Swiss rolling stock - big changes in progress

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Gordon

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I've got a Swiss Pass.

May I ask what sort of traction operates the RhB services between Chur-St. Moritz and St. Moritz-Tirano (not Bernina Express)?


I've created a new thread but started it off with a reference to a comment in the 'RBe540' thread from a few days ago.

Regardless of traction, the Chur St Moritz line ought to be visited this year - especially by those of us who prefer 'traditional' types of loco hauled stock, as the new Albula Gleiderzug will change the scene on the Chur - St Moritz main line, and the resulting cascade will change the scene on all the other RhB lines as well.

And, of course it's not just on RhB. The BLS and SBB are rapidly replacing their fleets with the latest genre of stock. This of course includes replacing what was supposed to be the 'new era' of stock - EWIVs and the 1980s designs - but the latter have of course become outmoded in a shorter time span than previous eras of Swiss rolling stock.

Hard to believe that the trunk east - west Swiss axis Geneva - St Gallen, the long time 'backbone' of the Swiss system, will soon be operated by EMUs!



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317666

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One thing confuses me about the new Albula Gliederzug sets - they're fixed formation six coaches if I remember rightly, but a lot of trains at high season are longer than that so surely they'll still have to use Einheitswagen as extra coaches some of the time anyway? Also, surely there isn't really anything that cascaded Einheitswagen can replace at the moment, as extra locos would be needed to use them to replace the Be 4/4s? Like I mentioned in the other thread, I think the really big changes on the RhB will be in a few years' time when the new EMUs arrive for the new Disentis - Scuol-Tarasp/Davos service, as it will see the Ge 4/4 IIs (the oft-overlooked backbone of the RhB and a personal favourite locomotive design) lose most of their passenger work.

And I agree, it's somewhat hard to believe that the EW IVs on SBB are in their twilight years, considering how long previous generations of stock have lasted.
 
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Gordon

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One thing confuses me about the new Albula Gliederzug sets - they're fixed formation six coaches if I remember rightly, but a lot of trains at high season are longer than that so surely they'll still have to use Einheitswagen as extra coaches some of the time anyway? Also, surely there isn't really anything that cascaded Einheitswagen can replace at the moment, as extra locos would be needed to use them to replace the Be 4/4s?

I was thinking more of the fact that with more of a particular variant of (e.g. newer) EW available they might start making sets more uniform. At the moment the hauled trains on all lines, especially the Scuol - Disentis are a lot of the time a mish mash of variants.

I agree with your query about the AGZ. Each set has 90 first and 217 second. I'm not sure if the coupling arrangements will allow extra coaches to be added. Or will they run two AGZ sets together - too long surely?



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317666

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One question I do have, again stemming from the other thread, is how much time roughly do the MOB ABDe 8/8s have? I've not managed to go on one (or the MOB at all for that matter!), and they seem to tick all the boxes for me, but I'm not heading to Switzerland again until September.
 

Gordon

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One question I do have, again stemming from the other thread, is how much time roughly do the MOB ABDe 8/8s have? I've not managed to go on one (or the MOB at all for that matter!), and they seem to tick all the boxes for me, but I'm not heading to Switzerland again until September.

Not sure, but I certainly consider them threatened. Some new EMUs have just arrived on the line, but I think they will still be around in September. I'm hoping to visit the MOB in a few weeks.




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Gordon

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Regardless of traction, the Chur St Moritz line ought to be visited this year - especially by those of us who prefer 'traditional' types of loco hauled stock, as the new Albula Gleiderzug will change the scene on the Chur - St Moritz main line, and the resulting cascade will change the scene on all the other RhB lines as well.

I spent a superb day linesiding the Albula main line in unbroken sunshine mid September... and I'm glad I did...

Major change to RhB train operating practice this winter:

14 (over half...) of the Chur - St Moritz and vice versa express trains in the new 2017 timetable will be Allegra unit hauled, normally with the new AGZ permanently coupled six-car coach sets.

The suggestion that - whatever one thought of the new coaches - 'at least they'll be loco hauled' seems to have been a false hope.

Sad days, arguably the first major change to the way this narrow gauge main line is operated for 100 years.


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Gordon

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Just experienced the Lucerne loco change on the Locarno to Basel IR. Like a time warp. Sad to see it EMUnised

AFAIK, loco change will remain. The Locarno IRs are stopped short at Erstfeld, but I believe will be otherwise unchanged.

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Major change to RhB train operating practice this winter:
14 (over half...) of the Chur - St Moritz and vice versa express trains in the new 2017 timetable will be Allegra unit hauled, normally with the new AGZ permanently coupled six-car coach sets.
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I've done a bit more analysis:

Comparing Monday to Friday (but Sats and suns are similar).

Basically what they have done is swapped three Ge4/4III days with three Allegra days:

Ge4/4III turns 154, 155 and 156, currently Chur - St Moritz expresses will become Landquart - Davos - Filisur turns.

In 'exchange' Allegra (3501 series of course, not the S-Bahn version) turns 610 - 615, switch as follows:

610 Landquart - Filisur , becomes reserve day
611 and 612 currently Landquart - Filisur become 2 days Chur - St Moritz expresses.
613 currently reserve becomes Chur - St Moritz expresses day
614 and 615 currently reserve day and remain reserve days

Thus Ge4/4III will now work 10 daily diagrams split as follows:

3 days Chur- St Moritz expresses
5 days Landquart - Davos - Filisur route - I assume these workings will all be push-pull
2 days Vereina tunnel car shuttles

What interests me is that they have not moved Ge4/4III onto the Landquart - Vereina - St Moritz which stay as 'secondary' Ge4/4II trains despite the faster journey times Zurich - LQ - St Moritz now possible via this route as compared with the Albula 'main line' .

To complete the assumed picture from the Dec timetable change:

Scuol - Disentis loco hauled Ge4/4II with EWI/II/III/IV coaches non push pull as before with long layover and change of train number at Landquart.

Scuol - Pontresina loco hauled Ge4/4II push pull sets as before

still some work for the ageing 510 series EMUs sets including up in the mountains

Bernina diagrams unchanged (mainly Allegra but with a couple of trains a day booked for ABe 51 - 56 pairs)

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