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Steam & Excursion > Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!


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Date: 06/20/10 02:01
Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: co614

Dear Friends,

I am pleased to report that the GBX is a "GO" project. Please see the thread below....Greenbrier Express-614 for my detailed posting.

Thanks, Ross Rowland, President & CEO
Greenbrier Express Company, Inc.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/20/10 02:03 by co614.



Date: 06/20/10 03:39
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: MH2198

Congrats and best of luck to you Ross on your new venture! I do have a question out of curiousity though; your more detailed post says "Motive power will be a mix of modern diesels and classic mainline steam locomotives". I understand (or assume) 614 will be the primary steamer, but will there be another one used for the trains?

Again, I wish you the best of luck on the Greenbriar Express!

-Mike



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/20/10 03:41 by MH2198.



Date: 06/20/10 03:50
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: Emmo213

Congratulations Ross! It'll be amazing to see large mainline steam on a regular basis and I look forward to finally being able to ride behind one of your creations.

I know you're going to get 100s of questions and suggestions, but I have to throw one out there too. I imagine that having a 5 day layover will increase business for the Greenbrier, but a one way fare would increase train ridership. Just my opinion.

Good luck, and THANK YOU!



Date: 06/20/10 06:14
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: alco636

Congratulations Mr. Rowland! May the 614 and you have many safe, fun, and fast miles of track ahead of you both.

Al Seever
Minneapolis, MN



Date: 06/20/10 06:51
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: 5-String

Wow! This is great news. I'm looking forward to additional details, such as sorting out the steam and diesel portions of the journey. I'd love to see the 614 on NS rails, but am grateful for any portion of the route to be led by unassisted steam power!

Congratulations, Ross and all of those involved! Gives all of us something special to look forward to!



Date: 06/20/10 06:51
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: steam290

This is fantastic news. I will be glad to see 614 finally steaming again. And MAINLINE STEAM IN THE EAST!!!!!!!



Date: 06/20/10 09:44
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: CPRR

Ross, could you tell us what needs to be done on the 614 to get current, and in this environmental world, is she still a coal burner? (I love coal, just thinking of the DC crowd)



Date: 06/20/10 09:53
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: webmaster

It sounds like a well thought out and purposeful plan on operation. $750 is not bad when compared to the price of a 1st class airline ticket. Running during the day is also a wise move too compared to the overnight plan of the other under construction luxury train known as American Railway Explorer. I read into it that a portion of the trip will run with steam. That seams like another smart decision as it tremendously lowers operating costs while still offering the thrill of a steam pulled train.

I am normally a pessimist when it comes to passenger excursion ideas, but I think this one has a high probability of success. How many days a week will the train operate and where will the equipment be acquired from? I see your posting mentions Tuesday, when does the train return if only one day a week?

Todd Clark
Canyon Country, CA
Trainorders.com



Date: 06/20/10 14:09
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: Frisco1522

Sounds like somebody's wallet is going on a severe weight loss program.



Date: 06/20/10 16:04
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: railstiesballast

While I am sure that there is a market for the fine dining and elegant lounge cars, all that matters to me would be vestibule doors that you can open....for either the diesel or steam trip segments.



Date: 06/20/10 21:40
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: ts1457

co614 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Dear Friends,
>
> I am pleased to report that the GBX is a "GO"
> project. Please see the thread below....Greenbrier
> Express-614 for my detailed posting.
>
> Thanks, Ross Rowland, President & CEO
> Greenbrier Express Company, Inc.

Good luck, I hope it is wildly successful. What kind of package deal is the Greenbrier going to come up with to attract 210 people each week traveling from DC on a Tuesday and returning on Sunday, as I understand the plan reported in the previous thread? I'll be amazed if there is that kind of market in the long run after the novelty wears off, but we shall see.



Date: 06/21/10 06:58
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: PumpkinHogger

I hope someone has talked with CSX and already has signed paperwork.



Date: 06/21/10 07:15
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: Emmo213

Just cross-posting from RYPN. Hope Ross doesn't mind:

Friends, Please allow me to address a number of issues you have raised:

1. Motive Power- We have purchsed 3, C-39-8 locos on the second hand market ( all runners equipped with cab signals) and will be giving them a top to bottom going over and then a first class repainting into GBX livery as designed by noted rr artist Bob Lorenz.
The biz. plan calls for the GBX to be all diesel powered for its first season ( 7/2/2012- 1/15/2013 ) and for steam to be added ( subject to approvals from Amtrak, CSX and Buckingham Branch RR, approvals that I am guardedly optimistic we will achieve) in the second season ( 3/17/2013- 1/15/2014).
When steam is added the GBX will be diesel powered WUS-Gordonsville and steam powered Gordonsville-WSS in both directions. There will be NO repeat NO diesels in the consist when steam powered.
C&O 614 will be one of 3 steam engines in the steam stable. We will need 3 engines so that we have one on hot standby and one in cycle maintenance in addition to the one in active service.
We are actively vetting many candidate engines to be 614's 2 stable mates with a goal of finishing that task by 11/1/10.

2. Employment-- Pls. send resumes to; Cathy Pattison EA, Greenbrier Express Co.,Inc., POBox 700, Sackets Harbor,NY 13685. Please DO NOT call. Pls. include day and evening phone numbers.



Date: 06/21/10 07:53
How about the Class J be one of those 2 canidates
Author: mike15224449

Well now that I've heard 2 steam engines are needed in addition to 614 I'm hoping that the class J at Roanoke Transportation Museum. What do you all think?



Date: 06/21/10 10:42
Re: How about the Class J be one of those 2 canidates
Author: 5-String

>>Well now that I've heard 2 steam engines are needed in addition to 614 I'm hoping that the class J at Roanoke Transportation >>Museum. What do you all think?

That was the first thought that came to my mind. It's a beautiful, powerful locomotive that likely doesn't need a lot of work.

The post above mentions painting the diesels in GBX livery... I'm sure some folks would prefer to see the steam locomotives in their original paint...



Date: 06/21/10 11:22
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: cblaz

Emmo213 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Just cross-posting from RYPN. Hope Ross doesn't
> mind:
>
> ...for steam to be added ( subject to approvals
> from Amtrak, CSX and Buckingham Branch RR,
> approvals that I am guardedly optimistic we will
> achieve) in the second season ( 3/17/2013-
> 1/15/2014).

I enjoyed how Ross just slipped this in, hoping no one would notice. Now I know why he so emphatically took CSX's side after they reneged on their commitment to move 734, since CSX doesn't know anything about his plan yet.

- Chris



Date: 06/21/10 14:30
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: NWRY1208

I think CSX is well aware of these plans
and that may be why the 734 was not moved.
Not wanting to give Ross any ammunition.

Larry



Date: 06/21/10 15:34
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: bioyans

cblaz Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Emmo213 Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > Just cross-posting from RYPN. Hope Ross doesn't
> > mind:
> >
> > ...for steam to be added ( subject to approvals
> > from Amtrak, CSX and Buckingham Branch RR,
> > approvals that I am guardedly optimistic we
> will
> > achieve) in the second season ( 3/17/2013-
> > 1/15/2014).
>
> I enjoyed how Ross just slipped this in, hoping no
> one would notice. Now I know why he so
> emphatically took CSX's side after they reneged on
> their commitment to move 734, since CSX doesn't
> know anything about his plan yet.
>
> - Chris

I'm also wondering how the operator intends to overcome any labor issues, by having a regularly sheduled passenger train running over CSX and Amtrak properties. Both are union shops, and won't take kindly to a regularly scheduled train operating over their properties with non-union crews.



Date: 06/21/10 16:01
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: co614

Ladies and Gents,

Please trust me that all the important operating details are being attended to with all the critical component property owners ( Amtrak,CSX,BB et al.) These discussions are in various stages of maturity and will work into agreements in due course. We have a little over two years until the commencement of service ( 7/2/2012) which gives us the time we need to have these discussions in a non-rushed atmosphere...that always produces better results.

It will all work out in the end.

Work on the cars will commence immediately after this Labor Day holiday in our Pottstown plant. We chose this 40,000 sq.ft. facility to lease out of 9 available in the greater Philadelphia region as it comes with live rail into it, an OSHA approved paint and sandblast booth and a 65 ton overhead crane. Made to order for our needs.

Work on the 3 steam locomotives will commence sometime early in 2011 at a facility yet to be chosen. We are vetting 6 locations as possible candidates. All three engines will of course be put through the full FRA 1472 day drill and then cosmetically be made appropriate for their new duties. I will post Bob Lorenz's drawing showing 614 in her Greenbrier garb soon. Most will like it a lot!! Your suggestions on possible candidates for the 2 open slots for her stable mates are most welcome. Feel free to PM me if you're more comfortable with that. Remember to be a serious candidate engine it must conform to the following parameters;

1. Owner must want it to go on lease to the GBX Co. for 15 years.

2. Must have been designed/built to operate at constant speeds up to 70 mph and have a minimum
TE of 60,000 lbs. without booster.

3. No MAJOR ( warped firebox sheets,cracked frame etc.) firebox/boiler issues.

4. Must have roller bearings on main drivers and preferably all around.


The above are the mandatory minimums. Having a C&O heritage would obviously be a plus.

I look forward to hearing from you. Remember that all 3 engines will need to be put through the full FRA teardown,Form 4 drill etc., so current cosmetic condition makes little if any difference.

Thanks, Ross Rowland, President&CEO
Greenbrier Express Company,Inc.

3.



Date: 06/21/10 16:21
Re: Greenbrier Express/614 is a GO!!!!!
Author: bioyans

co614 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> Your suggestions on possible candidates
> for the 2 open slots for her stable mates are most
> welcome. Feel free to PM me if you're more
> comfortable with that. Remember to be a serious
> candidate engine it must conform to the following
> parameters;

Ross:

With all due respect, in the past you've maintained that steam restorations are best left to the professionals who specialize in such work. In fact, you've often lambasted organizations who don't share in your philosophy of playing "hands off" and leaving it to the "pros." Having said that, what purpose does it serve to ask the railfan community for a list of potential candidates, when those same professionals you advocate are in a far better position to know what is available, and evaluate those locomotives based on your needs?



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