Scotrail Class 385 Discussion

Southsider

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The 314s never had gangways.
Are you sure?
As for 3 car on the EK line, the project is looking at the possibility of eight car working. While that may be peak times only it would suggest four car units being deployed or fixed formation eight car throughout. Personally I would think the costs of platform extensions will see a limit of six car remaining but in an increased frequency.
 
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hexagon789

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Are you sure?
As for 3 car on the EK line, the project is looking at the possibility of eight car working. While that may be peak times only it would suggest four car units being deployed or fixed formation eight car throughout. Personally I would think the costs of platform extensions will see a limit of six car remaining but in an increased frequency.
314s had gangways within the unit but not between units.
 

gsnedders

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Are the 802's power-packs producing more power than the other GWR IET's? ISTR that the original units couldn't reach 125 mph when using their derated engines.
The 802s have a much more aggressive engine map; I seem to recall that for a while all GWR IETs ended up running with the 802 power map. They're certainly not the quickest thing up to 125mph on diesel, and from memory they struggle more on gradients than HSTs at that speed, but they can do it.
 

Carntyne

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EK needs 6 car 23m walkthrough units running at a more intensive frequency. The latent demand on the route is incredible.

What it doesn't need is 3 car 20m units. That's a reduction on the current capacity.
 

hexagon789

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EK needs 6 car 23m walkthrough units running at a more intensive frequency. The latent demand on the route is incredible.

What it doesn't need is 3 car 20m units. That's a reduction on the current capacity.
Certainly it seemed as though EK would get a 385 follow-on order or similar. Given the platforms are laid out for 23m, it would be a backward step to only run 20m vehicle trains.
 

snookertam

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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.
The drivers seem to have legitimate concerns here. I think safety, and the comfort of the person charged with controlling the train in a safe manner, comes before all of these things. These units barely do any services of over an hour, so the need for gangways was pretty non-existent. The person who insisted on them clearly wasn't from a railway background.
 

alangla

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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.
Thought the union were involved in/signed off on the cab interior design before the units were built? Happy to be corrected if that’s not the case.
Is there a pre-production model 385 somewhere similar to the 380 that’s now in the Riverside museum?
 

380101

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Thought the union were involved in/signed off on the cab interior design before the units were built? Happy to be corrected if that’s not the case.
Is there a pre-production model 385 somewhere similar to the 380 that’s now in the Riverside museum?
Union never got to see the cabs until the 1st unit was in Scotland for testing, which by then was too late to do anything as the layout had been signed off etc. They were told the layout would be the same as the 380, which it is not.
 

Clansman

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There was a photo or two of a cab mockup (not a detailed one - but one with 2d stickers on a make shift panel etc) if I remember rightly. Though they would not have shown the scale to which the driver's vision was obscured nor the defects in the glass. It was extremely basic.
 

gimmea50anyday

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The best I have seen an 802 perform on Diesel was 122mph passing Hutton Bonville on the ECML, ironically, a point where the OHLE is fed off the national grid. Reached 110 fairly swiftly from departing York but seemed to struggle beyond 115. On electric however (when TPE are alllowed to use the juice it is of course a different matter....

It is ironic NR won’t allow 185s north of Newcastle, as despite their lower top speed of 100mph they do have a power advantage over an 802 on diesel. Having said that in both directions TPE leads the flight of trains with an XC operated voyager minutes behind it and a LNER 800 almost directly behind that. being 125mph trains and with a lot of 110-115 running it may well be a case the paths simply cannot sustain any slower moving services, especially as following the LNER Southbound the Dunbar semi fast and the North Berwick stoppers then depart, then a second LNER departure Fits in behind that. The only logical gap is to extend the Dunbar service to Berwick but as previously mentioned, the stations at Reston and East Linton form part of the cost benefit analysis undertaken to justify the expenditure so fast accelerating 100mph electric will be required. 125mph stock might not have the acceleration advantage required to fit in the slots and the stops
 

InOban

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The drivers seem to have legitimate concerns here. I think safety, and the comfort of the person charged with controlling the train in a safe manner, comes before all of these things. These units barely do any services of over an hour, so the need for gangways was pretty non-existent. The person who insisted on them clearly wasn't from a railway background.
Clearly I accept the driver's view that the ergonomics of the cab are dreadful, and some of the issues will be difficult to address in any refit. I think that the problem is that Hitachi originally designed them without gangways and they were an afterthought.
But these problems are not an argument against gangways per se.
I'm not clear why the short journey times make a difference. I'm thinking of an evening train, a disturbance starts in one unit but the Guard is in the other. Passengers want and deserve a visible presence throughout the train.
 

hexagon789

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I think that the problem is that Hitachi originally designed them without gangways and they were an afterthought.
But these problems are not an argument against gangways per se.
I think the front-end design is part of the problem, that applies to 380s as well. I don't think there were such issues with the gangways on 318s when they had them but they have a flat front end
 

Domh245

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I think the front-end design is part of the problem, that applies to 380s as well. I don't think there were such issues with the gangways on 318s when they had them but they have a flat front end
I think that Hitachi just made a particularly poor job of it. Compare recent gangwayed stock from other manufacturers (bombardier cl730 and CAF cl196) and both of them have got larger, flatter windows than the 385s. It'll be interesting to see how the cabs of these are received as well as the other gripes, but I suspect that at least some of the issues with the 385s will have been down to hitachi's implentation of it - gangwayed stock is always going to be cramped and compromised compared to non-gangwayed.
 

Altnabreac

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I’ve said before and I’ll say again that my view is that the future design and procurement of stock in Scotland should be aligned with a programme of platform extensions and infrastructure interventions to allow all newly upgraded lines to operate with 8 x 23m rolling stock. SDO only to be used where the platform extensions are totally uneconomic.

East Kilbride would be a great starting point for this policy and it would allow fixed formation 8 x 23m trains to be procured which could very well be Hitachi trains very similar to 385s.
 

scotraildriver

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I think the front-end design is part of the problem, that applies to 380s as well. I don't think there were such issues with the gangways on 318s when they had them but they have a flat front end
The problem is quite simply the raked back design of the front end. Siemens attempted to mitigate the issue on the 380s by fitting a retractable gangway. Hitachi didn't and the design of the front end means the gangway needs to be huge to reach the other train. Gangwayed trains don't cause visibility issues if done properly. 156 and 158 cabs are fine. It is simply a poor design and coupled to dreadful build quality makes these things rubbish for drivers. The amount of gaffa tape trying to seal gaps and draughts in these cabs is a disgrace for a new train. And the rubbish cab heating.
 

InOban

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I’ve said before and I’ll say again that my view is that the future design and procurement of stock in Scotland should be aligned with a programme of platform extensions and infrastructure interventions to allow all newly upgraded lines to operate with 8 x 23m rolling stock. SDO only to be used where the platform extensions are totally uneconomic.

East Kilbride would be a great starting point for this policy and it would allow fixed formation 8 x 23m trains to be procured which could very well be Hitachi trains very similar to 385s.
I quite agree. 8 coaches, over 600 passengers, is the point at which the train is making a significant contribution to the transport ecosystem (car, bus, train, bicycle), and at a economic cost.
 

mcmad

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8 coach trains are going to be carrying around an awful lot of expensive fresh air 90% of the time though, even on the E&G.
 

Altnabreac

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8 coach trains are going to be carrying around an awful lot of expensive fresh air 90% of the time though, even on the E&G.
To an extent yes, that's an issue. But these days TOCs are reluctant to do multiple splits and joins and by having longer fixed formation trains you reduce complexity, increase capacity, reduce build cost (2 cabs per 8 coaches is cheaper than 4 cabs) improve the driver environment, allow guard and catering staff access throughout the train, improve passenger circulation etc.

Having spare capacity in off peak times is not a huge penalty to pay for this. There will still be a place for 3 and four coach trains on quieter routes but busy commuter lines should be aiming to run 8 x 23m trains and ultimately they will be more financially viable and environmentally friendly that way as loadings increase.
 

43096

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To an extent yes, that's an issue. But these days TOCs are reluctant to do multiple splits and joins and by having longer fixed formation trains you reduce complexity, increase capacity, reduce build cost (2 cabs per 8 coaches is cheaper than 4 cabs) improve the driver environment, allow guard and catering staff access throughout the train, improve passenger circulation etc.
On the flip side, if you damage one then you’re into cancelling services rather than short forming.

Ask LNER about being short of 800109. The damaged HST had a power car swap and was back in service within a week or so. The 800, the whole set is stood down until it is fixed.
 

hexagon789

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I think that Hitachi just made a particularly poor job of it. Compare recent gangwayed stock from other manufacturers (bombardier cl730 and CAF cl196) and both of them have got larger, flatter windows than the 385s. It'll be interesting to see how the cabs of these are received as well as the other gripes, but I suspect that at least some of the issues with the 385s will have been down to hitachi's implentation of it - gangwayed stock is always going to be cramped and compromised compared to non-gangwayed.
Well it's always going to be less spacious than non-gangwayed but I don't think it's always "cramped" if designed right
 

hexagon789

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The problem is quite simply the raked back design of the front end. Siemens attempted to mitigate the issue on the 380s by fitting a retractable gangway. Hitachi didn't and the design of the front end means the gangway needs to be huge to reach the other train. Gangwayed trains don't cause visibility issues if done properly. 156 and 158 cabs are fine. It is simply a poor design and coupled to dreadful build quality makes these things rubbish for drivers. The amount of gaffa tape trying to seal gaps and draughts in these cabs is a disgrace for a new train. And the rubbish cab heating.
So as well as the issues with the windscreens and gangways, there's also construction issues leading to draughts!?

(That's probably been mentioned before up thread but I don't currently recall reading it.)
 

380101

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So as well as the issues with the windscreens and gangways, there's also construction issues leading to draughts!?

(That's probably been mentioned before up thread but I don't currently recall reading it.)
Yip. Issues with draughts under and arpund the driving desk, tall drivers have difficulty sitting in the correct driving position, dsd pedal, which moves up and down, doesn't go flush with the cab floor so again causes issues for taller drivers, drivers have to lean over to the left in order to get proper view of certain signals etc. All in all it's a poorly designed and built cab.
 

hexagon789

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Yip. Issues with draughts under and arpund the driving desk, tall drivers have difficulty sitting in the correct driving position, dsd pedal, which moves up and down, doesn't go flush with the cab floor so again causes issues for taller drivers, drivers have to lean over to the left in order to get proper view of certain signals etc. All in all it's a poorly designed and built cab.
When they are eventually due for significant refurbishment in say 20-25 years; perhaps a 318-style gangway blanking-off and cab opening out will happen?
 

Christmas

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Apart from the Edinburgh to Glasgow and empty coaching stock from depots, where are 385s operating in multiple where this dreadful gangway is actually required?

Again I'll say, unless you have sat in the driver's seat of a 385 then you cannot comment on their apparent virtues. Gangways are fine and many manufacturers can do it right but this train cab design is not fit for purpose. It'll take an incident or three and several demoted drivers before something is done.

I've yet to read a positive review of the 385 from a driver on this forum so far. Enthusiasts wailing about how great the 385 is of no interest to me.
 

scotraildriver

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Apart from the Edinburgh to Glasgow and empty coaching stock from depots, where are 385s operating in multiple where this dreadful gangway is actually required?

Again I'll say, unless you have sat in the driver's seat of a 385 then you cannot comment on their apparent virtues. Gangways are fine and many manufacturers can do it right but this train cab design is not fit for purpose. It'll take an incident or three and several demoted drivers before something is done.

I've yet to read a positive review of the 385 from a driver on this forum so far. Enthusiasts wailing about how great the 385 is of no interest to me.
Well I think the seat is comfy and they go like stink ............ Apart from that though
 

hexagon789

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Apart from the Edinburgh to Glasgow and empty coaching stock from depots, where are 385s operating in multiple where this dreadful gangway is actually required?

Again I'll say, unless you have sat in the driver's seat of a 385 then you cannot comment on their apparent virtues. Gangways are fine and many manufacturers can do it right but this train cab design is not fit for purpose. It'll take an incident or three and several demoted drivers before something is done.

I've yet to read a positive review of the 385 from a driver on this forum so far. Enthusiasts wailing about how great the 385 is of no interest to me.
I know presently most are operating in multi, but other than one or two diagrams in peaks, I think it's just the E&G ordinarily
 

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