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Passenger Trains > Locomotives running elephant style


Date: 04/03/03 10:24
Locomotives running elephant style
Author: frequentflyer

Back in the F40 era,it was common to see them running back to back,now I see that the majority of Genesis are run elephant style. Why?



Date: 04/03/03 11:14
Re: Locomotives running elephant style
Author: NE933

For trains that split up to become 2 separates, or in cases where strenuous terrain dictates the use of two or more locomotives, this arrangement is beneficial because when or if the lead engine is taken off, the one right behind it is already in position, facing forward.



Date: 04/03/03 21:27
Re: Locomotives running elephant style
Author: harrybechtold

The real reason Amtrak\'s locomotives are running elephant style is because of wheel wear. The Mechanical People that I know told me this because units were just ping ponging back and forth and not getting turned at endpoints. Running any type of equipment back and forth on the same stretch of track, and never turning the equipment, will cause uneven wheel wear. i.e. thin flanges on one side, and not on the other; wheel tread thickness of by several 1/16ths on the same axle, etc....

Running the units elephant style forces the endpoint terminals to turn the Locomotives, therefore creating the opportunity for even wheel wear.



Date: 04/04/03 07:24
Re: Locomotives running elephant style
Author: davidp

Seems like certain trains run "elephant", others back to back. Silver service always seemed to be elephant style (before single unit Genesys operation), dating back to Amtrak\'s beginnings and SCL practice before that. Auto-Train on the other seems to be back to back (no turning facilities?), as do 11/14 for the most part.



Date: 04/04/03 18:27
Re: Locomotives running elephant style
Author: mcdeo

I\'m curious, a 2200+ mile back and forth trip is causing uneven wheel wear? That seems a bit odd to me. (Around my HO Scale 4 x 8 foot loop of track, sure.)

What about the fact that the Surfliners, for example, have been running \'engine towards LAUD\' constantly for at least 3+ years? (I know that from time to time they\'d change.) But if this back and forth issue was big, wouldn\'t you change the consists say one way each month? or something?

Just curious.



Date: 04/05/03 08:24
Re: Locomotives running elephant style
Author: witrainfan66

The wheel wear thing just doesn\'t jive with me either. I had heard it was to allow continued operation in case the lead unit encountered mechanical problems enroute, or experienced a grade crosssing collision. The lead unit could just be set out, and the train limps on. When the Builder has three units, it\'s not at all uncommon to see the third running in reverse, with the first two elephant style.



Date: 04/05/03 21:24
Re: Locomotives running elephant style
Author: mkincaid

mcdeo wrote:

> What about the fact that the Surfliners, for example, have
> been running \'engine towards LAUD\' constantly for at least 3+
> years? (I know that from time to time they\'d change.) But if
> this back and forth issue was big, wouldn\'t you change the
> consists say one way each month? or something?

And what about commuter railroads that run push-pull with the engine always at the same end? If the wheel wear consequences were so deleterious surely they\'d find a way to turn equipment around sometimes?



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