FGW 158 Randomisation

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Schnellzug

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I notice that FGW seem to be mixing up the formations of 158s quite cheerfully lately; the other day I noticed a two-car set, 52762-57745, and just today there was a three-car set formed 52751-52763-57764 on the Weymouth line (the end two cars of 158951 with a different middle car). The message here would seem to be to note the coach numbers and not just the unit number, since, it seems, you can never be sure what it actually might be.
 
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455driver

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Maybe they are trying to get on top of the air conditioning problems before summer starts?

oops sorry, silly idea! :lol:

Probably just that a couple of coaches in different units need faults fixing so sets are being made up from the good coaches until such time as the units can go back to their proper formation, they dont like units staying misformed for too long due to the maintenance schedules, the last thing you want is different coaches in the same unit needing routine maintenance at different times.
 

172212

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Maybe they are trying to get on top of the air conditioning problems before summer starts?

oops sorry, silly idea! :lol:

Probably just that a couple of coaches in different units need faults fixing so sets are being made up from the good coaches until such time as the units can go back to their proper formation, they dont like units staying misformed for too long due to the maintenance schedules, the last thing you want is different coaches in the same unit needing routine maintenance at different times.
The latter could actually be a possible reason. Still seems odd to me, I'm sure they could have borrowed some units from Arriva, if the 158s needed replacing while being under maintainance
 

TEW

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The 3-car formations are chopped and changed quite often. The two-cars have to be put back in to original formations for certain exams I believe, which is why three-cars being formed without the extra carriage from another unit is quite common. This means that the additional carriages can be swapped around a bit. If there are individual carriages out it makes sense to from 3-car units from whatever is available. ATW don't just have 158s sitting around and FGW still hire a SWT unit, it was meant to end when the 150/1 refurbishment programme finished, but that finished a while ago and it's still hired daily.
 

Martin_1981

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As a slight aside, I do quite like the FGW 158's. Had a couple of pleasant trips recently between Exeter and Bristol on them, one of which was last night returning to Exeter. Comfortable seating, relatively spacious and not too much in the way of engine noise and vibration. Much better than XC Voyagers and as much as I love the HST, I find the seats better than those on FGW's HST's- at least you can see right down the carriage!

Martin
 

DJ_K666

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I did travel home in a 3 car (with a proper centre car) unit along the West Coastway recently. Mostly they are formed of 2 cars with an extra driving coach attached. I know the internal gangways are wider and they attach them using a translator plate.
 

Rhydgaled

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I'm sure they could have borrowed some units from Arriva, if the 158s needed replacing while being under maintainance
ATW don't seem to have enough 158s themselves. They seem able to lease a 150 or two every so often though, but surely even a 2-car 158 vice a 3-car 158 is better than a 150 vice a 3-car 158.

I did travel home in a 3 car (with a proper centre car) unit along the West Coastway recently.
West Coastway? Is that Portsmouth - Brighton? If so, I assume it was a First Great Western service rather than a SWT 159 covering for a shortage of EMUs (I don't think SWT go as far as Brighton anyway). First Great Western only have one proper 158 centre car I believe.
 

DJ_K666

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ATW don't seem to have enough 158s themselves. They seem able to lease a 150 or two every so often though, but surely even a 2-car 158 vice a 3-car 158 is better than a 150 vice a 3-car 158.

West Coastway? Is that Portsmouth - Brighton? If so, I assume it was a First Great Western service rather than a SWT 159 covering for a shortage of EMUs (I don't think SWT go as far as Brighton anyway). First Great Western only have one proper 158 centre car I believe.
Yes it was FGW. SWT stopped going to Brighton a few years back. There was an SWT one covering a shortage but I think that's gone back.
 

Schnellzug

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I did travel home in a 3 car (with a proper centre car) unit along the West Coastway recently. Mostly they are formed of 2 cars with an extra driving coach attached. I know the internal gangways are wider and they attach them using a translator plate.
that'd be 158798, I presume, one of the TPX three car units and I think the only one they have.
 

TEW

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Yes it was FGW. SWT stopped going to Brighton a few years back. There was an SWT one covering a shortage but I think that's gone back.
FGW still hire a SWT 158 everyday, it now does Swindon-Cheltenham services like it used to. For a while it was running the afternoon service to Brighton.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
that'd be 158798, I presume, one of the TPX three car units and I think the only one they have.
Yes, 158798 is the only proper 3-car 158 FGW have.
 

BestWestern

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The 158 fleet has been rather poorly lately, which might well explain more chopping and changing than usual. Several sets have been suffering from engines 'returning to idle' (i.e. refusing to power and just ticking over), plus a few other issues here and there. For whatever reason the past few weeks have been considerably worse than usual, I'm told that one set suffered a smoking and thoroughly knackered gearbox quite recently, which would obviously require removal from traffic for repairs. As ever, it's the old stock shortage chestnut, which means that there just isn't the required slack to get all the work done as quickly as it ought to be.
 

Charlie2555

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I hate the 3 car hybrid FGW units, they look so awful with different sized gangways and the locked out cab looks so wrong. I suppose it's the easiest thing to do though if you have surplus units and you need longer trains.
 
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