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Saturday, July 9, 2016

This week's Railroad Operations on the N.Y.C.T.L.


Greetings All,

Today's blog entry is a bit photo extensive and covers about a weeks worth of railroad ops on the N.Y.C.T.L. It's a bit long so a cup of coffee and comfortable seat will definitely help. Let's take a look;

First train into Empire City this week was Train ML-7 powered by 4 GP35s with cars for the 
Empire City Ford Plant. 

Boxcars loaded with auto parts are on the head end 

Empty Auto Racks are in block 2

My entire fleet of auto racks making up block 2 of ML-7. A NYC 40' boxcar is both a track cleaning car and being used as a buffer car between the 89' auto rack and the caboose. 

The four GP35s powering ML-7 roll thru the shelf portion of the layout known as industry city or shelf city. This area is still in need of a better name.

Four empty NYC 60' boxcars being pulled from Ford

Three boxcars from Acme Auto Parts in Mayfield NY are spotted at Ford

The just in time delivery of auto parts is completed. The auto racks will be spotted later on request of the Ford Plant Car Shipping Supervisor 
Next train in is Train VN-4 (Selkirk Yard to Terminal Yard) with EMD FP7 and ALCO C424 for power

Cars for Empire City industries in block 1

Steel loads going to Mid Island Steel in Medford NY will be interchanged with the L.I.R.R.

Block 2 of VN-4

Passing Niles Tower and switching over to track 3. Newly painted caboose 18418 on tail end of ML-7 sits on track 2 as they ready the auto racks for placement at Ford in the background.

Rolling past Hostess / Wonder Bread towards Terminal Yard

Beginning the climb to Terminal Yard

And arriving on time at 1900 hrs

The next train movement is EC-1 also known as the Empire City Turn

1st and 2nd generation EMD power are in charge of the train today

A panoramic view of EC-1 entering Empire City

EC-1 is bloated today with 17 cars for the L.I.R.R. that will be interchanged at North Side Yard

The 3 unit power lash up has the train moving slowly and steadily  towards North Side Yard. Block 1 from VN-4 includes the two flat cars with steel slabs for the L.I.R.R. and the three NYC boxcars.  

The EL and PC boxcars round out the cars brought down in yesterday's VN-4

Passing the Hohman Ave tower and entering North Side Yard

EC-1 makes it early morning arrival at North Side Yard

A pretty empty Yard has filled up with EC-1 needing to double over two tracks to accommodate it's train.
The power has run around and is now coupling onto it's caboose as their is still a bit of work to be done.
The crew was a little sloppy this morning leaving the car cards and uncoupling pick in the photo. 

This 40' A.P.R.R. boxcar is spotted as a buffer at the head end of the cars heading to Long Island

EC-1 leaving North Side Yard and passing Hohman Ave tower
and getting the all clear from tower operator 1/87th scale Larry D.

EC-1 has pulled past Niles Tower and is now shoving back towards All City Storage

The three NYC boxcars with appliances from Peerless Appliance being spotted at All-City Storage

Some switching has the two B&O cars cars out of the way and the third NYC car is shoved to the freight door. All-City Storage is an older building built when the 40' boxcar was the norm so it's two loading doors will not accommodate the 50'ers. No problem as they are spotted at the outside freight platform. The forklift drivers will use a steel plate to cross from the outside platform to the car at the door and enter the building that way. A common practice.

EC-1 all coupled together and heading back to Terminal Yard

Back at Empire City the Empire Belt train crew is none other than 1/87th scale Engineer Ed and 
1/87th scale Sir Neal Himself. Here they are exchanging pleasantries and/ or insults with the Hohman Ave tower operator 1/87th scale Larry D.

The crew also gets the word that the L.I.R.R. is due in this afternoon .
The Empire Belt power for today is rail fan favorite A.P.R.R. #358 and a NYC GP40 #3067

They have cautiously coupled up and started pulling today's cars which consist of high quality cases of scotch in the PC car and cases of soda in the EL car. A derailment here could result in an all night party with scotch and soda mixed couresty of E.E. and Sir Neal. The cars are consigned to Ralph's Grocery Warehouse

The crew shoves slowly into the Gervais Pipe and Ralph's Grocery Warehouse siding

The two gons with pipe loads are outbound from Gervais Pipe and Fitting and 
destined for the Mid Hudson Valley Ag COOP.

With the outbound cars out of the way the inbound cars are shoved back towards 
Ralph's Grocery Warehouse.

PC car with cases of scotch, EL car with cases of soda and an REA car are spotted at Ralph's 

1/87th scale PC Ralph has come out to chat with the E.B. crew and gets the time honored "come on up"

The E.B.R.R. now switches out Cargill with 1/87th scale E.E. on the front platform 
and 1/87th scale Bobby G hard at work in the Gervais Pipe yard.

The Empire Belt train is held at Hohman Ave as the L.I.R.R. makes it's scheduled appearance

The L.I.R.R. crew enters the yard from the east side to tack the caboose onto their train

The E.B. crew gives the outbound train L.I.R.R. train a roll by inspection while the tower operator gives them a high ball.

      An A.P.R.R. boxcar, steel loads from Kings Port Steel and other freight cars head for points east.          

The day's work is done and the guys talk it over. 
Tomorrow they'll switch the yard and make the Terminal Yard transfer run.

Thanks for reading!


  1. Regarding the name of your shelf area, keep in mind that PRR used short, pithy names for towers. Mohican, Arsenal, Midway, Benny, Wood, etc all come to mind. PC and then CR took over this practice. Auburn became Burn, Hamilton became Ham. New Rochelle became Shell, for instance. Why not just call the area Shelf?

    1. Hi John, Thanks for the info! I've been mulling over your suggestion for the past several days. Right now I'm on the fence with it but I appreciate the input. Any other names you can think of with a NY or NE feel to them please send them along.

    2. You might also call it the High Line after the PRR Philadelphia bypass, which it looks like. Or call the bridge the high Line, but put some signal equipment near the industries and call that CP Shelf.

    3. Come to think of it, I would name the tower near the Ford Plant Ford -- or Fairlane, after the CP on the Missabe near a Ford iron facility.

    4. The "High Line" is an excellent suggestion John! The tracks leading to the Bridge will be named just that!
      Excellent suggestions re Ford and CP Shelf! Not ready to commit to those just yet but the High Line is a definite winner. Thanks for your input. Much appreciated!

  2. Enjoyed the read with all of the photos! I especially liked seeing more pictures of the Hohman Ave area and North Side Yard which I don't think has been featured as often. A railfan treat to observe A.P.R.R. and L.I.R.R locos in the mix!

    1. Thanks Ralph! The Hohman Ave area has become a favorite of mine. Just giving it a name and the tower has added a lot of fun to the operation. Glad you liked the A.P.R.R. & L.I.R.R. engines!

  3. What a great recap of this weeks's work! I'm sure the coffers of the N.Y.C.T.L. were overflowing this week!! Thanks to 1:87 E.E. for looking out for the safety and protecting the assets of the railroad. As always, a great blog to read and always enjoy the story lines that accompany each photo.

    looking forward to the next entry!

    Sir Neal

    1. Thank you 1:1 Sir Neal! We here at the N.Y.C.T.L. appreciate all the efforts of 1/87th Scale Sir Neal, the A.P.R.R. and one of our best on line customers, Neal's Lumber and Hardware. Thanks for leasing the 358 to us on such short notice and allowing 1/87th scale PC Ralph to ride along with you and E.E.