Class 170s/185s to Irish Rail?

Discussion in 'Traction & Rolling Stock' started by F Great Eastern, 28 Dec 2018.

  1. F Great Eastern

    F Great Eastern Established Member

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    Reports from multiple sources suggesting that Ireland's National Transport Authority (NTA) approached the ROSCOS in the UK about hiring some rolling stock to add extra capacity as it's likely that any new build trains will not be in service until 2023/2024 and there is a pressing demand for additional rolling stock as many services are overcrowded and because of serious issues with Alstom EMU and DMU stock built around the year 2000, almost 40 carriages are not going to operate any further services because it would represent poor value for money for units which made the 175/180 fleets look reliable.

    Whilst 10 DART carriages with serious issues that could be repaired but were very expensive to do so, were recently repaired having not turned a wheel in years and 2x7 car MK4 sets were returned to service having been stored for a while, Everything is now in service aside from the Alstom stock and services are still very busy with overcrowding almost certain to become worse over 2019 where passenger growth is expected to increase.

    Porterbrook have apparently said they can offer the following:
    - 8x 3 car Class 170
    - 4x 2 car Class 170
    - Unspecified number of Pacers

    Eversholt apparently can offer:
    - 22x 3 car Class 185

    Angel Trains reportedly have offered:
    - Unspecified number of Pacers
    - Unspecified number of Class 15x vehicles.

    According to several Irish forums, the Class 170 and Class 185 are the favourites for the job, with the pacers not being considered. It has already been assured by the ROSCOS that regauging the trains will not be a problem and something that they can arrange.

    With the PRM deadline coming, this could cause additional issues with lack of rolling stock, with Greater Anglia in particular seemingly in a difficult position. The NTA is apparently willing to sign longer term deals than UK TOCs would offer so this is meant to be attractive to the ROSCOS who don't want their assets sitting idle in 2020/2021.
     
    Last edited: 28 Dec 2018
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  3. superkev

    superkev Established Member

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    Does Ireland have any routes that need the performance of the lardbutt 185s.
    Perhaps better to use them on the Scottish (abandon the hst program?) or Pennine hills (S and C?).
    K
     
  4. Jonny

    Jonny Established Member

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    This sounds like a ploy. Let the Irish have pacers. Re-gauged, of course.
     
  5. edwin_m

    edwin_m Veteran Member

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    According to Wikipedia the Irish intercity DMUs (class 22000) are 63 tonnes per car, so heavier than a 185 which is 168.5 tonnes for a 3-car unit. There's no power rating given for the 22000 but I'd guess the 185 would be able to achieve similar timings.
     
  6. Jonny

    Jonny Established Member

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    Can they not just fix the stock that they already have?
     
  7. dubscottie

    dubscottie Member

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    I don't know where the 63 ton figure came from. The heaviest car is 50.1 tonnes. Each car has 480 hp.
     
  8. anthony263

    anthony263 Established Member

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    Sounds like this could be a lifeline ne for the roscos with many stocl going off lease over the next few years. If they need emus they can have the 350/360s then again maybe they might be interested in some 769s
     
  9. F Great Eastern

    F Great Eastern Established Member

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    They need more diesel capacity urgently - only the Howth/Malahide-Greystones Dublin Area Rapid Transport (DART) line is electrified and honestly they need units that are at least 3 cars lon running in multiple.

    Right now they have:

    DART (Electrified) fleet
    38x 2 car Class 8100 LHB DART EMU from 1983 (Heavy refurb from Siemens from 2005-2007)
    4x 4 car Class 8500 Tokyu Car DART EMU - Built 2000
    3x 4 Car Class 8510 Tokyu Car DART EMU - Built 2001
    9x 4 Car Class 8520 Tokyu Car DART EMU - Built 2003

    Commuter Fleet
    8x 3 Car Class 2600 Tokyu Car DMU - Built 1993
    10x 2 Car Class 2800 Tokyu Car DMU - Built 2000
    20x 4 Car Class 29000 CAF CxK DMU - Built 2002
    9 x 4 Car Class 29000 CAF CxK DMU - Built 2005

    Intercity Fleet
    7x 8 Car (Max) Local Hauled CAF MK4 - Built 2004-2005
    28x 3 Car Hyundai Rotem Intercity Railcar - Built 2007-2009 and 2011-2012.
    25x 4 Car Hyundai Rotem Intercity Railcar - Built 2007-2009
    10x 5 Car Hyundai Rotem Intercity Railcar - Built 2008

    The following stock is sat out of use and will not return to service due to chronic unreliability, despite recent studies into possibly reactivating them.

    12x 2 Car Alstom Sparrow DMU Commuter set - Built 1998 - Withdrawn 2012
    2x 1 Car Alstom Sparrow DMU Commuter Train - Built 1998 - Withdrawn 2012
    5x 2 Car Alstom EMU DART Train - Built 2000 - Withdrawn 2007.
     
  10. Jonny

    Jonny Established Member

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    The most obvious type to replace that lot like-for-like would be re-gauged pacers, especially if it never has to go above 110km/h (just below 70mph).
     
  11. F Great Eastern

    F Great Eastern Established Member

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    The problem with EMUs is that they would only be able to operate on a single line because apart from the DART line, none of the Irish network is electrified. So whilst say 10 EMUs would be a huge help on the DART if they could be converted to work on the power supply, it's not going to do anything for the commuter lines.

    The need for units in Irish Rail is only medium term. They plan to have new stock coming in from 2024 but they need something to plug the gap until then, especially on the commuter service. At the moment there are a number of intercity trains turning up on commuter services because this is all Irish Rail can put on them due to a lack of commuter vehicles and even the Intercity services are now starting to suffer as well.

    They are about to order some middle cars to lengthen the 3 and 4 car inter-city sets by a carriage each and obtaining DMU carriages from the UK will allow them to also cascade the intercity sets on commuter runs to double up existing Intercity diagrams, whilst also providing extra capacity and a more acceptable kind of vehicle on the commuter routes that actually allow people to stand safely.
    There's been studies into doing that and the cost of fixing stock that has long since sat idle is too great on the Alstom stock. They have however brought back into use 8 DART EMU cars from the Tokyu/LHB fleets n the last month or so that suffered serious failures as well as getting an additional MK4 set back working, but these were just odd units from reliable classes that suffered serious damage, the Alstom stuff makes the 175 and 180 look reliable.
    Those trains haven't seen service for the last 5-6 years however - in any case two car units are nowhere near good enough for Irish Rail now - they need 3-4 car units - the only way pacers would work would be if you ran 3 of them together which is less than desirable and honestly the paces would be politically unacceptable and would create a lot of bad press.
     
    Last edited: 28 Dec 2018
  12. DanNCL

    DanNCL Established Member

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    Only DART is electrified over in Ireland, and the wires are energised at 1.5kV DC rather than 25kV AC, so even if re-gauged UK EMUs couldn't work over there.
     
  13. Brissle Girl

    Brissle Girl Member

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    Given the message for years has been that there are no spare dmus to go around, I predict an uproar if just at the time a few become available they are shipped off to another country.

    I fully acknowledge that the ROSCOs have every right to get the best possible return for their assets, but it will prove once and for all what a dysfunctional railway we have in the UK, with no strategic leadership from the DFT.
     
  14. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    The 3 Original UK ROSCOs are all feeling a bit upset at the moment as lots of the new Rolling stock orders have been with the newer ROSCOs so they are going to get financially squeezed in the next few years so they are just mirroring DfT's treatment of them back to DfT just at the pount when lots of the franchise and direc tawards in the next 2 years could usefully use some of that rolling stock (e.g. EMT award and direct awards for XC, GWR, Chiltern etc.)
     
  15. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    The 185s are probably the best fit overall:

    3 car
    Decent performance so can fit into any role (e.g. allow cascades)
    A sensible number of identical units
     
  16. dgl

    dgl Member

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    Business works how it works, if they can get an instant "sale" then they will. I also wouldn't want to even attempt to get older Alstom stock back into service, hell, look at the problems Hull Trains are having with the 180's and if these are even worse then .

    As for converting modern stock to 1.5kV DC for the DART it can't be that difficult if it is modern stock with GTO/IGBT (i.e. no camshaft/resistors/contactors as part of the speed/power regulation) control, and there is the 360's and 350/2's coming off lease soon and even the 323's.

    I suppose going for the Siemens units would be best as they have a great reliability record, and have superior acceleration compared to the 170's/pacers.

    As for pacers, lets start the troubles again why don't we ;)
     
  17. Agent_Squash

    Agent_Squash Member

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    Might encourage the DfT to get a move on with the decision regarding Liverpool-Norwich and TPE...
     
  18. F Great Eastern

    F Great Eastern Established Member

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    The benefits of the 185 are that they are recently refurbished, with USB sockets and Wifi fitted as standard, are all going to be of exactly the same specification as each other and have won the golden spanners for the last 3 years running and can easily be sold as a brand new train almost and have exceptional build quality, but they are heavy on fuel and would be pretty unique to Irish Rail.

    The 170s that have been offered, I've just read, are of 'various configurations and spec' which obviously will go against them since it's going to add costs of upkeep of the interior, some will have had different engineering projects performed on them and some will be 2 car and some will be 3 car. However they do have a number of engineering and part similarities to existing Irish Rail stock.
     
  19. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    Given the relative speeds the 2 governments can act at, it is already too late for Liverpool-Norwich etc.
     
  20. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    Almost better than brand new as they have already been bedded in!
     
  21. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    The bodies will also look incredibly narrow on 5-foot-whatever gauge bogies! :)
     
  22. squizzler

    squizzler Member

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    Could the old Tyne and Wear metro cars be used for DART? They use 1500v DC and I gather the replacements are ordered, but I'm not sure what the timescales are.

    Perhaps UK Rosco's could lease out the surplus class 43's to re-gauge and reform into HST's with the power-door equipped Irish Mk3 coaches. Oh no but they can't, because the Irish scrapped all their Mk3s. Doh!
     
  23. hwl

    hwl Established Member

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    Tender at short list stage so no orders yet...
     
  24. LOL The Irony

    LOL The Irony Established Member

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    I agree with this notion.
     
  25. F Great Eastern

    F Great Eastern Established Member

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    They'd be of no help at all unfortunately as they're too short. Until recently, DARTS used to operate every 15 minutes and during peak were a mixture of 8 car Tokyu sets, 8 car LHB sets, 6 car LHB sets and an occasional 4 car set.

    Now they operate every 10 minutes, still with 8 car Tokyu sets, but almost all of the 8 car LHB sets are now down to 6 car sets and there has been an increase in 4 car usage. Overall there are 10 extra carriages in service in peak-time since the timetable changes.

    The problem with the DART is that the peak flow is to/from Dublin which is in the middle of the line, unlike your traditional UK railway which is peak flow to/from a terminus. Then you add the issue that the DART splits into two spurs and it's not as simple to plan from a capacity point of view. Also whilst the new DART timetable did provide extra capacity overall, it has saw some 8 car services go down to 6 cars.

    Realistically every DART service needs to be a mix of 6-8 car running every 10 minutes . At the moment you have outer commuter trains stopping at DART stations as well to relieve the DART, because there simply isn't enough rolling stock to provide adequate train lengths on a DART, which puts even more pressure on the already overcrowded commuters, many already lengthened from 1x4 cars to 2x4 cars in recent years.

    The doubling up of commuters can only be done by taking them from another commuter service, which then has to be backfilled by sending an Intercity train over to a commuter line, with all the problems that caused, such as a lack of any place for standees to hold on, the far lower capacity per carriage and the fact that this means that obviously there is less capacity for Intercity services.

    Essentially the whole Irish Rail network is currently being run by a series of half measures and quick fixes, inappropriate stock allocation, trains stopping where they really shouldn't, capacity issues and Peter constantly robbing Paul because pretty much nobody has enough rolling stock of any type s it's
     
    Last edited: 28 Dec 2018
  26. dubscottie

    dubscottie Member

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    The 185s would be the best bet.

    The plan is to concentrate all the 22000 on services out of Heuston. The Portarlington - Heuston section is very overcrowded in the peaks and numbers are going to rise.

    The units from the UK will be used on the Sligo & Rosslare InterCity services.

    The 2700 units are knackered and they are also banned from running in multiple south of Bray so they could not be used on the Rosslare services anyway.
     
  27. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    If this is true, when we have an inbuilt shortage of DMU's for ever more, it will be proof that the "privatisation" model needs to be buried once and for all.
     
  28. najaB

    najaB Veteran Member

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    Is there really a shortage? A whole bunch of DMUs are being freed up by electrification, plus GA and Northern have ordered a shedload of self-propelled vehicles (DMU/hybrid). Throw in the Class 769 project as well.
     
  29. F Great Eastern

    F Great Eastern Established Member

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    Was this the same privatised railway that was barred from adding cars to the Class 185 by the DFT, eventually agree a deal with the DFT (who dragged their heels for ages) for a large number of DMUs, which the DFT then backed out of under the excuse of electrification and then the DFT backed out of the electrification itself which led us to the situation where we are today, where in the next few years we will have a chronic shortage of DMUs and a vast oversupply of EMUs, which has in turn put some TOCs in awkward positions, whilst at the same time these actions (and other more recent procurement exercises) have annoyed the ROSCOs?

    The DFT are to blame here. Their dithering and flip flopping on policy has led us to the current situation and the ROSCOS have been badly burnt in the last few years so no surprise that they might want to try and export some rolling stock to new customers who they might be able to have a bit more faith in.
     
  30. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    A whole bunch of DMU's are being freed up and built, but in my neck of the woods, a whole load are being withdrawn/scrapped. If it all pans out that our overcrowding issues are all sorted, then please, sell them on. But I'm sceptical until I see it.
     
  31. Meerkat

    Meerkat Established Member

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    If there really was a shortage the ROSCOs wouldn’t be touting these trains somewhere they have to gauge change them
     

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