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More units for Northern

Also, which train do you prefer?


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CarrotPie

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Just thinking about the 350/2s soon to be going to off-lease from WMT and also Northern looking at getting more trains. My plan is this:
  • West Midlands Railway's new Class 730s replace the Class 323s, which then transfer to Northern, bolstering their current Class 323 fleet.
  • London Northwestern Railway's Class 730s replace their Class 350/2s, which then transfer to Northern, replacing their Class 319 fleet.
  • These Class 319s then become Class 769s, swelling the ranks of the current fleet on order.
  • Greater Anglia's Class 379s also transfer to Northern, running on services around Leeds and Skipton with Northern's Class 333s.
Any thoughts/improvements on this, or other similar plans?
 
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JonathanH

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Just thinking about the 350/2s soon to be going to off-lease from WMT and also Northern looking at getting more trains. My plan is this:
  • West Midlands Railway's new Class 730s replace the Class 323s, which then transfer to Northern, bolstering their current Class 323 fleet.
  • London Northwestern Railway's Class 730s replace their Class 350/2s, which then transfer to Northern, replacing their Class 319 fleet.
  • These Class 319s then become Class 769s, swelling the ranks of the current fleet on order.
  • Greater Anglia's Class 379s also transfer to Northern, running on services around Leeds and Skipton with Northern's Class 333s.
Any thoughts/improvements on this, or other similar plans?
Do Northern need more electric units? They are already due to discard their existing 319s in favour of 17 (out of 26) of the WMT 323s. If they need more electric units, it would surely be the rest of the 323 fleet first. After that, there really isn't much scope for more electric units to be used.
 

xotGD

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Class 90s on Mark 4s.

Loco swap at Skipton for a 67 forward to Carlisle.
 

JonathanH

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There’s always the Goverment owned 365‘s looking for a home
Which again, Northern have no use for because they already have plans for all the possible electric stock (16 333s, 12 331/1s, 31 331/0s and 34 323s) they need in the short and medium term and there are nine much more suitable (and seemingly available) units (the rest of the 323s) which aren't in that plan.

This thread is effectively flogging a dead horse.
 

D365

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This thread is effectively flogging a dead horse.
This. As far as I can tell, it’s pure fantasy.

For those who aren’t aware, 17 of the 23 Class 323s from WMT are expected to transfer to Northern for the purpose of replacing those 319s. In terms of West Yorkshire, as far as I recall, six four-car Class 331s are used to supplement the Class 333s.
 

Neptune

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This is yet another solution looking for a problem.

Can we please stop worrying about the 350/2 and 379 fleets. They are the leasing company’s problem.
 
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py_megapixel

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  • West Midlands Railway's new Class 730s replace the Class 323s, which then transfer to Northern, bolstering their current Class 323 fleet.
This is an excellent idea. In fact, Northern think so too - they've already agreed to take on most of WM's 323s when the 730s arrive.

  • London Northwestern Railway's Class 730s replace their Class 350/2s, which then transfer to Northern, replacing their Class 319 fleet.
There will no longer be any need for the 319s - or any replacement for them once the 323s transfer.
In any case, due to their slow door operation and being geared for 110mph (correction: I was wrong about this; see post #25 below), the 350s better suited to the regional-express type services.

Incidentally, I believe the reason the 350/2s were going off lease was that Porterbrook decided to jack up the leasing costs beyond what it would cost to order new units in partnership with another leasing company, so I can't see any compelling reason for Northern to want them.

  • Greater Anglia's Class 379s also transfer to Northern, running on services around Leeds and Skipton with Northern's Class 333s.
Northern have already expressed a desire for a more simplified/homogeneous fleet - if they get any more EMUs they'll either be the other 9 323s or a follow-on of 331s, not the 379s.
 
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Energy

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I'm expecting Northern to order some more 331s at some point (they talked about it in a RAIL article some time ago but didn't say what for) to replace the 333s. Other than that I can't see much more happening other than getting the 9 additional 323s at some point for more capacity.

Northern isn't short of electrified stock, now if you could find a load of mid life diesel stock (like turbostars) I'm sure they would be interested, nothing has been said for 175s but Angel will want them doing something.


Incidentally, I believe the reason the 350/2s were going off lease was that Porterbrook decided to jack up the leasing costs beyond what it would cost to order new units in partnership with another leasing company,
Yep, given that Northern is subsidised (as a whole, I would imagine the electric routes do not need subsidy) they don't have loads of cash. New 331s or the 9 323 units will likely be cheaper to lease and require less training.
 

py_megapixel

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Northern isn't short of electrified stock, now if you could find a load of mid life diesel stock (like turbostars) I'm sure they would be interested, nothing has been said for 175s but Angel will want them doing something.
175s are an interesting one as they're not really suitable for many Northern routes due to the door configuration.
If I was in charge I'd put the 175s on the "Northern Connect" routes such as MIA-Barrow, MIA-Windermere, Chester-Leeds and so on, displacing 195s onto commuter routes either for additional capacity or to get rid of some of the 150s.

Yep, given that Northern is subsidised (as a whole, I would imagine the electric routes do not need subsidy) they don't have loads of cash. New 331s or the 9 323 units will likely be cheaper to lease and require less training.
Amusingly, not the first time Porterbrook have tried that gamble, and not the first time they've failed! They did basically exactly the same thing to Northern, refusing to renew their lease on the 323s at a sensible price - so Northern found replacements, and no other TOC wanted them, so they were worse off than when they started!
 

Llandudno

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175s are an interesting one as they're not really suitable for many Northern routes due to the door configuration.
If I was in charge I'd put the 175s on the "Northern Connect" routes such as MIA-Barrow, MIA-Windermere, Chester-Leeds and so on, displacing 195s onto commuter routes either for additional capacity or to get rid of some of the 150s.


Amusingly, not the first time Porterbrook have tried that gamble, and not the first time they've failed! They did basically exactly the same thing to Northern, refusing to renew their lease on the 323s at a sensible price - so Northern found replacements, and no other TOC wanted them, so they were worse off than when they started!
I like the 175s, but I don’t think we should be looking at keeping end door stock on Oxford Road and Piccadilly, platform 13 and 14 routes.

I Northern did get some 175s, which routes would they be best suited to?
Leeds - Carlisle/Morecambe?
 

LOL The Irony

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Northern need more diesel units, any of them knocking about?
I believe that all EMR 156's are going to Northern, on top of that, there's the EMR 158s and all of the TfW 150s & 158s, none of which have a home. If that happens, the majority of Northern services should all be at least 3 carriages (discounting failures). And as mentioned above, the 175's are without a home and are cleared for both routes into Chester.
 

Metrolink

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I personally voted class 350/2s as the most ideal option, and that they should replace the 319s.
If I was in charge I'd put the 175s on the "Northern Connect" routes such as MIA-Barrow, MIA-Windermere, Chester-Leeds and so on, displacing 195s onto commuter routes either for additional capacity or to get rid of some of the 150s.
I agree, I think getting rid of 150s is a good idea and replacing them with higher capacity trains, to run commuter lines e.g the CLC (an obvious one for me) and replacing Calder Valley and Ribble Valley Units with other units, such as 195s
 

py_megapixel

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I personally voted class 350/2s as the most ideal option, and that they should replace the 319s.
If you're going to go the cascaded-stock-to-replace-the-319s option - which, as already mentioned, is unnecessary as the 323s are already coming - then I can't see any real reason to choose the 350s over the 379s. The 379s have quicker doors, are geared for 100mph which fits better with the rest of the fleet (correction: so are the 350s, see post #25 below by @swt_passenger), and are in fact slightly newer.
 
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Metrolink

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If you're going to go the cascaded-stock-to-replace-the-319s option - which, as already mentioned, is unnecessary as the 323s are already coming - then I can't see any real reason to choose the 350s over the 379s. The 379s have quicker doors, are geared for 100mph which fits better with the rest of the fleet, and are in fact slightly newer.
Yes, but if I’m being honest I just prefer the 350s. As much as your point is valid (and probably right) it’s my personal preference.
 

py_megapixel

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Yes, but if I’m being honest I just prefer the 350s. As much as your point is valid (and probably right) it’s my personal preference.
If enthusiast preference was how they chose stock then commuter trains all over the country would be Mk2s hauled by 37s or 86s :D
 

swt_passenger

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If you're going to go the cascaded-stock-to-replace-the-319s option - which, as already mentioned, is unnecessary as the 323s are already coming - then I can't see any real reason to choose the 350s over the 379s. The 379s have quicker doors, are geared for 100mph which fits better with the rest of the fleet, and are in fact slightly newer.
Your point about 350/2 being “geared” for 110 mph isn’t really correct. They are still geared as from new for 100 mph, the upgrade simply strengthened the motor rotors to allow for increased speed but without altering the gearing. There‘s a few reasons to not use the 350/2, but that isn't one of them.
 

py_megapixel

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Your point about 350/2 being “geared” for 110 mph isn’t really correct. They are still geared as from new for 100 mph, the upgrade simply strengthened the motor rotors to allow for increased speed but without altering the gearing. There‘s a few reasons to not use the 350/2, but that isn't one of them.
Thanks for the correction. I will amend my posts.
 

JonathanH

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It has nothing to do with their current home. Read back my original post, just slowly and then think of who operates on the 2 routes into Chester from Manchester.
Yes, more 156s and 158s are a reasonable idea for Northern (if they can afford the extra lease cost which is not at all obvious) and can be maintained / worked alongside existing units.

If Northern were to take on 175s (either on cleared routes from Chester to Manchester or elsewhere) they would need to train both fleet staff and traincrew to work them, adding to costs. Whatever happens they won't be maintained at Chester which means a possible downturn in reliability of what has sometimes seemed a troublesome fleet.
 

LOL The Irony

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Yes, more 156s and 158s are a reasonable idea for Northern (if they can afford the extra lease cost which is not at all obvious) and can be maintained / worked alongside existing units.
The 156s from EMR are happening, I remember seeing it on its own thread or in the Northern refurbs thread.
If Northern were to take on 175s (either on cleared routes from Chester to Manchester or elsewhere) they would need to train both fleet staff and traincrew to work them, adding to costs.
That is indeed true, however, Northern need diesels and they need them 5 minutes ago.
Whatever happens they won't be maintained at Chester which means a possible downturn in reliability of what has sometimes seemed a troublesome fleet.
Longsight.
 

JonathanH

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The 156s from EMR are happening, I remember seeing it on its own thread or in the Northern refurbs thread.
Yes, that is true, although only 15 out of EMRs 24 156s, and part of the reason appears to be to eliminate 153s. https://www.railforums.co.uk/threads/e-m-r-156s-to-northern.214204/
That is indeed true, however, Northern need diesels and they need them 5 minutes ago.
See above but I will note that Northern needed more diesels based on pre-March 2020 levels of custom.
Longsight.
Maybe, although let's see if there is another use for them first.
 
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