Third rail only EMUs numbered with '3'

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JoeGJ1984

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Why are some EMUs that only work on third rail and have no pantograph to work on OHLE numbered 3xx and not 4xx or 5xx. I thought that 3xx were for AC EMUs and 4xx and 5xx for DC EMUs. Some EMUs can run on both AC and DC and are numbered 3xx. But I thought that DC only units were numbered 4xx or 5xx. But some are numbered 3xx. Why?
 
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Eagle

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The only DC-only units in the 3xx range are Electrostars, which have been numbered continuously in the range 375 to 379 (which is logical).

Also the 4xx series, due to the complicated class-numbering system it used (as opposed to the near-sequential system in the 1xx, 2xx, 3xx and 5xx) doesn't have that many class numbers left to use.
 

ainsworth74

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It's only the 376s isn't it? In which case I wonder if it isn't to do with them being part of the Electrostar family and primarily the units in that family are numbered in the 37x range (apart from the 357).
 

jopsuk

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When the 365s were first introduced in kent, did they have their pantograph fitted?

The old system the SR used was doomed anyway- by extrapolation, units introduced 2000 or later should perhaps have been 47x (50s were 41x, early 60s 42x/late 60s 43x up to early 90s Networkers at 46x) but the 375, 377 and 450 are all four-car outer-suburban units- so they'd all have been, by that classification, 473.


The numbering system is now a mess- it perhaps needs a reset, with a DC, AC and DV range for EMUs and (3xx, 4xx and 5xx) with perhaps the second digit denoting manufacturers? (could work with DMUs too, obviously 1xx, 2xx and perhaps 3xx for electro-diesel hybrids)
 

ainsworth74

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375/3, 375/7, 375/8, 375/9, 376, 377/1, 377/3, 377/4, 377/6 and 378/1 are all DC-only. But it would be silly to break up a class of clearly very similar trains along the lines of which have pantographs and which don't.
Well quite, I was going along with the 376s being the only whole class that's DC Only rather than breaking it down by sub-classes, because, as you rightly say it'd be silly to split a class of otherwise identical units up just because some have pantos and others don't.

The numbering system is now a mess- it perhaps needs a reset, with a DC, AC and DV range for EMUs and (3xx, 4xx and 5xx) with perhaps the second digit denoting manufacturers? (could work with DMUs too, obviously 1xx, 2xx and perhaps 3xx for electro-diesel hybrids)
Sounds nice from a neatness point of view but the real question is would it have an operational advantage. I can't think of one at present...
 

jopsuk

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Well quite, I was going along with the 376s being the only whole class that's DC Only rather than breaking it down by sub-classes, because, as you rightly say it'd be silly to split a class of otherwise identical units up just because some have pantos and others don't.
Arguably, that's exactly the case with Classes 350, 450 and even 360 (Class 172 features two different cab designs)
 

junglejames

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3XX will be for units designed for use on AC. Whether or not they use it. 375s and all electrostars are designed to be dual voltage. Unless 376s are different, but i wouldnt have thought so. Thats why 365s are 365s, even when down in Kent. They were designed to be used on AC as well.
The only units I can think of that dont make sense, are 444s and 450s. I thought they were also designed to be able to run on AC. Perhaps they just arent as dual voltage capable as Electrostars. Dont know. But thats why a lot of DC units are 3XX. Only 376s im not 100% sure about, but I guess its likely they are exactly the same as their sister fleets.
 

SouthEastern-465

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3XX will be for units designed for use on AC. Whether or not they use it. 375s and all electrostars are designed to be dual voltage. Unless 376s are different, but i wouldn't have thought so. That's why 365s are 365s, even when down in Kent. They were designed to be used on AC as well.
The only units I can think of that don't make sense, are 444s and 450s. I thought they were also designed to be able to run on AC. Perhaps they just arent as dual voltage capable as Electrostars. Dont know. But thats why a lot of DC units are 3XX. Only 376s im not 100% sure about, but I guess its likely they are exactly the same as their sister fleets.


I think the DC "Electrostars" are numbered in the 3xx series purely because they have a recess for a pantograph if needed which even a 376 has. (the exceptions being the 375/6s and 377/2s and 377/5s)

But than again I take it a Class 450 also has a recess for a pantograph which may complicate it more!
 

Eagle

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The numbering system is now a mess...
The more recent numberings aren't especially messy if you break it down. (Well, the 4xx range is, but that's because it's still trying to conform to the Southern Railway's long-obsolete system of classification.)

*deep breath*
1xx series

  • The original series of DMUs were numbered sequentially, getting as far as 131.
  • The Pacers were introduced, with the prototype jumping forward to the next round number, 140, and the actual units being 141–144.
  • The next family, Sprinters, jumped forward again to 150. 151 and 152 were planned but never built.
  • The next generation of Sprinter was felt different enough to warrant a jump forward to 155. 156 followed, and 157 was planned (for Scotland). When much later some 155s were broken up, they were simply given an available number, 153.
  • The Express Sprinter continued with 158. When some were sent to the south, they were renumbered as 159.
  • The next family to be introduced, the Networkers, decided to jump again to 165 (which also allowed their electric versions to take the free numbers 365 and 465). 166 followed.
  • The Clubman had a minor jump forward to 168, and its successor, the Turbostar, another minor jump to 170–172.
  • The next type of DMU to appear was the Coradia, which went to 175. Its successor, the Adelante, jumped again to 180.
  • The most recent new design of DMU was the Desiro Pennine, which took 185.

2xx series
  • The original series of DEMUs was numbered sequentially, up to 210.
  • The Voyager came much later and was unrelated, so it jumped forward to the 220–222 range.

3xx series
Admittedly a lot more complex than the diesel series. In order of introduction:
  • The sequential-style numbering got as high as 325.
  • Networkers took 365, to match the 165s.
  • The first EMUs since privatisation were the HEx units, which for no reason I can discern were numbered 332. Their successors in the North were numbered 333.
  • Electrostars, again for no obvious reason, took 357. Why their next generations jumped to the 375–379 range is equally obscure.
  • The Junipers went for 334, breaking the rule that different series of trains shouldn't use adjacent numbers.
  • Pendolinos, presumably because they are high-speed units, went for a high number: 390.
  • The WCML Desiros went for 350, because they were originally meant to be 450s. Subsequent Desiros went to 360, skipped 370 (which was the APT) and went to 380. Pretty silly way of numbering them if you ask me; why not 350, 351 and 352, Thameslink stock being 353?
  • The Javelins took 395, because they're higher speed than the 390s.

5xx series
Only ever used the sequential system which got up to 510 (the 510s ended up in the Southern Region however, and were relabelled as 455s).
 

Aictos

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3XX will be for units designed for use on AC. Whether or not they use it. 375s and all electrostars are designed to be dual voltage. Unless 376s are different, but i wouldnt have thought so. Thats why 365s are 365s, even when down in Kent. They were designed to be used on AC as well.
The only units I can think of that dont make sense, are 444s and 450s. I thought they were also designed to be able to run on AC. Perhaps they just arent as dual voltage capable as Electrostars. Dont know. But thats why a lot of DC units are 3XX. Only 376s im not 100% sure about, but I guess its likely they are exactly the same as their sister fleets.
You are indeed quite right regards your comment on the 444s/450s, as I believe that the DfT has set requirements regarding all new rolling stock in the South East region and I quote:

"In standing with requirements of all new rolling stock for the South East region, provision has been made for future conversion to 25 kV AC overhead supply or dual voltage"

The only new rolling stock which doesn't fit in with these requirements are the 460s as they are a DC only design unlike the others which are future proof so can be use as dual voltage or AC stock in the future :)
 

junglejames

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I think the DC "Electrostars" are numbered in the 3xx series purely because they have a recess for a pantograph if needed which even a 376 has. (the exceptions being the 375/6s and 377/2s and 377/5s)

But than again I take it a Class 450 also has a recess for a pantograph which may complicate it more!
I think the Electrostars have more than just that recess. The fact some subfleets of 377s are dual voltage well and truely, makes me think the whole Electrostar fleet is pretty much ready to operate on AC. All thats needed is the pantograph. Im guessing 444s and 450s arent quite as ready to operate on AC.

I certainly remember hearing back when 375s first entered, that the reason they are 3xx, is because they are able to operate on AC as soon as a panto is added.
 

jopsuk

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The next family to be introduced, the Networkers, decided to jump again to 165 (which also allowed their electric versions to take the free numbers 365 and 465). .
465 and 466- and even 455- were arguably the "correct" numbers according the Southern Region system. The Wessex units seem to have though gone through as a "70-s design"- I suppose the Mark 3 coach was- as otherwise 4x2 was correct (as they had some sort of buffet).

The southern region system only worked though where you had centralised procurement, ensuring that effectively only one design per purpose was ever built in each time frame.
 

pendolino

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I think the Electrostars have more than just that recess. The fact some subfleets of 377s are dual voltage well and truely, makes me think the whole Electrostar fleet is pretty much ready to operate on AC. All thats needed is the pantograph.
It's not quite that simple. You'd also need to fit a transformer (although the DC 377s have the under-floor brackets to hold one - there's a big lump of metal bolted there on them for extra weight), auxiliary compressor, drill some holes in the cab for the pan up/down/AC system select buttons, fit APC gear, VCB, probably change a whole load of wiring etc etc.

It's probably possible to do, but not without a lot of work.
 

jopsuk

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As do 444s. In fact the DC Junipers are the only post-privatization EMUs without pantograph wells.
Only the (soon to be gone) 460s- the current 458 fleet all have pantograph wells, though the rebuild 458s formed purely from 460 carriages won't have them I would have thought.
 

SouthEastern-465

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I think the Electrostars have more than just that recess. The fact some subfleets of 377s are dual voltage well and truely, makes me think the whole Electrostar fleet is pretty much ready to operate on AC. All thats needed is the pantograph. Im guessing 444s and 450s arent quite as ready to operate on AC.

I certainly remember hearing back when 375s first entered, that the reason they are 3xx, is because they are able to operate on AC as soon as a panto is added.

Exactly my point.

I may be totally wrong here, but I'm sure the 375/6s were given pantographs with the idea of them originally operating domestic services over the CTRL? Obviously this never materialised if so.
 

hairyhandedfool

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Just because a unit has a pan well, does not mean it is, for lack of a better term, 'AC Ready'.

It is quite possible that, whilst the 444s, 450s and 458s could be made into AC units at a later date, they were not designed for it and may lack some other AC equipment (not just the pan), but still have the room for it.

There is no reason, that I know of, to think that the DC only Electrostars don't carry all the necessary equipment (bar the pan) to run on AC electric.
 

David10

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There is no reason, that I know of, to think that the DC only Electrostars don't carry all the necessary equipment (bar the pan) to run on AC electric.
I can think of one, cost. Would involve some extra components, although as demonstrated by the 365 conversions not a big deal to do. But much like the Desiros the Electrostars have been built with conversion an option so I'm sure all the appropriate cavities for wiring etc are in situ.
 

swt_passenger

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Just because a unit has a pan well, does not mean it is, for lack of a better term, 'AC Ready'.

It is quite possible that, whilst the 444s, 450s and 458s could be made into AC units at a later date, they were not designed for it and may lack some other AC equipment (not just the pan), but still have the room for it.
I don't know about 458s, but 444 and 450 most definitely are designed for conversion to AC operation, with all the necessary internal wiring fitted at build. There are even control switches present to manually raise and lower the pantograph on the secondman's side back panel...

However, although is is often assumed that the key addition is a transformer, there is more to it than that. The rectifier to provide DC (which must also work in reverse to allow for regen - so is really a 'converter') is also a big lump that has to be fitted somewhere...
 

junglejames

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There has got to be a reason why 375s etc are numbered 3xx, and SWTs Desiros arent. I can only assume its what I heard when 375s first came out. They are all but ready for AC operation, but the Desiros arent quite so ready. I know pendolino denys this, but nothing else makes sense as to why some are 3xx and some arent. The only other possibility is that SWT were adament they never wanted their units to be numbered 3xx.
 

TGV

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3xx series

Admittedly a lot more complex than the diesel series. In order of introduction:
  • The sequential-style numbering got as high as 325.
  • Networkers took 365, to match the 165s.
  • The first EMUs since privatisation were the HEx units, which for no reason I can discern were numbered 332. Their successors in the North were numbered 333.
  • Electrostars, again for no obvious reason, took 357. Why their next generations jumped to the 375–379 range is equally obscure.
  • The Junipers went for 334, breaking the rule that different series of trains shouldn't use adjacent numbers.
  • Pendolinos, presumably because they are high-speed units, went for a high number: 390.
  • The WCML Desiros went for 350, because they were originally meant to be 450s. Subsequent Desiros went to 360, skipped 370 (which was the APT) and went to 380. Pretty silly way of numbering them if you ask me; why not 350, 351 and 352, Thameslink stock being 353?
  • The Javelins took 395, because they're higher speed than the 390s.
373.....? Doesn't fit into any logic there. Although that was chosen because it fits in with the UIC numbering system in place for TGVs at the time.
 

junglejames

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373.....? Doesn't fit into any logic there. Although that was chosen because it fits in with the UIC numbering system in place for TGVs at the time.
Im not sure there is any logic anymore. Its up to the operator mainly. They choose what they want. Obviously within the set perameters like 3xx, 4xx etc etc
 

Eagle

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373.....? Doesn't fit into any logic there. Although that was chosen because it fits in with the UIC numbering system in place for TGVs at the time.
373 was the French number, just so happened to be available in the British system too.

Kind of like how the train numbers for Eurostar on the continent are all 90xx and 91xx, so they can fit into the NR system as 9Oxx and 9Ixx.



One I forgot to mention: the Pullman started numbering at 251 (presumably because someone realized they weren't going to need 50 types of DEMU). Its successor, the HST, subsequently ended up with 253 and 254—with 252 being the prototype.
 

jopsuk

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during the period that SNCF Class BB 22000 electric locos were working freight through the tunnel to Dollands Moor, they were given a nominal UK class number of 22- way out of the correct range (as 2x should be a small mainline diesel- indeed had previously been used for the "Baby Warship" class)
 

TGV

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Eagle:1120457 said:
373 was the French number, just so happened to be available in the British system too.
Popular myth I'm afraid. 373 didn't fit into the TGV series numbering either. That started with series 23000, 33000 and 24000 with the PSE and Atlantique sets which came before TMST.

It was a mutual agreement that 373000 was used rather than it being a natural fit or progression. After TMST the TGV-R continued as series 28000 and 38000 around the same time as the TMST build.

The UIC numbering system that consists of many more digits that the usual TOPS system allowed 373 to fit in both without too many headaches. So it was a compromise.

Also, all TGV sets are given a unique number
consisting of 3 digits (325, 408, etc...). The TMST didn't fit that either as all sets are identified by a four digit number (3017, 3223, 3313, etc...).
 
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