Scotrail Class 385 Discussion

mde

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But I can’t see the EK line getting anything more than a 3 car train so I don’t think 385s would be the ideal candidates.
It currently gets 2, 4, and 6 car services alternating throughout the day. There are 436 seats in a 6 car formation, therefore, if you want to preserve similar numbers you'd two 3 car 385s (e.g. 2 x 206 seats).

Running 2 or even 4 cars on EK during peak hours isn't necessarily the most pleasant.
 
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156478

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If and possibly when the East Kilbride line is electrified could it be operated by converting more class 321/4's to 320/4's? (I'm not saying there will or won't be more 385's delivered btw).
I think using expensive brand new 100mph trains on a middling branch line like East Kilbride with a top line speed of 50mph is not a really good use of resources.
Dedicated fleet of heavily refurbished 4 car Class 321s off peak and 8 cars off peak would do the job and guarantee at least a 4 car on every service. Refurbished to 2x2 seating because the folks have been used to Class 156s. There’s plenty of 321's will become spare very shortly from Greater Anglia.

There's also loads of viable stock littered across the uk that can be used for a fraction of the cost of new, even the 365s would do and you would probably get a good deal for them. It’s a buyers market just now for decent quality emus.
 

route101

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The 314s never had gangways.

But I do agree with you. I don’t think it makes a huge difference to passengers. At the end of the day they’ll sit where they can and if not they’ll stand. I don’t imagine many people walk from one train straight through to another (walking through a 7 sometimes 8 car train). My local trains were 334s, 318s and 320s for years on the North Clyde line and there were never any issues.

They probably work better on busy routes like throughout Ayrshire and also the E-G for when trains get really busy. Then I see the reasoning. But I can’t see the EK line getting anything more than a 3 car train so I don’t think 385s would be the ideal candidates. Perhaps if more are ordered it’ll be to strengthen other services and allow more 318s and 320s to do the route.
EK would get 6 car trains surely ?
The 6 car peak 156s soak up a lot of people.
 

route101

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My source is someone involved in the EKL project. As for the 385s, the original design had no front corridors but the new rolling stock is essential for EKL electrification. I agree the front gangways are unnecessary and are restrictive. Having 385s without them would still allow them to attach to the current 385s, perhaps not ideal for E & G routes though.
When the 380s were ordered it was said only 1 influential person at Transport Scotland insisted on the gangways.
I reckon it will be a new order for the EK line , maybe like a 345. Nothing has really been announced with EK wiring
 

Roger B

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Isn't the most likely option more 385s, with related cascades - eg releasing 380s from Ayrshire to EK. If it's intended that the EK diagrams won't be self-contained post electrification (to enable more efficient use of rolling stock), cascade arrangements could be more complex.
 

XC90

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East Kilbride services currently have 6 car 156s. 6 car 385s would suffice the route during peak and reduce to 3 car outwith.

Cant see 320/4s being used. 385s are brand new and transfer to Scottish Gov after 25yrs. Wouldn't cost a lot more to lease compared to 320s.

4 additional trains for Inverclyde freeing up 320s and 318s for North Clyde.
 

the sniper

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The urban/suburban stuff south of Glasgow would seem like a good fit for the Class 707s to me, converted to AC of course. At least as a replacement for the 34 year old 318s... There'd be enough 707s to also free up some 320s for EK.
 

route101

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The urban/suburban stuff south of Glasgow would seem like a good fit for the Class 707s to me, converted to AC of course. At least as a replacement for the 34 year old 318s... There'd be enough 707s to also free up some 320s for EK.
Yeah 707s , would be good for EK too. I do wonder if 385s will work any Ayrshire services.
 

JumpinTrainz

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Yeah 707s , would be good for EK too. I do wonder if 385s will work any Ayrshire services.
I imagine the design of the 707s front would have been similar to what they would have used when creating the 380s but it was requested that they had gangways.

I would have thought the more 380s and 385s on Ayrshire/Inverclyde lines would have meant the current 318 and 320 workings could be used to assist on Cathcart circle/Neilston/Paisley Canal services. Mind you the 318s aren’t getting any younger and the 320s aren’t far behind. It would be nice to see one big order replace the full 318/320 fleet together and come up with 2 variants - with one being more metro style. I like the 385s but I doubt anymore will be coming our way.
 

NotATrainspott

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not only that, as the Edinburgh-Berwick line is >100mph so 385s would not make the best use of the paths available. Perhaps some 350s or 397s would be more appropriate for that service?
The journey time difference between 100mph and 125mph over relatively short stretches isn't as great as you think it is. This is especially true if you need to stop at stations along the route, like this 100mph ScotRail service to Berwick-upon-Tweed. A train optimised for accelerating up to 100mph will be better than one designed to cruise along at 125mph. In any case, the number of trains that ScotRail would need for this service would be so low that there's no chance of it seeing its own faster trains. If the timetable doesn't work at 100mph, then the service just won't ever happen.

The "Blue Trains" (classes 303, 311) never had them and nor did the 314s or 320s, or any 1st generation dmus except the 126s (and even they were only gangwayed at one end and, like the 318s, lost them during their service careers). Given the problems with the bespoke windscreen design for the 385s dictated by their gangways, I can't see much enthusiasm is likely for such an embellishment on future orders.
Gangways will be required on the future rural train (156/158) replacement. Whether or not gangways will be specced will come down to what sort of service ScotRail or Transport Scotland are expecting to run. Multiple operation without gangways works fine in the Strathclyde DOO area since people on board have little or no reason to change carriage. On longer-distance trains with catering staff that's a different matter.
 

snookertam

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I think using expensive brand new 100mph trains on a middling branch line like East Kilbride with a top line speed of 50mph is not a really good use of resources.
.
It's a good use of resources if that's what you have to hand. The top speed of the line and the capability of the unit aren't really relevant. Bringing in a completely new type of unit rather than build additional class 385 units effectively creates a sub class which couldn't be used elsewhere. More class 385 units means more flexibility as they can be used on any number of different routes, some of which will allow them to reach their top speed.
 

samuelmorris

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The journey time difference between 100mph and 125mph over relatively short stretches isn't as great as you think it is. This is especially true if you need to stop at stations along the route, like this 100mph ScotRail service to Berwick-upon-Tweed. A train optimised for accelerating up to 100mph will be better than one designed to cruise along at 125mph. In any case, the number of trains that ScotRail would need for this service would be so low that there's no chance of it seeing its own faster trains. If the timetable doesn't work at 100mph, then the service just won't ever happen.



Gangways will be required on the future rural train (156/158) replacement. Whether or not gangways will be specced will come down to what sort of service ScotRail or Transport Scotland are expecting to run. Multiple operation without gangways works fine in the Strathclyde DOO area since people on board have little or no reason to change carriage. On longer-distance trains with catering staff that's a different matter.
On the other hand, with modern lightweight multiple units it's still possible to have both 125mph top speed and good acceleration.
 
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For units that spend most of their time connected to other units it would be ridiculous to remove the gangways. Maybe not so much on the Glasgow suburban services but units without gangways would be a problem on longer distance services. Especially if we're eventually hoping to have electrification all the way through to Perth and Dundee one day. It does matter to passengers when they can't get food or a ticket because the guard or the trolley is in the other unit, and they do notice.

Besides, 385s spend most of their times working with other units. A subfleet without gangways would be a nightmare.

Having said that Scotrail possibly should have thought about ordering a mix of commuter EMUs and premium 385s, rather than trying to come up with a one-size fits all solution. They're overspec'd and kinda unsuitable for Glasgow commuter work.
 

gingertom

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The journey time difference between 100mph and 125mph over relatively short stretches isn't as great as you think it is. This is especially true if you need to stop at stations along the route, like this 100mph ScotRail service to Berwick-upon-Tweed. A train optimised for accelerating up to 100mph will be better than one designed to cruise along at 125mph. In any case, the number of trains that ScotRail would need for this service would be so low that there's no chance of it seeing its own faster trains. If the timetable doesn't work at 100mph, then the service just won't ever happen.
journey time savings of 7.2 seconds per mile 125 vs 100, so nearly 9 miles to save one minute. That's scope for quite a few minutes, it could be the difference between being able to be pathed or not. In any case is TPE not going to be providing the service using 397s?
 

Clansman

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East Kilbride needs electrified and duelled throughout the whole route and a metro style frequency.

There's only so far you can go with doing the whole 2 car, 4 car, 6 car at XTime YTime in the day etc etc, before infrastructure changes are better placed to reduce the need for constant train length extensions.
 

Christmas

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Time someone took the bull by the horns and demanded the gangways are removed. Hitachi to foot the bill for supplying a product not fit for purpose.
 

NotATrainspott

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On the other hand, with modern lightweight multiple units it's still possible to have both 125mph top speed and good acceleration.
You can't outrun the laws of physics. Once you're no longer limited by rail adhesion, your choice of gearing is what dictates the acceleration. A unit capable of good acceleration and a 125mph top speed would be even faster accelerating to a top speed of 100mph if you re-geared it.

journey time savings of 7.2 seconds per mile 125 vs 100, so nearly 9 miles to save one minute. That's scope for quite a few minutes, it could be the difference between being able to be pathed or not. In any case is TPE not going to be providing the service using 397s?
This isn't the southern WCML where all trains are timed at minimum headways. There's 28 miles between Dunbar and Berwick-upon-Tweed, or a maximum time saving of 3 minutes assuming consistent 125mph linespeed is possible with no acceleration/deceleration at either end.

The TPE 397s will only run on the Airport-Scotland services, since that's the only fully-electrified TPE route. The extension of the existing Liverpool-Newcastle service to Edinburgh requires a diesel-powered train due to the non-electrified section between Manchester and York. TPE is using 802s on this service, which can do 125mph on diesel and electric power.
 

gimmea50anyday

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TPE is using 802s on this service, which can do 125mph on diesel and electric power.
Not on diesel power they can’t...

Besides, before any additional service to Berwick can be introduced, there needs to be more juice in the OHLE and that won’t be upgraded until at least 2022. The OHLE between Longniddry and Chathill OHNS and fed at Marshall Meadows (Berwick) cannot support the services operating now, especially since LNERs HST operated services switched to Azumas, hence why TPE 802s are running on diesel on departure from Edinburgh and not electric.
 

InOban

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Time someone took the bull by the horns and demanded the gangways are removed. Hitachi to foot the bill for supplying a product not fit for purpose.
I must be in a parallel universe. I thought that the purpose was to convey passengers quickly and reliably. I'm sure that bus drivers would like a larger space, but they get one which brings everything they need within reach. Unless there are safely issues with the cabs (a matter for the ORR), I see no reason to remove them from future builds, let alone existin ones. They allow passengers to move to find space, OBS, whether buffet,guard or RPI to cover the whole train providing security as well. They also permit train lengths to be adjusted.
It is however true that operators seem reluctant to split trains at off-peak times. Following other threads it seems that modern units, essentially computers with attached hardware, don't take kindly to splitting in service. It confuses them.
If you want something more radical, why not a new build of 8-coach fixed sets for the Edinburgh Glasgow Intercity service with the existing sets being cascaded to accommodate growth in the Stirling routes and so on.
 

59CosG95

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By the time the EK line is electrified these trains will be nearing 40 years old. Let’s keep that in perspective. This isn’t going to be a quick thing.
And besides, the 2 Class 321/9s that left Northern are now due to re-enter service with Greater Anglia to bolster their fleet...
 

Christmas

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I must be in a parallel universe. I thought that the purpose was to convey passengers quickly and reliably. I'm sure that bus drivers would like a larger space, but they get one which brings everything they need within reach. Unless there are safely issues with the cabs (a matter for the ORR), I see no reason to remove them from future builds, let alone existin ones. They allow passengers to move to find space, OBS, whether buffet,guard or RPI to cover the whole train providing security as well. They also permit train lengths to be adjusted.
It is however true that operators seem reluctant to split trains at off-peak times. Following other threads it seems that modern units, essentially computers with attached hardware, don't take kindly to splitting in service. It confuses them.
If you want something more radical, why not a new build of 8-coach fixed sets for the Edinburgh Glasgow Intercity service with the existing sets being cascaded to accommodate growth in the Stirling routes and so on.
At least bus drivers get to see where they are going without virtually leaning over to see out of their windscreen. The gangways are barely justified on the routes out of Glasgow Central. Edinburgh to Glasgow should have been fixed formation 8 car sets (7 initially with 8th added later). The 4 cars operating on routes with a declassified first class are a waste of resources.

Getting back to the cabs, unless you have sat in the driver's seat then you won't know just how appalling the view from the cab actually is. Drivers are concerned because they can't see anything on the right hand side of the trains. The windscreen is tiny, even compared with a 380 which offers a veritable panorama in comparison. This is Hitachi's second attempt at a driver's windscreen and they got it wrong again, the new one being surrounded by white plastic that caused glare and reflection during the day. They've had to put matt black tape over this to cure the issue.
Driver's reminder appliance in the wrong place, out of direct sight, Sunflower out of direct sight, no opening cab window, aircon that never shuts off, second man windscreen that has still to be replaced, buttons all over the cab with no thought for easy reach of essential controls, headlights that blind oncoming drivers, desks that taller drivers can't get their knees under comfortably, cabs that are so dark during daylight hours that drivers can't see their paperwork, the list goes on...

They're reliable enough but drivers hate them. Just read over the comments from member 380101 for confirmation. Had the original spec conventional non gangwayed cab been fitted then I doubt there would have been anywhere near as many issues.
 

GregA

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Drivers are concerned because they can't see anything on the right hand side of the trains. The windscreen is tiny, even compared with a 380 which offers a veritable panorama in comparison. This is Hitachi's second attempt at a driver's windscreen and they got it wrong again, the new one being surrounded by white plastic that caused glare and reflection during the day. They've had to put matt black tape over this to cure the issue.
Driver's reminder appliance in the wrong place, out of direct sight, Sunflower out of direct sight, no opening cab window, aircon that never shuts off, second man windscreen that has still to be replaced, buttons all over the cab with no thought for easy reach of essential controls, headlights that blind oncoming drivers, desks that taller drivers can't get their knees under comfortably, cabs that are so dark during daylight hours that drivers can't see their paperwork, the list goes on...
These issues sound at least partly due to poor initial specification when the trains were ordered. The cab could (should?) have been designed with the assistance of drivers, even if that was as simple as "What are the important things which you need to be able to see all the time?" "The right hand side of the train, the driver reminder appliance, the sunflower, the buttons for {X, Y and Z} and the paperwork".
 

mcmad

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Someone within Scotrail will also have had to accept the cab design so if it is as poor as Christmas says then its an own goal.
 

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