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Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by EMD E8A, 24 Apr 2015.

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  1. EMD E8A

    EMD E8A Member

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    Hello everyone,

    I just signed up to this forum, and I hope I enjoy my stay. I'm a Canadian railway enthusiast (or railfan, as us North American enthusiasts call ourselves) and I started taking an interest in British trains within the last year or so. My interest began with a curiosity of the slam-door EMU's mentioned in Colin Garratt's The World Encyclopedia of Locomotives. (Specifically, the class 302's and 415/416's were mentioned.) I found the term "slam-door" amusing and I began learning more about these types of trains. From there my interest in British trains developed.

    I will be making my first visit to the UK later this year, so hopefully I can find help in the trip planning section of the forum. Cheers everyone!
     
  2. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    Welcome to the forum, and I have to say, very good taste in trains !

    The 415's and 416's haven't been in service for a few years now, but they were very comfortable workhorses with lots of character.

    If you're planning on visiting the National Railway Museum, they're currently cosmetically restoring a HAP unit (similar to the 416's, but built for slightly longer distances with first class) with the NSE society, so you might get to see it.

    http://www.networksoutheast.net/project-commuter.html
     
  3. fishquinn

    fishquinn Established Member Quizmaster

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    Welcome to the forum!

    As said above, the 415s and 416s don't operate any services any more but if you are interested in slam door stock then there are quite a few trains around which still have it.
     
  4. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Welcome to the forum from me too :)

    There will be plenty of us to advise on a UK visit, and more than happy to as well! Of course if you want to post a trip report from an adventure in Canada please do as we'll be more than happy to read it!

    Hopefully you'll enjoy learning more about the UK's extensive railway system on here, there's a lot to learn about!
     
  5. EMD E8A

    EMD E8A Member

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    Thanks for the welcome, gents!

    I was made aware by learning about British railways that unfortunately the slam-door trains are now gone. Hopefully when I get to London I will get some rides on a couple of 313's, 315's, and 465's, just to name a few. I will try to get a ride on a Class 121 Bubble Car on the Chiltern Mainline, as I understood some of those are still in use.
     
  6. CC 72100

    CC 72100 Established Member

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  7. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Strictly speaking, not quite true. The Caledonian Sleeper (London Euston to Glasgow Central and Edinburgh Waverley on the Lowland Sleeper, Inverness, Fort William and Aberdeen on the Highland Sleeper), HSTs and MK3s in use both between London Liverpool Street and Norwich, as well as on the loco-hauled workings around Fife, Scotland still use slam-door MK3 coaches, not to mention the handful of MK2s on the Seated Sleeper portions of the Caledonian Sleeper. Oh and of course MK3 coaches on the Night Riviera sleeper (London Paddington to Penzance)!

    Of course, I'm well aware you refer to the 'slam-doors' that were BR EMUs. It must be 10 years since they were withdrawn, 2010 I think for those which were modified for use on Brockenhurst to Lymington Pier services. Goodness that makes me feel old!

    Tons of 313s running between Moorgate (London) and Welwyn Garden City/Hertford North/Letchworth Garden City, so that won't be too difficult to do :)

    315s every 10 minutes on weekdays between London Liverpool Street and Shenfield, as well as every 15 minutes on weekdays between London Liverpool Street and Enfield Town, with some also turning up to Chingford.

    465s are also easy to do out of both London Victoria and London Charing Cross, as well as London Cannon Street. They go as far out as Dover Priory, although far easier to find on Metro services of course.

    Might I also recommend trying some 317s (mostly operating out of London Liverpool Street) as they are usually quite entertaining. Of course, for maximum enjoyment get yourself into the motor coaches on all of the above, it won't be quite the same sitting in the trailer coaches!

    Correct, Chiltern do still use a Class 121. This forum has the details of when they run (I believe it's just 121020 and 121034 that they use) in the Frequently Requested Diagrams thread, which should be a 'sticky' thread in the Allocations and Diagrams sector of this forum. Of course, these are subject to change and substitution by a Class 165 should the need arise, so check nearer the time. The 121s only run between Aylesbury and Princes Risborough, so no proper mainline running but I thoroughly enjoyed my run with 121034 a few years ago!

    It's also worth pointing out that the UK has several cities which can be great fun for an enthusiast. Glasgow also has an extensive network with some very enjoyable motive power (314s, 318s and 320s), and the 314s have only a couple more years left before they're due to go. If London's not an option, I would highly recommend Glasgow as a very good alternative! Leeds is also highly enjoyable, the variety of motive power there is rather impressive, and of course you'll find plenty of the notorious 'Pacer' DMUs there! Manchester and it's extensive tram network (Metrolink, if you're not already aware), not to mention variety of motive power on local trains and large number of routes is also worth a look.

    Not that I want to put you off London of course, it is after all that needs to be visited on a first visit if you want to sample the UK's railway in its busiest area, but just wanted to make sure you're aware we have several other places worth a visit!
     
  8. EMD E8A

    EMD E8A Member

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    Thank you! The 317's are definitely on my list, and I will definitely be riding in the motor coaches. I find it interesting that some of the the 317's, 319's, CIG's, BIG's, and VEP's (am I missing others?) have only one coach with traction motors.
     
  9. Domh245

    Domh245 Established Member

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    All of the 317-322, 455, and 456 classes have got 1 motored coach - common factor being they are all of the same family (albeit different generation) and so a similar design philosophy. Of course with the 456s, it is a bit of a skewed view though as they are 50% motored carriages compared to the 25-33% of the other classes
     
  10. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    Traditionally longer Southern EMU's tended to have a motor coach at each end. This changed with the CIG's built in 1964. Not sure why though. The REP's built for the Bournemouth line in 1967 had the traditional layout of two motor coaches, but they were designed to propel a further eight carriages.
     
  11. Smudger105e

    Smudger105e Established Member

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    I think you'll find the reason for one motor coach per unit was one of cost. If you have 2 motor coaches with 2 traction motors each, each coach needs it's own control equipment, camshaft, contactor etc. One motor coach, one camshaft, one MG (did CEPs have 2) etc.
     
  12. yorksrob

    yorksrob Veteran Member

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    Yes, the CEP's were basically an updated version of the 4COR's with motor coach and guards van at each end.
     
  13. Smudger105e

    Smudger105e Established Member

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    I meant 2 M/G sets. I believe that the Nelson didn't have M/G sets at all, that was another SR first for the EPBs.
     
  14. Bedpan

    Bedpan Member

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    I'd say 317s are one of the most entertaining EMUs to travel in sound wise, if you sit near the pantograph, as the transformer makes a loud humming noise when current is being drawn from the overhead line.

    Also the 121 is the one and only proper slam door still set in use, by which I mean carriage with a line of doors along the side corresponding with each seat bay.

    Welcome EMD E8A, where are you from? If E8A is the first part of your postcode I assume you are in New Brunswick and so you probably won't be able to help me, but do you know if there are websites in Canada like our Realtimetrains.co.uk where you can see the timings of all trains passing a certain point? (I'd particularly like timings of trains running along the shoreline in West/North Vancouver as whenever I go there I seem to just miss seeing one, and I'll be back there in a few months time). I know this is completely off topic an dyou probably live 1000s of km away if my hunch is right, but you'll be sure to see the request if I post it here!
     
  15. EMD E8A

    EMD E8A Member

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    Thank you Bedpan. Actually, E8A doesn't refer to my postal code. It's a type of passenger diesel locomotive built by EMD (formerly a division of General Motors) during the 1950s. I'm actually in Ontario.

    I have heard of realtimetrains.co.uk, and unfortunately I don't know of any websites like that over here. I would have to say from what I've observed so far about British railways is that organizing and planning is very meticulous. I like how I can download a working timetable from Network Rail's web site and pick which train I want to ride on base on the type of train used in a service! I wish we had something like that here.
     
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