New Rehabilitated Superliners unveiled

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jis

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The refurbishment is certainly an improvement but I just wonder if the systems were upgraded. On all the sleeper trips that we have ever taken the temperature controls in the sleepers have never worked. I just hope that the HVAC systems were upgraded. Then there is the suspension that can get a bit rough. Cosmetics are nice but an overall overhaul would be best. Does anyone know if any mechanical upgrades were made?
They were not as part of this refresh.
 
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AmtrakBlue

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The refurbishment is certainly an improvement but I just wonder if the systems were upgraded. On all the sleeper trips that we have ever taken the temperature controls in the sleepers have never worked. I just hope that the HVAC systems were upgraded. Then there is the suspension that can get a bit rough. Cosmetics are nice but an overall overhaul would be best. Does anyone know if any mechanical upgrades were made?
Did you read the article on the first post? It tells what the updates were.
 

dlagrua

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Did you read the article on the first post? It tells what the updates were.
Quite honestly the refresh is very nice, but we do not follow all aspects of what Amtrak is doing these days that closely. We are not using the LD service at the present time but maybe in the future based on competitiveness. that will change.
 
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PaTrainFan

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Has anyone seen any of these cars in service yet? Obviously it is a long process to refresh the entire fleet and I give creedence to the fact this is a more complex undertaking than it was with Amfleet, but wonder when there would be enough running that we would actually see them during travel this summer. And the summer is almost over.
 

Cal

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Has anyone seen any of these cars in service yet? Obviously it is a long process to refresh the entire fleet and I give creedence to the fact this is a more complex undertaking than it was with Amfleet, but wonder when there would be enough running that we would actually see them during travel this summer. And the summer is almost over.
None on my SWC trip
 

me_little_me

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Has anyone seen any of these cars in service yet? Obviously it is a long process to refresh the entire fleet and I give creedence to the fact this is a more complex undertaking than it was with Amfleet, but wonder when there would be enough running that we would actually see them during travel this summer. And the summer is almost over.
They are holding them back because that's an Amtrak tradition started with the arrival of the VL2 sleepers. :)
 

Dustyroad

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Since I have cruised so often, that name just slipped out. I am trying learn all the names and abbreviations here for things. It will take me a while since there are so many.
LOL, I'm with you. There are so many it is very confusing. There was a link posted of all the abbreviations and what the stood for, but I don't know where it is. Perhaps some one can post the link for it again. Good luck. :)
 
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Cal

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LOL, I'm with you. There are so many it is very confusing. There was a link posted of all the abbreviations and what the stood for, but I don't know where it is. Perhaps some one can post the link for it again. Good luck. :)
Your wish is my command.

 

Dustyroad

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Your wish is my command.

Thank you. :) 👍
 

west point

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A thought. A few airlines have announced cutbacks this fall at a higher % than pre C-19. This may be because potential passengers are more wary of making longer range plans ? Now will this apply to Amtrak who knows ? Hopefully Amtrak will not reduce service again once budget is signed by president. ? If C-19 delta goes wild this fall things might change and god forbid a new variant emerges then what ?
 

zephyr17

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Well, they are under a mandate that has the force of law to run daily for the time being. Cutting back to triweekly is not an option for management in the immediate future.
 

AmHope

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The refurbishment is certainly an improvement but I just wonder if the systems were upgraded. On all the sleeper trips that we have ever taken the temperature controls in the sleepers have never worked. I just hope that the HVAC systems were upgraded. Then there is the suspension that can get a bit rough. Cosmetics are nice but an overall overhaul would be best. Does anyone know if any mechanical upgrades were made?
The superliner temperature controls work fine, they're just not very intuitive. They control the power to an electric space heater in the wall that takes time to warm up. This does nothing to control the temperature coming from the vent in the ceiling. If you're cold, just close the ceiling vent and then turn up the heater dial and *wait*. I do hate that they're labeled "temperature" as that implies they can somehow cool as well as heat, and they don't.

Regarding the lack of new Superliner sleeper stock... ...since they ARE finally getting the Viewliner II sleepers, maybe they can do some quick repairs on older Viewliner Is that come out of service and stick them on the end of the Transition Dorms, and use the Viewliners for crew lodging instead. Then they could sell *all* the transition car roomettes to paying customers, and they could even use the downstairs lounge for some added value for sleeper passengers. If staff absolutely needed office/break space they could stick a Venture on along with the Viewliner.

This would add a bunch of roomettes while increasing effective passenger train length by only one car since the staff cars wouldn't need to stop at the platform, while keeping to superliner layout to not confuse passengers with a mixed consist.

Since none of the western LD trains ever reach NE Corridor speeds, and most never even exceed 79mph, the old Viewliners won't need the level of maintenance that they need for the NEC.
 
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20th Century Rider

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Amtrak unveiled its first rehabilitated Superliners at Chicago Union Station on June 15th.

Yey for progress! Let's hope that includes the plumbing and heating / cooling systems that are always breaking down or dysfunctioning!
 

zephyr17

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The superliner temperature controls work fine, they're just not very intuitive. They control the power to an electric space heater in the wall that takes time to warm up. This does nothing to control the temperature coming from the vent in the ceiling. If you're cold, just close the ceiling vent and then turn up the heater dial and *wait*. I do hate that they're labeled "temperature" as that implies they can somehow cool as well as heat, and they don't.
The temperature controls often do NOT work fine.

As far as the baseboard heating control on the wall goes, at least 50% of the time it does nothing in my recent experience. I had the misfortune once of being in a roomette where the floor heat was stuck full on and it was like being on the inside of a toaster. Most of the time if they are non-functional they just don't turn on the baseboard heat, which is preferable to running away even on the Builder in the winter. Been there, done that.

As to the vent, on Superliner Is the lever that controls the louvers is often jammed or broken. Superliner II louvers can be directly manipulated and are usually in good shape.

Finally a few times I have been in cars where the HVAC AC has failed and the whole car was uncomfortably warm.

Most of the posters here are veteran Amtrak riders and are familiar with the controls. The complaints about increasingly unreliable HVAC are valid, and bad vent louvers and non functioning baseboard heat controls are very common. They are real problems and not user error.

Thanks for explaining the controls most of us thoroughly understand, though 🙄.
 

20th Century Rider

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The temperature controls often do NOT work fine.

As far as the baseboard heating control on the wall goes, at least 50% of the time it does nothing in my recent experience. I had the misfortune once of being in a roomette where the floor heat was stuck full on and it was like being on the inside of a toaster. Most of the time if they are non-functional they just don't turn on the baseboard heat, which is preferable to running away even on the Builder in the winter. Been there, done that.

As to the vent, on Superliner Is the lever that controls the louvers is often jammed or broken. Superliner II louvers can be directly manipulated and are usually in good shape.

Finally a few times I have been in cars where the HVAC AC has failed and the whole car was uncomfortably warm.

Most of the posters here are veteran Amtrak riders and are familiar with the controls. The complaints about increasingly unreliable HVAC are valid, and bad vent louvers and non functioning baseboard heat controls are very common. They are real problems and not user error.

Thanks for explaining the controls most of us thoroughly understand, though 🙄.
Well said! If it's hot one must sweat through the nite... and if you're on the TE you can't even escape to the SSL. Way too many times I've had this happen... and went to fine the conductor at the middle of the night to re-set the darn thing... which sometimes the will do and sometimes they will not do.

Too cold is easier to live with than too hot as you can cover up... but when it's sweltering you suffer.

Mostly those controls just don't work!
 

AmHope

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Thanks for explaining the controls most of us thoroughly understand, though 🙄.
Haha okay, I apologize. I'm just used to having to explain how they work elsewhere, obviously a large number of people here do understand how they work. I'm sure you can empathize with experiences with confused passengers twisting the dials randomly and waving their hands under the vents.

In terms of if they *are* working, they've worked every time for me, though I must confess that 95% of the time I have it turned off as the HVAC air is normally plenty warm for me (or too warm). It's usually only in deep winter that I turn them on.

The experience of having one stuck on though sounds hellish. :(

I'd like a new design to have an incredibly simple system of dual hot/cold air ducts, and a simple robust louver to let you control mixture manually (I'm wary of the added complexity of one electronically controlled by a thermostat).
 

John819

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Let's face it. The Superliners are nearing the end of their useful life. And because of the very strict interpretations of the ADA by disability advocates who are willing to sue everyone it is unlikely that we will see any new bi-level cars in the future.

What would probably make sense is to have Siemens produce a new set of single level sleepers (and long distance coaches) for all routes, and then sell off or scrap the Superliners, Viewliners, and Amfleet IIs. After all, this is probably the one time in a generation that Amtrak will have funding.
 

jis

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I doubt the Viewliners will be scrapped in the next 20 years. Amfleet IIs will go way before anyone touches the Viewliners, other than to do a rebuild perhaps.

Whether Superliners will be rebuilt or not will be decided in the next five years. I suspect the Superliners will run for at least another 10 years, and more if they are rebuilt.
 
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20th Century Rider

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The major design flaw of the Superliners is the tight winding stairwell in the center of the car... making it difficult to move even small carryon luggage a balancing act. It is also a barrier for handicapped.

Double level cars everywhere else have mid or base level vestibules and a short stairwell up in tandem with a short stairwell down. The other big problem is the cooling and heating systems which have been discussed in length. Ventilation is a major issue with these cars. Many find physical discomfort with this design.

Improved multi-level design is being applied to commuter rail as seen in the illustrations below. Many hope for better designed LD cars... with either one level or two.

SEPTA.jpgDouble-Decker-Electrical-Multiple-Unit.png

Stadler.png
 
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