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Getting Ready for Centennial Celebrations

Muni teams have been working overtime to get vintage vehicles ready for special Sunday service tomorrow (November 4) and November 11.

MSR member (and Muni operator) Tony Marquardt sent us the snaps in this post, representing the testing going on. Late Saturday morning (November 3), 1906 O’Farrell, Jones & Hyde cable car No. 42, went out for line testing under the expert handling of gripman Val Lupiz. The shot above shows it turning onto California Street from Hyde (it’s ancestral stomping grounds until that line was ignominiously shuttered in 1954. The Sunday service, starting about 10 a.m. on the California Street cable line and running until about 4 p.m., will be the first opportunity the general public has had to ride this glorious cable car, which was restored by Market Street Railway volunteers and Muni craftsworkers to serve as a ceremonial car.

Yesterday (Friday), Muni moved 1941 trolley coach No. 506 from its long-term storage location inside the old Geary carhouse to a service bay downstairs at Presidio Division. It’s not operational at this time (though Muni does not plan to make it so in the coming months) but it will be on static display on November 4 and 11 at the south end of Justin Herman Plaza, across from our San Francisco Railway Museum, where we’ll have special things going on (see below).

Two other trolley coaches will be operational though, carrying people on a planned downtown loop from the stop adjacent to the museum on Steuart Street between Market and Mission via Market, Sutter, Mason to Market; returning by Market, Main, and Mission to Steuart. We’re told some trips might be a bit longer. The operating trolley coaches will be 1950 Marmon-Herrington No. 776 (above, being tested on the 31-line Thursday night) and 1976 Flyer No. 5300 (below, at the 6-line terminal in 2006).

There probably won’t be any vintage motor coaches carrying passengers tomorrow, but at least one will be on display: 1969 GMC “Fishbowl” motor coach No. 3287. It may possibly be joined by Muni’s oldest motor coach, 1938 White No. 042 (restored to its original number from 062 and painted back in its as-delivered orange and black livery). Muni crews have been working on these buses right up to the last minute, and they might possibly carry passengers on November 11.

As far as vintage streetcars, Nos. 1, 162, 1006, 1008, and 1040 will all run out the J-line, Muni’s oldest surviving streetcar line. The first four, all double-ended, will operate to the original J-line terminal at 30th Street, while single-ended No. 1040 will continue on the J-line extension, opened in the 1990s, to Balboa Park and loop through Cameron Beach Yard. Riders may board the streetcars at any stop along the route.

We at Market Street Railway will have special Centennial merchandise on sale, including our brand new centennial mug with our own design: Car No. 1 and a Breda LRV symbolizing a century of Muni (We also have this design available in a bookmark; other items are on the way).

We’ll also have a special sale of vintage books and selected transit artifacts that do not fit in with our mission of Preserving Historic Transit in San Francisco. Both Sundays will be great days for fans of streetcars, cable cars, buses, and San Francisco history. Please join us!

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