correct that I would drop the call but my agent called me back shortly after the tunnel after I gave the tourist tour to Brian of monuments and I had my reservation in place before Alexandria. Shortly after that our two SCAs introduced themselves and we talked for a bit. We showed them a picture of our car and then they took our lunch order.



After that I pointed out some sights to Brian like Lake Accotink as we crossed high overhead. And then the foothills of the mountains in the DC area around Clifton with the Bull Run Valley. If you know where to look you can see the original right of way as you rumble along. After that we came to a stop on time at Manassas where I told Brian my stories of working excursions out of the yard here for the Virginia Museum of Transportation. We then rumbled south as the train passed the airport and into the Virginia Countryside along US29.



I pointed out some of the small towns I knew of along the way. Then our attendants brought our food to us right around Culpeper. I again had the mystery meat because that was the only option. Honestly I wouldn’t be opposed if they gave us the option of cafe food over this garbage if it was included in the ticket. Brian is a vegetarian so he had the same fate as me the same meal twice in a row.



As I was finishing the little bit of mystery meat in the mystery meat plate we were diverging onto the Orange Branch of the Chesapeake & Ohio. I told my stories of working along the nine mile branch on board private cars. One of those being how the speed went up from 25 mph to 40 or 50 and I swear they just changed the signs out. Brian was impressed that he was riding on jointed rail. Such a rare thing on a passenger train these days that was once common place.



The whole way to Gordonsville I was talking up the Gordonsville Marine to Brian that we would pass. For those of you who don’t know when you are crawling over downtown Gordonsville at ten mph there is a house even with the track. At that house is a man who meets every Cardinal and salutes it as the train passes. The crews all know him and are always in an open vestibule to salute back to him. When I was working PVs on this route occasionally we would throw him gifts from our vestibule onto his porch.



We waved to him as I always do and then he did an about face and marched back into his house. I have no idea who he is but he is a highlight of any trip on the Cardinal for me. After that we picked up the pace and started heading westbound on the former mainline of the C&O. We passed by several large quarries along the route into Charlottesville. We arrived into Charlottesville 12 minutes early and had a twenty minute stop. It was so strange to walk by the building and not see the Wild Wing in the station that shuttered due to covid.



I took a photo of the locomotive before getting back on. The room across the aisle was filled at this stop with a man who went to Tennessee. He went south on the City of New Orleans and lost his phone, and was returning via the Crescent and Cardinal. He was a rather interesting fellow. He had the better side of scenery for climbing the Blue Ridge out of Charlottesville but we occasionally had some nice vistas ourselves.



Brian and I noticed a really interesting trail at Afton, VA to the original Blue Ridge Tunnel opened in 1858 and closed in 1944. I had never noticed a trail here before in my many ventures on the Cardinal and while I was researching this for this trip report I found out the trail opened just before Thanksgiving of 2020. I’ll have to come back one day and hike the trail. After that we dropped into the Shenandoah Valley and arrived into Staunton a few minutes later.



Our sleeper filled in Staunton with four rooms being occupied with a last minute family boarding. I photographed the Shortline on both ends of the station and texted my friend Jess who was making me a nice homemade dinner instead of Amtrak mystery meet that we had left Stanton so she could meet us at Clifton forge. We didn’t meet No. 50 at any of the usual places because it was running about two hours late. As we went west out of Staunton we struck a tree with our plow at track speed.



That caused the plow to be bent and scrape every crossing along the way. The Buckingham Branch couldn’t get anyone to us fast enough to get us on the way so the decision was made for the CSX mechanical to cut the plow to prevent it from catching crossings. However it was also decided that we should go over every crossing at 5 mph on the head end. So we spent the next hour slowing down and speeding up.



We were held at the next town East of Clifton Forge to meet the late counterpart. Normally Clifton Forge has enough fluff in the table it becomes a stretch stop. Instead we arrived 58 minutes late and I saw my friend Jess and her family as we paused. However no one ticketed to get on or off we didn’t linger so I thought I had missed on my home cooked meal. Luckily Jess found a CSX employee who was willing to drive it out to the train while mechanical cut the plow.



So while the rest of the train got to feast on mystery meat and other crappy dishes I was relishing in Mac and Cheese and Southern Fried Chicken. Now that is what I call a train meal. Shortly afterwards we departed the mechanical stop and our Amtrak approved dishes were delivered. It didn’t compare to the homecooked meal made with love. After that Brian went to sleep in he top bunk after we sang country roads and I relaxed in the bottom bunk.



I honestly didn’t do a lot on this segment after dark. I texted Viktoria when I could which she wasn’t a large fan of. But she’s never been to the New River Gorge it West Virginia so she doesn’t understand how little service there is in some of the valleys of West Virginia. At Charleston I texted my friend Cam to let him know we were going to stop in Huntington to see if he wanted to come visit on the platform for a few minutes.



We arrived in Huntington an hour late and I took a photo of the train in the station and Cam arrived at the last possible second. So we got to say hello, but that was about it. He went to the C&O station where New River Train departed from. After that Brian and I tried to sleep after talking for a bit.
 

Seaboard92

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Eastern Market.jpg
Eastern Market

Devoid of Life.jpg
Union Station devoid of life

51 at WAS.jpg
The Cardinal at Washington

Lake Accotink.jpg
Lake Accotink

Manassas.jpg
Manassas, VA

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In the foothills of the Blue Ridge

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The Cardinal at Charlottesville

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Now we are in the Blue Ridge

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Leaving the Shenandoah Valley

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C&O 614 at the C&O Museum
 

Seaboard92

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Day 3: Winter Cleaning

I slept till we stopped in Covington, KY right before Cincinnati. And I was awake to watch us cross over the Ohio River and gawk at the skyline of Cincinnati.

I was confused about what the Fifth Third Bank was seeing it’s a skyscraper in the skyline. Wouldn’t that just be the 8th Bank? After that I tried to fall asleep knowing I had a long day ahead of me in the grove but I couldn’t fall back asleep. I texted Viktoria and tried to offer some support to her as she tries to get her mother’s pension fixed. She is such a nice girl I just wish she knew how much power she has.

I did see the villages and towns of suburban Cincinnati and Hamilton along the B&O Cincinnatian Route. At Hamilton we diverged on a B&O branch line that didn’t have service in the 1950s. I still tried to sleep but I didn’t really get any. Maybe five minutes here or there. As we approached Indy south of Greenfield we started getting the room ready. We packed our bags, got dressed, and I put the beds up.

We then pulled in under the train shed in Indy but I was surprised the conductor was rolling the checked baggage up to the sleeper vestibule. I was also surprised when we stopped our vestibule was not under the shed but under open air. What I didn’t factor in was that the Beech Grove Shop move was occurring on this day. On the platform to greet us was our friend John Owen. We then watched them attempt to couple the Beech Grove cut onto our train but they couldn’t manage it due to the repair work done in Clifton Forge.

So eventually they decided to couple the Beech Grove cut on the rear end so for a brief moment while the other cut shoved down track 10 it looked like Cincinnati had two passenger trains calling on it at one time. Once the Grove cut passed we went into the station. Inside the station we met the former owner of our railcar and he took us out to the Grove. I sat in the passenger seat while Brian rode on a folding chair in his van.

It was a wild ride to the Beech Grove Waffle House because Indy Roads are a bit strange but at least I had a real chair. I felt bad for Brian back in the back. We then caught up with the former owner of our car Bill at the Waffle House. After we had finished eating our breakfast Patrick and Nigel arrived at the Waffle House. Brian and I left with Bill to the grove while Nigel and Patrick had breakfast.

We signed into the grove at the guard shack and went down to our car Pacific Park. Bill unlocked the cars and gave us the keys. Then Brian and I measured out how much extension chord we needed so we could pull power off a nearby building. We sent the first Lowe’s order to Nigel and Patrick while we started opening the car up. It took us a good hour of standing around trying to figure out where we would start.

Today our mission was to get all of Bill’s stuff off of our car. However using the money we paid for our car Bill bought a baggage car that was also in the yard so our first mission was to find his new baggage car a former Santa Fe car. Brian took the East end of the bone yard and I took the west end till we found his new car. His car currently is lacking Trucks under it. Eventually Patrick and Nigel arrived at the Grove and we started had the wrong extension cord so we had to send Nigel back out.

While Nigel went out I gave a tour of the car to Patrick. After that the three of us started organizing the former owners items and loading our tools into the car. It took two of us to carry Nigel’s tool chest into the car and walk it down the narrow hallway. After that Nigel arrived back with the right extension cord so we started threading a line across the yard. We run the extension cord to a building a little under 300 ft away.

Between us and the plug is the Amtrak cut in the bone yard. The only track with Amtrak’s equipment stored on it, and the field of trucks. There are over a hundred sets of trucks from Amfleet trucks to GSC superliner style trucks. Then a open area where Amtrak trucks drive. In case Amtrak wants to move something on their property we bury the cord under the rail. So we sit with the blue flag on the track and move some of the ballast out from under the rail so we can thread the cord under the rail in case something needs to be moved.

Then we threaded it thru the chain link fence into the sea of trucks. It’s rather complex to get over all of the trucks because of little space to get between them and when you are wearing your nicest overcoat because it’s cold it’s even harder so you don’t snag it. Eventually we managed to get it over to the building and plugged into an outlet. Once we had power we plugged in our space heater because it was in the low 30s and the inside of the car was ten degrees colder.

Then Brian and I wired the lights up to an extension cord so we would at least have the lights to work with on the overcast day. After that our friend Ben of Midamerica Railcar stopped into say hello and to help us out. As Bill the former owner was moving into his baggage car No. 1215 we were moving his stuff off our car. He had a lot of miscellaneous items on our car from printers, cooking utensils, tables, broken heaters, and boat booths.

Ben was impressed with how nice of a transition we were having with Bill. Ben also volunteered the use of his truck to help move stuff across the yard to where the 1215 was. Patrick was loading the items into the back of the truck while Ben and I were walking the items thru the railcar down the narrow hallway to the vestibule.

I want to say we did four trips before lunch and we sent Nigel out to get more tools with Brian. I don’t remember what we sent him out for though. Nigel and Brian brought back pizza for lunch which the four of us, Ben, Bill, and John ate in the lounge of our car. The first of many meals to be consumed inside the car. I don’t eat pizza so they picked up wings for me. Yes I am the weirdo who doesn’t like pizza.

We talked about what we want to do with the car and where it is going. As well as just catching up about life seeing we rarely ever are all in one place at one time. The room was substantially cleaned up from what it started like but we had the large stuff left to get rid of. Namely the tables, and the boat booths. After we ate lunch we went looking for a few pallets to move the large bulky items with. Once we found them Ben and I unloaded the large items while Patrick and Brian loaded the bulky items on the pallets.

Bill came back with a forklift that Ben owns and keeps at the shops because of his large amount of work he does at the grove. We then rode with Ben back to the other car to help Bill move his stuff in the car. Somewhere someone found a pallet jack in which to move the bulky items inside the baggage car. When I used to work at Publix I used to unload semi-trailers I got used to moving items in tight congested spaces.

However the baggage car had several soft spots in the floor making it extra difficult to move the pallet jack along the floor. However I didn’t have that big of an issue getting the pallets moved into the spot I wanted to because the jacks are very good at taking a tight turn. Patrick and I took turns moving the bulky items into the baggage car. Which meant a lot of waiting while the forklift drove across the yard to get more pallets. Which was fine for me to look at the cars closest to where we’re standing.
 

Seaboard92

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Once we had our car empty it was about 3 in the afternoon with 2 hours of daylight left in which to continue working because the shops close at sundown. Ben took us over to his storage baggage car next to the lumber pile to see if he had the hoses we needed for the car. Which he did so the four of us grabbed what he gave us and started working on getting the hoses off. All of the hoses under our car had ran out of their legal life.

If you are curious the hoses that are visible have an 8 year life span while those under the car in the shade are valid for 16 years. Now another fun fact about all Amtrak cars they have two air lines. The thicker hose is the one that goes to the brake system, and the thinner one is the Main Reservoir. On Amtrak cars the MR controls the water system, automatic doors, and the toilets. It can also help charge the brake line if needed and on Amfleets it Inflates the Air Bag suspension.

However for where our car is going it doesn’t need to have the MR line and it’s hoses are also not legal so we would have to pay another $1,500 to replace it. But because it is legal to remove it without replacing it as long as the pipes are capped we opted to remove it. However our main goal was to get the new hoses on the car and not mess with the MR.

Patrick and Brian started working on replacing the end hoses on the B end of the car first. For those who don’t know how we divide railcars the B end is always the end with the handbrake which also is the vestibule end on most but not all cars. And the A end is the side without the vestibule or handbrake. They started on the easiest of the hoses to learn which is the end hose.

Even with one side being exposed it’s still a tight space with the trap down, the coupler and passage overhead. While they started removing the first hose I worked on sorting the tools I brought from home now that the lounge was clear. After that my mission was to start removing the plungers from the car. The car has two plungers per truck which is a visual item to let the conductor know at a glance the brakes are applied. If the plunger is out the brakes are applied, and in they are released.

It took me about ten minutes to figure out which of my wrenches worked to remove the plungers. I got the north end of the car off without a problem however on the south side one of them took part of its pipe off with it. Which means I’ll have to replace that entire pipe which won’t be a pleasant experience.

After that it was time to remove Brian and I’s luggage from the car and load it into Nigel’s small sedan with Nigel and Patrick’s. After a quick glance thru we turned the lights out and turned the space heater off and locked the car. In the Amtrak yard the car is locked by a chain around the door handle and grab irons. I then closed the traps and closed the vestibule up.

Then we all crammed into Nigel’s car and the Amtrak officer at the gate dubbed the vehicle the clown car because people kept coming out of it’s small size. Then we drove to our AirBNB off Emerson Ave. Even though the Grove closes at sundown we still ended up getting to the Airbnb well after dark at about 7:00. It took us awhile to figure out how to find the key and let ourselves in the small townhouse from the early 1900s.

Our place had three bedrooms on the 2nd floor and two couches on the ground floor. At 8 PM we ordered delivery from Golden’s Fish and Chicken for Nigel, Patrick, and Me because Brian retired early. It arrived around 8:55 in plenty of time for Rick Steves Monday Night Travel presentation. Tonight’s special was on Egypt to be specific Cairo. His program goes on for an hour and I fell asleep in the middle of it.
 

Seaboard92

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51 at IND.jpg
The Cardinal at Indianapolis

IND Scene.jpg
For the first time in years it looks like there are two passenger trains calling at the same time.

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Two things are out of place here. Two passenger trains at one time, and a Surfliner

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Two passenger trains at a time in Indy that is a rare sight

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Backing Down the platform to couple onto the rear end.

Before Lounge.jpg
The Lounge before we started doing work
 

Seaboard92

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1215.jpg
The Baggage car we were loading items into. Ex Santa Fe

Wrecked Super.jpg
A wrecked superliner owned by someone our age

Wrecked Super-2.jpg
A Close Up of some of the damaged superliners Next To Us.jpg
The cuts next to our car.
 

Seaboard92

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Day 4: More hoses and valves.

We are allowed into the grove at sunrise which is at eight so we all set our alarms for seven to get ready. I woke up happily on the couch where someone draped a blanket over me. I don’t know who was thoughtful but I was very thankful. When you work in the industry you get used to weird places to sleep. So the living room wasn’t that bad. We left the Airbnb at eight am to go to the grove. We decided to go to God’s Chicken I mean Chick Fil A for breakfast because it isn’t common for Patrick where he is from.

That and it is consistently good and efficient. Being a vegan Brian had never experienced the wonders of the Chick Fil A drive thru. He had a few of the sides that he could eat. He was really surprised when they told us to pull ahead to the shack to pay and there was a shack set up behind the building for payment.

Then we sat in the parking lot and ate our breakfast while it was hot. I had two chicken biscuits which is my standard breakfast from there. After about a half hour we left for the Grove and checked in with our friends in the guard shack. The morning guy is a hoot and we usually lose 20 minutes of working time just shooting the breeze with him. After going in and hanging our tag on the Flag.

Then I unlocked the car and turned the lights and space heater on. After that the next step was putting 60s on 6 on the Bluetooth speaker so while we were working we would have some tunes to jam out to. Working under the car can be a miserable job so music makes it just a bit more bearable despite the tight spaces.

Brian and Patrick resumed working on the hoses under the car. For those who haven’t done under car work there are a total of four hoses. From the end of the car working into the car you have your End hoses that tie into another car. Then come the intermediate hoses which connect from the end of the bracket with the end hose to the center sill of the car. Then the hardest hose are the two control hoses which come down from the air line on the sill to the cylinders.

While they were removing the hoses and replacing them I was taking the valves down that are being sent to Pittsburgh Air Brake Company (PABCO) to be inspected. For those who don’t know brakes have to be inspected every four years if you are on a 26C system which we are going to. The cars last COT&S (Clean, Oil, Test, & Stencil) was performed in October of 2002. Meaning the car had to have been retired by October of 2006.

While I was using my grandfathers tools I couldn’t help but think about what he would be thinking. For those who don’t know he was a machinist on the Savannah & Atlanta Railroad and most of my tools I had came from those days. I hope he would be looking down with pride that his grandson bought his own car and was using his tools to get the car ready. I found a place in the trucks to put my wrenches for storage while I was working on the valves.

After awhile Brian and Patrick asked me for help removing the Intermediate Hose on the A end because they were struggling with it. That hose connects on two ends as I previously mentioned so as one end was spun the hose kept twisting and getting more stuck. We had help from Ben who would drive by occasionally and Noah a 24 year old who owns several locomotives, cars, two talgos, and a scrap yard. In fact his scrap yard is the Second Largest draw of electricity in Anaheim, CA right behind Disneyland.

Both of them would come by occasionally to help give advice on how to do things. Both are also impressed that we have a plan in hand for where the car is going, and the fact that we were all there turning wrench’s and getting dirty doing our own work. They said most people when they get these cars have no idea what their plan is for them, and they aren’t willing to learn how to do the repairs opting to hire others instead.

Ben and Noah’s confidence and help was and still is a godsend. They helped us get that hose off without getting slapped by it. I’m sure they knew when we needed help because they could hear the multi-lingual cursing coming out of our part of the bone yard. To give you an idea of all the languages you might hear a curse in other than English, German, Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Italian, Portuguese, Japanese, Spanish, French, and Mandarin. We are a very international crew.

After we got that intermediate hose off it was time for lunch which Nigel brought back from Steak and Shake. It is something that is unique to the Midwest and East coast for Patrick so he wanted it. I don’t mind because it’s usually decent and cheap. We ate in our lounge but this time with no furniture so we were just standing around. It wasn’t as comfortable as it was the day prior but you do with what you have. I’ve had several railroad meals standing before and I’ll have several more.

After our lunch it was time to get back out in the elements. It is very difficult to go back outside in the 30 degree weather to get back under the car especially when it is snowing. Eventually we got the guts up and Brian and Patrick went back under the car to get the other intermediate hose off. While I continued taking valves off and had to borrow tools from Ben to get some of the larger bolts off. To get the tools I could go to one of his three storage locations in the grove. One is the car by the lumber pile, the other is the SC RR Museum baggage car.

The railcar requires a mega socket set with some rather large bolts to hold. Seeing the last time these valves had been off the car was in 2002 a lot of the valves were difficult to get off. In order to get extra leverage on them I could hook a manual socket on the end of my wrench to add extra power. But when that’s not good enough we found a random rusty pipe laying on the ground that we converted into an extender.

By the end of the day we had managed to need another trip to Lowe’s but with the sun going down it was time to finish. We had to return keys to and locks to Bill so we had our own lock put on the car and in the process we managed to have the catch for the door fall off. So we had to get a new screw as well. I propped the door closed with the floor scraper and forced it shut. Then we removed the flag and went to sign out. Again we lost another hour shooting the breeze with the Amtrak cop at the gate.

After that we drove to the Lowe’s. We struggled finding a new screw for the vestibule latch because it’s an odd size. Brian and Patrick had an academic level discussion about the merits of some tools while Nigel and I went and looked for a pressure washer. After that Nigel and I looked at the power tools. I miss my power tools from the theater’s shop because it makes life so much easier. I now understand why my dad salivates in the hardware store.

I wish there was a local hardware store near the yard as I would rather support a local business. That and local hardware stores the staff is more helpful and knowledgeable about the product. Nigel and I found a place to get dinner but it closed at eight pm so Nigel and I were trying to rush them along. We got into the car at 7:30 and started placing our to go order at Metro Diner. We left the Lowe’s at 7:45 and made it to the restaurant in time before closing and they brought the order out hot and accurate.

Then we drove back roads back to the Airbnb and we ate at the dinner table in house. After we had dinner we had our business meeting to discuss what our mission was going forward. Even though we already have a contract signed for the car to enter service we still have a lot to cover. Namely interior design, tasks that need to be done, and other mission critical items.

After that we all retired to go to bed.
 

Seaboard92

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Pacific Park-1.jpg
Say Hello to our railcar from the A End

Knot.jpg
The Knot on the air hose. See the small hose under that? That is the MR Hose

Phase III Diner.jpg
A Phase III EX New York Central Diner

Superliner.jpg
Phase III Superliner

Valves Coming Off.jpg
Me taking the valves off of the car with a baby socket wrench

Curtains.jpg
The roomette curtains that we donated to Kentucky Railroad Museum to go on a L&N sleeper
 

Seaboard92

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Day 5: I’ve been working on the railroad. All the live long day

Another day where we intended to start earlier than we actually did but the longer the week goes on the more we want to sleep in from sleep deprivation. Brian was flying back home to Boston at one so he was only with us for a half day. This time on the way to the grove we went to McDonalds and again ate in their parking lot. Their new cinnamon rolls are actually really nice. McDonalds messed the order up which is par for the course with 2020.

About 830 we arrived into the Grove and started working again. Brian went to work removing the MR and we sent Nigel out to get caps to cover the MR system. While Brian worked on removing all of the MR Hoses which is just the end hoses and intermediates Patrick and I worked on getting the control hoses down. When Nigel returned it was time for Brian to go to the airport so we had a photo session of the group of us in front of the car. Some serious photos some non serious photos.

For a change we had good weather and I was able to shed layers. Patrick and I waved in Japanese culture till Nigel’s car was out of view then we went back to work. We decided it was a good time to take a look at the leak on the roof. So we crawled onto our roof with a caulk gun, a power drill, and a pack of new screws. We had trouble getting the caulk gun open because neither of us have ever had to do in our lives before.

Luckily Ben happened to come by to see how we were doing and he helped us get the gun working. Then Patrick and I fixed the spot on the roof. There was about a 1.5 inch gash in the roof from where a rock, or a brick impacted the car at some point during its service years. Amtrak did a horrible job fixing it by drilling the cover into the valleys instead of the ridges giving more places for moisture to get in. Patrick and I are both very happy with the fix though. Our fingers got very dirty from rubbing the caulk in but what else is new.

You don’t buy a railcar and expect it to be a clean process from start to finish. By the time we finished that Noah had come over to see if we needed any help and we didn’t at this point. He did pop up and inspect our roof fix because we asked for a second opinion. After awhile Nigel eventually arrived back at the Grove with lunch which was steak and shake again we got back to work.

Patrick and I went under the car again to start working on removing the control hoses which was quite easy. After another hour we were done with the hoses coming off and trying to figure out how to assemble the new ones. Once that was taken care of we installed the new ones. The next mission was getting the E3 Valve off.

For those who don’t know what the E3 is it’s the emergency brake valve that is inside all the cars. It is also located in the worst possible place to work on it inside the truck. Not next to the trucks but inside each of them. In order to reach them you have to crawl under the truck and then contort your way five ways from Sunday to get up in at it. All in all there are five bolts holding the E3 up.

In order to get the right size I had to go visit Ben again and borrow another socket set from where he was working. I assisted him for a few minutes with moving something with the forklift to do a tread brake car. Once that was taken care of I walked back and started trying to remove the E3 on the B end of the car. The B end of the car is the most difficult side to work on because there is more to this truck than the A end due to the handbrake.

I thought I had the bolt moving on the E3 only to find out the whole bolt was spinning it just the nut. So after multiple calls to various people for advice we used four hours trying to free it. Eventually I swapped out with Patrick on it because I was getting cranky from being pent up in such a small space. Railcars are not for the claustrophobic. I then started gathering our tools together and held the flashlight for Patrick as the light started to fade. We finished the day without finishing that mission critical piece.

On the way out of the grove we talked with our friendly officer about a place to get good diner food. So we took his recommendation for the Edward’s Drive In. We ordered in the car and took the meal home to the Airbnb. After that we decided to watch Borat Subsequent Moviefilm because Nigel and Patrick hadn’t seen it yet. So we watched that and it’s especially special for me and Patrick as parts of it were filmed in our home towns.

After watching the genius that is Sacha Baron Cohen we called our friend Anton to tell him about the grove. And we were rolling on the floor laughing for hours while we talked with him.
 

Seaboard92

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Sunrise on the car.jpg
Sunrise on the north side of the car

Our Group Photo.jpg
Here is the group photo of the four of us. (L-R) Brian, Me, Nigel, Patrick

Taking Hoses Off.jpg
Taking hoses off with the large pipe wrenches laying on the ground. Any under car work had a valid Blue Flag standing.

From our vestibule.jpg
The View from our vestibule. Sometime in this year we will return it to the stainless and remove the Amtrak era paint.

Our fluting.jpg
A close up on our fluting.

At Sunset.jpg
Here is our car at sunset. That's my favorite photo of it
 

Seaboard92

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Day 6: E3 Valves, holes, and a Tour

Another day started and again we were a bit late getting out of the Airbnb. We stopped at Burger King on the way and had breakfast. Nothing Like railroading for the variety of fast food breakfasts. Again eating in the parking lot. This morning we learned the Amtrak officer was in the movie the Dark Knight with a small speaking role. Such a nice guy. We lose a good hour a day just on idle chit chat with the police officers.

After that we head back to our car and get everything turned back on. Patrick goes to work working on the E3 Valve under the B end while Nigel and I start work on the soft spot in the floor. We knew we had a soft spot in the floor from our many trips down the hallway directly under where the leak was. For those who don’t know Budd cars have a stainless steel bottom, with insulation, then a wood sub floor. When the water leaked in the sub floor rotted out. So Nigel and I started working on ripping the carpet up.

I have always had trouble with getting Amtrak carpets up because they literally must use stuff from the space program to keep things glued down. I was surprised when I had no issue at all ripping the carpet up. Nigel cut the carpet into smaller six foot sections as we worked our way down the hallway. To get some of the stubborn carpet guards off the floor we had to use a hammer and a saw till they came off. There is nothing quite like hitting things with a hammer to make them do what you think they should do. Especially stripped screws.

It took about twenty minutes to get the first carpet up which we dubbed the load bearing carpet as it supported our weight over the whole. Then we had to rip the sub carpet up which over the hole wasn’t an issue as the adhesive was gone. But the rest of it was pretty much stuck. And that will be the gift that keeps giving in 2021 for us. So once we had exposed the hole we took a few pictures of it and threw our excess carpet off the side of the car.

Luckily the environmental inspector had already been by or he would have thrown a fit according to Noah as Noah told us to throw all of the carpet back on the car. After that Nigel went on another parts run while Patrick and I worked on the E3 valve and turns out I missed two screws on it and broke another pipe. We will fix that in 2021. After that we started working on the other E3 valve on the A End except this time we devised a method that worked really rapidly.

Noah stopped by while Nigel was out getting lunch and pars and we asked if we could tour some of his superliners and see if there were any components we might want to buy off of him. So we took a tour of several wrecks that he will be scrapping here in the next few years. The first one being 31537 a Superliner Coach with significant crash post damage that Noah says he will move the car to California then scrap it.

Of course that is after getting all the good components off the car. The next car we enter is another wrecked superliner this time sleeper 32014 that is also meant for the scrap heap. We look at the wrecked and jumbled up inside of the car on both levels. Patrick buys an Amtrak pointless arrow hanger that was still in the car. Then after that we walk over to the next line of cars with Surfliner Cab Car 6902 that Noah owns that had burn damage from a crossing accident in the early 2000s.

The car is completely gutted on the top level. After that we walked thru several of his other superliners looking for components. One of his cars was destined to become a Cross Country Cafe by Amtrak and they had nearly finished the job. It still has the plastic protective covers on the kitchen appliances and on the carpet yet Noah now owns it. We walked thru a diner from the Sunset Limited’s sabotage wreck in the 90s still in Phase III. Another diner that was caved in on itself on one side.

We finished our tour with the car he is going to turn into a PV which is a superliner that had an electrical fire on the roomette end. He has amazing plans for the car. After that it was time to eat and we ate in our vestibule. For lunch we had the same as the night before because that diner was so good. After that we spent the rest of our day working underneath the car working on the brake system.

We really need to start finishing the projects we start at three because we start things not thinking we will run into darkness then run into darkness. The bad thing about the grove after three that’s when all the workers go home so the bathrooms close then too. So it’s best to go before then or else you will be holding it. I’ve made the three Pm Walk to the bathroom in the main shop multiple times. Passing by the paint booth and a few cars getting active work on.

This evening we decided on a share pack from White Castle because Patrick wanted to have it seeing it isn’t native to his home state. That was a mistake for everyone’s bowel systems for the rest of the trip. During dinner we watched Goodbye Lenin which is a fantastic film about the fall of the East German culture. Nigel loved it because of all I’ve told him about it. While Patrick fell in love with the story line of it, and how it eulogizes a culture that evaporated in 1989.

If you need a good movie to watch and don’t mind subtitles and want to learn about a culture that no longer exists Goodbye Lenin is a fantastic choice. After that we did a lot of cleaning and straightening up.
 

Seaboard92

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Hole in the Floor.jpg
The hole in our floor

Tree growing.jpg
A highlight of our component research trip a tree growing in a sightseer lounge

Sightseer Lounge.jpg
A sightseer Lounge owned by our friend Noah that we looked for components on. It still had some old food on it.

The new car.jpg
The Cross Country Cafe our friend Noah bought.

The yard at night.jpg
The bone yard at night

The Talgo.jpg
The Talgo VI awaiting disposition
 

Seaboard92

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Day 7: The Longest Delay and Day

Today was supposed to be a very short day at the grove only being three hours then a road trip north to Michigan. Well to start off we left the Airbnb late as we tried to clean up our trash, and any dirty dishes we had. Once we had all of that finished we got to the grove at nine. Due to the fact we were so late we sent Nigel to Chick Fil A to go and get breakfast to bring it back to us.

So while we waited Patrick and I started on taking the carpet off the walls of the car. The carpet on the walls is something from the space program for sure because it is fairly well rooted. I fought for the better part of an hour to remove a 2 foot by 2 foot section of the carpet. Patrick took all of the panels covering the water system off as well. Somehow we got the idea that the place our car is going might like some videos of us doing work on the car. So Patrick and I then started filming B roll of us doing things.

Eventually our breakfast arrived and we stoped to eat in our lounge. Now we had an improvised table of a cardboard box over our trash can. Eventually bill came by to bring back the tools we lent him of ours and to bring us a wooden plank we could put on our saw horses to become a table. After breakfast we decided we needed to get rid of the trash so Nigel looked up where the dump was. Then we filmed some B roll of me throwing the old carpet off the car to Nigel who loaded it into his car.

Once Nigel had all the trash off the car Patrick and I gave facetime tours to our parents. After doing that Ben came over with his friend Mark to deliver us a key part we needed. They brought us the 26C pipe bracket. So the former owner Bill decided to convert the car to D22 which is the older (1950s), heavier, and more expensive brake system. His reasoning was he already had clean D22 items sitting on his shelf. The car was pretty much a complete 26C car it was just missing the pipe bracket which is a hard (as in rare) part to find.

Ben located this part for us and Mark has just delivered it. So when Nigel got back he filmed a tour of the car led by me while Patrick followed Ben to get tools we would need to take the D22 pipe bracket off. The first step is taking two valves off the bracket itself which wasn’t that difficult other than some had a tight space for the socket set. The next step was the more difficult step removing the actual bracket.

So the bracket is held up by three bolts that are load bearing but it also is one that when you spin the bolt the top moves as well, so you have to hold it in while someone else moves the socket set on the bottom. The first bolt came out no problem. However the second bolt took us an hour and a half. Midway thru we went to the lumber yard and grabbed some scrap wood and cut it to size to sit the heavy bracket on. However when we got the second bolt off it was now 4 PM and the grove closes at 5 ish. The bolt we had just removed we stripped at least an inch worth of threads off of.

It is also a $50 bolt because of its size, length, and the metal it’s made from. So then we started working on the last one hoping against hope we would get it done before sundown. We used the extra leverage by using part of an old steam pipe we found on the ground to no avail. Eventually Ben came back for his tools so we had to give that up with the bracket hanging from one of the three bolts from the car. Ben said he would finish the job in the next week.

Then it was time to do the clean up as it was now dark with a dead flashlight which made it very difficult. Ben also noticed our hand brake assembly was laying on the ground so Nigel and I had to crawl under the car to at least secure it above the ground in case they did any switching. We didn’t get out of the grove till 6:30 just because clean up took that long. That also included taping all of the valves in duct tape.

Once that was done we left the grove for the final time and went to the Steer Inn drive in for dinner. It took them thirty minutes to get our food ready but it was good as we ate in the car. Then Patrick drove us as far as Fort Wayne. Somehow I managed to fall asleep in the back seat next to the mountain of our luggage. I woke up as we stopped at a gas station in Fort Wayne. Then I was up for a bit to discuss Thorium and other topics of our discussion before falling asleep near Lansing and waking up on the outskirts of Flint.

At least I got to see downtown of Flint which was nice despite it being 1 something in the morning. We went to Nigel’s Victorian Era House and and crashed in an empty bedroom.
 

Seaboard92

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The car's name.jpg
The Cars current name, and soon to be former name.

The porters room.jpg
The Porters room where you enter our car on the B End

Post Carpet.jpg
The first section missing the carpet

The mini sink.jpg
Some hotels have a mini bar but do they have a mini sink?

Removing D22.jpg
Removing the D22 system

Stripping Screws.jpg
At this point we were stripping the bolts
 

Seaboard92

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Day 8: The Blue Water

Mostly because both Patrick and I wanted to get the mileage we had Nigel drive us to Port Huron to board the Blue Water even though it also passes Flint. So we left at five in the morning to drive over to Port Huron in the rain which wasn’t a bad drive. Mostly because no one was on the road. We passed the signs for entering Canada that we longed to go under and went to the station.

After photographing our train it was time to board the mostly Horizon set and wait the departure. Patrick and I took the opportunity to change in the trains restroom because we didn’t want to unpack at Nigel’s. The train began on time and rumbled westbound. There was no scenery till just west of Flint because the sun hadn’t rose yet but at least we could say we rode the milage. We arrived early into every station up until Battle Creek. We enjoyed our rainy journey across the lower peninsula.

At Battle Creek I used the smoke stop to take photos of the locomotive despite the rain. The Amish in our car weren’t wearing their masks, and when they did they weren’t properly wearing their mask. It was annoying that they were sitting so close to us from Lansing into Chicago. Despite having five total coaches on the train only two were open for passengers which made it difficult to spread out in these pandemic years. I thought the goal was to spread out and be more socially distant.

Patrick and I admired the beautiful Niles station building once again and enjoyed a fast ride on the Michigan Central. We stopped for a freight near Porter as Patrick and I worked on the renovation costs for the railcar on his iPad. I always enjoy arriving in Chicago for the shear variety of freight locomotives one sees on the arrival and today didn’t disappoint. We arrived in Chicago about twenty minutes late which isn’t that bad considering it is Chicago.

What I found unusual though we arrived under the glass train shed on the south concourse which usually is only the domain of Metra. After detraining we stored our bag in the Metropolitan Lounge and bought our commuter day pass outside of the city. I knew a great quiet restaurant in an old train station just outside of the city where Patrick could take his business calls, but also on a very active mainline where I could be entertained.

So we took the BNSF commuter train to Hinsdale and ate inside the Mexican restaurant there. Along the way we raced a BNSF mixed freight west along the Speedway. One reason I chose this railfaning location was simply because we could railfan in relative comfort and warmth, secondly all of the western Long Distance trains would be running along the Burlington on a Saturday.

The station building the restaurant is located in was opened in 1898 making the building 122 years old and a nice backdrop for trains passing by. Our lunch was great and the food is always good there. We sat in the agents bay window with a nice view East and west on approaching trains. The first one by was the Eastbound California Zephyr Follower quickly in under a minute by a BNSF freight.

After that the next train by was the westbound California Zephyr, a westbound freight, and an inbound Metra. I enjoyed using the old building as an elaborate prop. I crossed the tracks for the westbound Southwest Chief and the Metra following it. I was super happy to see that the Metra had the Burlington Route heritage unit on the point. It was definitely a nice surprise.

After the late eastbound Southwest Chief passed Patrick and I took a walk around downtown Hinsdale. It’s a cute little town but you can tell with its boutique shops, and Steinway Pianos Store that this is a very well off neighborhood. I really like this little town and if I was in Chicago I would definitely return. We stopped in a bakery offering free coffee with no questions asked and still bought some pastries from them to eat in the station waiting room.

Our commuter train eventually arrived and we arrived back in Chicago with an hour and twenty minutes before our next train t Capitol Limited. As I didn’t want to have just mystery meat for dinner Patrick and I detoured over to Northwestern Terminal to get dinner. Plus I wanted to find a heritage unit for Patrick to photograph. I normally go to Northwestern Terminal by walking along a Milwaukee District platform and was in luck as the platform I chose at random had the Milwaukee Road Heritage unit. Then we emerged on Madison Street.

Recently Metra has unveiled the Chicago & Northwestern heritage unit and I was hoping to find it. So we walked down an empty platform and just managed to get lucky and see it. It is former Amtrak No. 467 from the Cascade service. After that I went down to the food court and got Popeyes for myself. Then we hightailed it to Union Station arriving around 6:15 and our train was already boarding. So we grabbed our stored bag and reported to our platform at the end of the hall.

Both the Cardinal and the Capitol Limited were boarding at the same time from the same platform which made it a bit Cramped on the platform. After storing my luggage in the bedroom we had on the train because the luggage rack was full I walked down to the locomotives. After that I settled into the room with Patrick and ate my dinner. Popeyes got the order wrong but nothing I could do with our train moments from departure so I just ate it anyway.

As we were crossing the state line our attendant brought us the Mystery Meat special. After that Patrick and I had a long therapeutic chat all the way into Toledo. I naturally took advantage of the stretch stop seeing I was awake for it. The first time I’ve actually been awake going eastbound out of Chicago. After that we went to bed shortly thereafter.
 

Seaboard92

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Blue Water at Port Huron.jpg
The Blue Water at Port Huron

Blue Water at BTL.jpg
The Blue Water at Battle Creek

The Blue Water at BTH.jpg
The Blue Water in the rain at Battle Creek

BNSF Gary.jpg
BNSF in Northern Indiana

Industrial Switchers.jpg
Industrial Switchers in Gary

Niles Station.jpg
Niles Station

The Dan Ryan.jpg
The Dan Ryan Expressway

New and old.jpg
New and Old at the locomotive shop

Veterans NPCU.jpg
The Veterans NPCU
 

Seaboard92

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Messages
4,391
Location
South Carolina
MILW Heritage Unit.jpg
The Milwaukee Road Heritage Unit

CNW Heritage Unit.jpg
The new Chicago & Northwestern Heritage Unit

Metra at Northwestern.jpg
Metra at Northwestern Terminal

Metra Surfliner.jpg
The Metra surfliner

Downtown Chicago.jpg
Downtown Chicago at Christmas

Chicago Union Station.jpg
Chicago Union Station

Eastbound Trains.jpg
Two Eastbound trains. On the Left the Capitol Limited, and the right is the Cardinal

The Capitol Limited.jpg
The Capitol Limited at Chicago

30 at TOL.jpg
The Capitol Limited at Toledo
 

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