Your opinions on current DMU's

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wobblybob
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby wobblybob » Sun Jun 22, 2008 9:06 am

m8internet wrote:Fleets need to be flexible, which locos and coaches are not.


This is a rail industry half-truth that has had currency since Beeching's day. In some respects MUs are flexible, but in others they are not.

It is true that MUs can often carry-on in service even with one failed power car, whereas a failed loco is (except for double-headers and top-and-tail) a failed train.

However, other claims as to the superiority of MUs are much more questionable. A few examples:

Track wear and tear - The axle load of a loco is greater than an MU car, but the modern practice of all powered MU cars means the axle load of MU cars is greater than that of hauled stock. And, of course, the damage done to track by 'Pacers' is legendary!

Flexibility to meet passenger demand - While the theory may be sound, all too often the delivery of 2-car and/or 3-car units has frequently resulted in the operation of trains of just that length - regardless of peak demands.

Inter-city MUs - These are generally quite inflexible. The Pendolinos are a classic example of inflexibility. A loco and hauled stock could be formed of loco + 7 at quiet times and loco + 14 at peaks. With Pendolinos it's either 9-cars or no train! A waste of energy and resources in the late evenings and wholly inadequate in the peaks. Where's the flexibility in that?

m8internet
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby m8internet » Sun Jun 22, 2008 11:03 am

The pendelino is very similar to what it replaced, in fixed formation
Virgin Trains changed the formation from what IC West Coast had, and removed one Standard coach and in some cases added an additional First Class coach
The capacity is required between Euston - Birmingham, Manchester, Preston, and Liverpool
Virgin Trains got round most of those problems by increasing frequency, which has increased the total number of seats per day, and is vastly more than what IC West Coast provided

I would debate the axle loadings, but it's more to do with RA and when you compare the likes of a 47/7 with 5 coaches against a pair of Class 170s, apparently NR much prefer the Class 170s as the load is spread over the entire length of the train, same with a compaison between a Class 87/90 with 9 coaches against a Class 390, and so on
It's not just the track, but all the other infrastructure

As for HST2, the proposal is for a loco-based train operating in fixed formation, as this type of train needs to utilise both electrified and non-electrified routes
For Great Western this will mean utilising the OHLE between Paddington and Reading, and for East Coast between Kings Cross and Edinburgh
Equally, the mistakes were made with the 9-car Class 222s and have been learned from
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mortyfootball
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby mortyfootball » Sun Jun 22, 2008 5:33 pm

Good old 142s, now they are a DMU. Remind you of the 1st generation ones, very nice over non-welded track, actually sound like a train, and that engine is fantastic.

Soem of the electric ones are good too, such as the 321 Dusty Bins, strange sounds when the current is applied. Nice interior too, unless you get the one that was on the last train to Manchester. Smelt like a toilet.

In addition you have to remember that DMUs with other TOCs will have different seating layouts and different stages of refurbishment. Some of the Merseyrail 142 have no leg room at all. Some midget must have decided to cram all those seats into it.
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m8internet
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby m8internet » Sun Jun 22, 2008 6:47 pm

mortyfootball wrote:Soem of the electric ones are good too, such as the 321 Dusty Bins, strange sounds when the current is applied. Nice interior too, unless you get the one that was on the last train to Manchester

That strange noise will be because this type of EMU doesn't have a diesel engine, it uses something else called electricity
Ironically, I've also mentioned Class 220, 221, and 222 DMUs, but these too use electricity and so hence are actually classified as DEMUs, and as for the HST, that too should be classified as a DEMU
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mortyfootball
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby mortyfootball » Sun Jun 22, 2008 6:52 pm

m8internet wrote:That strange noise will be because this type of EMU doesn't have a diesel engine, it uses something else called electricity


Thanks for the update, don't think I knew that
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m8internet
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby m8internet » Sun Jun 22, 2008 8:53 pm

A few weeks ago I was on a Turbostar from Cumbernauld to Glasgow and a pair of locals were sat near to me
"This electric train is very noisy"
They also pointed this out to the Conductor / Ticket Examiner and he replied, "This type of train converts the electricity on the ground into bio-diesel, and that's the noise you can hear"
I just covered my eyes and wanted to cry!
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Philip
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby Philip » Mon Jun 23, 2008 3:39 am

Whilst in UK in 2005 I had a 15 day railpass (only available to overseas buyers).
I travelled on a 142 from Newcastle to Carlisle. It was a very busy service with paseengers joining and alighting at every station.
It was a journey of about 90 mins, and although they are old units and 4-wheelers it didn't seem that bad.
I returned Carlisle to Newcastle on a differant type of DMU but can't remember what class as I don't have my notes with me.
By far the best DMU (in '05) was First Great Western's IC 125 HST's.
The seats were comfortable and the ride (logged 121 mph) good for a 30 year old unit.
I believe since refurbishment they are not as good as the originals, but I'll find out in 2009 as I am coming back, this time with a 30 day pass.
The 165/166's on First Great Western Link (now FGW) were comfortable with good acceleration I used them Guildford - Reading and Guildford - Gatwick Airport via Redhill.
The 220/221 Voyagers are good, but not so comfortable when overloaded. I did one such trip York - Newcastle but was able to get a seat. I think these units could be strengthened with one or two more coaches for busy runs. I rather imagine Bournemouth to Aberdeen would be ok at start and finish but overloaded through the Midlands.
If I may add I think the 442 EMU's on SouthWest Trains are very comfortable. I note they have been refurbished and some are to go to Southern on the Brighton line, have they had new (modern) seats fitted or were the originals overhauled?
The 170 I used Hastings to Rye was a good unit as well.



.

m8internet
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby m8internet » Mon Jun 23, 2008 11:36 am

Philip wrote:The 220/221 Voyagers are good, but not so comfortable when overloaded. I did one such trip York - Newcastle but was able to get a seat. I think these units could be strengthened with one or two more coaches for busy runs. I rather imagine Bournemouth to Aberdeen would be ok at start and finish but overloaded through the Midlands

This will all have changed on your next visit and Arriva have already started to implement this
Long distance journeys between Scotland, ECML, Midlands, and the South will be operated by HST rather than Voyagers
The first of their HSTs has now arrived, they are being used between Friday and Sunday only, and once others arrive their fleet will start to undergo refurbishment
Voyagers will then only operate on the main parts of those routes, so in most cases will no longer be seen north of Newcastle or south of Bristol
Sadly the compromise for this is that Voyagers will have their shop removed, the service being replaced by a trolley, so First Class ticket holders will be getting a "raw" deal, so the trick will be to wok out which ones are operated by HST
Equally, some inter-urban services will be operated by TurboStar, but most of these services are already operated by TurboStar or Voyager
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MärCo
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby MärCo » Mon Jun 23, 2008 4:45 pm

What will happen if the HST ever get worn out ?
It look like the HST still betas it's successor(s).

b308
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby b308 » Mon Jun 23, 2008 6:09 pm

m8internet wrote:This will all have changed on your next visit and Arriva have already started to implement this
Long distance journeys between Scotland, ECML, Midlands, and the South will be operated by HST rather than Voyagers
The first of their HSTs has now arrived, they are being used between Friday and Sunday only, and once others arrive their fleet will start to undergo refurbishment
Voyagers will then only operate on the main parts of those routes, so in most cases will no longer be seen north of Newcastle or south of Bristol
Sadly the compromise for this is that Voyagers will have their shop removed, the service being replaced by a trolley, so First Class ticket holders will be getting a "raw" deal, so the trick will be to wok out which ones are operated by HST
Equally, some inter-urban services will be operated by TurboStar, but most of these services are already operated by TurboStar or Voyager


Just a minor couple of changes - the HSTs that XC are currently using are ours (except at weekends when we also use East Midlands sets as well) but have not been refurbed - the first of the refurbs will be out in Sept. Some of the Anglo Scots will still be Voayagers, though double sets, there are not enough HSTs for every service.

The shop is being removed, though "at seat" service south of Newcastle will still exist in 1st - it's the same as now except the 1st class passenegrs outside the "core" routes will have to find the trolley! (Though I suspect they will ensure that 1st is "done" before the trolley goes for its wander down standard!)

One important thing to note is that there are only two bike spaces on both the Voyagers and HSTs, so if you intend to take a bike make sure you get a reservation (which is free but cannot be done online!). :wink:

Philip
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby Philip » Tue Jun 24, 2008 12:02 am

Thank you m8internet and b308.
My home town is Bournemouth, so I would like to do the Aberdeen trip from there as it seems to be about a 12 hour journey similar to Auckland - Wellington "Overlander" in NZ where I live.
I want to go to the top of Scotland by rail ( unable to fit it in in 2005) and Aberdeen seems to be a good starting point for that. Will it be 158's on that run?
We only have 3 types of DMU in NZ. Two types ex Perth (W. Australia) and the "Silver Fern" 2-car units RM 1, 2 & 3.
The Perth units are used on the Auckland suburban system (soon to be electrified) and the "Ferns" Pukekohe to Britomart (Auckland) I think the electrification on the south line will only go to Papakura, so the "Ferns" would still run to Pukekohe which is about 20+km south of there.
Wellington is electrified at 1,500v DC overhead (since 1938 to Johnsonville) and early 1950's to Paekakariki (now to Paraparaumu and soon to Waikanae) and Upper Hutt and the Melling branch. 29 2-car units have recently been ordered from Rotem, due to come into service late 2009 to early 2010.
It would be nice to think we could get 3 or 4 spare 180 Adelantes for Auckland - Wellington as although we are 3ft-6in gauge our loading gauge is very similar to UK.
We have lots of MKII Ex-BR coaches that have been refurbished for both suburban and long-distance use. I think about 110 have so far been bought, a shipment has recently arrived I believe.

m8internet
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby m8internet » Tue Jun 24, 2008 12:47 am

I lived and worked in Aberdeen between 1989 and 1996
The trip up to Aberdeen is enjoyable, however I suggest you try this :

Edinburgh - Dundee - Aberdeen, on InterCity East Coast
This will be by HST
Sadly most northbound services arrive quite late into Aberdeen and overnight accomodation is quite expensive, so the trick would be to take the earliest Kings Cross to Aberdeen, then continue
Aberdeen - Inverness
Normally Class 158, although some peak time services are either Class 170 or a pair of Class 158s

Inverness - Perth - Ladybank / Stirling - Edinburgh
The first morning service is again InterCity East Coast and will also be HST, which is via Stirling
If you travel on any other service to Edinburgh, it will be via Ladybank
An alternative is to return to Glasgow, although you will need to walk or take the "free" bus between the two Glasgow stations

Edinburgh - Aberdeen and Glasgow - Aberdeen services are normally Class 170
Edinburgh - Inverness and Glasgow - Inverness services are normally a Class 158 with a Class 170
Through services Edinburgh - Aberdeen - Dyce - Elgin and Edinburgh - Inverness - Elgin are also a Class 158 and a Class 170, the section between Inverness - Elgin - Dyce - Aberdeen is then only served by the Class 158

Inverness - Kyle / Thurso / Wick and other InverNet services are operated by Class 158

Almost all other services are operated by a mix of Class 156, 158, and 170
Thankfully, ScotRail operate fixed diagrams so if you know which type of unit you want to travel on you can use the diagrams at scot-rail.co.uk

Finally, day loco hauled trains make a return to ScotRail from the end of this year, albeit with Class 67s, on the Fife circle
This is due to the Bathgate upgrade which will be completed by then
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b308
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby b308 » Tue Jun 24, 2008 8:23 am

Philip wrote:Thank you m8internet and b308.
My home town is Bournemouth, so I would like to do the Aberdeen trip from there as it seems to be about a 12 hour journey similar to Auckland - Wellington "Overlander" in NZ where I live.
I want to go to the top of Scotland by rail ( unable to fit it in in 2005) and Aberdeen seems to be a good starting point for that.


Yes it will and the Bournemouth Aberdeen direct trip is quite a journey - you will see many major rail stations en route - Southampton, Reading, Birmingham, Leeds, Newcastle and Edinburgh to name the major ones...

The key thing with a Voyager going long distance is to get a decent window seat with extra legroom - that means either First or one of the seats next to the disabled ones (but which are not disabled seats!) in standard - unless you are small in which case you'll be ok anywhere! I've done many Brum/Aberdeen trips and they are fine in those seats!

The Bournemouth Aberdeen gets in at 1920 which is ideal - not too late and early eough to find a hotel and a drink/meal!

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bendoyle1983
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby bendoyle1983 » Wed Jun 25, 2008 8:17 pm

Class 142 - Classic 80's Bus, but on the rails! Retro in a kind of odd way! Apparently, they have a top speed of 75mph, which I believe I have only experienced once, on a practically non-stop Liverpool-Manchester Piccadilly. It was the last train of the evening, only stopped at Warrington, and the driver put his foot down after the Warra! I thought we were going to bounce straight off the tracks. Anyone else every been "fast" on these? They don't usually get chance to open up their throttle properly!

Class 143 - Like a deluxe version of the 142!!

Class 150 - Not too bad on a local service, but I can imagine the 3+2 high backed seating getting a bit claustrophobic after 40 minutes or so.

Class 156 - I used to use these to get to Manchester Airport. I like them - roomy and quick!

Class 158 - I've not used these in years, since they were taken off TPE. I always liked them, and they were comfortable. I travelled Leeds-Manchester while coming home from Uni at weekends. 3 carriage version better than the 2 carriage version - they're a bit cramped when full!!

Class 185 - Lovely! Smooth running and light and airy inside. Luggage racks are a bit lacking though, considering a lot of people use them to get to Manchester Airport. Bring back the luggage compartment!! lol

Class 220 - Not too bad, but the "smelly toilet" thing still happens. I was going from Oxford to Manchester the other week and the vestibules stunk to high heaven!! These should really be 5 car sets, if not six. I think Virgin were being a bit cheap only putting 4 coaches in. Whilst service levels have increased, some of the earlier trains (i.e. those due to arrive into B'ham at 9am-ish) are RAMMED! People can't always travel at a different time, especially when commuting.

Just a few thoughts!

PS My most loathed EMUs are the Merseyrail 507s. None of the seats line up properly with the windows! BAH! :evil:
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mortyfootball
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Re: Your opinions on current DMU's

Postby mortyfootball » Wed Jun 25, 2008 9:29 pm

bendoyle1983 wrote:Class 142 - Classic 80's Bus, but on the rails! Retro in a kind of odd way! Apparently, they have a top speed of 75mph, which I believe I have only experienced once, on a practically non-stop Liverpool-Manchester Piccadilly. It was the last train of the evening, only stopped at Warrington, and the driver put his foot down after the Warra! I thought we were going to bounce straight off the tracks. Anyone else every been "fast" on these? They don't usually get chance to open up their throttle properly!


One of the early morning trains from Darlo to Newcastle is a 142, and this is on the ECML, not sure how fast it goes but the guy said on a slope it went over the top speed, so I'm guessing it must have went over 75mph! Although I've been on one going 20 for nearly half and hour, so I've experienced both extremes!

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