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Discussion in 'Allocations, Diagrams & Timetables' started by 33011, 13 Dec 2012.
An SWT 158 158880 I think it was did a test run to Swanage yesterday. Anyone know why?
The only information I can find suggests it was a route clearance exercise.
Just found out and you are correct. Interesting
The South-West Trains class 158 ran from Salisbury Depot to Swanage and back. It also did a return run from Swanage to Norden. It checked platform clearances on all platforms at Swanage, Harmans Cross, Corfe Castle and Norden. Unfortunately its arrival on the line was delayed by problems at the new points installed at Worgret Junction last weekend. There are photos on the Dorset Transport blog:http://www.dorset-transport.info/blog.html
Are there any dates set for when a passenger service could start (assuming it's fairly likely given the checking of clearances)?
There are no plans for this, SWT just doesn't have the capacity to start new services at the moment or in the planned future, this was no more than a testing exercise but opens the door to possible special workings from Wareham.
I do wonder though what the future holds - Could / are they being approached by Dorset County Council to run a clearing test for a future 'commuter service', seeing as Dorset CC has divested it's self from the 117s they originally had for the service. Also, now that South West Trains has Tim Shoveller at the helm - who seemed rather proactive when it came to working with the Ecclesbourne Valley Railway, could this lead to a few Class 158 operated shuttles between Wareham & Swanage for events such as the Diesel doo and Swanage Carnival?
Perhaps when the 456s come over one could replace the 158 on the Lymington branch, which could then work a few Wareham-Swanage shuttles?
To be fair, it seems that a few of the diagrams currently operated by 158/159s will be changed over to EMU operation when the 456s arrive - largely those originating from Basingstoke.
The update on progress towards a daily service from Wareham to Swanage is here: http://www.swanagerailway.co.uk/dailysvce.htm
456s will almost certainly never operate the Lymington branch. 21 of the 24 units are already earmarked for daily use in the inner suburban area, and on the Guildford Ascot service.
SWT have also stated publicly that the current weekday 158 will not be changing in the foreseeable future.
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The DMUs released from those services are already accounted for strengthening other services on the Salisbury route, the numbers are shown in one of the various SWT press releases issued following the 458/460 decision.
Interestingly the story on the Swanage Railway website states that the gauging trips were for the testing of "...a modified Class 158 DMU - for performance and environmental improvement - on the Swanage Railway early in 2013 during the line's winter shutdown" - presumably this is the long awaited testing of a mechanical transmission as fitted to the 172's.
Yep. It'll be the ZF Ecomat 6 speed gearbox. Not sure which unit it'll be fitted to yet, although it'll probably be rather distinctive due to the sound of it.
That is correct
Without wishing to resort to posting unintelligible babble, how exactly does the noise change from that of a standard 158 when this new kit is fitted? I'd be rather sad if they lost their distinctive high pitched engine note
Because its a completely different transmission - the ZF box sounds like that in a car, so you get to hear it accelerate up through each gear as you would in a car. It's very distinctive in the 172.
Oh Looks like they'll lose that whining roar as they power up then; that's a shame. I think the 158s have the best DMU sound track of any of the current stuff.
Already linked in post #12 of this thread.