Glasgow - Euston Record Run 2006

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pt_mad

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Anyone know whether the top speed of the record run from Glasgow to Euston on 22nd September 2006 achieved in 3 hours 55 minutes 27 seconds was 125mph or higher?
 
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LE Greys

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I was on board, and managed to record the time to the nearest 1/100th of a second (somehow). Highest I timed was 129 mph between Acton Bridge and Winsford, but that's slightly suspect, being over seven miles without a proper timing point (I lost my place and don't know the line well). I also got 127 mph at Hemel Hempstead and 126 mph at Wolverton. All on my little stopwatch with a broken strap, and scribbled on a timing sheet we were handed out.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Not necessarily, it's not unheard of for record runs to have speed restrictions relaxed (but I don't know for sure either way in this case).
Wasn't in this case, we had to obey TASS the whole way. Seems it's not quite reliable.
 

Crossover

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I have the VT book, Decade of Progress, which details the run and I'm sure it says something about the driver being authorised to run slightly over 125mph at certain points, (though only within TASS tolerances I think). I will try and remember to check and get back to you :)
 

12CSVT

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'Railway Magazine' did a 'cab ride' DVD which came with one of their magazines. According to the commentary it did reach 127 mph at one point but this was only very brief.
 

Crossover

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Looking at aforementioned book, it is showing speeds such as 125/128 through Tring, though not sure exactly what this is denoting.
There is a note at the bottom though saying that unlike on previous record attempts, the permitted top speed could not be allowed due to TASS as it would have kicked in.

From what I understand though, it allows a small percentage overspeed so 128 is plausible, though not much, if anything, above that as the electronics then interject.
 

LE Greys

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Looking at aforementioned book, it is showing speeds such as 125/128 through Tring, though not sure exactly what this is denoting.
There is a note at the bottom though saying that unlike on previous record attempts, the permitted top speed could not be allowed due to TASS as it would have kicked in.

From what I understand though, it allows a small percentage overspeed so 128 is plausible, though not much, if anything, above that as the electronics then interject.
I think that's average and maximum. I got 121 at Tring, but it's not very far from my 127, so it's plausable. Times "at" somewhere usually mean between there and the previous timing point (in my case Bourne End Junction to Hemel).
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
'Railway Magazine' did a 'cab ride' DVD which came with one of their magazines. According to the commentary it did reach 127 mph at one point but this was only very brief.
I've got that. There are a lot of interesting snippets of historical film on there as well.
 

dk1

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Such as on 26 September 1991 when 91012 did the 393 miles between King's Cross and Edinburgh in 3 hours 29 minutes!
Or the GEML 86 fairwell back in the mid 2000s when 'Crown Point' beat 'Round Tabler's' pre-electric launch set in 1987. Luckilly this new record was before the roll out of OTMR. Ride was extremelly rough in places due to the excessive speed & the driver was later spoken to severely although the spoil-sports never made it official.
 

Cherry_Picker

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I was on board, and managed to record the time to the nearest 1/100th of a second (somehow).

Out of curiosity, how would you do that given there is no obvious start point or finish line? Was it doors locked in London to doors open in Glasgow? Was it wheels rolling in London to at a stand in Glasgow? Was it something else?
 

ainsworth74

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How fast would it be if the train was going at 140 mph or even travel via HS2?
None stop at 140mph (assuming that it had a totally clear run and that it could actually do 140mph all the way) then it would have been just under three hours. I'm not sure what you mean by travelling via HS2, do you mean a 390 using HS2 (in which case no faster as a 390s top speed is 140) or do you mean using HS2 Classic Compatible stock (in which case the estimate is that when phase one is open London to Glasgow will be 4 hours).
 

LE Greys

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Out of curiosity, how would you do that given there is no obvious start point or finish line? Was it doors locked in London to doors open in Glasgow? Was it wheels rolling in London to at a stand in Glasgow? Was it something else?
From wheels rolling to a stand, mostly because I remember reading that that was how it was done in one of Peter Semmens' books.

None stop at 140mph (assuming that it had a totally clear run and that it could actually do 140mph all the way) then it would have been just under three hours. I'm not sure what you mean by travelling via HS2, do you mean a 390 using HS2 (in which case no faster as a 390s top speed is 140) or do you mean using HS2 Classic Compatible stock (in which case the estimate is that when phase one is open London to Glasgow will be 4 hours).
I did some guesswork and calculations on that, firstly, taking out the slight delays and minor signal checks we had in Scotland to give a 'perfect' run, and that would have shattered the record at 3hrs 49. Allowing 140 running south of Crewe, but including the minor checks would have given 3hrs 45 almost precisely, which might just make a 4hr dead scheduled service possible with stops at Carlisle and Preston only (both have speed restrictions anyway).
 

sprinterguy

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I did some guesswork and calculations on that, firstly, taking out the slight delays and minor signal checks we had in Scotland to give a 'perfect' run, and that would have shattered the record at 3hrs 49. Allowing 140 running south of Crewe, but including the minor checks would have given 3hrs 45 almost precisely, which might just make a 4hr dead scheduled service possible with stops at Carlisle and Preston only (both have speed restrictions anyway).
BR proposed Euston to Glasgow journey times of 3 hours 52 minutes with 140mph running with APTs, so your calculations sound plausible.
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
None stop at 140mph (assuming that it had a totally clear run and that it could actually do 140mph all the way) then it would have been just under three hours. I'm not sure what you mean by travelling via HS2, do you mean a 390 using HS2 (in which case no faster as a 390s top speed is 140) or do you mean using HS2 Classic Compatible stock (in which case the estimate is that when phase one is open London to Glasgow will be 4 hours).
As I'm sure you are aware, there would never be a possibility of a 140mph start to stop average speed for a run limited to a 140mph maximum on the existing infrastructure, as it simply isn't possible to travel at 140mph all the way! It would probably be more realistic to consider the average speed of the 125mph Pendolino record run and to extrapolate a value from that: The stop to start average for the Pendolino record run was 102.25mph, which represent 81.8% of the 125mph maximum that was allowed.

If we use this same percentage for a 140mph run, then that produces a a start to stop average of 114.5 mph. So that would be a journey time from Euston to Glasgow of 3 and a half hours. Although to be honest you would probably use a lower percentage value than that, as the faster the maximum speed the less the decrease in journey times becomes. This is because it becomes increasingly difficult to shave any more time off the total journey time due to the constraints of the infrastructure, even if speed restrictions are relaxed.
 
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ainsworth74

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As I'm sure you are aware, there would never be a possibility of a 140mph start to stop average speed for a run limited to a 140mph maximum on the existing infrastructure, as it simply isn't possible to travel at 140mph all the way!
Well of course! I was just being lazy with the maths ;)
 

DownSouth

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I was on board, and managed to record the time to the nearest 1/100th of a second (somehow). Highest I timed was 129 mph between Acton Bridge and Winsford, but that's slightly suspect, being over seven miles without a proper timing point (I lost my place and don't know the line well). I also got 127 mph at Hemel Hempstead and 126 mph at Wolverton. All on my little stopwatch with a broken strap, and scribbled on a timing sheet we were handed out.
Out of curiosity, how would you do that given there is no obvious start point or finish line? Was it doors locked in London to doors open in Glasgow? Was it wheels rolling in London to at a stand in Glasgow? Was it something else?
He's clearly not a physicist. A physicist would understand that just because the stopwatch has extra digits on the right doesn't mean it's actually measuring it to ±0.01 seconds. Human reaction times would make it ±1 second at least. Without the stopwatch being calibrated against a source based on an atomic clock (like a GPS receiver) beforehand, you can't even guarantee ±1 second precision.

Likewise, measuring it "at a station" also impacts the precision of timing measurements - is the stopwatch clicked when the station comes into view, when you pass the start/middle/end of the platform, when you pass a sign on the platform or just some random point somewhere in the rough vicinity of the station? How precise is the distance given to the relevant point, is it just in miles and chains (i.e. ±20.12 metres) or is it accurate to the nearest metre? Is the exact track to be followed the source of distance measurements, or is it some approximate distance applied to all tracks on the route?

A physicist would understand that the various errors in precision (stopwatch calibration, inaccurate distances, inconsistent measurement points, reaction times, calculation mistakes such as imprecise conversion) are all multiplied together, not added. I've just done a few quick sums and found that you're dealing with potential errors of anywhere between 2-6% on a given interval from one station to the next, easily enough to account for pulling a figure like 129 mph out of the air.

Without having a motorsport-style transponder on the train and timing beacons placed at locations previously surveyed for the exact distance on the track path to be used, you can't expect to get anything within ±5 mph for the average speed over a given interval, especially not distances shorter than about 10 miles. His accuracy claims are not to be taken seriously.
 

LE Greys

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He's clearly not a physicist. A physicist would understand that just because the stopwatch has extra digits on the right doesn't mean it's actually measuring it to ±0.01 seconds. Human reaction times would make it ±1 second at least. Without the stopwatch being calibrated against a source based on an atomic clock (like a GPS receiver) beforehand, you can't even guarantee ±1 second precision.

Likewise, measuring it "at a station" also impacts the precision of timing measurements - is the stopwatch clicked when the station comes into view, when you pass the start/middle/end of the platform, when you pass a sign on the platform or just some random point somewhere in the rough vicinity of the station? How precise is the distance given to the relevant point, is it just in miles and chains (i.e. ±20.12 metres) or is it accurate to the nearest metre? Is the exact track to be followed the source of distance measurements, or is it some approximate distance applied to all tracks on the route?

A physicist would understand that the various errors in precision (stopwatch calibration, inaccurate distances, inconsistent measurement points, reaction times, calculation mistakes such as imprecise conversion) are all multiplied together, not added. I've just done a few quick sums and found that you're dealing with potential errors of anywhere between 2-6% on a given interval from one station to the next, easily enough to account for pulling a figure like 129 mph out of the air.

Without having a motorsport-style transponder on the train and timing beacons placed at locations previously surveyed for the exact distance on the track path to be used, you can't expect to get anything within ±5 mph for the average speed over a given interval, especially not distances shorter than about 10 miles. His accuracy claims are not to be taken seriously.
I'm actually a biologist (and a bit of a motorsport fan) but I do not claim to be that accurate, just lucky, hence the word 'somehow'. I was doing my absolute best to keep within 0.25 seconds of accuracy, but was only able to do station-to-station times because I was on the wrong side for the mileposts. The 0.25 seconds came from a combination of practice (i.e. doing this a lot) and quick reactions (I've tested quicker than 0.2 seconds before). The figures usually given are either the centre of the platform, the station building or a nice noticeable point like the footbridge (and most milecharts have a note to say what to look for). Miraculously hitting 0.01 seconds over a nearly 4 hour period was pure, blind luck.

I also tried to callibrate them by looking at the figures on either side. Taking City of Truro as an example, I would consider the 102.3 mph to be unconfirmed, because it was not backed up by (for instance) 100 mph on either side to allow for fluctuations. Same goes for my 129, that was not confirmed (flanked by 116 and 108). My 127 on the other hand was, since that was flanked by 126 and 124, themselves flanked by 121 and 120. That could be interpreted two ways. One, random fluctuation. Two, the train speeding up from a speed restriction (110 north of Bletchley) and peaking at a speed just beyond the speed limit, then slowing down again (for the 115 north of Bushey).

Another point is the length of the train. I was in Coach C, the seventh vehicle. I checked my log against John Heaton's. He was one of the official timers, in Coach J I think, but had to allow for the 375 ft or so of train between us. It turned out to be remarkably close. He actually got 128 at the same point I had my 127, but was obviously on the other side and working from quarter-milepost.

Also, remember, each individual point is independent of the previous one. Unless the watch itself is wrong - and I ran it against the Speaking Clock beforehand - then there are a series of individual possible errors rather than a cumulative one.
 
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