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Showing posts from February, 2014

Toronto Union Station Part 1

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I'm in a little bit of a homesick mode so I will spend some time writing about a station I've known quite well and can't wait to go back to one of these sunny days. Though not that there isn't any information here which one cannot easily find elsewhere on the internet.

Tracing back to the beginning, the Union Station as we know it today is actually the third Union Station the City of Toronto has seen. The first Union Station was built in 1858 in a location west of the current one by Grand Trunk, Northern, and Great Western Railway (and in those days, the North meant Lake Simcoe, and the West meant London and Windsor). Front Street was literally on the water front until the early 1900s.

Toronto soon had outgrown her original Union Station and a second Union Station replaced the original one at the same spot in 1873. It had a very British looking train shed and housed 3 tracks. With the arrival of the Canadian Pacific Railway at Union Station in 1884, another train shed …

British Rail Class 92 / SNCF CC 92000

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I feel like writing about a little 6-axle Anglo French electric locomotive this week. By little I really only mean in physical dimensions, however, this locomotive is more powerful than any diesel in service in North America right now. She is used in transporting goods (or in freight train service I should say) domestically in Great Britain and through the Channel Tunnel between Great Britain and Europe. This locomotive is classified as the Class 92 in Britain and CC 92000 in France by the SNCF.

The locomotive is jointly developed by Swiss company ABB and Britain's own Brush Traction. Since the Class 92 predates the High Speed 1 and has been built between 1993 and 1996, they have to have both a pantograph and the ability to draw current from the third rail DC system in the South of England. Due to the difference in electrical supply system, the maximum power developed by this locomotive differ. On top of a third rail, the Class 92 develops a healthy 5 360 horsepower; and under the…

TRA TEMU2000

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While passenger rail continue devolving in Canada, the world moves on without the parts that don't look forward. I hold on to the hope that even for just 5 seconds a week, this blog provides some catching up to those of us who are not so ignorant but unfortunately happen to live in the passenger grave yards of the world.


This week I'll write about a fairly recent addition to the express intercity fleet of the Taiwan Railway Administration, Class TEMU2000 built by Nippon Sharyo. The history of Japanese import multiple units in the express fleet of the TRA only started not long ago with the TEMU1000 tilting train used in the Taroko Express service. Like the TEMU1000, the TEMU2000 is also a tilting train. However, rather than a more complex hydraulic tilting system, the TEMU2000 utilizes a simpler pneumatic system but does not tilt as much. The TEMU2000 also has a higher top speed, 87 mph in service and 93 mph in test, making her the fastest train service on non-high speed lines.…

Amtrak Cities Sprinter Inauguration

Hell I'm late again... but anyway. History was made on the 6th of Feburary, 2014, as Amtrak 600, as the first ACS-64 rolled down the red carpet at Washington DC Union Station on Train 171 to head north with 9 cars. This began a new era on the North East Corridor of modern European high horsepower locomotives. Soon, and hopefully soon enough, all the good old Swedish workhorses (AEM-7s) and couldn't-really-work HHP-8s would be replaced by these sensible but powerful 8,660 hp German Engineered speed machines.

I'd like to redirect you to Amtrak's official blog and to some video footages gathered by railfans along the NEC of the inaugural run of the AMTK 600, Train 171.

JOE BIDEN WELCOMES 1ST CITIES SPRINTER LOCOMOTIVE