Class 390 rollout

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Wapps

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Does anyone recall how the 390s were rolled out - in particular, at what point did they switch on the tilt and start 125mph ops? I am aware that they ran for a period without tilt and at 110mph.
 
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Energy

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I believe they started out as 8 car before being lengthened to 9 car.
 

KevinTurvey

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My first passenger runs in these were early 2004, and they were 8 coaches to begin with, meaning frequnt standing - only really 3.5 standard class coaches equivalent when the train manager office and shop were considered.

They were rolled out slowly in 04 and 05 with perhaps 1 train in 4 being a 390 to begin with.

In their early days the scrolling passenger display also showed the travel speed, I never saw it show above 108mph.

I think full 125mph tilt service started in autumn 2006, and also think they had all been lengthened to 9 coaches by then, although the 4 tracking didnt completely finish for another year or two. There will be people here with more accurate knowledge than me on this!
 

hexagon789

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Does anyone recall how the 390s were rolled out - in particular, at what point did they switch on the tilt and start 125mph ops? I am aware that they ran for a period without tilt and at 110mph.
Tilt was implemented with the summer 2005 timetable I believe. The EPS limits existed from 2002 though.

I believe they started out as 8 car before being lengthened to 9 car.
Yes, minus the Trailer Standard

Originally they were all going to be 8-car. Then before the build it was changed to a mix of 8 and 9-car. Then the ratio was changed. Finally, they settled on all 9-car but presumably the build had started by then hence the first units being delivered as 8-car

My first passenger runs in these were early 2004, and they were 8 coaches to begin with, meaning frequnt standing - only really 3.5 standard class coaches equivalent when the train manager office and shop were considered.

They were rolled out slowly in 04 and 05 with perhaps 1 train in 4 being a 390 to begin with.

In their early days the scrolling passenger display also showed the travel speed, I never saw it show above 108mph.

I think full 125mph tilt service started in autumn 2006, and also think they had all been lengthened to 9 coaches by then, although the 4 tracking didnt completely finish for another year or two. There will be people here with more accurate knowledge than me on this!
Yes, all 9-car by that point.

As to seats - an 8-car seated 145 First and 218 Standard; extra 76 seats in the TS. It wouldn't have been helped by having two Standard Class wheelchair cars reducing Standard seating further as per the Voyagers either.
 
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route101

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I recall Glasgow Central got its first 390 in regular service in early 2004(Started as one service per day) and it was all 390 by Dec 04.
 

hexagon789

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I recall Glasgow Central got its first 390 in regular service in early 2004(Started as one service per day) and it was all 390 by Dec 04.
The first revenue earning passenger with a 390 on Euston/Glasgow was on January the 5th, 2004. The services were 1S55 0830 Euston - Glasgow and its return working 1M31 1535 Glasgow - Euston with 390004 having the honours.

The first 390 to visit Glasgow Central was 390012 which visited with a test run on 29/04/2003.
 

Scotrail314209

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An eight car 390, I can't believe they were considering keeping them a mix of 8 or 9 car. Even before COVID, some 11 car services were extremely busy, even more so on the current 9 car services.

Wasn't the reason for tilt being turned off due to a few issues resulting in certain coaches being stuck in the tilted position?
 

Wapps

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My first passenger runs in these were early 2004, and they were 8 coaches to begin with, meaning frequnt standing - only really 3.5 standard class coaches equivalent when the train manager office and shop were considered.

They were rolled out slowly in 04 and 05 with perhaps 1 train in 4 being a 390 to begin with.

In their early days the scrolling passenger display also showed the travel speed, I never saw it show above 108mph.

I think full 125mph tilt service started in autumn 2006, and also think they had all been lengthened to 9 coaches by then, although the 4 tracking didnt completely finish for another year or two. There will be people here with more accurate knowledge than me on this!
Thank you. That’s interesting regarding be travel speed. I wonder why that is no longer shown? Perhaps it had been intended to show 140mph running and 124mph doesn’t look so good.
 

hexagon789

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An eight car 390, I can't believe they were considering keeping them a mix of 8 or 9 car. Even before COVID, some 11 car services were extremely busy, even more so on the current 9 car services.

Wasn't the reason for tilt being turned off due to a few issues resulting in certain coaches being stuck in the tilted position?
As per the XC Voyager situation at the same time, the issue was rising passenger numbers encouraged by new trains and improved service frequency.

The original idea with the 8-car was I believe that off-peak the first class fares would be significantly lower, rather like weekend first, and so the spread would be balanced between classes. Virgin also of course going for a operate like an airline approach.

Of course it didn't work, and the trains even with operating more frequently couldn't cope with the demand with their reduced capacity compared to the LHCS.

They were restricted to 110 for a period after a low speed buffer stop collision at Liverpool Lime Street caused by software issues in the WSP, don't recall any tilt locking issues like that. Afaik if the tilt fails the system automatically returns the car to level and locks it there.
 

cambsy

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I can t remember the exact details, but the first passenger tilting runs were 6 or so months before the September 2004 titling timetable, on certain services between Atherstone and Hanslope Junction,ramping up slowly to the Sept 2004 timetable, if memory correct, I think the first time i tilted was on a Liverpool-Euston run, with a driver learning the tilting function etc, between Atherstone-Hanslope Jct, with tilting round Weedon curves being memorable at the time,

I had been chasing my first tilting run for a while, n the rest of the route it was normal 110mph running, the first stage of tilting timetable was euston-Crewe and Manchester via Stoke, then gradually Crewe-Preston, then Preston onto Glasgow, once TASS was in place etc, and drivers were trained on EPS speeds and tilt, I always regret having not managed to ride on the APT.
 

johnrichmond70

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Does anyone recall how the 390s were rolled out - in particular, at what point did they switch on the tilt and start 125mph ops? I am aware that they ran for a period without tilt and at 110mph.
I was involved in the commissioning of the 390s at Asfordby Test Centre (Old Dalby Test Track). Originally 2 x pre-series trains were produced and sent to Asfordby (PS01 and PS02). PS01 was a 7 car set without tilt enabled, PS02 was 8 cars with tilt enabled. These undertook extensive testing from 2001 onwards. They were at times used for testing on the WCML and were numbered 390 001 (PS01) and 390 002 (PS02). Once the production sets were being built, numbered 390 003 onwards, 001 and 002 continued testing at Asfordby. Each production set had to complete either 1000 or 2000 miles fault free running before it was released into traffic. If there was a fault, the counter was reset. During this time 001 and 002 were sent back to Washwood Heath to be rebuilt and brought up to specification, before release in to traffic as 390 001 and 390 002. Hope this helps.
 

Wapps

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I was involved in the commissioning of the 390s at Asfordby Test Centre (Old Dalby Test Track). Originally 2 x pre-series trains were produced and sent to Asfordby (PS01 and PS02). PS01 was a 7 car set without tilt enabled, PS02 was 8 cars with tilt enabled. These undertook extensive testing from 2001 onwards. They were at times used for testing on the WCML and were numbered 390 001 (PS01) and 390 002 (PS02). Once the production sets were being built, numbered 390 003 onwards, 001 and 002 continued testing at Asfordby. Each production set had to complete either 1000 or 2000 miles fault free running before it was released into traffic. If there was a fault, the counter was reset. During this time 001 and 002 were sent back to Washwood Heath to be rebuilt and brought up to specification, before release in to traffic as 390 001 and 390 002. Hope this helps.
Thank you
 

Jamesrob637

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I'm sure December 2008 saw the introduction of three per hour to Manchester and Birmingham.

Don't forget that the WCML is still briefly three-track between Rugby and Nuneaton.
 

Wapps

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I'm sure December 2008 saw the introduction of three per hour to Manchester and Birmingham.

Don't forget that the WCML is still briefly three-track between Rugby and Nuneaton.
Isn’t it also 2 track between Coventry and Birmingham? Madness.
 

Ianno87

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I'm sure December 2008 saw the introduction of three per hour to Manchester and Birmingham.

Correct.

Presumably because it's a significant capacity bottleneck.

Although the timetable is built around the constraint to a large extent, and a surprising number of trains can be accommodated as a result.

The main compromise is skip-stopping the local service to fit between the Pendolinos.
 

Bald Rick

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Presumably because it's a significant capacity bottleneck.

Well, New St is at capacity too, so if there were more tracks between Cov and Birmingham, the only benefit would be to avoid the skip stopping as @Ianno87 says, which would of course slow down many journeys. The two trains an hour that terminate at International could go on to Coventry, although what you do with them there would be another issue.
 

LNW-GW Joint

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My memory is that Dec 2004 was the first "accelerated" 125mph timetable including tilt.
That's when the North Wales service went up from 3tpd to 5tpd using Voyagers and a hauled 390 on the peak service.

Tilt was not rolled out all at once either, it took until 2005 or later to upgrade parts of the Trent Valley - the last bit was Colwich-Stafford.
The North Staffs line was one of the early tilt sections (bar Oxenholme-Penrith which was the test section from about 2002).
The stretch via Weedon was another (except for Kilsby tunnel, which is still 110mph).
Wolverhampton-Stafford stayed at the old 90mph for a long time on electric, pending OHLE modification, while HST/221 went up to 125mph.

I also remember a Voyager PIS once showing the current speed - but limited to 110mph because of a tilt failure, the only one I have had in 2 decades...
Like may other aspects of GB rail, we fail to copy European practice in showing train speeds (except on Eurostar), even when we can.
 

Ianno87

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My memory is that Dec 2004 was the first "accelerated" 125mph timetable including tilt.
That's when the North Wales service went up from 3tpd to 5tpd using Voyagers and a hauled 390 on the peak service.

Also when Manchester-Euston went to 2tph all day.

EPS schedules to/from Glasgow didn't start until Dec 2005, IIRX.
 

Wapps

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Well, New St is at capacity too, so if there were more tracks between Cov and Birmingham, the only benefit would be to avoid the skip stopping as @Ianno87 says, which would of course slow down many journeys. The two trains an hour that terminate at International could go on to Coventry, although what you do with them there would be another issue.
Yes this is why madness - some of our biggest cities, and particularly the connection between London and Birmingham (no1 and no2 city), has poor infra, full of compromises that holds back growth and opportunity, that should have been fixed long ago. At least HS2 starts to remedy that. I think double tracking Birmingham - Coventry is on the wish list of various schemes too, eg Midlands Connect.
 

92002

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Also when Manchester-Euston went to 2tph all day.

EPS schedules to/from Glasgow didn't start until Dec 2005, IIRX.
The rollout of the 390s at 110mph was staged since the TASS Control system was not instantly fitted to the track to activate the train tilt system. When it was phased in at locations the speed increased to a max of 125mph, with enhanced speeds on curves.
 

Mikey C

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I'd forgotten that some early 390 formations were 8 cars only.

How long were the loco hauled Mk2 and Mk3 formations they replaced?
 

Journeyman

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I'd forgotten that some early 390 formations were 8 cars only.

How long were the loco hauled Mk2 and Mk3 formations they replaced?
To the best of my memory, they were about 8 coaches plus DVT, but it was a while ago now...
 

Jamesrob637

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I'd forgotten that some early 390 formations were 8 cars only.

How long were the loco hauled Mk2 and Mk3 formations they replaced?

Mk3 formations were usually 5x Second, Restaurant Buffet/1st and 2x First

Mk2 formations were usually 5x Second, Mk3 Restaurant/Buffet 1st and 3x First

All with DVT at the London end and 86/87/90 at the provincial end.
 

hexagon789

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I'd forgotten that some early 390 formations were 8 cars only.

How long were the loco hauled Mk2 and Mk3 formations they replaced?
The Mk2F sets were mostly:

DVT*-3 FO-RFM*-5 TSO
(*Mk3 vehicles)

The Mk3 sets were one of 3 formations:

DVT-2 FO-RFM-5 TSO
DVT-3 FO-RFM-4 TSO
DVT-3 FO-RFM-5 TSO

Some ad hoc formations varied from this theme, there was a DVT+7 Mk3 set (DVT-BFO-FO-RFM-4 TSO) going about in the 2000s and at least one Mk2F set with 6 TSOs making for DVT+10
 

Bald Rick

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I'd forgotten that some early 390 formations were 8 cars only.

How long were the loco hauled Mk2 and Mk3 formations they replaced?

To add to the answers above, the Mk2 sets all had seats aligned to windows, which although good for seeing out, wasn’t great for capacity. A standard Mk 2 TSO had 64 seats, FO had 42.
 

hexagon789

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To add to the answers above, the Mk2 sets all had seats aligned to windows, which although good for seeing out, wasn’t great for capacity. A standard Mk 2 TSO had 64 seats, FO had 42.
Though the 8-car Pendolinos were arguably more wasteful, none of the cars seating any more than 62 in Standard.
 

Mikey C

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To add to the answers above, the Mk2 sets all had seats aligned to windows, which although good for seeing out, wasn’t great for capacity. A standard Mk 2 TSO had 64 seats, FO had 42.

Though the 8-car Pendolinos were arguably more wasteful, none of the cars seating any more than 62 in Standard.
Especially bad as the Mk2s are 20m, rather than 23m...
 

Taunton

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To add to the answers above, the Mk2 sets all had seats aligned to windows, which although good for seeing out, wasn’t great for capacity. A standard Mk 2 TSO had 64 seats, FO had 42.
I haven't quite got this. The Mk2 vehicles were designed the proper way, do the vehicle layout, which was as efficient as they come, 8x8 bays in the SO, entrances and loos at the end. Then, having done that, you determine the window positions. Not the other way round.

Just imagine what it would be like if housebuilders put the windows on the plan first, to suit the convenience of the bricklayers, and then did the interior rooms and floors afterwards, ending up with some rooms with two windows and others with none - oh, I seem to have just described seating on much current rolling stock.
 
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