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About four weeks ago, a group of transit fans (including myself) got a yard tour at IAD. They set up their electric bus chargers, and the guide tour says that their New Flyer XE40s should be coming in next month (this month). The tour guide said that this is probably the last year for the NABI 60-BRTs, due to something that has to by finding parts. They recently got brand new Gillig Low Floor buses, and the pilot coach number is 8351. 

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8351 and others is to replace 2005 C40LF buses that came from South bay despite them temporarily reallocating those buses to in house (408-412). Infact, East County has 2741 which is formerly 407 an in house bus. They even have some 2300 series Gillig's from South Bay. 66 40' buses which includes 51 Gillig CNG's (8201-8213 and 8301-8338). Not a bad little operation, but it is not open on Sundays, but maybe some day it will be. South bay and Copley park cutaway/paratransit do all the Sunday operations for them. 

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2020_nov30_dub_conc_009.jpg  2020_nov30_dub_conc_006.jpg  2020_nov30_dub_conc_002_crop.jpg 2020_nov30_dub_conc_012.jpg

San Diego MTS Gillig 1601 and 1602, electric buses in test on the 680 and 580 freeways not far from the Gillig plant in Livermore were spotted on November 30th during delivery.

(Photo credit goes to Michael Strauch of www.streetcarmike.com.  Used with Permission from the owner. Watermarked) 

 

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  • 4 weeks later...

MCI buses have gone into revenue service and the plan is start retiring the Blue Bird Buses next month. I believe the MCI's are 8531-8554 as MTS seems to like to start fleets with the number one and not continue on with an existing number. 

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11 hours ago, XN40 said:

MCI buses have gone into revenue service and the plan is start retiring the Blue Bird Buses next month.

I am shocked those Blue Birds lasted as long as they did.

That was a weird model -- I can't think of a single other transit system that deployed them in any significant number.

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6 hours ago, Border City Transit said:

I am shocked those Blue Birds lasted as long as they did.

That was a weird model -- I can't think of a single other transit system that deployed them in any significant number.

They are from 2007 and were originally purchased by Transdev, then MTS purchased them for 100,000 per bus which is not a bad deal for an older coach. I believe the model saw some success as a luxury RV but Blue Bird got out of the market and abandoned the factory. I know the Department of Homeland Security had some but I think it is the end of the line for that bus as MTS got rid of the Diesel facilities at the El Cajon facility (all Blue Birds have to be fueled using a Diesel tanker). 

In regards for the Trolley, SD Trolley did order 25 LRV + 22 option to replace the SD100. 5000's are not necessarily a replacement for those rail cars. These new cars are going to be configured just like the 5000's as SDT Inc is pretty happy with them and no reason to change the specs on those. 

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On 1/21/2021 at 10:17 PM, XN40 said:

MCI buses have gone into revenue service and the plan is start retiring the Blue Bird Buses next month. I believe the MCI's are 8531-8554 as MTS seems to like to start fleets with the number one and not continue on with an existing number. 

Did San Diego MTS Banning all Blue Bird Diesel buses yet in Southern California from 2007 and up due to California Air Resources Board Strict Emissions  

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29 minutes ago, JAX Transit 2000 said:

Did San Diego MTS Banning all Blue Bird Diesel buses yet in Southern California from 2007 and up due to California Air Resources Board Strict Emissions  

Yes their policy is to not use any Diesel engines so they had to move over to CNG for the MCI's. Plus the MCI is the only CNG motor coach available. Engine is a Cummins ISX12N with an Engine brake and an Allison B500. MTS is also transitioning to ZEB so these will be replaced with ZEB's when they are due for replacement. 

Bike racks are underneath the bus in the luggage compartments. 

 

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On 1/26/2021 at 11:14 PM, XN40 said:

Yes their policy is to not use any Diesel engines so they had to move over to CNG for the MCI's. Plus the MCI is the only CNG motor coach available. Engine is a Cummins ISX12N with an Engine brake and an Allison B500. MTS is also transitioning to ZEB so these will be replaced with ZEB's when they are due for replacement. 

Bike racks are underneath the bus in the luggage compartments. 

 

Good thinking and Did the Diesel Fuel Tanks at San Diego MTS Bus yard for 2007 Blue Bird Commuter Coach build by Complete Coach Works has been confiscated by California Air Resources Board for Climate Change yet

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On 2/1/2021 at 10:10 PM, JAX Transit 2000 said:

Good thinking and Did the Diesel Fuel Tanks at San Diego MTS Bus yard for 2007 Blue Bird Commuter Coach build by Complete Coach Works has been confiscated by California Air Resources Board for Climate Change yet

Wha?

CARB bans equipment from use. They do not confiscate. And certainly not fuel tanks.

The tanks were likely removed due to the cost of ongoing maintenance and inspections, in addition to the liability in terms of being a fire hazard and the potential to leak and contaminate soil. When you only have a few buses that use diesel it becomes more cost effective to switch to having a tanker do mobile fueling.

Also, the prohibition on new diesel transit buses is due to smog, not climate change.

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On 1/26/2021 at 11:14 PM, XN40 said:

Yes their policy is to not use any Diesel engines so they had to move over to CNG for the MCI's. Plus the MCI is the only CNG motor coach available. Engine is a Cummins ISX12N with an Engine brake and an Allison B500. MTS is also transitioning to ZEB so these will be replaced with ZEB's when they are due for replacement. 

Bike racks are underneath the bus in the luggage compartments. 

 

Here’s the photo of 2020 MCI D4500CT CNG parked at the yard by So Cal Metro of Flickr. Used with Permission. 

New MTS Bus

And some of the Blue Bird Buses were repainted in the rapid livery by So Cal Metro of Flickr 

MTS Bus

 

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 2/9/2021 at 9:01 PM, JAX Transit 2000 said:

Here’s the photo of 2020 MCI D4500CT CNG parked at the yard by So Cal Metro of Flickr. Used with Permission. 

New MTS Bus

And some of the Blue Bird Buses were repainted in the rapid livery by So Cal Metro of Flickr 

MTS Bus

 

MTS did not repaint the Blue Birds AFAIK. I live near the terminus of the 290 route and have seen a lot of them and they were wrapped. Some they did not even bother to wrap and still have their original livery. Some of them have had their wrap partially removed for some reason. I don't know why but it happens. 

The wiki is wrong about the in service date for the new MCI's as they actually started service in January but February 1 is technically when they went into service. 

 

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On 2/26/2021 at 5:12 PM, XN40 said:

MTS did not repaint the Blue Birds AFAIK. I live near the terminus of the 290 route and have seen a lot of them and they were wrapped. Some they did not even bother to wrap and still have their original livery. Some of them have had their wrap partially removed for some reason. I don't know why but it happens. 

The wiki is wrong about the in service date for the new MCI's as they actually started service in January but February 1 is technically when they went into service. 

 

San Diego MTS just retired their last Diesel Blue Bird Buses as of this week and San Diego is now 100% CNG and Electric power buses now. Hope San Diego MTS will preserve all of the Diesel-powered buses for the Historical Fleet collection. 

 

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28 minutes ago, JAX Transit 2000 said:

San Diego MTS just retired their last Diesel Blue Bird Buses as of this week and San Diego is now 100% CNG and Electric power buses now. Hope San Diego MTS will preserve all of the Diesel-powered buses for the Historical Fleet collection. 

 

None of them are being preserved as some have been spotted at JJ Kane Auctioneers (Ken Porter). They are for sale to authorized dealers and not retail buyers. They tend to be non runners as MTS likes to screw around with them so they cannot run right (might be a CARB rule). I do expect them to be sold to dealers which can resell them for those who need a motorcoach without a bathroom. Maybe someone might buy one to make a nice RV as they are actually based on the Wanderlodge platform which is a nice RV. 

MTS is not 100 percent CNG and Electric as they do have some cutaways that run on LPG and gasoline. 

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On 3/4/2021 at 11:39 PM, XN40 said:

None of them are being preserved as some have been spotted at JJ Kane Auctioneers (Ken Porter). They are for sale to authorized dealers and not retail buyers. They tend to be non runners as MTS likes to screw around with them so they cannot run right (might be a CARB rule). I do expect them to be sold to dealers which can resell them for those who need a motorcoach without a bathroom. Maybe someone might buy one to make a nice RV as they are actually based on the Wanderlodge platform which is a nice RV. 

MTS is not 100 percent CNG and Electric as they do have some cutaways that run on LPG and gasoline. 

That is very a good idea and they could do many motorhome conversions with body work, many fixtures, accessories, furnitures and other stuff as well. 

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1018 1010

 

1017

 

San Diego MTS Retired NABI 1010,1017 & 1018 were spotted at Los Angeles Harbor Bay Area in running condition this past Friday by SoCal Transit Studios of Flickr by one of their private owners. Hope these units are not going to scrap yard for parts at Zacher's Auto Salvage. 

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6 hours ago, JAX Transit 2000 said:

1018 1010

 

1017

 

San Diego MTS Retired NABI 1010,1017 & 1018 were spotted at Los Angeles Harbor Bay Area in running condition this past Friday by SoCal Transit Studios of Flickr by one of their private owners. Hope these units are not going to scrap yard for parts at Zacher's Auto Salvage. 

I saw some on instagram under the user losangelesbussales and they wanted 20k for them. They also had 6 in stock but they may have sold some already. I bet a shuttle operator might buy them for their transportation needs.

There will be 26 XN60 buses from 1801-1826 to replace the NABI but not sure if they really need all of them as the 50 and 150 routes that use the NABI BRT will be discontinued (due to Mid Coast trolley, pending board approval). 

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MTS Board has unanimously approved new fare changes to be sent off to the SANDAG Transporation Committee. 

Keep all the fares the same but lower Youth 1 way fares to match SDM (Senior/Disabled/Medicare) (Youth passes match SDM)

Rollout the PRONTO fare system to replace Compass and Compass Cloud. 

Institute Fare capping with free transfers on 1 way fares for up to 2 hours with a PRONTO card (No transfers for cash riders)

It appears that NCTD will likely approve the changes as well then it is off to SANDAG. 

 

 

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On 2/26/2021 at 5:12 PM, XN40 said:

MTS did not repaint the Blue Birds AFAIK. I live near the terminus of the 290 route and have seen a lot of them and they were wrapped. Some they did not even bother to wrap and still have their original livery. Some of them have had their wrap partially removed for some reason. I don't know why but it happens. 

The wiki is wrong about the in service date for the new MCI's as they actually started service in January but February 1 is technically when they went into service. 

 

Did you look at Wikipedia for the current fleet roster yet

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Diego_Metropolitan_Transit_System#Current_Rail_Fleet

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 3/7/2021 at 1:00 PM, XN40 said:

I saw some on instagram under the user losangelesbussales and they wanted 20k for them. They also had 6 in stock but they may have sold some already. I bet a shuttle operator might buy them for their transportation needs.

There will be 26 XN60 buses from 1801-1826 to replace the NABI but not sure if they really need all of them as the 50 and 150 routes that use the NABI BRT will be discontinued (due to Mid Coast trolley, pending board approval). 

I'm the person who runs that instagram account. I help out my friend who buys buses to resale. If I remember right, Transit Sales International bought three of those NABI's from us awhile back. 

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On 2/26/2021 at 5:12 PM, XN40 said:

MTS did not repaint the Blue Birds AFAIK. I live near the terminus of the 290 route and have seen a lot of them and they were wrapped. Some they did not even bother to wrap and still have their original livery. Some of them have had their wrap partially removed for some reason. I don't know why but it happens. 

The wiki is wrong about the in service date for the new MCI's as they actually started service in January but February 1 is technically when they went into service. 

 

The electric Gillig LowFloor Plus EV buses are in Service now by So Cal Metro of Flickr. 

MTS Electric Bus MTS Electric Bus

 

MTS Electric Bus

 

 

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