R28 (New York City Subway car)

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In service 1960–2002
Manufacturer American Car and Foundry
Constructed 1960-1961
Scrapped 2001–2002
Number built 100
Number preserved 4
Number scrapped 96
Formation Semi-Married Pairs
Fleet numbers 7860-7959
Capacity 44
Operator(s) New York City Subway
Car body construction LAHT carbon steel
Car length 51.04 feet (15.56 m)
Width 8.75 feet (2,667 mm)
Height 11.86 feet (3,615 mm)
Doors 6 per car
Maximum speed 55 mph (89 km/h)
Weight 70,000 lb (32,000 kg) (post-rebuild)
Traction system General Electric 17KG192 (7860-7909 formerly Westinghouse)
Prime mover(s) Westinghouse (WH) 1447J/JR, General Electric (GE) 1257F1
Power output 115 hp (85.8 kW)
Electric system(s) 600 V DC Third rail
Current collection method Contact shoe
Braking system(s) WABCO, "SMEE" (electrodynamic)
Coupling system H2C
Track gauge 4 ft 8 12 in (1,435 mm)

The R28 was a New York City Subway car built in 1960 and 1961 by American Car and Foundry (ACF).[1] They were a "follow-up" or supplemental stock for the A Division's R26s and closely resemble them. The average car cost per R28 was $114,495.[2] They operated on the IRT A Division in married pairs.

The R28s were the last ever passenger cars built by ACF, with the closure of the Berwick assembly plant following the delivery of the final cars delivered in January 1961.[3] ACF has since focused on solely freight rolling stock.

The first set of R28/R26s was placed in service on the 6 train on October 12, 1959. By 1982, all cars in this series have received air conditioning as part of a retrofitting program. Rebuilt by Morrison Knudsen in Hornell, New York between 1985 and 1987, the R28s were repainted as Redbirds and were the first cars to be repainted in the scheme. They re-entered service particularly on the 2 and 5 trains.


As time wore on, heavy service took their toll on these cars. The R142 and R142A car orders replaced the entire R28 fleet. The first R28s were retired in May 2001 until the last train with R28s ran on October 7, 2002, with the last pairs of R26s and two pairs of R29s (the latter of which was retired weeks later).[1]

After retirement, many cars were stripped to help create the Redbird Reef. They made their last trip on October 24, 2002 on the 5 service.[1]

Today, cars 7924-7925 and 7926-7927 survive. 7924-7925 are still on the New York City Subway property; this pair was previously used for work service at the Unionport Yard until July 2013, when they were moved to the Concourse Yard for storage and preservation, along with R28s 7924-7925 and R29s 8678-8679. 7926-7927 are currently in the Illinois Railway Museum collection undergoing restoration.

Route assignment history[edit]

  • 6 (1960–1966)-All cars[1]
  • 2/4/5 (1966–1976)-General Electric (GE) cars[1]
  • 2/5 (1976–1985)-General Electric (GE) cars[1]
  • 6 (1966–1985)-Westinghouse (WH) cars[1]
  • 7 (1978–1985)-some General Electric (GE) and Westinghouse (WH) cars as a temporary replacement for cars being sent out for air conditioning, overhaul and rebuilding[1]
  • 2/5 (1985–2002)-All cars after overhaul and rebuilding[1]

Note: All cars became General Electric (GE) cars and became permanently paired with link bars after rebuilding.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i George Chiasson, Jr. "A Historic Perspective of the R-26, R-28, and R-29". New York City Subway Resources. Retrieved December 24, 2010. 
  2. ^ [1]
  3. ^ "IRT SMEE delivery dates", R36 Preservation, Inc. http://www.coronayard.com/r36preservation/irtsmeedelivery.html

External Links[edit]