Best bus driven or passenger

Discussion in 'Buses & Coaches' started by Geordie driver, 11 Jan 2020.

  1. Geordie driver

    Geordie driver Member

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    Following on from the worst bus thread, what,in your opinion, is the best bus you have ever been on, single decker and double decker either as a driver or a passenger?

    My own preference would be a pair of Bristol's (snigger), for a single decker a Bristol RE is probably my favourite, smooth, good acceleration, comfortable and warm. Well built, none of the shakes and rattles you seem to get on modern buses. We had one or two of these when I started in 1985 and they got rid of them soon after.

    For a decker I preferred a Bristol VR with a semi auto box and power steering. Again well built, the steering column looked like Fred Flintstone had carved it from rock. We had some without power steering and they were hard work, later they changed them to full auto which I didn't like.

    I don't know much about buses but to me these vehicles harked back to the past a bit, before light weight became the norm.
     
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  3. Lewlew

    Lewlew Member

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    As a driver, Enviro 200 was my favourite to drive, nice and responsive with smooth gear changes and indicator stalk on the right hand side of the steering wheel which I really liked for some reason
     
  4. christopher

    christopher Member

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    58 plate Scania Omnicity decker, proper drivers bus.
     
  5. randyrippley

    randyrippley Established Member

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  6. Eyersey468

    Eyersey468 Member

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    As a driver I would say the Northern Counties bodied Leyland Olympians with Gardner engines, the Optare Prisma or the Alexander PS bodied Volvo B10Ms we had. All fantastic machines, nice to drive and reliable.
     
  7. CN04NRJ

    CN04NRJ Member

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    Transbus Enviro 300s, Volvo B10Ms and Dennis Tridents and MCW Metrobuses to drive, absolutely wonderful things in every way!
    Out of preserved buses I've driven I'd say the Leyland Lynx is probably my favorite, nice throaty L10 and loud ZF boxes.
     
    Last edited: 12 Jan 2020
  8. TheGrandWazoo

    TheGrandWazoo Veteran Member

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    Speaking from a passenger perspective (and judging them as nearly new vehicles as opposed to hammered examples in later life), there are a few....

    ECW bodied Leyland Olympian with DP seats - very assured ride
    MCW Metrobus 2 with Cummins engine - really spirited (though for real performance, the turbocharged Gardner examples coach ones that Northern had were special
    Optare Delta - really superb when new and a quantum leap from the previous generations

    And for Geordie driver, the Cummins engined Olympian with NC body - Northumbria had a coach seated batch that were wonderful to travel on
     
  9. bobslack1982

    bobslack1982 Member

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    Was that the rebodied ex-London ECW one?

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/david_love/4371414156
     
  10. TheGrandWazoo

    TheGrandWazoo Veteran Member

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    No though I do remember that one and the other ex Green Line ones. Meant these... https://www.flickr.com/photos/14186...mcS-oFUSVe-eijPUX-6Btvq8-opGwhg-icQVHr-icQFqj

    At that time, the 602 was a very strong performing service and these were put on there to compete with the awful, uncomfortable Pacers that were on the rail line.

    Sadly, they were replaced with some very pedestrian ALX Tridents by Arriva, and loadings declined so that they in turn were replaced by B10BLEs sent down from Scotland. The Olympians went to Alnwick where they were hammered up and down the A1 but they were very good machines!
     
  11. Geordie driver

    Geordie driver Member

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    Would we have had some of these at Jesmond? We had one very nice Olympian fleet number 303, my mate got followed into the depot by the police for speeding down to Jesmond from Cowgate, copper was complaining he couldn't catch him, it was a real flyer.
     
  12. delt1c

    delt1c Established Member

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    from passenger perspective Bristol FLF, even in a harsh scottish winter lovely and cosy with a good ride. RM would be a close 2nd but in Winter heater ( or lack of) lets it down
     
  13. TheGrandWazoo

    TheGrandWazoo Veteran Member

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    Jesmond had the bus seated ones (but probably similar other than that) https://www.flickr.com/photos/16042...iXq-jBc6hb-diNWLW-VnQnVn-9tFt3m-a3ZtUx-dmmS5M - they worked the Tynemouth service but also did North Shields and Low Prudhoe routes

    303 was this - https://www.flickr.com/photos/busfr...MDH-eGXvRG-i2C8jE-eGVsRs-CHD9Mz-eGPo3T-i2CMsx - it was Northumbria's first new big bus and was exhibited at the Motor Show in 1988 (?). There were 10 of them, split between Blyth and Ashington and they were also superb especially when you were used to sliding around on a brown vinyl seated VR.
     
  14. bobslack1982

    bobslack1982 Member

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    Ah yes I remember those. They were still doing the A1 routes until relatively recently - definitely in 2009-10 or so, 15 years after being introduced.
     
  15. ChilternTurbo

    ChilternTurbo Member

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    On a couple of visits to the Wythall Transport Museum last year, I very much enjoyed a couple of spirited run on a preserved West Midlands Travel Leyland Lynx and a 'Timesaver' Metrobus Mk.2 from the same operator. Both were really quick off the mark and the Metrobus benefitted from a four speed auto box so cruising along at 60mph wasn't an issue. They both sounded great too! The Metrobus in particular has always had such a distinctive melodious sound to it.

    I've been impressed the ADL Enviro400 MMC double deckers I've ridden on in London. I remember going on a London Sovereign example on a particularly warm day and I have to say that the ventilation, whilst not as good as full air conditioning, did a reasonable job of keeping the bus cool. The build quality on these seems to be decent too.
     
  16. cnjb8

    cnjb8 Member

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    The Scania OmniDekka, particularly NCTs are awesome. The Electric Solos on Locallink are lovely.
    I never used to like the Volvo Olympian East Lancs Pyoneers and East Lancs Cityzen.
     
  17. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    As a passenger? Mercedes O405N (low floor version). The perfect city bus. I have no idea why they stuffed it up with the Citaro with its weird layouts etc.
     
  18. Geordie driver

    Geordie driver Member

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    That picture of 410 at Tynemouth, I know the driver! Seen hundreds of old buses pictures online but never seen one with me driving, I must have been in the canteen losing at cards.
     
  19. TRAX

    TRAX Member

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    Anything Scania.
     
  20. TheGrandWazoo

    TheGrandWazoo Veteran Member

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    It's odd - I seldom find photos of my late father driving. Plenty of his other colleagues but I have found a couple.
     
  21. Jordan Adam

    Jordan Adam Established Member

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    At a Non-Driver POV the Volvo B10BLE Wright Renown will always be the firm favourite. Especially due to the fact that they remained superb vehicles right in to their later years, i've never had any form of B10BLE fail in service when i was on it. Speaking to a family member who drives they're a favourite too.

    Others...
    • Alexander Dennis Enviro500. By far my favourite deckers.
    • Vanhool A330
    • Volvo B7R Plaxton Profile
    • Volvo B11R Plaxton Elite (ZF Ecolife examples)
    • Any ZF or Manual Volvo B10M (Besides the NC Paladin bodied examples which were rancid rattle boxes)
    • Volvo B7RLE Wright Eclipse Urban (Specifically 07/57/08 reg examples)
    • Scania L94UB Wright Axcess-Floline.
    • Volvo B7TL ALX400
    • Volvo B9TL Wright Eclipse Gemini
    • Volvo B10BLE ALX300
    • Volvo B10LA Wright Fusion
    • Leyland Olympian Alexander RL (Cummins/ZF)
    • Leyland Atlantean Alexander AL
    • MAN 18.220 ALX300 (Euro 2, 3 speed examples from V to X reg)
     
  22. Mikey C

    Mikey C Established Member

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    From a passenger point of view the Gemini 2 with bonded glazing on the B9TL is an excellent bus, as are the current E400MMC and E400 MMC City.

    A rather rare combination, but I did like the East Lancs bodied B10M single deckers Grey Green used on the 210 route in London. The B10M was high floor and high entrance, but once up had a very nice passenger saloon
     
  23. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    I don't know if it's offered on that bus, but bonded double glazing is best for the passenger. No steaming up and no rattles due to very low body flex.
     
  24. Tetchytyke

    Tetchytyke Established Member

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    The East Lancs Scania L113s they had at the same time, again with coach seats, were wonderful buses too.

    The NC Olympians were good buses, even with bus seats. Northern had a batch on the X10 to Middlesbrough too and they coped far better than any of the newer Volvos have managed. But those coach seats Northumbria had in the Olympians and the Scanias were like armchairs. I still miss them!
     
  25. Eyersey468

    Eyersey468 Member

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    We had 11 ALX300 MANs and from a drivers point of view they were horrible to drive.
     
  26. Smithy6750

    Smithy6750 New Member

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    From a driving point of view (only been driving 3/4 years, my favourite so far:

    Was rather fond of the 54 plate B7TL Gemini’s example (First Glasgow 32557)

    Certain B7rles which went like rockets !


    Coaching wise:

    VDL DAF Futura 2 (very good driving position, fond of the daf and the layout of cab)
    2019 Merc Tourismo (excellent on the cruise control)
    DAF Vanhool TX15 (looked the part)
    B11R eco life (gave me a surprise it was a fantastic machine to drive, felt so airy in the cab so much light)
     
  27. Smithy6750

    Smithy6750 New Member

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    Totally agree they are awful, an 09 welsh example I driven the column couldn’t be adjusted, Gearbox totally humped and it didn’t like hills !
     
  28. Great_Western

    Great_Western Member

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    From a passenger perspective, I have always had a soft spot for the Citaro. Better ride quality than anything else, they seem very well put together and powerful too. The Cardiff Bus examples, in particular, are a step above anything else in their fleet.
     
  29. richw

    richw Established Member

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    On a hot summers day I’d be quite happy driving our Enviro 200 MMCs in Cornwall. They’re specced higher than other operators and have driver air con, which is ice Cold.

    I have a soft spot for Bristol VRs though if I could drive any bus every day that would be it!
     
  30. Jordan Adam

    Jordan Adam Established Member

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    Yeah at a driver and operator point of view they were awful. But at an enthusiasts perspective I liked them, So I took that in to consideration.
     
  31. harz99

    harz99 Member

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    As a driver a mark 2 Leyland National with a 680 in the back, as a passenger an RCL class long coach Routemaster in coach spec, as an enthusiast (why no 3rd category) a London Transport RTW class Leyland Titan of which RTW 75 really floats my boat...
     

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