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2006-2007 Edmonton and area spottings


M. Parsons
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well the day looked good and i just happened to look out the window at work here as 121 went by hooked up to a towtruck with a broken pole.

this one was wierd because the pole was broken near the connection to the unit right on the bus as opposed to half way up the pole like im used to seeing.

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Gotta love those reliable New Flyer Diesel Buses!! They are supposed to be #1 in reliability for our service!!

Trust me. He has heard us all. no doubt about that!

yikes what a mess these d40lf's cause!

Allright, time to be devil's advocate.

Geeeee, look at all these trolley buses that are always calling in with problems about almost everything you can think of. Doors, steering, mechanical, electrical, broken poles etc., what a peice of crap they are. They are so unreliable. These dead trolleys are causing massive traffic headaches etc etc etc.

Now, most of us that know anything about the ETS trolleybus issues, will realize what I just said was a garbage argument against trolley buses.

But you know and I know that part of the problem is that the trolleybuses get treated like crap in terms of preventative maintenance. Ever wonder how much better the diesel fleet gets treated in terms of preventative maintenance? I'd be willing to say not a whole lot better if even any better at all.

So instead of always blaming New Flyer for their "crap" product, how about you look at what ETS has to put up with right now. Not enough mechanics to fix too many problems on all types of buses in the fleet. Step back take a look at the current industry, New Flyer is not an excpetion it is the norm and regardless it is still the most experienced builder in Canada of today's modern low floor.

I am not sure what you expect out of the New Flyer busess really. I often get the sense that you expect New Flyer to be as reliable as a GM in their earlier days. Of course thats not even reasonable, D40LF's are so computerized compared to a GM, so much that it would be pointless to do much comparing at all. There are just so many more things that can go wrong with these New Flyer's as with ANY new bus now a days. Its just the fact of the industry, learn to live with it.

Point is, the New Flyer bashing is getting old James, just like the Orion bashing was getting old in some of the other fourms on this board. We got the point long ago, you really dislike New Flyer low floors.

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this one was wierd because the pole was broken near the connection to the unit right on the bus as opposed to half way up the pole like im used to seeing.

A little more than halfway up, actually. I think the poles have a weak spot that's designed to break if the pole gets caught in the overhead or something (i.e. so the pole breaks instead of bringing wires down onto the street).

yikes what a mess these d40lf's cause!

I'll echo what Kevin said above...but, also, I'd suggest that icy roads causes 242 to slide into a pole, rather than it being a D40LF. I mean, unless the older buses are significantly narrower than the new ones, any bus that's involved in an accident as happened at Millgate will block service and cause "a mess". Just sayin'...

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I don't doubt that a big part of this problem is lack of preventive maintenance and repair... however to me, i still believe that the d40lf's from new flyer show their lack of strength and reliability even when they were being taken care of. if a 4500+ is having mechanical issues already that is not necessary poor maintenance. how can it be only poor maintenance when they are only a year old... i know they will never compare to a gmc or a brill or anything but they still suck as far as im concerned. You don't here council or management telling them to only do emergency maintenance on the diesels... they tell them to give it their best!

You go to europe and stuff and find 40foot diesel buses that run great there with minimal maintenance..

im sorry if you don't like my hate for newflyer... however many people are always bashing the Trolleys here.. so i have every right to bash the diesels..

btw, i do believe our bbc trolleys are on there hind legs and need to be replaced! but they have done there job and continue to step up to the plate no matter how much poor maintenance there is.

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I don't doubt that a big part of this problem is lack of preventive maintenance and repair... however to me, i still believe that the d40lf's from new flyer show their lack of strength and reliability even when they were being taken care of. if a 4500+ is having mechanical issues already that is not necessary poor maintenance.

Strength... if you mean in an accident... The D40LF is actually pretty damn good. Look no further than the accident involving 7902 in Calgary today. The GM isn't bad, but actually wasn't the best bus to be in if you were going to be involved in an accident. Just take a look at a few of ETS's accident victims and you can see that there are some areas on a GM that just don't seem to stand up well in an accident (the front end... lower skirt panels).

Strength... such as rattles and stuff... the D40LF isn't perfect, but I've rode VIVA's Van Hools that already have a hell of a lot of rattles and are a lot newer!

Mechanical issues with the 4478-4522...

I'm not totally familiar with the specifics, but, remember ETS did get a different axel this time around. So... These mechanical issues could actually be an individual component that is causing problem, indeed, it could be something that ETS wanted installed.

In that case the builder of that component would be the one to blame, not New Flyer. This would also included such stuff as the engine and transmission.

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I don't doubt that a big part of this problem is lack of preventive maintenance and repair... however to me, i still believe that the d40lf's from new flyer show their lack of strength and reliability even when they were being taken care of. if a 4500+ is having mechanical issues already that is not necessary poor maintenance. how can it be only poor maintenance when they are only a year old... i know they will never compare to a gmc or a brill or anything but they still suck as far as im concerned. You don't here council or management telling them to only do emergency maintenance on the diesels... they tell them to give it their best!

I agree, that does show weakness upon New Flyer's part. But that is the reality of the bus industry today. The fact is that buses are not built the same way as 25 years ago, they are more prone to breakdowns because of how computerized they are and the decline in build qaulity. I completely agree with you in that regard. However, as I said, it is the norm of today's industry in Canada. So I am questioning the point of constantly bashing New Flyer when everyone already knows that New Flyer products has flaws, just like Orion and NovaBus.

You go to europe and stuff and find 40foot diesel buses that run great there with minimal maintenance..

Good for them and the European transit industry. But we are in Canada and as I said above, Canada's transit industry does not function in the same manner.

im sorry if you don't like my hate for newflyer... however many people are always bashing the Trolleys here.. so i have every right to bash the diesels..

There is a thing called taking the higher road, essentially you are saying that if someone insults you, you insult them back and there is no problem with that. But that gets nobody anywhere, other then bashing each other endlessly with no purpose in mind, other then bashing each other.

I respect that you dislike the New Flyer D40LF, you are entitled to your opinion. I am saying that we don't need to hear about it in every 2 or 3 posts, we get the point by now.

btw, i do believe our bbc trolleys are on there hind legs and need to be replaced! but they have done there job and continue to step up to the plate no matter how much poor maintenance there is.

It is obvious that the BBC Trolleys are failing to step up to the plate day in and out. Look at the problems they are suffering day in and out. The buses are simply old and were and/or neglected compared to the diesel fleet. The result, they are plagued with problems as much as or worse then diesels. If a BBC Trolley counts as being able "to step up to the plate" then so does a D40LF.

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The GMs had their share of problems too, and so did the trolleys when they were new. 20 years down the road, most of the problems have been dealt with, so you don't hear of them much anymore.

Regarding build quality - bus manufacturers only build for 12 years of life, because that is when the American federal government will give agencies funding for new buses. Long Beach Transit is already retiring a batch of second-generation D40LFs!! It makes economic sense for New Flyer (or any company for that matter) to build to this standard instead of 30 years, as in 12 years they will have some more business coming their way.

With about 5/7ths of the fleet being composed of D40LFs, it shouldn't be surprising to hear a bunch of low floors calling in with problems. Also, it is not really New Flyer that is the problem - other components outfitted on the bus are made by other manufacturers. For example, the speedometer wasn't working below 20km/h today on one of the buses. New Flyer didn't make the speedometer, so really should New Flyer get blamed for the problem?

In other news, 587 was out on the 192 today. Trolleys out in full force. 124 was having a bad day today as it kept getting a line volt light and blocked 101 St and Jasper intersection, so it had to get towed back to the garage or something. Guess it followed suit of the person who had a seizure on that unit earlier. :angry:

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My guess is that they won't come in the redesigned style, so just imagine any old D40LF with a blue tank on top of it. ;)

I think they will have the redesigned front.

Or else... the trolley will likely have the most curb appeal of the 3 types of hybrids and the trolley.

And we wouldn't want that............ :angry:

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It is obvious that the BBC Trolleys are failing to step up to the plate day in and out. Look at the problems they are suffering day in and out. The buses are simply old and were and/or neglected compared to the diesel fleet. The result, they are plagued with problems as much as or worse then diesels. If a BBC Trolley counts as being able "to step up to the plate" then so does a D40LF.

Actually without the BBC's we wouldn't be able to make bookout right now and runs would have to be cut. The bbc's are stepping up to the plate. there not failing to do that.

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Actually without the BBC's we wouldn't be able to make bookout right now and runs would have to be cut. The bbc's are stepping up to the plate. there not failing to do that.

I don't know if that can be attributed to the BBC though.

If we had more GM's in the fleet instead of BBC's we could be in the same place that we are in today.

If we had scrapped trolleys in 2004, maybe we could be in a better position today to meet bookout, maybe (and likely) we would be in a worse position.

Lack of maintainence aside... The trolley fleet as a whole probably has less milage than the 4000 GM's. A lot of have seen periods of storage, and for many summers have been given summers off... as well as other periods of low/ no trolley operations.

Thus, the trolleys *should* have more life in them than most of the GM's... And should have no problem providing that service.

Maybe it should be the oldest (average) fleet of GM's in Canada (I assume... 1972, 73, 74, 75, and 76 GM's... most cities seem to only have 77's and newer left) that should be credited for helping ETS meet book requirements? After all... we still run diesel that are 34 years old, while the trolleys are only just over 24.

What has really helped is improved incident management on the trolley system.

Yes, the trolleys are probably helping with bookout, since they aren't being dieselized all the time, but, that is probably thanks to direction from people from within ETS/ The City.

As well, the mythical "trolley back up fleet", if it did exist at one point, probably has helped ETS as well... Since they just hung onto those 37 GM's a little bit longer than maybe they should have...

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I've got pics with thumbnails... does a person use bbcode or html code to post

pics in here? I know the 'insert image' thing... but I want to post thumbnails

linking to the pics.

Insert image will allow to you link to an image that's not on this server. While it's not a thumbnail, it won't drain any resources from this server (I would imagine).

I can put them up on my Barp server if needed.

microbus, do you know if there's any plans for the bus tomorrow?

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Just curious Ashton, when and where did you take that picture of the Orion 7NG(new generation)? Also do you have any more pictures of it? Would you be able to email it(and/or them) to me?

I didn't take it - and I don't have any more. However, it is to be released soon I think!

I've got pics with thumbnails... does a person use bbcode or html code to post

pics in here? I know the 'insert image' thing... but I want to post thumbnails

linking to the pics.

BB Code.
[img=http://link to thumbnail.jpg]
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Insert image will allow to you link to an image that's not on this server. While it's not a thumbnail, it won't drain any resources from this server (I would imagine).

I can put them up on my Barp server if needed.

microbus, do you know if there's any plans for the bus tomorrow?

Which bus, one of the hybrids? For them... no... they are 11'3" in height by the way....

And I thought of your site for them... I have 8 pics which I've edited in size, with a

few others which are more of the driver's compartment and stuff.

Barp.ca doesn't make any money, does it? Cuz I was warned that they couldn't

be posted for profit, and to be careful with them.

So bbcode to post... I know bbcode well, use it on my site all the time...

here's two pics for now, will post more later :)

Note though, 6006 doesn't have the ETS logo on the front yet...

6006-003t.jpg

6006-004t.jpg

the code didn't work, at least not yet.. if a mod can fix it for me please :P

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I still can't see the pics... :) it doesn't need the www though... but my site stuff

works with or without that...

Yeah, post them on barp.ca... if you don't mind the little copyright thing in the pic....

if you would prefer that not to be there, I can send you pics without it.

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Cool pictures - thanks for sharing those! :)

I hope those touchstrip/touchbar rear doors won't cause too much trouble for people used to the operator-controlled doors.

Interstingly though... they still have the slanted handles on the rear door. Something you really don't need if you have the touch bars on the doors.......

Also... the doors aren't painted yellow on the inside like all of ETS's big buses dating back to.... I don't know when!!!!

We even have one batch of ELF's with the the doors painted yellow on the inside.

There's is probably a power door switch (like Calgary's D40LF's) if the buses are indeed not equipped with operator controlled doors.

Hopefully they do have touch bar rear doors. I will sit back there and watch people trying to figure them out. It will be just like when 531 was the only one in the fleet with a push bar operated rear door... ahh.... the memories...........

It does appear that the buses only have a single width rear door, as opposed to ETS's usual double width door.

As well, note the electronic run number box in the windshield.

My random thought... since these buses don't seem to be to TTC specs (as they apparently were going to be... according to city reports that essentially said if we buy now, we can add onto to the TTC order and get a lower price)...

Vancouver is due for 2 demo Orion VII's... Maybe Orion did a batch of 4 buses... 2 for Edmonton... 2 demo's for Vancouver...

That could explain the run number box.

Edit: Turns out Vancouver uses roller run number boxes as well...

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Another good trolley day

125 and 156 are parked outside my office laying over as training trolleys. I love where my office is! lol

Bill had 198 today. ran like a charm!!

# 121 ended up getting a left limb pulled from a socket near the library. # 124 was having line volt indicator issues and died on Jasper Avenue requiring a tow job. # 160 lost his radio signal transmitter casing / tape when he dewired on 124 Street & Jasper Avenue. This did not affect the operation at all. Janice had # 198 and it purred like a kitten all night :)

well the day looked good and i just happened to look out the window at work here as 121 went by hooked up to a towtruck with a broken pole.

this one was wierd because the pole was broken near the connection to the unit right on the bus as opposed to half way up the pole like im used to seeing.

That's because it got pulled from the socket, it probably was not anchored down properly. It probably worked it's way loose and then at a very unopportune and unsuspecting moment...pop !!!

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