Class 90 'Cobblers' vs 12DES 'Desiros' on Northamton fasts

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yorkie

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As many of you will know, the SRA ordered too many trains for SWT and now has decided to put them to use on the WCML.

For the most part, it makes sense. Except - in my opinion - for the Northampton fast services.

Every weekday there are 2 fast services in each direction which must use the fast lines south of Ledburn Junction.

There is a need for them to get between Ledburn Jn and Euston as quickly as possible to avoid delaying 125mph Pendolinos.

Class 321s are banned from the fast lines (except contra-peak) as they use up too much capacity.

I say that the Class 90s + Mk3s that currently operate are more suited to this service than the 12-car desiros that are proposed by the SRA.

Here's some stats:-

90 + 10x Mk3s + DVT
Standard class seats (2+2): 648
First class seats (2+1): 48
Weight: Approx 450 tonnes
Max speed: 110mph

3x4Desiro
Standard class seats (2+2): 606
First class seats (2+2): 72
Weight: approx 510 tonnes
Max speed: 100mph

The new trains are notably heavier, and with fewer seats.

The loss of 2+1 first class seating, and the loss of First Class at the barriers at Euston, is a blow to first class passengers so could cause a decrease in FC passengers, despite the increase in FC seats.

I am not sure about track access charges but modern EMUs/DMUs are nit just heavy but cause more track damage than was previously thought and charges have increased recently to reflect this.

It is much more expensive to lease brand new trains (that must be paid for) than stock that is older and has already been paid for, just needs to be maintained, stored etc.

So, is this change really needed? I believe not. I belive the SRA simply has to find a use for these new trains to avoid an embarrasing repeat of the MML Meridian fiasco.

Comments?

Who will - and who should - foot the bill?
 
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Julian G

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the 350 should have the new routes Silverlink is going to have!!!
321 should stay and so class 90
whereas the class 90 is not that fast on accelerating!!! :x
this is what silverlink should do!!!
321-London-Tring,Milton Keynes,
350-London-Northampton,Birmingham-Preston?
90-express to birmingham and to preston?

and plus if the WLLG manages to make Southern go up to Birmingham either Rugby.....
321-the same^
350-Express to Harrow,Watford,Milton,Northampton and the same
90-the same

possibly a 319 or 377 calls at harrow,watford,leighton b,milton k,northampton,rugby,coventry,birmingham intl,birmingham new st.....
 

jonb

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I agree the 90's and Mark 3's should stay on the Northampton fasts I do not see why not as the coaches are fitted with CDL (Central Door Locking) which is perfectly safe and a requirement of the SRA. The Northampton stoppers (Watford, Milton Keynes, etc) Should be in the hands of the 350's as they are quicker accelerating than the 321's so would be able to cut dwell times at stations. Finally the Milton Keynes stoppers should be left in the hands of the 321's which would be restricted to the Slows.
 

bunnahabhain

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It's the opposite way to the Peak-Flow, like a Contra-Flow.

IE Out of London in the morning and into London in the evening, whereas normal Peak is the opposite.
 

yorkie

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Put it this way, if you get the 1723 to Northampton, you can get a fast train back :)

(Although in our case we got off at Milton Keynes anyway, saw a few 87s while we still could, a few freight trains and the 2nd Cobbler before getting a Pendo back).
 
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