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Western Railroad Discussion > Zipper in Lovelock, NV


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Date: 11/17/22 20:50
Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: RailDawg

This evening an almost-on-time Amtrak 6 was stuck behind a billion-mile-long UPRR eastbound freight. Out here in Lovelock NV where the eastbound trains are climbing the hundreds of miles out of our Great Basin.  

Without the Big Picture I'm clueless (never a scanner) so I'm watching this monster PSR freight rumbling slowly through town and Amtrak 6 is right behind it also crawling through town.  Amtrak is falling further behind schedule.  

PSR train is too big for the siding just east of Lovelock.  Soooo... PSR train stays on the main and pulls far enough east for Amtrak to take the siding. Amtrak chills on the siding and PSR then backs up to clear the east end of the siding so Amtrak can get moving past. 

Is this called a Zipper?

It's fun to check out Amtrak and the dining car folks drinkin' whiskey and smokin' big cigars as the train rolls through our little desert town.  Man though couldn't they have just kept PSR train chugging along until past Winnemucca? Again I'm generally clueless to the Big Picture. 

Chuck



Date: 11/17/22 21:01
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: callum_out

Probably done out at Toy, and at least UP allowed the runaround.

Out 



Date: 11/17/22 21:09
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: P

I believe that is what it is called. Was it the Amtrak crew who threw the switches, or would this have been done remotely?

Someone would have to eyeball the backup move though of the freight.... Perhaps Amtrak conductor could have done this before proceeding east

Posted from Android



Date: 11/18/22 05:42
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: cjvrr

I thought that manuever was called a "saw-by"



Date: 11/18/22 06:31
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: RailDawg

P Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I believe that is what it is called. Was it the
> Amtrak crew who threw the switches, or would this
> have been done remotely?
>
> Someone would have to eyeball the backup move
> though of the freight.... Perhaps Amtrak
> conductor could have done this before proceeding
> east


Good question... can an Amtrak crew provide protection like that? It appears the Amtrak stopped too far east to drop off the conductor and yes the switches are automated... does a move like this require a manual throw or does dispatch handle all this?

Interesting to watch a super-long PSR train get started on a small grade with the DPU'S pounding first to take up slack.  

If this PSR train was "precision-scheduled" why was it blocking a barely-late Amtrak? It also blocked a well-used crossing for almost 40 minutes. That doesn't happen very often out here.  

Chuck
 



Date: 11/18/22 09:47
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: upengr21

The Disp set the saw-by up. We dropped my conductor off to verify we were in the clear and look for the signal to back up . Amtrak picked up my conductor to bring him to the head end . We were over 15,000 feet and there was no place for him to get around us. It was a good move by the Disp . No reason to use that siding it’s just where Amtrak caught us . The conductor stayed back there until our shove moved stopped . Amtrak had to wait a little bit longer but he would have really been delayed staying behind us .
Posted from iPhone



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 11/18/22 10:01 by upengr21.



Date: 11/18/22 10:16
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: MP555

RailDawg Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It's fun to check out Amtrak and the dining car
> folks….. smokin' big cigars

Oh really?



Date: 11/18/22 10:51
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: billmeeker

There also used to be double track out east of Lovelock, until Moyers ripped it out.  It would have been a convenient place for Amtrak to run around the freight.



Date: 11/18/22 11:46
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: upengr21

The meet was at Colado.

Posted from iPhone



Date: 11/18/22 12:53
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: callum_out

Thanks for the update on that, had to be one or the other.

Out 



Date: 11/18/22 15:26
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: bwyrick

Surprised they didn't just wait until Weso, where Amtrak would've stayed on Main 1 anyway, whereas the MRVNP (if my memory serves correctly) would've been on Main 2.

Brody Wyrick
Reno, NV



Date: 11/18/22 17:57
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: upengr21

Several westbounds on MT1 . We had to fuel and get inspection at Elko . We didn’t fit between switches there either. Disp did the right thing . It would have happened earlier but Amtk was 30 minutes late out of Reno….. MRVNP ???? Wasn’t us .


Posted from iPhone



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/18/22 17:59 by upengr21.



Date: 11/18/22 21:55
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: RailDawg

MP555 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> RailDawg Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > It's fun to check out Amtrak and the dining car
> > folks….. smokin' big cigars
>
> Oh really?

Ain't that what Johnny Cash sung about?

Chuck



Date: 11/18/22 22:04
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: RailDawg

upengr21 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> The Disp set the saw-by up. We dropped my
> conductor off to verify we were in the clear and
> look for the signal to back up . Amtrak picked up
> my conductor to bring him to the head end . We
> were over 15,000 feet and there was no place for
> him to get around us. It was a good move by the
> Disp . No reason to use that siding it’s just
> where Amtrak caught us . The conductor stayed back
> there until our shove moved stopped . Amtrak had
> to wait a little bit longer but he would have
> really been delayed staying behind us .
> Posted from iPhone

I watched you guys but it was too dark to see the crews doing their thing! Saw the Amtrak moving in the siding but couldn't figure out the reasons.  

Well done! Very professional I've learned a lot. 

I'm in a white mining truck with orange flag and a white German Shepard/Wolf. I don't take pictures but love to watch. Always respect where I can and can't be. As you maybe saw in the thread where I called in hot brakes a few nights ago I do my best to give some interesting info without throwing the crew under the bus. 

You guys always impress me. 

Chuck



Date: 11/19/22 10:19
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: BobB

This is one of the great things about this site.  Somebody sees something interesting happen but does not know the details.  Others ask sensible questions.  Then the person who was actually involved comes and gives the answers.  Not a lot of railfan speculation but specific information from the crew of the train.  Without the railroaders who frequent this site it would be far less interesting.



Date: 11/19/22 11:00
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: RailDawg

BobB Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> This is one of the great things about this site. 
> Somebody sees something interesting happen but
> does not know the details.  Others ask sensible
> questions.  Then the person who was actually
> involved comes and gives the answers.  Not a lot
> of railfan speculation but specific information
> from the crew of the train.  Without the
> railroaders who frequent this site it would be far
> less interesting.

Exactly what I was thinking. The fact that one of the crew was able to fill in the gaps on here is impressive. 

The railroads have strict "social media" policies. However there is nothing wrong with posting some knowledge on a well-executed saw-by maneuver!  

It enhances safety because we have our eyes on trains all the time. The more we know the more we can spot unsafe conditions.  

What do you guys think?

Chuck
 



Date: 11/19/22 13:25
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: gonx

I am impressed that your query was quickly answered as well.



Date: 11/19/22 15:01
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: tehachcond

cjvrr Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I thought that manuever was called a "saw-by"

It's actually called a back-saw.  A true saw-by is where a train doesn't fit in the siding, so it stops in the siding with the rear end still hanging out at the other end.  The opposing train. who does fit between switches stops in the clear, the no-fitter pulls out of the siding, thus clearing the other end, and goes on his way, leaving a clear track at the other end for vthe shorter train.

Brian Black
Castle Rock, CO



Date: 11/19/22 19:27
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: upengr21

Call it what you want where you live but thats what we call it out here.



Date: 11/19/22 20:19
Re: Zipper in Lovelock, NV
Author: RailDawg

upengr21 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Call it what you want where you live but thats
> what we call it out here.

Your train was huge! Was very cool how you got her going again. 

And to watch good railroading in action. Looked like a saw by to me. I initially called it a zipper! 

Chuck



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