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Railroaders' Nostalgia > On the GO, at seven-OH!


Date: 04/15/22 11:47
On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: santafe199

Back in those long-gone 1980s we Kansas Gang yayhoos developed a spoken ritual when we were trackside. Actually we developed several such rituals, each in reaction to certain scenes or events we had just photographed. But this one was one of the most frequently employed. And it’s no wonder when one considers the significantly large volume of fast-moving, intermodal hotshots Santa Fe once ran every day. After shooting such a specimen our heavily sarcastic, but always fun-loving sense(s) of humor demanded that at least one of us utter the classic description: “On the go at seven-oh!” Of course, the heavy sarcasm translates directly into a trainload of admiration for a RR that could run such a large fleet of 70 MPH trains on a daily basis.

In my train service career I had access to shooting on-duty/in-cab pics the average ‘civilian’ did not have. In the back of my mind I always wanted to sit in the engineer’s seat and shoot a slide of the speedometer pegged at 70 MPH. In August of 1981 I finally got that chance. I was called as the head brakeman for a 168 train, one of the lesser priority 70 MPH outfits Santa Fe ran daily. But for some reason I needed to ride in one of the trailing units. Someone extra to the crew would be riding up front, so I got bumped back. It may have been an RFE check-riding with my engineer, or something along those lines. I really don’t remember. But instead of riding in the SD26 (middle unit) I opted for the novelty of riding in the F45 cab on the rear of the consist. I climbed aboard, stashed my grip and made myself comfortable, waiting for the moment...

After our head-end depot crew change we pulled up and the waycar crews changed on the roll. Once done engineer W. V. “Bill” Mayer accelerated the train very quickly to 70 MPH. He could do this by virtue of running the north main track all the way to Ellinor. We were just past the crossover plant at Merrick when I took this slide. Then I settled back for a routine, uneventful trip down to Wellington...

1. Looking backward from the rear unit on train 168 A-1 a couple of miles west of Merrick (X-overs) west of Emporia, KS. Engine consist: 5648, 4603 & 5927. Crappy HP scan, but it serves the purpose here...
Photo date: August 2, 1981.

Thanks for riding along!
Lance Garrels
santafe199




Date: 04/15/22 21:26
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: ATSFSuperChief

In one of the books that burned in the forest fire there was a photo of the speedometer in the E3/6 number 14, AKA Fast 14 which showed 114 MPH, which it was geared for.

Don Allender



Date: 04/16/22 09:09
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: WP-M2051

Lance, I'd be on trailing unit myself as 5648 was equipped with an Incinolet electric toilet, if memory serves me correctly.  Someone would always make the mistake of firing one of those things off and then you were in real trouble as the cab would fill up with steam and noxious smoke.



Date: 04/16/22 16:30
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: Orient

This was taken on eastbound on Curtis Hill many moons ago... This was the closest as a conducter I'd ever been to experiencing a penalty. I remember this moment rather well, as when we hit 71, all the while going downhill the engineer gently moved the throttle over to DB setup. Pins a needles? Yeah, you bet. Then 72 hit, and I just sat there thinking "well, it's your show bud".... how, just how we never tapped 73 is beyond me, but seeing 72 with the red warning light was a bit beyond anyones comfort point. My trusty Sony standalone captured this, unbeknown to my hogger in the moment.




Date: 04/18/22 00:55
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: aronco

I thought I could find this photo shot on private car TIOGA PASS on the NorthEast corridor in July, 2013.  I was standing while taking these shots as we moved along smartly at 109 MPH.  You can barely see the ties at that speed.!

Norm

Norman Orfall
Helendale, CA
TIOGA PASS, a private railcar






Date: 04/18/22 08:48
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: santafe199

aronco Wrote: > ... standing while taking these shots as we moved along smartly at 109 MPH ...

Very difficult circumstances, unless you can employ a very high shutter speed. Like maybe 1/500th or faster... ;^)

Lance



Date: 04/18/22 09:48
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: engineerinvirginia

santafe199 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> aronco Wrote: > ... standing while taking these
> shots as we moved along smartly at 109 MPH ...
>
> Very difficult circumstances, unless you can
> employ a very high shutter speed. Like maybe
> 1/500th or faster... ;^)
>
> Lance

The pic is appropriately blurry.....



Date: 04/26/22 16:32
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: HardYellow

Why is the Generator Field switch off?



Date: 04/26/22 18:38
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: ExSPCondr

It wasn't the lead unit in the consist.  Only one GF switch should be on.  Really all three switches should be off, but with poor m/u cables and worn receptacles, its tough to get trailing units to load with all switches down.
G



Date: 04/27/22 00:32
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: santafe199

ExSPCondr Wrote: > ...  It wasn't the lead unit in the consist ...

"But instead of riding in the SD26 (middle unit) I opted for the novelty of riding in the F45 cab on the rear of the consist."
(my next-to-last sentence in paragraph #2)

;^)



Date: 04/27/22 21:28
Re: On the GO, at seven-OH!
Author: ExSPCondr

santafe199 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> ExSPCondr Wrote: > ...  It wasn't the lead unit
> in the consist ...
>
> "But instead of riding in the SD26 (middle unit) I
> opted for the novelty of riding in the F45 cab on
> the rear of the consist."
> (my next-to-last sentence in paragraph #2)
>
Ex SP Condr wrote: It wasn't the lead unit in the consist because of "Hard Yellow's" post immediately above it "Why is the generator field off?" 
G



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