Reply to "METRA to Purchase SD70MACs for commuter service."

Hot Water posted:
Lou1985 posted:
Hot Water posted:
Dieselbob posted:

How fast do Metra trains actually run? 

I believe it depends on the line, i.e. UP or BNSF for example, but they have lots of 79 MPH speed limit areas.

The couple that I have rode didn't really ever get up that much speed, but we were not going very far out of downtown.

I'm pretty sure that the express trains that METRA runs on the BNSF line we live on, operate over 70 MPH.


I'd have to clock one but the BNSF line express trains I've seen appear to be doing close to the 79mph limit at times, along with some west cost bound Amtrak trains. But La Grange/Brookfield have a lot of buildings around the tracks, making it harder to judge speed without measuring. Not like BNSF doesn't run intermodal trains at a good clip through the area.

I am currently trying to find out what the maximum speeds are for METRA trains on the BNSF and UP lines.

When the SD70MACs were produced what was their top speed?

The BN had the speedometer overspeed trips set for about 72 MPH. Naturally the maximum speed was never reached on loaded or empty coal/hopper trains. If and when they were ever assigned to intermodal trains (very rarely), the could run 70 MPH.

I though I remember an article from the early 90's in Trains magazine saying they topped out around 70 mph, but I'm probably way off.

No, you are correct.


Huh. I remembered something accurately for once.

If you find the max speed on BNSF/UP let us know. Otherwise next time I'm in downtown La Grange I'll try clocking an express train.

Santa Fe, All the Way

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