PA1s in freight service

An open forum to discuss all aspects of the New Haven Railroad.
Noel Weaver
Member
Joined: 18 Feb 2003, 07:23

07 Nov 2017, 03:49 #11

The NHRR could and occasionally did run FA's in passenger service. Only problem on a job to Hyannis was that Boston- Buzzards Bay was 79 MPH territory and the FA's were only allowed 65 MPH. This could make a difference in whether the train was on time or not. During the NHRR days no train normally needed steam for AC and no Boston - Cape trains had dining or grill cars which would have needed steam.
Noel Weaver
Reply

rfranzosa
Member
Joined: 17 Oct 2005, 10:55

07 Nov 2017, 04:30 #12

Back in the early 1930's, my mom and her girlfriends used to ride from South Station to Onset Beach on the train.  They paid 25 cents for the trip, and rode in a baggage car.  She claims I got my love of trains from her!

Rick Franzosa
#0697
Reply

Noel Weaver
Member
Joined: 18 Feb 2003, 07:23

07 Nov 2017, 05:41 #13

rfranzosa wrote: Back in the early 1930's, my mom and her girlfriends used to ride from South Station to Onset Beach on the train.  They paid 25 cents for the trip, and rode in a baggage car.  She claims I got my love of trains from her!

Rick Franzosa
#0697
This is very reasonable and is good. I always had a love for both trains and trolley cars. I was very fortunate to be able to rurn that love in to a great 41 year career. I never dreaded going to work. Unlike a lot of brothers and sisters my career got even better and more interesting after Penn Central and even better with Conrail. Two totally different lines that I enjoyed in my childhood were lines that I worked a lot on as an engineer, namely New Haven and New York and the Mohawk Division of the former New York Central which I especially enjoyed for my last ten years. YES!!, the railroad was very good to me, I still have a lot of great memories too.
Noel Weaver
Reply

rsullivan
Member
Joined: 14 Dec 2016, 20:36

07 Nov 2017, 05:53 #14

You brought back the memory of a very old railroader who was a patient I was caring for at Hartford Hospital as a student nurse in 1970, just before I received an invitation to work for the US Army. He told me to go down to the railroad and go to work for them. He said it is the best job there is and I would always love it. You just echoed what he said. Thanks for the memory, he was a quiet and very nice man. I wish I could recall his name, but I don't remember names well.
Richard H. Sullivan, Jr.  member #3967
Reply

Bill Chapin
Member
Joined: 16 Jun 2006, 09:12

08 Nov 2017, 06:20 #15

Going back to Ron's original post - PA1's were occasionally scheduled to run on freights as far back as September, 1949.  (In April, 1949 none were so scheduled)  At that time they were scheduled for BO1, OB4, HB2, OB2, NS4 & SN3 in pairs.  Oct 1950: BG3, BO1 & BH-1. ( I don't have my Sept 1952 assignments at hand, but I'm pretty sure there were some scheduled PA freights.) Oct 1956: A/N-1 & A/M-6.  April 1957: BH-7, HB-8 & KN-1.
Reply

TomCurtin
Member
Joined: 13 Jul 2017, 14:13

08 Nov 2017, 14:17 #16

Richard Abramson wrote:
One cannot always go by what the assignment books dictated. It didn't always work out that way.
A general comment on what Rick wrote. He's absolutely right.  Speaking as one who has extensively researched Engine Assignment and Passenger Train Consist books I have found a number of apparent inconsistencies and "logically impossible" situations which I have to presume are errors.  That's the point in their including on the covers of all those booklets the statement "For the information of all concerned."  What that disclaimer translates into --- for the great unwashed masses like you and me --- is these are not operatrional documents that the RR "hangs its hat on"  and guarantees to be correct (unlike, for example, an employee TT, which absolutely has to be correct).  The EA and PTC books are just what the disclaimer says: "information."
Reply

Bill Chapin
Member
Joined: 16 Jun 2006, 09:12

09 Nov 2017, 02:20 #17

The way I would look at this is that PA's were used in freight service with some level of regularity, otherwise why bother including freights in the assignments?  We know that for symbol freights any specific unit would be used wherever it was needed at the time.  Similarly PA's would have been used based on need and availability, so those specific train assignments could vary all over the place, but I think that it would not have been too unusual for PA's to be assigned to freights with a greater likelihood of running them at night.
Reply

NHJJ4
Member
Joined: 18 Aug 2003, 09:18

09 Nov 2017, 04:08 #18

 With regard to lack of pulling power on a PA It was ALL in the gear ratio. Passenger vrs Freight Gearing.
Reply

Noel Weaver
Member
Joined: 18 Feb 2003, 07:23

09 Nov 2017, 05:09 #19

NHJJ4 wrote:  With regard to lack of pulling power on a PA It was ALL in the gear ratio. Passenger vrs Freight Gearing. 
I will try to finish this one on a real computer after my smartphone acted up last night.
It was not just the gear ratio but also the weight on drivers which equaled tractive effort.  Tractive effort was most important on grades like existed on the Maybrook Line as well as WB on Hell Gate Bridge.  Just about every Maybrook Job in both directions changed power at Cedar Hill.  Two PA's could handle OB-2, OB-4 and some of the other trains between Cedar Hill just fine but they would not do as well between Derby Junction and Maybrook.  There was a job or maybe two between Maybrook and Cedar Hill that had mostly trailers and a very few cars of hot freight, two PA's could and sometimes did run them but what to do with the PA's when they got them to Maybrook.  The PA's could not MU with anything else in freight service and were not enough for most EB freights.  I believe a pair of 0700's or 0760's could handle about the same weight train as a 3200 and you can see a huge difference between a 3200 and the 0400's.  When the 0400's finally took over the Maybrook Line there were fewer trains running but they were carrying more tonnage than they did in steam days. Engine Assignment books would show PA's on OB-2 or some other Boston job and indeed they would do OK to Boston but they did not do OK west on the Maybrook Line.  I think most of the Engine Assignment books showed these trains changing power at Cedar Hill.
Noel Weaver
Last edited by Noel Weaver on 09 Nov 2017, 19:53, edited 1 time in total.
Reply

Derek Thompson
Member
Joined: 13 Jun 2003, 20:27

09 Nov 2017, 11:55 #20

Noel Weaver wrote: When the PA's came on the scene the New Haven wanted engines that could run well in either passenger or freight operation and they did that.  They did not have the TE that the four motor Alco's had but they did a good job with NH-1 and HN-2 which was their last assignment in 1965.  0783 and 0784 were the last two to operate on NH-1 and HN-2.  I have the month on record but not handy to me right now.  They weren't bad on that job even with the switching.  Another set of trains that had PA's when there were more than two running was NS-4 and SN-3 between Cedar Hill and Springfield.  They did not have enough weight on the drivers for heavy tonnage freight trains on the Maybrook Line or Bay Ridge jobs crossing Hell Gate Bridge.  The PA's could only MU with the 0700's and the 790's, nothing else.  
As for FA's in passenger service, it happened but it was not common.  At one time I believe they had pass through steam lines but never had steam connectors nro steam generators.  The FA-'s also had communicating whistles, all of them.  The Old Colony would be an ideal place to run them in the event of necessity because the runs were short and they could heat the hell out of the coaches in South Station before the train left.  The Canadian National never had steam heat on their old electric locomotives in Montreal and that's what they did with the commuter trains which went through the Mount Royal Tunnel.  It worked there too.
I had a regular job out of Bay Ridge for several months in 1965 and PA's (the last two) were regular power on NH-1 and HN-2 all through that time until they made their last trips.  One trip I spotted both of the at Cedar Hill, one still running the other dead.  It was the end but I don't remember the exact date.

Noel Weaver

When you mention the Canadian National electrics out of Montreal, Noel, you bring back memories for me. Over a seven year span in the '70s, I rode on this line and I well remember the cars being boiling hot on leaving Central Station and then, station by station, a distinct cooling down, particularly on bitterly cold winter days. 

Derek Thompson
Toronto, Ontario

NHRHTA Member # 0668
Reply