GDLK Operations

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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby MQT1223 » Sun Oct 20, 2019 9:13 pm

Doktor No wrote:The trains between Jackson and GR both ways had regular SD40's on them in the early to mid 70's PC era. I had noticed center beams parked south of the lumber yard on the 8th when I was down that way. Interesting they are parking lumber cars...because experts agrees, the economy is doing biggly. Or perhaps not.


Did PC run any SD45's up the line?
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Doktor No » Mon Oct 21, 2019 9:21 am

Not that I ever witnessed. 1972 thru 1976 I worked at Fruehauf Trailer on Steele Street north of Burton. The Jackson train was made up right behind us and the power would be sitting there awaiting departure right about the time that 9AM break happened. I would go back to the fence and sit on a flatbed and watch them leave Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. PC was still servicing Steelcase, Spartan Stores, Bradford White in Middleville and all the various farmers elevators. The line was still viable and it was in fair condition and had a decent amount of customers.
Now pretty much EVERYTHING is gone. Industry, elevators and all.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Doktor No » Mon Oct 21, 2019 9:25 am

Heck, I even remember the interlocking in Hastings at the CK&S crossing. Advance searchlight signals as you came into town north and south then the signals right at the crossing. That would have been late 50's early 60's when I was a lil kid. Hastings even had a small yard out near Bliss Machine Works.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby dave989 » Tue Oct 22, 2019 2:45 pm

When I caught trains on that line it was mostly 4 axle power. Bradford White still going strong however. Still wondering what's planned around the former Steelcase facility near Eastern and 36th.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Doktor No » Tue Oct 22, 2019 3:16 pm

dave989 wrote:When I caught trains on that line it was mostly 4 axle power. Bradford White still going strong however. Still wondering what's planned around the former Steelcase facility near Eastern and 36th.

I still have dreams that the line is back in service beyond Caledonia with a new elevator in Caledonia and some kind of trash recycle out towards Middleville.
Yeah, I still have work dreams five and a half years after the fact.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Super Chief » Tue Oct 22, 2019 7:38 pm

Not really rail related, but the Great Lakes Coach bus driver for the Elk business train last week told me they just signed an extended contract to bus Amazon employees from parking lots around Steelcase to their new hub in GR? Just in time for Christmas.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Doktor No » Wed Oct 23, 2019 6:05 pm

Could have a run a commuter from Steelcase down to DUTTON! (where the new Amazon warehouse is located.) 68th and Patterson. Sorta happy I don't live down that way anymore. Sure is getting BUSY! Used to be cornfields, now its subdivisions and warehousing and computer centers.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby ~Z~ » Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:46 pm

At some point in the past few days, GDLK shoved another 14 empty centerbeams into the area near 36th and Eastern Ave in Grand Rapids. Believe 6 more cars put southeast of 36th St, and 8 cars are northwest of Eastern Ave. They have the one rail section unbolted again near Eastern. No cars spotted at L&W Supply.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby kd_1014 » Thu Oct 24, 2019 2:24 pm

~Z~ wrote:At some point in the past few days, GDLK shoved another 14 empty centerbeams into the area near 36th and Eastern Ave in Grand Rapids. Believe 6 more cars put southeast of 36th St, and 8 cars are northwest of Eastern Ave. They have the one rail section unbolted again near Eastern. No cars spotted at L&W Supply.


Drove past Hughart yard on Saturday this past weekend and there was a significant amount of centerbeams in the yard.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby NS3322 » Thu Oct 24, 2019 4:55 pm

There were (still?) some centerbeams stored on the old Parchment line in Kalamazoo two weeks ago.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby SD80MAC » Thu Oct 24, 2019 8:07 pm

They have around 180 that they’re storing short term.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby justalurker66 » Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:35 pm

Spotted in Vistula, Indiana (CP 14): A trailer for "CDL Electric" signal construction and other equipment. There is a new wayside signal mast (no signals yet) at CR131 about two miles west of the controlled siding (current 85E/85W). It looks like the siding, currently controlled by spotlight mast signals and dwarfs, will be getting an upgrade.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Super Chief » Sat Oct 26, 2019 8:59 pm

Right you are an upgrade, they have been there 2 weeks now doing underground. They will update the current heads to LED but the heads stay as they are per CDL. Don't know if CP 14 will still be the control point as they've changed the rest from Cowling south. Just when you thought you had it all figured out new numbers and just a few new signals.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby justalurker66 » Sat Oct 26, 2019 11:25 pm

The signals at CP 18 (White Pigeon) and north had their number plates changed from E/W designations to N/S designations.
CP 18 in White Pigeon is signed as "18" and 78N/78S. (Pictures posted in February to this thread.)
4th St in Three Rivers is signed as "4th ST." and 68N/68S.

Dark and rainy on Saturday ... have any changes been made at "White Pigeon Jct"? I didn't see anything obvious.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby Ypsi » Sun Oct 27, 2019 8:58 am

Everything should stay the same, they are just upgrading to the LED signals. CP18 and CP 4th Street were former control points that are now just number signals. CP18 used to be connected to MSO, and CP 4th Street was formally the diamond/ connection with the east/ west line through three rivers (probably posted here or in the wiki already). Everything after 78 is technically east-west due to the curve at white pidgin, and is labeled as "east/ west" despite it being railroad north and south.. Who did that I don't know, but most crews will call signals south of 78 north or south. Indiana did some Grants/ matching for the CTC upgrades in IN. CP 14 and 16 were particularly bad with dropping and other issues so they were first on the list. The remaining signals south of CP 16 should be changed out during 2020. 68, Colwing, and Park should be safe for some time, and of course the "Semaphore" approach signal at Vine is safe as well.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby SD80MAC » Sun Oct 27, 2019 9:53 am

FWIW, yesterday Grand Elk ran a train from Grand Rapids to Plainwell and back with 4124 and the WSOR Theater car for employees and their families.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby justalurker66 » Sun Oct 27, 2019 1:50 pm

Ypsi wrote:Everything should stay the same, they are just upgrading to the LED signals. CP18 and CP 4th Street were former control points that are now just number signals. CP18 used to be connected to MSO, and CP 4th Street was formally the diamond/ connection with the east/ west line through three rivers (probably posted here or in the wiki already).

CP 18 is/was the hold out north of the MSO connection. White Pigeon Jct is the MSO connection where the line originally was the "old road" from Elkhart over to Toledo - running Elkhart to White Pigeon to Sturgis etc as the main line. (MSO MP 421.2 - mileage measured from Buffalo over the old road.)

Ypsi wrote:Everything after 78 is technically east-west due to the curve at white pidgin, and is labeled as "east/ west" despite it being railroad north and south.. Who did that I don't know,

The railroad did that. As stated, Elkhart to Toledo through White Pigeon was the main line ... east west. There was also Elkhart to Jackson through White Pigeon and Three Rivers as an east west route. This explains the old "E" and "W" signage NORTH of White Pigeon - the line remained east west as it joined the Niles to Jackson Airline. Those signs were changed to N/S when the signals were upgraded about a year ago.

I am surprised that GDLK uses the Elkhart based mileposts in their timetable but maintains the Jackson based mileage on their intermediate signals.
The signal numbers at Cowling (13) and Park (15) reflect the mileage from White Pigeon Jct.
The southbound approach signal north of Park ("169S") reflects the mileage from White Pigeon Jct.
The approach signals for the CN diamond in Schoolcraft (386N/433S) reflect mileage from Elkhart.

... the "Semaphore" approach signal at Vine is safe as well.

Both Kalamazoo fixed semaphore signals should survive for a while. There is no need to replace them.
The northbound one is signed "538N" and reflects the mileage from Elkhart.
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby kd_1014 » Sun Oct 27, 2019 7:34 pm

Where exactly are the fixed semaphores? Are there any pictures of them??
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby justalurker66 » Mon Oct 28, 2019 12:00 am

kd_1014 wrote:Where exactly are the fixed semaphores? Are there any pictures of them??

GDLK538n-Google.jpg
Vine St at Portage St (from Google Street View)
GDLK559s-190105.jpg
MP 56 (just south of Mosel Rd on the north side of Kalamazoo)
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Re: GDLK Operations

Unread postby MQT1223 » Tue Oct 29, 2019 11:07 am

justalurker66 wrote:
kd_1014 wrote:Where exactly are the fixed semaphores? Are there any pictures of them??

GDLK538n-Google.jpg
GDLK559s-190105.jpg


The northern semaphore is now easier to view since brush cutting commenced on the right of way a few weeks ago.
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