Cab Visibility

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Inversnecky

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Which cabs have (or had) the worst driver visibility, whether due to window size or intrusive ‘noses’ - thinking 37/40/44/45/46/55 and most of all, the Class 20.

Isn’t the Class 20 the worst offender for restricted forward view? I guess you’d get a feel for it, but apart from a steam engine, it must have about the worst field of view of any modern traction. Hence why many were driven ‘cab first’ I guess.

Ok, a Class 08 Shunter has a ‘nose’ too, but it’s not as long, and it’s not out on the main line above 15mph.
 
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ungreat

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387 and its variants
08 09 20 all rubbish nose 1st. Driven all of them
 

40129

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Having driven cl-20 I can confirm that the view when going nose first isn't great. Thankfully, they were provided from the outset, with a second driving position which enabled them to be driven cab first in regular service. Ultimately, the nose first problem was largely solved by them almost always being run in pairs and coupled nose to nose. Now if only cl-153 pairs were always coupled #2 end to #2 end, driving them would be so less painful!
 

Mcr Warrior

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What's the driver visibility like on certain types of multiple unit stock, where the middle of the cab area is sometimes alternatively used as the passenger gangway when units are joined together, e.g. Class 377 Electrostar?
 

fgwrich

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On an EMU Front, I would have to say the 385 appears to be worse than the Electrostar. They really did make them ridiculously narrow. Having driven a few 20s, I'll agree about those.

I would also agree about 37s - whoever chose that seat / driving position + bonnet clearly didn't think about how they'll be to shunt with!
 

hexagon789

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What's the driver visibility like on certain types of multiple unit stock, where the middle of the cab area is sometimes used as the passenger gangway when units are joined together, e.g. Class 377 Electrostar?
385s have a bad reputation for poor visibility, closely followed by the 380s
 

theironroad

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Desiro 450/444 have connecting gangways so limited front windows on driving and non driving side , smallish side cab windows and no window at 45 degrees which gives a large blind spot especially unhelpful when locating stop car markers on offside.
 

irish_rail

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Unfortunately alot of modern EMUs seem to be poor in this respect. Cab visibility is extremely important and in my view a real design flaw.
Thinking of a route I drive, the Gunnislake , the view from the cl150 is poor at level crossings, when looking for approaching people , cycles and cars is paramount. New EMUS look even worse. Apparently the priority is making the gangway as wide as possible, however i can't help but think this should not be the priority and the priority should be driver visibility!!

And a quick note on the 80x family. The desk is very very high and the seat can be very difficult to adjust properly. Often I am forced to sit virtually on the cab floor due to the seat being stuck on "uber bouncy" mode which leads to limited visibilty out of the front. This limited visibilty also gives an impression of much lower speed than the reality and can lead to slight misjudgements when making station approaches.
 

Inversnecky

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Unfortunately alot of modern EMUs seem to be poor in this respect. Cab visibility is extremely important and in my view a real design flaw.
When you compare the view through a small rectangular window on some EMUs with the veritable vistas through a panorama of DMU windows, a driver must feel short changed.
 
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Fincra5

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I feel the Electrostar family has a better visibilty for a gangway unit that other EMUS of similar style. I drive Electortars and when I see pictures cab view from of Desiro's (350s, 450,s 444s and 380s) and of 385s... I think we get the best view for a gangway unit. Is the visbility as good as say a 170, possibly not.
 

Neptune

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When you compare the view through a small rectangular window on some EMUs with the veritable vistas through a panorama of DMU windows, a drive must feel short changed.
That’s why I’m glad Northern went with the 195/331 design with a full width cab and central driving seat.
 

furnessvale

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When you compare the view through a small rectangular window on some EMUs with the veritable vistas through a panorama of DMU windows, a drive must feel short changed.
On the other hand, a small window can be made strong enough to resist a brake block thrown through it, which led to the ultimate death of a friend of mine.
 

Ashley Hill

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Isn't this a design thing on modern units i.e the drivers view is concentrated on the line ahead.
With 20s running nose first you hoped your secondman was reliable. I suppose the class 15/16s were worse with noses both ends.
 

O L Leigh

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I feel the Electrostar family has a better visibilty for a gangway unit that other EMUS of similar style. I drive Electortars and when I see pictures cab view from of Desiro's (350s, 450,s 444s and 380s) and of 385s... I think we get the best view for a gangway unit. Is the visbility as good as say a 170, possibly not.

Absolutely, definitely, unquestionably not.

As for the Electrostar cab, I presume you never got the chance to drive any of their predecessors because the visibility is in no way better than what went before. There are blind spots all over the place and you simply cannot see anything to the right of centreline, which is difficult when you have sharp right-hand bends. Whether it's better or worse than a Desiro, Hitachi or CAF equivalent I'm unable to say, but I have cabbed a number of Cl350s and I would say that they are about on a par.
 
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