Not a good start for the FGW 180's

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mralexn

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Please be aware that the following 180 test trains that were planned to operate today are now CANCELLED:

5Z28 0615 Paddington to Oxford
5Z29 0747 Oxford to Paddington
5Z30 0935 Paddington to Oxford
5Z31 1055 Oxford to Paddington
5Z32 1233 Paddington to Oxford
5Z35 1655 Oxford to Paddington
5Z36 1935 Paddington to Didcot PW
5Z37 2036 Didcot PW to Paddington

This is due to a train fault.

So if they are failing, even on test runs, imagine what they will be like in actual service?

so my question is do you think they will become more reliable in time?
and also if available what other rolling stock do you think should be used on the London - Oxford route?
 
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jopsuk

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if BR/NSE had been more ambitious, it could have been 365s, same as Cambridge... similar distance.
 

YorkshireBear

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Well it does depend, the unit may be one of the ones that has not been through bursh yet on the major modifications program so you never know it could improve by time they are in service.

The 180s will do just fine on the jobs they are about to be placed on so i dont think there is a more suitable rolling stock. I think HSTs can be overkill and the turbos not good enough.
 

NSE

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I think that the 180's are fine for the route, I.e. two more carriages than the turbos, and a speed increase down the GWML on the Reading stretch might help make up time when there are delays. However we do know they are unreliable so I guess that's nothing unexpected. But I can't think of any other available rolling stock to use, so they'll have to do!
 

Zoe

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if BR/NSE had been more ambitious, it could have been 365s, same as Cambridge... similar distance.
But if they'd done that then Oxford would not benefit from a half-hourly HST service. The turbos (networker based like the 365s) were not coping with the Oxford commuters and it was lucky that there were HSTs available at the time to take over these services. It's the same for the peak semi-fast services to Westbury, the turbos would not cope well with this so HSTs are used.
 

Failed Unit

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But if they'd done that then Oxford would not benefit from a half-hourly HST service. The turbos (networker based like the 365s) were not coping with the Oxford commuters and at the same time available HSTs were available and so it was decided to use these on commuter services.

Oxford would have been fine, the Cotswolds shafted. I suspect the 365s would have ran to Oxford and 158s beyond with a change of train and of course less growth.

Oxford would have coped with 8 car 365s
 

fgwrich

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Don't forget that the test unit - 180106 - has not yet received the Class 180 reliability modifications yet as so far, it's gone from Northern to Old Oak FGW to Kilmarnock for refurbishment and back to FGW for the test runs. However, as soon as the next 1 or 2 units that have been modded / refurbished have returned, 106 will go then go into the reliability mods program - mostly likely at Wolverton.

The purpose of this - to get a 180 back down to FGW for staff familiarisation and training before a gradual reintroduction of the fleet into regular service as soon as possible.
 

Failed Unit

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There would be a reduction in quality if 365s were used though as they are clearly not intercity trains like the HSTs.

Nor are the FGW layouts either - they would be fine. Cambridge copes with them. 395 are not much better in terms of quality and would you object to them?
 

YorkshireBear

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Don't forget that the test unit - 180106 - has not yet received the Class 180 reliability modifications yet as so far, it's gone from Northern to Old Oak FGW to Kilmarnock for refurbishment and back to FGW for the test runs. However, as soon as the next 1 or 2 units that have been modded / refurbished have returned, 106 will go then go into the reliability mods program - mostly likely at Wolverton.

The purpose of this - to get a 180 back down to FGW for staff familiarisation and training before a gradual reintroduction of the fleet into regular service as soon as possible.

See i was right :) thanks for that feel quite proud now as it was just a guess.

When are they expected in full service?
 

Zoe

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Nor are the FGW layouts either - they would be fine. Cambridge copes with them. 395 are not much better in terms of quality and would you object to them?
The door layout on the 395s would suggest they were not intended to be intercity trains. Cambridge will finally be getting an intercity service with the IEP, about 15 years after Oxford got its half-hourly intercity service to London.
 

Failed Unit

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The door layout on the 395s would suggest they were not intended to be intercity trains. Cambridge will finally be getting an intercity service with the IEP, about 15 years after Oxford got its half-hourly intercity service to London.

But what is wrong with Cambridge's service? It has a fast and frequent service to London, much better than Oxfords!

There are quite a few places that have IC stock that don't need it, Norwich is the other where an EMU with decent seating would be fine.

If South Eastern could spare them, etc, etc. I would have the 395s on London - Newark as well!
 
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jopsuk

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365s are only 100 mph though and so it would be worse than the current half-hourly 125 mph HST service.

Paddington to Oxford is 63mi 26ch according to rail miles. Fast services are 56/57 minutes.
Kings Cross to Cambridge is 57mi 38ch. Fast services are 47/49 minutes (non-stop, admittedly).
 

fgwrich

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See i was right :) thanks for that feel quite proud now as it was just a guess.

When are they expected in full service?

Whenever really - Shouldnt be too long now as a Spring start seems to be the most mentioned, so give or take a few weeks really - In short, it all depends on how many staff are trained up and how far the 180s are through the mods program.
 

Zoe

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There are quite a few places that have IC stock that don't need it, Norwich is the other where an EMU with decent seating would be fine.
It could be argued that the London to Bristol doesn't need intercity stock though as it's largely a commuter route these days. I doubt that would be popular though.
 

calc7

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But what is wrong with Cambridge's service? It has a fast and frequent service to London, much better than Oxfords!

There are quite a few places that have IC stock that don't need it, Norwich is the other where an EMU with decent seating would be fine.

Agreed. Yes, Oxford is a nice, aspirational city but it's too close to London to justify HSTs being used on runs terminating there and it's hardly the "blue chip" area like the Fens. If it didn't have the uni surely it's just be another Swindon!
 

Failed Unit

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It could be argued that the London to Bristol doesn't need intercity stock though as it's largely a commuter route these days. I doubt that would be popular though.

Nope, good point maybe Bristol should get 395s, they are good enough for Margate services! 395s for Newark Stoppers!
 
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jopsuk

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with Cambridge and IEP being brought up- stated seating capacity I can find for a 365 is 242- making the 12 car peak time services 726 seats. How many seats will a 2x5 car IEP have? The likes of the 0745 from Cambridge leave with more than 726 people on board...
 

Schnellzug

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isn't that the point of a test run, to identify & iron out problems before they go into service? So it could be said that it's worked even though it didn't actually run. A kind of virtual test run, perhaps. :s
 

VTPreston_Tez

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How about ordering some 185s? They have good acceleration and braking as well as 100mph top speed, they could be designed to be 5/6 car 185s with 125mph top speed? If not, then maybe modified 170s? I'm sure it would work but I don't know much about the GWML...
 

MidnightFlyer

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Well bear in mind that 125mph trains need a crumple zone and you'll see why it may be quite complex to modify 170s or 185s for it - it would require a complete front end rebuild that I'm guessing wouldn't be possible on existing units. AFAIAC 180s are perfect for the Cotswolds route, I suspect their 125 is handy between Paddington and Oxford.
 

W-on-Sea

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If it didn't have the uni surely it's just be another Swindon!

Fighting words, there! If (and it is, admittedly, given their history, a very big if) they do prove reliable, the 180s will be great on the Cotswold Line - similar capacity to the Turbos (for all that they are longer trains), but much more comfortable and suited to the route.

As for HSTs from Oxford - there is definitely the demand for a train that can shift that number of people in the peaks, at least. While if anything at weekends (perhaps Sundays more than Saturdays) the train service from Oxford to London really isn't adequate to deal with the numbers, at some parts of the year, at least.
 

TEW

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isn't that the point of a test run, to identify & iron out problems before they go into service? So it could be said that it's worked even though it didn't actually run. A kind of virtual test run, perhaps. :s

These aren't test runs though, they're crew training, so if the train is always broken crew training is going to take longer.
 

Tiny Tim

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How about ordering some 185s? They have good acceleration and braking as well as 100mph top speed, they could be designed to be 5/6 car 185s with 125mph top speed? If not, then maybe modified 170s? I'm sure it would work but I don't know much about the GWML...

Nobody's going to be ordering new motive power for the soon-to-be-electrified GWML. That's why they're having to make do with hand-me-downs in the interim.
 

sprinterguy

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with Cambridge and IEP being brought up- stated seating capacity I can find for a 365 is 242- making the 12 car peak time services 726 seats. How many seats will a 2x5 car IEP have? The likes of the 0745 from Cambridge leave with more than 726 people on board...
500 standard class seats and 118 first class seats.
 

NSE

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The door layout on the 395s would suggest they were not intended to be intercity trains. Cambridge will finally be getting an intercity service with the IEP, about 15 years after Oxford got its half-hourly intercity service to London.

I can safely say Cambridge does not need an intercity service. It would be overkill, off peak all is needed is maybe a couple of 8 car trains on the non-stop services. Even that wouldnt be vital at all, but would be welcome. Capacity is definatly needed in the peaks, but not new trains. Just longer 365s, the speed is fine as north of Hitchin line speed drops and the door layout makes them ideal for when they run semi fasts. I know there aren't any more 365's but we certainly don't need HST type trains, mostly because all trains terminate at Cambridge. It's only the Kings Lynn and the XC services that regularly run as through services off peak, and only a few GA to Kings Lynn.
 
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I would certainly take the 180's back in my morning commute into Manchester without a doubt.Much more comfortable ride than the 142's or 150's that we have now - and people not left behind on the platform at Bolton!
 

D1009

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The likes of the 0745 from Cambridge leave with more than 726 people on board...

I would rather doubt that as it suggests that no-one joining at Royston gets a seat. Unless things have changed recently I heard there was plenty of room in the rear coaches of the 12 car formations.
 
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