Tramlink: Stadler Variobahns

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MCR247

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As these are now in service I am wondering if anyone knows whether or not these trams are used in a common pool with the rest of the trams and can therefore be found anywhere on the network? A quick look on flickr seems to tell me they are only found on routes 1 & 4 serving Elmers End? Is this true?

Do they have any specific diagrams?
 
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317666

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As far as I'm aware they can be found anywhere, although I do see them on the 1 and 4 quite a lot. If you stand at East Croydon it certainly won't be long until one shows up!
 

bluegoblin7

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This is correct, and the Variobahns can normally be found on specific diagrams.

The reason for this is that the cars have not (yet) received full approval to run to Beckenham Junction due to the NR line running alongside, although they have reached there during testing whilst the NR line was closed, I believe.

Certain 'routes' on lines 1 and 4 interwork with each other and avoid Beckenham, and these are usually operated by the Variobahns, but not exclusively - CR4000s can (And do) appear on line 4, whilst the Variobahns can operate to New Addington if required, though I believe this is avoided as much as possible due to the slower acceleration and deceleration rates of the cars.

Hope that helps!

Jack
 

WatcherZero

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I seem to remember there is clearance issues somewhere so they are limited to those routes, they also had to lower the line speeds in corners across the whole network because they cant take corners as fast as the existing stock.
 

MCR247

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Does anyone know anywhere where I can find The diagrams?
 

bluegoblin7

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Does anyone know anywhere where I can find The diagrams?

Sadly they're not publicly available to the best of my knowledge, but routes 11-17 are the Line 1/4 interworkings. 12-16 are the 'Beckenham avoiders', and therefore scheduled to be Variobahns.

I seem to remember there is clearance issues somewhere so they are limited to those routes, they also had to lower the line speeds in corners across the whole network because they cant take corners as fast as the existing stock.

This is also correct - the new cars have fixed bogies unlike the CR4000s, meaning that the curves have to be taken at lower speeds. Timetables were changed (requiring one additional tram) and these apply to the CR4000s as well.

But, as previously, there are no clearance issues with the new stock, rather they have not had the necessary paperwork completed to allow them to operate alongside the NR lines between Arena and Beckenham Junction.
 

MCR247

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Thanks for all of the help :)

Looks like a trip out to Elmers End on a 376 is now necessary :(
 

starrymarkb

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Sadly they're not publicly available to the best of my knowledge, but routes 11-17 are the Line 1/4 interworkings. 12-16 are the 'Beckenham avoiders', and therefore scheduled to be Variobahns.



This is also correct - the new cars have fixed bogies unlike the CR4000s, meaning that the curves have to be taken at lower speeds. Timetables were changed (requiring one additional tram) and these apply to the CR4000s as well.

But, as previously, there are no clearance issues with the new stock, rather they have not had the necessary paperwork completed to allow them to operate alongside the NR lines between Arena and Beckenham Junction.

Presumably they have to be fixed because of the low floor limiting their travel.
 

bluegoblin7

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Presumably they have to be fixed because of the low floor limiting their travel.

Correct - the Variobahns are completely low floor, unlike the CR4000s which have high floor sections at each end to allow for rotating bogies.

I believe that there is now a low floor rotating bogie in existence, but I am yet to hear any more details...

Jack
 

WatcherZero

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Most 100% low floor trams do it by having bogieless or shorter axles rather than connecting both sets of wheels in parallel theres only one wheel on each axle and neighbouring axles arent linked, then they stick a seat over the wheel arch like on low floor bus.
 

Electrostar

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I knew I should have taken a photo one night a few weeks ago when I noticed a Variobahn at the Beckenham Junction stop. It was the first and only time I've seen one on that branch, and now I know why!
 

317666

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After riding on the Croydon Tramlink yesterday, all six Variotrams were out and were on Lines 1 and 4 only - apparently they can't go to Wimbledon as they don't fit in the Tramlink platform there. Is this true?
 

anthony263

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After riding on the Croydon Tramlink yesterday, all six Variotrams were out and were on Lines 1 and 4 only - apparently they can't go to Wimbledon as they don't fit in the Tramlink platform there. Is this true?

I think it is true although they are trying to get the tramlink platform at Wimbledon extended
 

MCR247

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I was also on the Tramlink yesterday - got a Variobahn in. Was pretty good. Apart from the awful noise the articulated section bit was making (even when it was stopped!)
 

bluegoblin7

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After riding on the Croydon Tramlink yesterday, all six Variotrams were out and were on Lines 1 and 4 only - apparently they can't go to Wimbledon as they don't fit in the Tramlink platform there. Is this true?

I'm not aware of that being the case, although I will make some enquiries and reply the findings. I am sure I recall at Variobahn operating to Wimbledon on service, though...
 

robvulpes

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After riding on the Croydon Tramlink yesterday, all six Variotrams were out and were on Lines 1 and 4 only - apparently they can't go to Wimbledon as they don't fit in the Tramlink platform there. Is this true?

I'm not aware of that being the case, although I will make some enquiries and reply the findings. I am sure I recall at Variobahn operating to Wimbledon on service, though...

Allegedly the problem at Wimbledon is the vertical curvature at the top and bottom of the steep ramp on the approach to the platform, in relation to the Variobahns' articulation. Not impossible but close to limits.

Rob
 

Peter Mugridge

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After riding on the Croydon Tramlink yesterday, all six Variotrams were out and were on Lines 1 and 4 only - apparently they can't go to Wimbledon as they don't fit in the Tramlink platform there. Is this true?

All six were out last Saturday ( 25th ) as well - saw them in the space of 20 minutes near East Croydon.

Unfortunately it was a shopping trip and I was in the custody of the wife so no bashing was possible!
 

westcoaster

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I saw one of the new trams at Wimbledon the week before last in passenger service, must have been stopped for less than a minute and gone again, drivers at both ends (probably learning the traction).
 
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