As I wrote in my January 2011 post "Inside The Cab, Part I," I have to admit that, from my very early interest in trains, my goal was to find out what happens in the cab of a locomotive on point.
I went home and snatched a plate full of just-out-of-the-oven chocolate chip cookies. Getting out of my car and trudging through about three feet of snow, I yelled up at the cab. The window slided open and I was invited into the cab -- for clear reasons.
I met an engineer whom I encountered many times on the road and has invited me into the cab for various rides since -- to the point where I was given the opportunity to operate the controls on a couple of very clandestine runs. Those were, frankly, the times of my doddering life, a few years ago. I think my age also helped: I'm not a kid (far from it) and I am customarily festooned with cameras.
Because of my fascination and interest in the locomotive cab and what happens there, I'm on the lookout for interesting videos and photographs. I'll be posting a few photographs of myself in the cabs of locomotives [such as the one of me above, in Burlington Northern #8039, an EMD SD40-2 built in August of 1979 with 3,000-hp, stopped near Switch 9], and other interior shots -- of SD70Ms, SD60Ms, SD40T2s, SD90MACs, C44-9Ws and more. I'm currently on vacation in Ft. Bragg, California as I write this -- and don't have my terabyte external drive with me -- or I could post some of my cab photographs now.
In the meantime, please enjoy some YouTube videos of what it's like "inside the cab."
Engineer Jim works for Metra passenger rail:
What's it like inside an SD60M?
Here is a Canadian National recruitment video for conductors. Embedding has been disabled on YouTube by CN's request. It's interesting to note the inclusion of the controversial Belt-Pak, which has eliminated a number of jobs for yard engineers.
Here's how to make your SD40 travel faster:
Not everything works perfectly in the cab:
Here, it's time to drive an EMD F7 unit:
Nice (and very rare) cab ride in an Amtrak GE P42DC unit, with subject of the video sitting in the co-engineer's seat (not the primary engineer's seat). Because there are actual conductors aboard a passenger train, there are two qualified engineers in an Amtrak cab. The person sitting in what would customarily be the conductor's seat in a freight cab is called the co-engineer.
More to come!