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Flashback: Grumman Flxible Model 870

 
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Q65A



Age: 60
Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 1634
Location: Central NJ

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 7:09 pm    Post subject: Flashback: Grumman Flxible Model 870 Reply with quote

Difficult as it may seem, it has been 40 years since NYCT took delivery of its final order of Flxible New Looks.
The next bus order (and NYCT's first ever purchase of an ADB) involved a vehicle that probably was the most controversial bus ever operated by NYCT: the Grumman Flxible Model 870.
Volumes probably could be written about what went wrong, but I'm sure some valuable lessons were "learned the hard way" about bus testing and procurement policies.
One could argue that as disappointing as the Model 870 was at NYCT, the next ADB order (GM RTS-04) opened the (depot) door for a bus design that still is serving NYC faithfully for 36 years.
I originally had written this article in July 2008; these 2 links take you to Parts 1 and 2. I hope you enjoy reading them and, if you're old enough, you might want to share your own stories about those good looking, ill-fated 870's:
http://bustalk.info/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1266
http://bustalk.info/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1273
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629




Joined: 18 Dec 2007
Posts: 4296
Location: NEW JOISEY

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 8:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Q65A:

Cannot BELIEVE it is now that many years ago now, when the 870's debuted!

The GRUMMAN FLXIBLE debacle had to be the biggest blunder in bus building history; I well recall when these buses were literally dropping like flies while in service.

Thanks for posting the links; I am certainly going to enjoy delving into your work later this evening!

Waaayyyy back when, at least 30 or more years back, I was on a #181 (NJT) bus (outbound from Hoboken) when without warning, a loud "BANG!!" shook the bus, as well as its passengers.

I had thought, at first, that someone had rear-ended us; totally oblivious, the driver kept on driving north along Bergenline Avenue (in West New York), despite the loud, harsh scraping noise that was coming rom the rear of the vehicle.

Finally, we were pulled over by a WNY police car; one of the hinges for the engine hatch hand simply broken off, and the hatch was hanging by the one remaining hinge, scraping along the pavement (I think this must have been an ex-NYC MTA bus, but cannot be 100% sure)

I remember the passengers having to vacate the bus to wait for the one following; I simply boarded an ACADEMY #22 that was only a block or so behind us, to continue the trip home from work.

NEVER forgot this incident; STILL mystifies at why the driver never stopped the bus to see what had happened when the hatch first broke loose....I have the feeling this NJT driver had some explaining to do when he reported back to the old Union City garage (old PS "carbarns", now closed)

This had to be at least thirty or more years ago....man, time flies.......

"NYO"
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629




Joined: 18 Dec 2007
Posts: 4296
Location: NEW JOISEY

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Memories.......

http://bus.nycsubway.org/perl/show?1258

http://bus.nycsubway.org/perl/show?1259

http://bus.nycsubway.org/perl/show?1260

(courtesy: bus.nycsubway.org)
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629




Joined: 18 Dec 2007
Posts: 4296
Location: NEW JOISEY

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 9:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It all seems so long ago now......

http://bus.nycsubway.org/perl/show?3253

http://bus.nycsubway.org/perl/show?3254

http://bus.nycsubway.org/perl/show?3255

http://bus.nycsubway.org/perl/show?3256

(courtesy: bus.nycsubway.org)
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629




Joined: 18 Dec 2007
Posts: 4296
Location: NEW JOISEY

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 9:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Of interest from Sacramento......

http://law.justia.com/cases/california/court-of-appeal/3d/158/289.html
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629




Joined: 18 Dec 2007
Posts: 4296
Location: NEW JOISEY

PostPosted: Tue Apr 18, 2017 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

New kid on the block......

http://bus.nycsubway.org/perl/show?1355

(courtesy: bus.nycsubway.org)
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Q65A



Age: 60
Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 1634
Location: Central NJ

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

An interesting article from Curbside Classics
http://www.curbsideclassic.com/bus-stop-classic/bus-stop-classic-grumman-870flxible-metro-ive-been-framed/
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Q65A



Age: 60
Joined: 17 Apr 2007
Posts: 1634
Location: Central NJ

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 7:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From the website of OMOT is this roster of all owners of the Model 870:
http://www.omot.org/roster/flxlist/flx870.html
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NEW YORK OMNIBUS 2629




Joined: 18 Dec 2007
Posts: 4296
Location: NEW JOISEY

PostPosted: Wed Apr 19, 2017 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Q65A:

I have in my collection an (undated) color copy (sadly, text is largely unreadable) of an advertisement for the 870.

It shows a smiling driver (in full uniorm) behind the wheel; At the top it reads:

"A BUS HE CAN DRIVE IN SAFETY AND COMFORT"

At the bottom of the ad, is a picture showing the 870, with the following comment: "THE BEAUTY OF COMMON SENSE"........(!!) Rolling Eyes

Ahhhh, optimism.........

"NYO"
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