Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

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pwm94
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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby pwm94 » October 4th, 2015, 10:51 pm

Anyone know anything about this? Are the remaining Siemens S70s on option not enough?

http://www.railwayage.com/index.php/pas ... channel=61

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby MSPtoMKE » October 4th, 2015, 11:40 pm

My guess is that they are putting it out to bid to see if they can get a better price than the existing options with Siemens, but I don't know... Might we be in for some 'Type III' LRVs in the future?

There was an item in the Met Council Transportation Committee meeting last month about offering (selling?) 4 of the options to Norfolk/Virginia Beach for an extension of their small light rail line. The Met Council also exercised an option on 5 more vehicles (for a total of 64 Type IIs, when they arrive in time for the Superbowl), it seems as though perhaps the favorable pricing expired at the end of September? Not really sure what to read into that.

http://metrocouncil.org/Council-Meeting ... 5_208.aspx

http://metrocouncil.org/Council-Meeting ... 5_202.aspx
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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby Mdcastle » October 5th, 2015, 6:33 am

In plain English, what are " Direct Startup Costs for Discontinuance Production of the Vehicles" ?

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby Silophant » October 5th, 2015, 6:48 am

My guess is that Siemens has stopped production of the S70s, and those would be the costs to reconfigure the assembly line and supply chain and whatever back to S70 mode.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby MNdible » October 5th, 2015, 9:57 am

Yeah, it's obviously cheaper to build all 99 vehicles all in one bang, right? So when they signed the initial contract, they gave them the same initial pricing on future vehicles, but added the extra costs which would be incurred for them to build the cars out in fits and starts as a separate line item.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby Silophant » October 5th, 2015, 11:32 am

If they are considering type III LRVs, I wish they'd consider 150' units, like we discussed upthread (or in another thread? A while ago.). It's not like they run single-unit trains that often anyway. Of course, that assumes the OMFs can support 150' vehicles. I can't imagine they could fit 300' ones.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby talindsay » October 6th, 2015, 12:43 pm

The options on the current contract ran out on September 30, 2015. They bought five more for HLRT and gave the rights to four additional to Norfolk so that the two agencies can share both (1) the great price our contract included; and (2) the expensive restart cost since construction of our LRVs had been completed. It doesn't matter whether S70s are still being made or not; each city's S70 order is different and requires a different setup for the factories. So since our initial run had been completed, we have to pay a penalty to cover the cost of setting it back up for the nine additional. Norfolk, buying on our contract, gets exactly the same vehicles as we specified (the only major drawback to buying on another agency's contract), but that means the two agencies can split the restart penalty.

The reporting in that article is sloppy, because while it's true that we didn't exercise all our options, the time period to do so is now closed. Also, additional point but I'm pretty sure the total number in the order was 99, not 109 - that's from memory though, so they may be right. EDIT: yes, I was right: 99 LRVs, 41 as part of the initial order and 58 on option (http://councilmeetings.metc.state.mn.us ... 10_275.pdf).

BUT, that means we don't have a contract for LRVs any more - our options expired seven days ago. So since we didn't order all the LRVs for SWLRT during that contract's option window, we need a new contract to buy those LRVs. For obvious reasons Siemens has an advantage: they could resume building our most recent order type pretty easily, especially since they actually have an order in hand for a final 9 from the original contract's options. But keep in mind that Bombardier had an obvious advantage in the Series II contract negotiations, but was undercut by Siemens. So it's certainly possible that we could be seeing a Type III instead of a Type IIa emerge from this process.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby Mdcastle » October 9th, 2015, 2:07 pm

So can someone explain why a LRT train needs to be custom made for each city, as opposed to buying a standard, stock product. Imagine if Ford had to design a different car for every customer.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby talindsay » October 9th, 2015, 2:19 pm

Mdcastle wrote:So can someone explain why a LRT train needs to be custom made for each city, as opposed to buying a standard, stock product. Imagine if Ford had to design a different car for every customer.
Well, recall that they're not actually making many of these - we took delivery of four per month. So there isn't a scale where it's obviously best to have "off the shelf" assembly for the whole thing.
Further, bear in mind that the S70s share a huge percentage of their parts from installation to installation.
But there are a few differences that *need* to be engineered in for different systems, and a lot more that are better if they be engineered for different systems. For example, our system needs good heating, snow removal capabilities, ice cutting on the pantograph, etc. And our trains need to be a length that accommodates three cars on a downtown block without blocking either intersection. We have cultural preferences toward more standing space than, for example, Saint Louis, and we have a specific livery that has to be designed and painted to match our vehicles.
With such low overall production volume, it's worth allowing for all that customization. Mind, even when you buy a Honda you can choose whether or not you want a whole array of things that involve different assembly procedures, and your price changes accordingly. This isn't that different from that, but they don't standardize the option packages - so buying off somebody else's contract is kind of like getting a discount on the car purchase by going with a standardize option package, but in so doing, losing the ability to customize the specs.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby DanPatchToget » April 16th, 2016, 9:34 pm

General question-Sometimes there is a loud buzzing noise at the front/back of the cars when it's accelerating/decelerating. What is it? It happens more often in cold weather so I feel like it has something to do with the brakes but I'm not sure. Never heard it on the Type I vehicles, just the Type II.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby David Greene » April 16th, 2016, 10:07 pm

I've often wondered that myself. I too assumed it has something to do with the brakes.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby FISHMANPET » April 16th, 2016, 10:13 pm

I think the Type IIs have regenerative braking, so the put power back into the grid when they brake. I've always assumed that's what the noise was.
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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby mulad » April 16th, 2016, 10:21 pm

I mostly associate that noise with the train accelerating rather than decelerating, though it can happen in both situations. I suspect it has something to do with exceeding the electrical load level that the train or catenary system is supposed to handle -- both current draw when accelerating, and energy being fed back when decelerating.

Another possibility is some detection of wheel slip.

I've avoided asking about it, since I hoped someone with knowledge would pipe up.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby David Greene » April 16th, 2016, 10:34 pm

Wheel slip is a good bet and is more of what I was thinking when I said brakes. It's not unlike the noise you get when the ABS activates on a car, not the buzzing necessarily but there is some associated noise with it that sounds a lot like the rattle of an ABS system. I've never heard it when accelerating, only braking.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby Minnehahaha » April 17th, 2016, 7:04 pm

I'd always assumed that the buzzing was a warning to the driver regarding their speed when coming into a stop (that is, if we're talking about that really loud, obnoxious buzz and not something else). I think I've noticed it more with those operators whose style is a little less smooth than it could be.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby mulad » April 18th, 2016, 8:36 am

The buzzing on acceleration happens a lot when you sit in the last LRV of a 3-car train, so it's possible there's a communication issue between the different cars that triggers it to some extent. When I've been in the first or second car, it's more common to hear the buzzer as a train is coming in a bit too hot as it slows for a station.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby HuskyGrad » April 18th, 2016, 9:29 am

My presumption has been the sound is the sanders located on the vehicles. They help create more traction during positive and negative acceleration.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hOPaWGzjXOk

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby LRV Op Dude » April 19th, 2016, 3:54 pm

Metro Transit is adding wig wag to the trains.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby mulad » April 19th, 2016, 6:55 pm

Recently, I've been thinking of asking if Metro Transit was looking at doing something similar to that, though I'm a bit disappointed they're using lights that appear to instantly flash on and off.

One of my observations about cars, buses, and other roadway vehicles is that they tend to bob and weave as they go over bumps and navigate traffic, but trains tend not to jostle around as much. I figured it would be good to simulate that with lights that appear to dim and brighten. Historically, this has sometimes been done with a "gyralight" or "Mars light", which has a constant-intensity light on a rotating mechanism that moves the beam in a circular or figure-8 pattern, though alternating ditch lights have also been used.

Here's a cab view of a train using a light with a circular pattern:



Here's how lights like that would appear on the ground (fast-forward about 20 seconds in):



I haven't found a cab view of a light using a figure-8 pattern, but the Cedar Rapids skytop lounge owned by the Milwaukee 261 folks has a red taillight that operates that way (or at least it did when I took this video in 2010):



Northstar trains use a wig-wag pattern on their ditch lights, though it seems like it only gets activated on the locomotives when they're blowing the horn:



The Northstar lights fade in and out like I was expecting to see with the LRV lights, although I can't tell if that's just because they're incandescents that are slowly warming/cooling as they switch on and off, or if there's circuitry to cause it to happen. I worry that the instant flashing on and off will be more of a distraction than a help. I figure something fading in and out would grab my attention in a more meaningful way, but I can't say for certain.

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Re: Type II LRVs - Siemens S70

Postby DanPatchToget » April 19th, 2016, 6:59 pm

LRV Op Dude wrote:Metro Transit is adding wig wag to the trains.

Wig-wags?! Those are supposed to be called ditch lights!

Already seen a few with that design. Problem is, people still don't pay attention.


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