Jump to content

CPTDB Wiki was recently upgraded! Please report any issues here.

Orion VIII

King County Metro - Seattle, Washington

Recommended Posts

16 minutes ago, Atomic Taco said:

H/T to @Express691 and @aznichiro115 for watching the tracker; 7202, 7203, and 7205 have hit the streets in the last two days.  I only noticed the latter two this afternoon, both on route 271.  Managed to snag a few exterior pics:

I was not watching anything heh but np

P.s. you mentioned XDE40s

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the photos, Mr. Taco!!  

Personal observations of mine are these:  

1.  The traditional Gillig Advantage design, especially with the traditional windows without heavy tint make the bus to the casual observer just appear like any bus that could be twenty years old ...Gillig has essentially been using the same basic design for over twenty years.  I suppose to the traditionalist, using such design characteristics make the bus timeless and one that will always be in style.  I personally like the more modern and streamlined-look of the ST Gilligs with the BRT front cap and heavily-tinted frameless-look windows.  

2.  There was a discussion some time ago about Metro's tail light specifications.  Since the Gillig Phantoms, Metro has used three-light round 7" LED fixtures in a red-yellow-red configuration.   This is the first time that they've spec'd 4" flush-mount/recessed tail light fixtures.  I suspect that Gillig would have charged a substantial fee for modifying the rear cap to accommodate 7" fixtures.

 

edited to add: 

...eh, pertaining to the 7" fixtures, it doesn't appear that much modifying would have to be done to accommodate them as Twin Cities Metro uses two 7" lamps on some of their Gillig low-floors.  Example HERE.  Perhaps Metro will now be using the 4" recessed fixtures on future orders.  I've read that the 4" LEDs can be actually more efficient and even though being smaller, can actually have better visibility properties and are being used in more applications on trucks and buses lately.  I also forgot that the Proterras obviously do not have the "standard Metro- spec'd" tail lights so it appears that they are not holding fast to using the 7" fixtures any longer but are evolving pertaining to their thoughts on tail lights in general. 

2nd edit:  As I was hunting around for the tail lights on Gillig low floors (btw, found several other agencies that use 7" fixtures on their Gillig low-floors), I noticed this photo of an Orlando Gillig low-floor with a BRT front and dark tinted frameless-look windows, HERE --it looks modern, streamlined, and not like it's twenty years old like Metro's new Gilligs might appear to the observer not attuned to bus particulars.   However, from a former driver's standpoint, I firmly believe that the BRT front has visibility issues and would much prefer driving a Gillig low-floor with the traditional front cap.

 

 

 

3rd edit:  A photo from Zack's collection of a 1998 Grays Harbor Transit Gillig Low Floor ...go HERE --or an old 1997 Hertz Gillig Advantage ...go HERE and compare them to a brand spankin' new Metro Gillig Low Floor HEV ...go HERE for one of Taco's photos.  To the casual observer, the look of an actual 20+ -year old design is essentially the exact same bus.  The only real noticeable difference is the slightly larger windshield that Gillig started using around 2002 and, of course, the HEV roof apparatus. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, roamer said:

I noticed this photo of an Orlando Gillig low-floo

Wow -- that looks almost like a New Flyer!

 

19 hours ago, roamer said:

1.  The traditional Gillig Advantage design, especially with the traditional windows without heavy tint make the bus to the casual observer just appear like any bus that could be twenty years old

Amen.

That is a huge problem with the Gillig design. In the transit biz, we're fighting to stay relevant in a field that's popping with "mobility innovation". If we're going to play in the same league as Uber and Lyft and Bird and Lime and Elon Musk... we're going to need to do a lot better than spartan, institutional boxes-on-wheels. The Gillig exterior is problematic enough -- the interior is even worse.

At least KC Metro uses nice colors. That's shiny, happy paint on an ugly, dreary bus!

 

19 hours ago, roamer said:

I personally like the more modern and streamlined-look of the ST Gilligs with the BRT front cap and heavily-tinted frameless-look windows.  

 

Agree that heavy tint + frameless windows can look slick from the outside.

However, FWIW, I lament the gradual phasing-out of abundant natural light on the interior of Seattle's buses. Think of the Gillig Phantoms, New Flyer D60s... heh, even the Bredas. Positvely drenched in natural light. Rear windows and enormous side windows with little or no tint. I thought it made for a very pleasant ride.

Newer buses feel much darker and more closed in. It further compromises the transit experience.

 

Are there any early reviews of the 7300s? I'm hoping the whole order is a hiccup and Metro goes to New Flyer (or Nova!) for the "7500s". 

In any case, thanks for all the photos, info and insight!

 

 

 

 

  • Like 1
  • Confused 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Border City Transit said:

Agree that heavy tint + frameless windows can look slick from the outside.

However, FWIW, I lament the gradual phasing-out of abundant natural light on the interior of Seattle's buses. Think of the Gillig Phantoms, New Flyer D60s... heh, even the Bredas. Positvely drenched in natural light. Rear windows and enormous side windows with little or no tint. I thought it made for a very pleasant ride.

Newer buses feel much darker and more closed in. It further compromises the transit experience.

 

I actually do agree with your assessment of the "natural light" issue.  Yes, from the outside, buses do appear more modern and streamlined when windows are tinted but pertaining to being a rider --and I was remiss in not addressing it-- tinted windows in the Seattle area are not only pointless but a detriment as it pertains to the bus rider.

I remember having the discussion among my former co-workers about buses having tinted windows and it was just about unanimous that drivers didn't think that our Metro buses should have dark tinted windows.  The climate in Seattle certainly doesn't justify the need for buses to have tinted windows and before air conditioned buses, it absolutely wouldn't have made any sense at all. 

I suppose for the same reason that some tint the windows of their personal vehicles in the Seattle area because it looks "cool" and not because of necessity as one might do in a sunny climate, that is the reason I blurted out that I prefer the look of a frameless-look with heavy tinted windows on a bus.  From a rider's standpoint, however, it's definitely a negative feature for a bus in Seattle to have. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, roamer said:

and I was remiss in not addressing it

Haha all good! 👍

I meant to add to your observations -- not contest them!

Before the Gilligs plowed onto this thread, I asked a few other Metro questions. Perhaps you or someone else could address?

1. Are there any "100% artic" bases? East?

2. Why is the 120 assigned to Atlantic rather than Central? Which is part of a larger question: does Atlantic have its own fleet of non-trolley buses?

Thanks!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, Border City Transit said:

Haha all good! 👍

I meant to add to your observations -- not contest them!

Before the Gilligs plowed onto this thread, I asked a few other Metro questions. Perhaps you or someone else could address?

1. Are there any "100% artic" bases? East?

2. Why is the 120 assigned to Atlantic rather than Central? Which is part of a larger question: does Atlantic have its own fleet of non-trolley buses?

Thanks!

To answer 2b: https://cptdb.ca/wiki/index.php/King_County_Metro_Atlantic_Base

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Atomic Taco said:

Is there a page like that for EB?  Since I'm no longer living in the area, I don't keep up with how the fleet is distributed.  One of the current employees participating on this forum hopefully will chime in but the way I once understood it, the fleet at East Base is entirely artics with the exception of a few Sound Transit 40-footers.  Does that still stand? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Atomic Taco said:

I haven't seen a fleet roster in *forever* but I don't think this is quite right. There are more D60LFs that are assigned to / maintained by Atlantic Base. The 120 run cards indicate "PULLOUT AT PARENT BASE - ATLANTIC." If the 120, which uses Atlantic operators, were using coaches assigned to / maintained by Central Base, the run cards would read "PULLOUT AT STORAGE BASE - CENTRAL."

Also - the lack of XDE60 sightings on the 120, which are intermixed in the Central Base signout, is another clue as to the Atlantic fleet. 

Note that in the past, Atlantic did use coaches assigned to / maintained by Central Base for the 120, though that no longer appears to be the case. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/27/2018 at 2:13 PM, roamer said:

Is there a page like that for EB?  Since I'm no longer living in the area, I don't keep up with how the fleet is distributed.  One of the current employees participating on this forum hopefully will chime in but the way I once understood it, the fleet at East Base is entirely artics with the exception of a few Sound Transit 40-footers.  Does that still stand? 

Yes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/25/2018 at 5:45 AM, Border City Transit said:

 

I confess, I can't quite figure out the Atlantic vs Central distinction. Seeing 120 listed as an Atlantic route really threw me. Does Atlantic have its own set of diesel/hybrid buses? I thought (perhaps wrongly) that Atlantic drew its non-trolley fleet from Central -- particularly on weekends. If that's the case, why isn't 120 simply a Central route? Any clarification appreciated -- feel free to set me straight!

 

As of 9/25 Atlantic Base has 47 2600s assigned.  In addition to 37 weekday assignments on route 120 there are 44s and 70s.  These have deadheads which aren't feasible in a trolley.  On weekends Atlantic borrows some 2600s from Central, but Central doesn't have enough capacity to maintain 43 60'  coaches required to dieselize Saturday service (26 on Sunday).  Atlantic also borrows 42 40' coaches on Saturday & 40 on Sunday (from both Central & Ryerson).  To share the maintenance load Atlantic needs to have its own assigned 2600s.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Just now, coordinator47 said:

On weekends Atlantic borrows some 2600s from Central, but Central doesn't have enough capacity to maintain 43 60'  coaches required to dieselize Saturday service (26 on Sunday).

Why is there still so much dieselization on weekends?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The tints are a negative if you're trying to look out at the views of traffic and city life, but they are a lifesaver if you're in a seat that is facing the sun. It can get uncomfortable and interferes with screen reading.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 9/30/2018 at 1:03 PM, Atomic Taco said:

Why is there still so much dieselization on weekends?

What's interesting is that during diesel weekends, you'll still see a stray XT40 running here and there, but diesels operating on all 60ft routes. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Was the 174's terminus located at 9th & Stewart because it was the location of the (former) Greyhound station?

Also, the 7300s look ugly as heck.

6 hours ago, anonymous guy said:

What's interesting is that during diesel weekends, you'll still see a stray XT40 running here and there, but diesels operating on all 60ft routes. 

Any 8200s running on the 44/49/70? How about on the 120/125? (Or is it all DE60LFs and Orions for those two routes?)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, V3112 said:

Any 8200s running on the 44/49/70? How about on the 120/125? (Or is it all DE60LFs and Orions for those two routes?)

From what I've seen, it's typically DE60LFs running routes typically served by 60ft trolleys with Orion coaches sometimes thrown in. 

There have been occasions where I've seen XDE60 coaches on the 120, but usually on special event dates where DE60LFs are used elsewhere as shuttles. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, V3112 said:

Was the 174's terminus located at 9th & Stewart because it was the location of the (former) Greyhound station?

Probably one of the only places they could get layover curb space downtown and it was near CPS so you had relative parity with the tunnel routing.  Unless it served both CPS and 9th & Stewart in which case I have no idea 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, Atomic Taco said:

Probably one of the only places they could get layover curb space downtown and it was near CPS so you had relative parity with the tunnel routing.  Unless it served both CPS and 9th & Stewart in which case I have no idea 

I saw the term CPS and my mind immediately went to Child Protective Services instead of Convention Place Station...of course, doy.

The 174 didn't move into the tunnel until it reopened in 2007, I thought? The "classical routing" as I understood it was

North on 4th, east on Virginia, south on 9th to the layover point NS Stewart (across from where the Seattle Children's building is). Returning to S Federal Way P&R via west on Stewart (the first stop was on the farside of the intersection, where 818 Stewart is located now), south on 2nd to reach 4th Ave S.

While yes, the 174 was well-aligned with the AcRd to Convention Place, I don't think it ever ran in the tunnel until 2007. It was always via 2nd/4th using 1400s, 2000s and later 2300s (did 3000s/3200s ever see service on the 174? Not sure) Now the 194 to my knowledge has always been a tunnel route.

11 hours ago, anonymous guy said:

From what I've seen, it's typically DE60LFs running routes typically served by 60ft trolleys with Orion coaches sometimes thrown in. 

There have been occasions where I've seen XDE60 coaches on the 120, but usually on special event dates where DE60LFs are used elsewhere as shuttles. 

What a bummer. How long have 2300s been running on the 120/125? It feels like decades now. Does Metro not want to put 8200s on 120/125 because they're higher-mileage Central Base routes? (They're both long routes and frequent as well, so I guess they have a high amount of passenger-miles.) Or on 60' trolley routes because of the hilly sections?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
45 minutes ago, V3112 said:

I saw the term CPS and my mind immediately went to Child Protective Services instead of Convention Place Station...of course, doy.

The 174 didn't move into the tunnel until it reopened in 2007, I thought? The "classical routing" as I understood it was

North on 4th, east on Virginia, south on 9th to the layover point NS Stewart (across from where the Seattle Children's building is). Returning to S Federal Way P&R via west on Stewart (the first stop was on the farside of the intersection, where 818 Stewart is located now), south on 2nd to reach 4th Ave S.

While yes, the 174 was well-aligned with the AcRd to Convention Place, I don't think it ever ran in the tunnel until 2007. It was always via 2nd/4th using 1400s, 2000s and later 2300s (did 3000s/3200s ever see service on the 174? Not sure) Now the 194 to my knowledge has always been a tunnel route.

That's right, forgot about the tunnel closure.  Looks like the layover was at 7th & Blanchard, except for some turnbacks to Union

174 Jun07.pdf

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Atomic Taco said:

That's right, forgot about the tunnel closure.  Looks like the layover was at 7th & Blanchard, except for some turnbacks to Union

174 Jun07.pdf

The early 90s version of The Book shows a layover routing via Virginia instead of Blanchard, and skips Westlake. When did this change occur?

174_Jun1987.pdf

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, V3112 said:

 

What a bummer. How long have 2300s been running on the 120/125? It feels like decades now. Does Metro not want to put 8200s on 120/125 because they're higher-mileage Central Base routes? (They're both long routes and frequent as well, so I guess they have a high amount of passenger-miles.) Or on 60' trolley routes because of the hilly sections?

1

120 is based out of Atlantic, the 8200s are at Ryerson or Central. 125 generally runs Orions. Not sure why not on the trolley routes on the weekends.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, V3112 said:

What a bummer. How long have 2300s been running on the 120/125? It feels like decades now.

I do recall seeing a rare 2300 on the 125 during peak afternoon hours before their retirement. The 120 would sometimes see a 2300 when the route was based out of Ryerson.

After the move to Atlantic,  the 120 would rarely see 2300/6800/6900/8200 during special event dates when 2600s were used for shuttles. There was also the rare use of a RapidRide coach or even a Gillig Phantom on this route as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, V3112 said:

The early 90s version of The Book shows a layover routing via Virginia instead of Blanchard, and skips Westlake. When did this change occur?

174_Jun1987.pdf

Don't know when the change occurred. But the layover was at 7th and Blanchard for a long time...

5 hours ago, V3112 said:

While yes, the 174 was well-aligned with the AcRd to Convention Place, I don't think it ever ran in the tunnel until 2007. It was always via 2nd/4th using 1400s, 2000s and later 2300s (did 3000s/3200s ever see service on the 174? Not sure) Now the 194 to my knowledge has always been a tunnel route.

3000s only operated out of Ryerson (and Mercer Base, briefly, before Ryerson opened), Central/Atlantic, and, as discussed here previously, briefly East Base. Thus, there were no regular assignments of them to the 174.

1600-series Flyers, as well as 3200-Gilligs made occasional appearances. I can recall seeing an occasional 3200 in the late 1990s on a 174 Boeing Industrial or Sea-Tac short-turn. Bredas also were regularly seen on the 174.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...