Loco-hauled for Crosscountry?

Discussion in 'Traction & Rolling Stock' started by Mitchell Hurd, 10 Aug 2018.

  1. Mitchell Hurd

    Mitchell Hurd Member

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    Good evening people . Yesterday I picked up an 'Express' rail magazine. It has the question (in capital letters) 'Loco-hauled for CrossCountry?'

    From looking at that, it could be that Mark 4's and new bi-mode locomotives could take over Voyagers - especially the South West services! Perhaps a 125mph loco the same shape as the Class 68 or 88 would be nice.

    If this is going to happen then some workings to / from the South Coast would have to be a Mark 4 service (weekdays at least).
     
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  3. DenmarkRail

    DenmarkRail Member

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    Don’t think so, but what would I know?
     
  4. pt_mad

    pt_mad Established Member

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    Could it be that one of the potential bidders is cooking up this plan, hence the story?
     
  5. Mitchell Hurd

    Mitchell Hurd Member

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    I believe LNER have 32 IC225 sets. I multiplied on my calculator - 288 Mk4's in total...
    1. 12 going to the next Wales & Boarders franchise.
    2. If I've got this right, are some going to EMT to replace the Mark 3's? If so, that's 96.

    That leaves 180 left. From the next XC franchise, Mark 4's and newly-built locomotives will be a fast and quick way of increasing passenger capacity!

    I've not travelled in a Mark 4 - are they comfortable and I guess have fab ride quality?
     
  6. Darandio

    Darandio Established Member

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    Not really, no.
     
  7. DarloRich

    DarloRich Veteran Member

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    I thought one of the options on the tablee was a loco plus mkiv combo

    i think they are very comfortable.
     
  8. geoffk

    geoffk Member

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    Anything is better than a Voyager. And with a class 88 you can have electric traction under the wires.
     
  9. a_c_skinner

    a_c_skinner Member

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    They are OK, but isn't recieved wisdom that they won't fit up the MML without a deal of work on platform copings? Where will they fit on the XC routes? Also aren't some going to do Blackpool to somewhere near Euston for an independent operator (Alliance?). Somewhere I recall reading they were limited to 110 MPH pending review of speed limits. Trainspotters' magazine obviously.
     
  10. londonteacher

    londonteacher Member

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    This would make sense, and Mark 4s are of a good condition still.

    If they fit the route, then I think that this would be useful and a welcome addition to supplement the Voyagers. This could mean some Voyagers could be doubled up and some even possibly transferred to VTWC to allow for their services to be doubled.
     
  11. Darandio

    Darandio Established Member

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    I often find the ride terrible.
     
  12. Iskra

    Iskra Established Member

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    I think XC 221's are limited to 110 anyway, so that's not a problem.

    This would be nice, even just a handful of sets could make a big difference on XC. How many 68's are there spare? I'm guessing 67's can't accelerate fast enough to be useful?

    Wouldn't more HST's be faster and more resilient in the event of a loco failure?

    I'm not sure I believe this rumour though, just seems like more XC speculation.
     
  13. Minilad

    Minilad Established Member

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    221s can do 125. Restricted to 110 on the WCML as is every non tilt equipped train. So in effect only 110 between Stafford and Crewe.
     
  14. Iskra

    Iskra Established Member

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    Thanks for the clarification.
     
  15. Harbornite

    Harbornite Established Member

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    Mk4s on XC are unlikely. It has been looked at but the costs of getting them cleared for XC routes aren't worth it, apparently.
     
  16. a_c_skinner

    a_c_skinner Member

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    All this is XC froth. It will be some crackpot scheme dreamed up by one of the franchise hopefuls. There isn't a suitable locomotive apart from the 68s. Are these still Euro compliant enough to order more? At least the DVTs would give some luggage space!
     
  17. a_c_skinner

    a_c_skinner Member

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    Off topic, but how is that done? Surely we know the size of structures (gauging train) and (kinematic, dynamic) of the rolling stock so it should be easy and cheap. After all the Forth Bridge and Fife lines were gagued very rapidly for the Flying Scotsman when it became vital.
     
  18. Rail Blues

    Rail Blues Member

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    I agree, has more than a wiff of wibble about. It.
     
  19. gsnedders

    gsnedders Member

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    The cost of clearing them will be in the remedial work, not the paperwork. (The paperwork still isn't that cheap; it takes a fair bit of well-paid staff time.)
     
  20. class26

    class26 Member

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    I`ll second that. They are certainly far more comfortable than sitting on a voyager
     
  21. pt_mad

    pt_mad Established Member

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    Alliance (an Arriva company) is seeking a lease on I believe 6 sets of 7 coaches for Euston to Blackpool. Office of Rail and Road has now approved the application. Max 110mph on the WCML because of the curves.

    Virgin leased 221s do 125mph on the WCML as they still have tilt. XC 221s don't due to no tilt equipment. 220s also 125mph capable on ECML and core XC route where permitted speed allows. Max 110mph on WCML.
     
  22. pt_mad

    pt_mad Established Member

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    Far more comfortable than any DMU/bi mode unit surely. And that's going to be the only viable alternative.
     
  23. InterCity:125

    InterCity:125 Member

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    The whole line from Bristol temple meads to Bristol parkway was blocked at the end of September due to one of the XC hst power cars breaking down.
     
  24. Starmill

    Starmill Established Member

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    And incredibly slow traction everywhere else.
     
  25. InterCity:125

    InterCity:125 Member

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    92D0B330-1A07-49CF-8F1A-5A393B7B52E1.png
    Map of the electrified areas of the uk rail system. Slightly dated but gives a good idea. The only parts of the cross country network electrified are just Glasgow/Edinburgh to York/Doncaster, plus Leeds-Wakefield and Manchester-Birmingham.
     
    Last edited: 11 Aug 2018
  26. squizzler

    squizzler Member

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    As I said elsewhere, the CAF Mk5 (perhaps stretched to 26m) is a shoe-in. Don't be deflected by talk about Mk4's.

    Loco-wise, its bound to be class 68's to start with. There will almost certainly be emissions compliant engines available, remember how a few years ago they in turn predicted the demise of underfloor engines due to emissions, which never came to pass. In the July Modern Railways "Pan Up" Ian Walmsley talks about a revival of the VP185 lump used in a few of the class 43 power cars. Perhaps a new batch of class 68 design could use those - a British rather than American (Caterpillar) product as used presently?
     
  27. Up_Tilt_390

    Up_Tilt_390 On Moderation

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    Going off the question of comfort, is it not operationally impractical to bring back loco-hauled stock? The need for added turn around times, the space needed for the procedure of getting the loco from one end to the other, along with the fact you actually get slower trains because of the fact loco-hauled stock is often slower to accelerate and has trouble getting up hills more than multiple units?

    The only major main line railway that comes to mind that still uses loco-hauled long distant stock are Chiltern Railways. Everyone else in mind has moved into the future. True, extra coaches can easily be put in for more capacity at a last minute with loco-hauled, but with passenger demand and traffic and such it’s probably better to just extend Voyagers to at least seven coaches. All of them!
     
  28. CC 72100

    CC 72100 Established Member

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    The whole line from Bath to Westbury was blocked on Wednesday night due to a class 158 breaking down, one line into Paddington was blocked one night due to a 360 breaking down - all traction break down, nothing exciting or unusual to see here!
     
  29. Thunderer

    Thunderer Member

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    Short term obvious answer - ex-GWR HST's - tried, tested, many capacity issues on the core XC route will be relieved.
    Long term answer - bi-mode DEMU's (Hopefully with more than 4 or 5 coaches per unit) capable of 125mph..now that could be a variation of the class 800/802 or another train altogether, but it would make perfect sense to electrify the "gaps" - Birmingham to Derby and Sheffield, Sheffield to Doncaster and to where the XC line joins the ECML running to Wakefield, Leeds to York, Bromsgrove to Bristol, thus allowing a XC service from Glasgow/Edinburgh to Plymouth to run on the overhead 25Kv between Scotland and Bristol..very green indeed. If the DFT done a proper electrification job on the GWML, they would have electrified the Berks and Hants route to Exeter St Davids and from Cogload Junction north of Taunton to Bristol Parkway, if this had happened, XC could run on electric power between Exeter and Scotland, accelerating services and making them even more reliable...food for thought?
     
  30. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    No. Trains have used driving van trailers, or passenger carrying vehicles with a driving cab at one end, for decades!
    This is incorrect. Chiltern's Class 68 hauled trains have better performance than their Class 168 units!
    Not quite, and it is very common on the continent (e.g. Switzerland are far better than us at running railways)
    Nonsense.
    Surely this has been done to death before? Ordering additional carriages to extend Voyagers is no longer viable. Also Voyagers probably have only a relatively limited life left in them now anyway.
     
  31. fgwrich

    fgwrich Established Member

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    Indeed so, hence one of the reasons why TPE and ScotRail have also decided to use Class 68s on their loco hauled services as well. That and the Turbostars have always been fairly notoriously sluggish in the performance side of things.

    Also, as you’ve mentioned the Voyagers having a possible limited life left in them. I was wondering this the other day while looking a stabled XC example parked up in Reading Station with all its battle scars visible. The worst part appeared to be the roofline, especially in the area where the brake retarders are - more dents and twists along the roofline than any Mk3 I’ve ever seen.
     

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