Old 12-24-2010, 06:07 AM   #26
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Like you said. Before GEVO’s, it was SD40-2’s and the GP38-2’s. Before that it was covered wagons.
And before that it was steam. Even better!!!

We all talk about locomotives, but even the infrastructure is standardizing. The semophores on the Monon line dropped this week, classic signal bridges and B&O color position lights are falling, and even the dime a dozen searchlights seem ancient. And now all new bridges seem to be poured in concrete; what could be more boring? Interlocking towers are falling (well many have already fallen), and only a select few are still in operation. All of these little modernizations on the railroads have limited the things we have to shoot. But in 50 years, maybe the monotonous tri-light signals that the railroads are installing like crazy, which by then will be the only signals left, will be a rarity.
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Old 12-24-2010, 05:27 PM   #27
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I have told this story before, and will tell it again, but when I was ten and all the locomotives that I knew in the world were the Athearn models in the Walther's Catalog, my dad took my brother and me to some of the Erie Lackawanna commuter yards in an our area. When I saw my first E8 (Erie Lackawanna 823) I thought it was an F7. I had never heard of an E8. My dad corrected me and I just stared in awe. Then my dad said something along the lines of "this boring sheet metal is what killed the Erie's Pacifics and Berkshires... too bad you didn't get to see those."
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Old 12-24-2010, 05:37 PM   #28
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Of course, we all know E8s are just a bunch of boring sheet metal...just kidding.
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Old 12-26-2010, 02:42 AM   #29
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This is why it drives me nuts when friends of mine refuse to shoot that pair of ES44DCs on that intermodal train in decent light! "Well, it's nothing I won't see again", comes up a lot.

A while ago I noticed there was a thread for photos of CSX's vanished B36-7s and B30-7s. I have never shot one, and I doubt I will now as they are off the roster. Most people had 2 or 3 photos they posted, but won't it be great when I can pick out 200 great shots of the modern day GEs when they are retired??? Just put yourself in the shoes of yourself 40 years down the road, and then think again.
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Old 12-26-2010, 10:25 AM   #30
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We all talk about locomotives, but even the infrastructure is standardizing.
Standardization is the bane of most railfans, but what most railfans fail to realize is that this standardization is a sign that the railroads they get so much enjoyment from are very healthy financially and not going anywhere any time soon. A hodgepodged system of locomotives, signals, etc. is expensive to operate since it doesn't take advantage of economies of scale in regard to maintenance, parts, technical knowledge, etc. The money saved from running nothing but GEVOs through an endless landscape of Safetran signals helps allow railroads to keep their track in good condition, upgrade their infrastructure (such as capacity improvements), construct new intermodal terminals, etc. CSX ran with a lot of older power (B36-7s, straight GP40s, etc.), had every signal system known to man, didn't make any infrastructure upgrades (no new yards, few capacity improvement projects), and let their track maintenance slip during the John Snow reign when he demanded across-the-board deep cost cuts without giving much thought to the implications regarding operations; Michael Ward has been cleaning up his mess ever since as he gets the railroad back to what I would call a very healthy state.

And as Charles said before, standard cab EMDs back in the 80s were just as bad as widecab GEs today - clearly the times have changed, so don't be quick to make assumptions about what we'll see a decade or two down the road. With many Class I railroads partaking in rebuilding older EMD locomotives (EMD's ECO program, NS' SD50Es and SD60Es, or CSX's SD40-3s and SD50-3s, as well as the wide variety of Gensets), you can be assured that the railroad scene won't be epitomized solely by widecab GEs. Just roll with the change and enjoy it all while it's still here in front of you - it won't be like this forever!
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Old 12-26-2010, 06:49 PM   #31
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It's called having ten cakes and wanting to eat them too....we can dream of the good ol' days when the cakes were smaller, can't we?
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Old 12-26-2010, 10:01 PM   #32
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I haven't been trackside since November 29th. The leaves are gone and not much snow has fallen yet which doesn't entice me to go out. There was also a span in June and July that a didn't go out for a little over a month. I was burnt out and tired of getting unlucky with weather and train movements. Sometimes it feels good to get away for a while and concentrate on other things in life. I'm sure once January gets here and we start getting steady amounts of snow I'll get bit by the bug again and get trackside. Until then I'm more than happy to stay inside where it is warm and plan out future trips.
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Old 12-28-2010, 03:41 PM   #33
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My interest in railways has ebbed and flowed a lot over the years for many reasons, though it always returns at some stage.

Photography-wise the ups and downs are even more pronounced, I lost a huge amount of interest in the UK scene some years ago when nearly all the variety went with the arrival of the class 66s. My overall interest was kept going with frequent trips to other countries, but my main interest there has always been travelling around with photography very much a "by-product".

Going digital re-awakened my interest in photography, but I can't ever see it getting back to the stage of 10 to 15 years ago where it was my #1 railfan interest.
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Old 01-08-2011, 07:43 AM   #34
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I never could understand why people would choose not to shoot a train just because of its power. Granted as far as CSX goes I would rather shoot a YN2 painted AC4400 thats in better shape than a newer YN3 painted SD70 ACe thats already fading. NS I could care less, I just want to shoot some Conrail engines before they're all gone..
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Old 01-23-2011, 02:41 AM   #35
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Reading everyones responses I probably should just keep my mouth shut and not cause a debate. Although that would be fun.... I'll keep it short.

Some people dont just like engines because they are rare, or because of their color, or whatever it may be. I can tell you I dont just like Dodge Ram trucks from 02-08 because of their rarity or whatever, its the design and look to them that draws my interest.

The reason why I love EMD spartan power and Dash 8C's is because I think the design is much nicer looking than widecabs of pretty much any sort. Now obviously the spartan power is becoming much harder to find on road trains, but thats not why I like SD40-2's. The design is what makes me like these engines, the history, and the fact that power from the 1970's and 1980's was part of a time when (In my opinion, anyway) the railroading scene was the neatest. So if I dont particularly like Dash 9's and SD70ACe's, don't just assume that I will like them when they are rare. Sure, they will be more noteworthy, but its not going to make me start to like them. I have plenty of shots of newer power and whatnot, but I will admit to steering clear of it more often than not. And actually I'd rather shoot a GEVO all day over any Dash 9 or AC44, because the GEVO looks a bit nicer to me. And with that said I still sigh when I hear "BNSF 7624 calling West Hump dispatcher". Time to go look for another train.

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Old 01-25-2011, 03:24 AM   #36
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I find my self losing more & more interest in the hobby period. Pretty much its a "oh what the hell, I have nothing better to do " motive to go shoot.. I find myself becoming more interested in the lighting of the trains than the actual trains themselves.

Power wise, I just shot a SD40 ( yes an actual 40 ) and some other eye catching stuff I guess you can say.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/pittsbu...n/photostream/

BUT any who, railfanning isn't really even railfanning these days. Its a hobby and nothing more or less. Hell half the time these day's I'm more concerned about cops than trains with how ridiculous things tend to get. Not to long ago I was kicked out of the Homestead train station ( its a restored train station ) for no apparent reasoning.. ( you can ask Ben Sutton he was there. ) Summer is where its fun for me. I bike everywhere for photos.
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:50 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IHapsias View Post
I find my self losing more & more interest in the hobby period. Pretty much its a "oh what the hell, I have nothing better to do " motive to go shoot.. I find myself becoming more interested in the lighting of the trains than the actual trains themselves.

Power wise, I just shot a SD40 ( yes an actual 40 ) and some other eye catching stuff I guess you can say.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/pittsbu...n/photostream/

BUT any who, railfanning isn't really even railfanning these days. Its a hobby and nothing more or less. Hell half the time these day's I'm more concerned about cops than trains with how ridiculous things tend to get. Not to long ago I was kicked out of the Homestead train station ( its a restored train station ) for no apparent reasoning.. ( you can ask Ben Sutton he was there. ) Summer is where its fun for me. I bike everywhere for photos.
Don't get discouraged, or lose interest. You have a great collection of shots on here already. Keep on shooting!
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Old 01-25-2011, 08:51 PM   #38
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Ive spent almost 5 months since mid July on crutches due to 2 Achilles tendon surgeries, so I kind of lost touch with fanning, but I have spent the last 3 Sundays out shooting and it feels good to be back out doing it. Kind of a way to get away from lifes problems, even though it maybe only be for a few hours at a time. And honestly, it doesnt matter what the power is, Im going to shoot it, whether it be a GEVO or an SD40-2, or a Dash 9. Its nice to get something out of the ordinary on the point, but to me, it's about getting out and enjoying myself trackside.
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Old 01-25-2011, 09:22 PM   #39
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I took a break for a while later in the summer and into the fall, but once we started getting closer to the snow falling, I got the itch back. I love shooting in the winter, so no matter how bored I get with trains the rest of the year, once the white stuff falls, I'm back out there.
Just a follow up to this post....I've shot more train pics in that past six weeks than I did in all of 2010. January has been VERY good for me so far. Lots of snow and good photo ops so far. I hope it continues into February as well.
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Old 01-25-2011, 09:40 PM   #40
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Ive spent almost 5 months since mid July on crutches due to 2 Achilles tendon surgeries, so I kind of lost touch with fanning, but I have spent the last 3 Sundays out shooting and it feels good to be back out doing it. Kind of a way to get away from lifes problems, even though it maybe only be for a few hours at a time. And honestly, it doesnt matter what the power is, Im going to shoot it, whether it be a GEVO or an SD40-2, or a Dash 9. Its nice to get something out of the ordinary on the point, but to me, it's about getting out and enjoying myself trackside.
I second this, I could care less whats leading as long as I get to be trackside!

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Just a follow up to this post....I've shot more train pics in that past six weeks than I did in all of 2010. January has been VERY good for me so far. Lots of snow and good photo ops so far. I hope it continues into February as well.
I hope so as well, so far I've added 7 shots to RP in January. I hope to add a few more before the month is over, but its good to be back behind the camera this year since I don't have any priorities outside of my job.
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Old 01-25-2011, 11:45 PM   #41
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Ive spent almost 5 months since mid July on crutches due to 2 Achilles tendon surgeries, so I kind of lost touch with fanning, but I have spent the last 3 Sundays out shooting and it feels good to be back out doing it. Kind of a way to get away from lifes problems, even though it maybe only be for a few hours at a time. And honestly, it doesnt matter what the power is, Im going to shoot it, whether it be a GEVO or an SD40-2, or a Dash 9. Its nice to get something out of the ordinary on the point, but to me, it's about getting out and enjoying myself trackside.
I'll 3rd whatever is on point. I shot whatever comes. I probably have shot half the NS Dash 9 roster
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Old 01-25-2011, 11:52 PM   #42
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By the way.. Here's the Youtube video of the SD40 in idle ( 1 min, 10 secs. Please watch in HD )
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wz8-qTpINTg
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