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Passenger Trains > Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors


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Date: 10/29/17 15:13
Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: MNR225

The last subscription parlor car on Metra's UP-North Line has been recently re-painted back to the CNW colors. Below are two views taken on the elevation at the Kenosha Metra station today (10-29-17) during the weekend lay-over. The parlor car normally comes north on Train 349, Monday-Friday.






Date: 10/29/17 15:17
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: railwaybaron

Can anyone pay a daily step-up and ride the car space permitting? Is hard drink served? Look cool!



Date: 10/29/17 15:22
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: MNR225

As I understand it - private, subscribers only. Adult beverages served northbound.



Date: 10/29/17 15:45
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: daniel3197

a LOTof historic info on these bar cars is in this post from 2005 here on to = commuter bar cars.
https://www.trainorders.com/discussion/read.php?1,1016287

---Daniel



Date: 10/29/17 16:08
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: jp1822

After Hurricane Sandy, it's the only one of its kind left in the country now!!! Looks great in that livery!!!



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/29/17 16:09 by jp1822.



Date: 10/29/17 16:21
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: King_Coal

Nice! Original CNW equipment? Is that an original CNW bi-level next to it?



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 10/29/17 16:23 by King_Coal.



Date: 10/29/17 16:43
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: joemvcnj

Yes, the only smooth sided gallery cars left are the former C&NW ones.

Posted from Android



Date: 10/29/17 17:20
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: BuddPullman

King_Coal Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Nice! Original CNW equipment? Is that an original
> CNW bi-level next to it?

The 553 was built for Chicago & North Western by ACF in 1949, as car 7901, the C&NW's contribution to the Streamliner fleet of C&NW, UPRR and SP trains. Club Lounge cars could be found on such trains as the "City of San Francisco" and "City of Portland", as well as the "City of Los Angeles" featuring a Barber Shop, Room for the Dining Car Steward and a spacious Bar Lounge for First Class sleeping car passengers.

In the October 1955 partnership break up between C&NW and UP, the C&NW kept their cars and used them on other North Western trains, eventually repainting them in Green and Yellow. UP Streamliner and Domeliner trains used the Milwaukee Road between Chicago and Omaha starting in October 1955.

It is fantastic to see this survivor, in fresh paint. Interesting to see a vestibule has been added at some point over the years.

Thanks for the photos!



Date: 10/29/17 17:34
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: GPutz

Back in the '70s railfans referred to the train as the "Bankers Express." It had three subscription cars. Since it's down to one car, can we infer that times are tougher now? Gerry



Date: 10/29/17 18:40
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: jp1822

GPutz Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Back in the '70s railfans referred to the train as
> the "Bankers Express." It had three subscription
> cars. Since it's down to one car, can we infer
> that times are tougher now? Gerry

A number of factors at play as to why there are no more "subscription cars." Largely though, people's work schedules are more variable or host railroad wants versatility among the train sets. For example, there were a LOT of subscription cars on commuter lines to/from Jersey City/NYC and NJ suburbs. The last one operated till 2012. With the car flooded during Hurricane Sandy and then scrapped, so too was the Club.



Date: 10/29/17 20:14
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: illini73

GPutz Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Back in the '70s railfans referred to the train as the "Bankers Express." It had three subscription
> cars. Since it's down to one car, can we infer that times are tougher now?

I grew up in Highland Park, IL. At the time, there were four "club" cars on the "Club Run", a Chicago-Kenosha express departing Chicago at 5:10 p.m., first stop Highland Park. In the morning, the Club Run departed Highland Park at 8:08 a.m. and ran non-stop to the Chicago Passenger Terminal ("North Western Station" as it was then popularly called). There were seven bi-levels in addition to the club cars. Running time was about 33 minutes for the 23 miles to/from Highland Park.

The four cars were former C&NW single-level streamlined coaches converted to HEP. When they reached the end of their service life, two of the clubs dissolved and the other two continued with the rebuilt Streamliner service lounge cars.

It's nice to see the yellow and green paint restored - now Metra needs a Heritage C&NW locomotive to match. The "Club Run" always had a dedicated set of equipment including the newest bi-levels, even after the first stainless-steel Metra cars appeared. This is no longer legal under the civil rights laws, but maybe the engine could be permanently assigned.

As to times being tougher now, I think a better explanation is that high-income North Shore residents no longer observe "bankers' hours". In fact, many don't even go in to the office every day, which is why the UP-North Line for many years reported a higher proportion of 10-ride ticket usage than other Metra lines.



Date: 10/29/17 20:14
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: AndyBrown

Very cool! Much better looking than in the Metra colors.

Andy



Date: 10/29/17 21:48
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: jcaestecker

Just as I remember it from the '60s & early '70s when I lived in Winnetka, IL. Only wish I could hear the E units and F units grinding their way up to Indian Hill from both directions.

Thanks for the memories,

-John



Date: 10/30/17 00:21
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: mp51w

Here's when they got repainted into a pseudo Metra scheme back in 1985. Just terrible!
Running that stripe part ways through the window line just didn't work for me.
That car sure looks great now! Often referred to as the Deerpath club.




Date: 10/30/17 06:33
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: Raja

Any interior shots?



Date: 10/30/17 06:51
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: joemvcnj

What has happened to the other 3 club cars that have fallen by the wayside over the years ?

Be nice if METRA painted one of their Gallery cor-ten sided coaches green & yellow.



Date: 10/30/17 13:21
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: prech786

Raja Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Any interior shots?

Here are some interior shots from a suburban Chicago paper ca. 2010.






Date: 10/30/17 14:31
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: Topfuel

prech786 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Raja Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > Any interior shots?
>
> Here are some interior shots from a suburban
> Chicago paper ca. 2010.

I'm rather stunned to see that the furniture looks to be mostly traditional railroad lounge car chairs, even though it looks like the beautiful original bar may have been bulldozed out of the car. That's a real shame.



Date: 10/30/17 14:36
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: Topfuel

joemvcnj Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> What has happened to the other 3 club cars that
> have fallen by the wayside over the years ?
>

The 2 sister cars to the one that is the subject of this thread were sold off by METRA some years ago. One ended up in stationary use coupled to a Rock Island diner on a private estate in suburban SW Chicago. Those cars were scrapped a few years ago when the property was sold so another 100,000 houses could be built there. The other car also ended up in stationary use but at a lumber place in Alabama, of all places. It was for sale a few years ago but not sure of current status.

Not sure off hand what happened to the 3rd car you ask about.



Date: 10/30/17 14:51
Re: Subscription Parlor Car #553 Returns to CNW Colors
Author: joemvcnj

Wonder if they had to pay UP a royalty to display "C&NW" on the letterboard ?



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