Old 06-08-2016, 07:56 PM   #1
CSX1702
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Default 611 Problems?

I've seen a couple of comments about the 611 not running excursions for awhile and I was wondering what the reason was?

If I had to guess it would be the state of railroads and the cut-backs and furloughs and NS not wanting to spend the extra resources for mainline excursions. Am I correct or is it something else?
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Old 06-08-2016, 09:20 PM   #2
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Just like last year, they ran the 611 a few times from April to June or July. They're trying to make money on freight. Yeah, I wish they'd run it more. I haven't seen it since they brought it to Spencer to begin work. But I imagine running it for a few months a year also builds excitement for next year, too.
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Old 06-09-2016, 05:55 PM   #3
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Contract requirements for the 21st century steam program have been fulfilled. There are no current plans to continue mainline steam operations after 2016 on NS. While not the entire story, it's the official one at this time.

Nothing wrong with the engine, except a terrible railroad economy.

Loyd L.
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Old 06-10-2016, 08:50 PM   #4
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It's odd that so much money and effort would be spent on restoring such a large locomotive, without having some kind of long-term arrangement in place to ensure that it has a place to run. They've run perhaps a couple of dozen excursions in the past couple of years, but it is difficult to believe that after all expenses have been paid, there is enough recovery to pay for the next 1,472-day inspection as well as other scheduled and unscheduled maintenance. That has to be the goal, or in 13 years, she goes back into the museum.

On railfan boards all over the net, folks are constantly calling for restoration of this famous locomotive or that one. All of that enthusiasm is great, but without a place to run or a reliable source of income, most of those projects just aren't practical. In the case of 611, many people are just thinking "chase", but unfortunately, that doesn't put any dough in the kitty. Those of us who would rather charter than chase, and are willing to pay for the experience are pretty much out of Schlitz with 611, because NS will not allow run-bys....at all.

Ultimately, for the 611 thing to continue, they are going to have to find someplace else for her to run. If NS elects to abandon some lesser-used routes, that could be a start.....but then someone will have to take those routes over and make money with them in order to maintain a suitable right-of-way.

Big engines may be more fun to watch than smaller ones, but they are also a much bigger PITA to operate.
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Old 06-11-2016, 10:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinM View Post
It's odd that so much money and effort would be spent on restoring such a large locomotive, without having some kind of long-term arrangement in place to ensure that it has a place to run. They've run perhaps a couple of dozen excursions in the past couple of years, but it is difficult to believe that after all expenses have been paid, there is enough recovery to pay for the next 1,472-day inspection as well as other scheduled and unscheduled maintenance. That has to be the goal, or in 13 years, she goes back into the museum.

On railfan boards all over the net, folks are constantly calling for restoration of this famous locomotive or that one. All of that enthusiasm is great, but without a place to run or a reliable source of income, most of those projects just aren't practical. In the case of 611, many people are just thinking "chase", but unfortunately, that doesn't put any dough in the kitty. Those of us who would rather charter than chase, and are willing to pay for the experience are pretty much out of Schlitz with 611, because NS will not allow run-bys....at all.

Ultimately, for the 611 thing to continue, they are going to have to find someplace else for her to run. If NS elects to abandon some lesser-used routes, that could be a start.....but then someone will have to take those routes over and make money with them in order to maintain a suitable right-of-way.

Big engines may be more fun to watch than smaller ones, but they are also a much bigger PITA to operate.
Not to sound like one of "those" foamers but they could always buy out and repair the Saluda ROW. Lol
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Old 06-12-2016, 12:45 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinM View Post
It's odd that so much money and effort would be spent on restoring such a large locomotive, without having some kind of long-term arrangement in place to ensure that it has a place to run. They've run perhaps a couple of dozen excursions in the past couple of years, but it is difficult to believe that after all expenses have been paid, there is enough recovery to pay for the next 1,472-day inspection as well as other scheduled and unscheduled maintenance. That has to be the goal, or in 13 years, she goes back into the museum.

On railfan boards all over the net, folks are constantly calling for restoration of this famous locomotive or that one. All of that enthusiasm is great, but without a place to run or a reliable source of income, most of those projects just aren't practical. In the case of 611, many people are just thinking "chase", but unfortunately, that doesn't put any dough in the kitty. Those of us who would rather charter than chase, and are willing to pay for the experience are pretty much out of Schlitz with 611, because NS will not allow run-bys....at all.

Ultimately, for the 611 thing to continue, they are going to have to find someplace else for her to run. If NS elects to abandon some lesser-used routes, that could be a start.....but then someone will have to take those routes over and make money with them in order to maintain a suitable right-of-way.

Big engines may be more fun to watch than smaller ones, but they are also a much bigger PITA to operate.
What we need is a Ross Rowland with a Warren Buffett checkbook.
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Old 06-12-2016, 02:24 AM   #7
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What we need is a Ross Rowland with a Warren Buffett checkbook.
I'll second that thought! It is too bad that Warren Buffet and Bill Gates aren't rail enthusiasts.

Here's the thing... Steam locomotives are worth preserving for future generations. They are a HUGE (as Bernie would say) part of our history. They were the first machines built by the hands of man that could move at will under their own power. They enabled and fueled the industrial revolution. They made long-distance travel viable and enabled the westward expansion of the USA. The Civil War was won and the union preserved because of the supply chain they enabled. If you think about it, virtually every bit of technology that enriches our lives today is traceable back to the the steam locomotive. In the early 1800s, man traveled by sail and horseback, much as they had for many centuries. The invention of the steam engine occurs and less than 100 years later, we were flying. Just over half a century later, men were landing on the moon. The world has never seen such rapid progress, and that march toward modern society began with the invention of the steam engine.

What a sad shame it would be if our kids and their kids didn't have a few of these things around to remind them of where all of our technology came from.
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Old 06-12-2016, 05:07 AM   #8
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What a sad shame it would be if our kids and their kids didn't have a few of these things around to remind them of where all of our technology came from.
I know I say it too much, but my favorite locomotive is good to go for another 15 years! And wow does this video bring back some childhood memories.

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Old 06-12-2016, 09:12 PM   #9
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At some point the steam preservation industry has to deal with the decision as to how much preservation is achievable, and the best way to achieve it. Every time I hear about another restoration my first thought is to whether that is a good use of money, as opposed to putting more money into existing preserved steam.

One adds onto that the ability of preserved steam engines to pay for themselves. It isn't clear to me that the tourist RR industry can sustain its current level of revenues, as people move on to other types of leisure.

Of course, boosting existing steam operations is a less sexy, for lack of a better term, means of spending one money. "New" is always more interesting than "maintain."

These are just thoughts as I have not studied the economics of the preserved steam market.
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Old 06-13-2016, 11:36 AM   #10
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Of course, boosting existing steam operations is a less sexy, for lack of a better term, means of spending one money. "New" is always more interesting than "maintain."
That sounds like the PRR T1 project. I thought that was an April Fool's joke at first. I wish them well, but I'm not holding my breath. Restoring the K4 first would be far more practical (i.e. "cheaper"!).
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