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Trivia: Quietest and noisiest types of trains?

Discussion in 'Traction & Rolling Stock' started by Intermodal, 1 Jan 2019.

  1. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    I think the clue is in the title, 'Express Sprinter' versus regular Sprinter. They were designed for a higher grade of service therefore had better sound insulation and sealed windows with air conditioning. That goes a long way to improving noise levels. On the outside 158s are if anything even noisier than the other Sprinter classes.
     
  2. Parallel

    Parallel Established Member

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    I actually find the 165s/166s very noisy from the outside (especially departing stations) - 150s are very noisy internally though.
     
  3. Jozhua

    Jozhua Member

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    Yeah that makes sense now, thanks! Still has me wondering how much it would have cost them to add sound insulation, sealed windows and air-con in the first place, or even whether it would be worth the investment to refit them with such today? To be honest, the 153's/156's could just benefit from some retrofitted air conditioning!
     
  4. camjkerman

    camjkerman Member

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    Same thing with the Javelins. Sit in the middle 4 cars, which are all powered, and it’s nigh on deafening, the outer 2 are the only ones where a group may be able to hold a conversation at a civil volume. It’s not like it’s a nice sound either. If Electrostars were that loud, it wouldn’t be anywhere near as bad due to the motor distribution (3 motors in a 4 car set spread over 3 cars) and the fact they sound somewhat decent.
     
  5. Journeyman

    Journeyman Established Member

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    I'd strongly recommend getting a trip on the Hastings unit if you ever get the chance - it's an absolute beauty and a superb restoration job. There's also plenty of Thumpers in preservation. I live in Scotland now so it's a while since I've ridden on one, but a Thumper heading up the stiff gradient out of Alton on the Mid-Hants is fantastic too.
     
  6. Mugby

    Mugby Established Member

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    HSTs anyone?

    Perhaps the only diesel train still running where you can get a carriage which doesn't have an engine underneath!
     
  7. hexagon789

    hexagon789 Established Member

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    Oh definitely, though I wouldn't mind a Northern Irish one either ;).

    I cannot believe our forgot HSTs! :oops:

    I can remember being deafened by one at York in 2004, Valentas screaming out of the station - I've loved them ever since! :wub: :lol:
     
  8. camjkerman

    camjkerman Member

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    Doesn't stop them from being loud in other ways. Mk3s are horrible for rattling and screeching at even low speeds. Just because you cant hear the engines much doesn't make them quiet. In fact, most underfloor engines make less noise than the rubber gangways on Mk3s rubbing against eachother.
     
  9. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    A lot and no, not worth it. Bear in mind the Sprinters originated at the same time as the Pacers, they too were on the cheap. The 153s are even still Leyland bus bodies of sorts, they just at least have proper bogies so they ride better.
    I have to say I disagree with that. The traction motors on those are not quiet by any means but they're really not that loud, especially not at speed, above 60mph or so I can't really hear them at all and I don't find they stifle conversation. Mk3 EMUs like 317s, 321s etc. however, are a different story.
    Also true, Mk3s are quiet ordinarily but I prefer continuous engine noise I can tune out to the erratic screeching of those gangway connectors - then again, that's not unique to Mk3s by any means. 345s are already starting to make a similar racket with their gangway connectors.
     
  10. superalbs

    superalbs Established Member

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    They are, however, very noisy when in a tunnel at around 140mph, louder so than either of the Eurostar fleet!
     
  11. Kneedown

    Kneedown Established Member

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    Noisiest in the UK has got to be a 56 at full pelt on the front of 42 HAA's, climbing the hill out of Calverton. No sound like it. I happily withstood frostbite in the winter going along with the window open!
     
  12. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    I'm sure, but so too would be almost anything else. I think the sound insulation on the Desiro UK is still perhaps slightly better but not by a whole lot. Comparing them to stock designed for 186mph or more is a very high bar to set. It may be noisy to travel on them on account of the route's very high line speed but that doesn't make the 395s inherently noisy themselves.
     
  13. superalbs

    superalbs Established Member

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    Fair point.

    Of course, there is nothing alike to compare them to!
     
  14. Western Lord

    Western Lord Member

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    I should jolly well think so as four of the five coaches are unpowered trailers!
     
  15. delt1c

    delt1c Member

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    I had forgotten about the sound of the hastings units when sitting in the power car, not only noise but vibration. Possibly worse than other thumpers as they had song long fast runing
     
  16. hassaanhc

    hassaanhc Established Member

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    Engines on idle generally seem to have got louder since the 1980s. Pacers and Sprinters are quiet on idle, but it starts getting louder with the 158 and 159. Then 165/166 are louder still, then the Turbostar, and the 175/180/185/220/221/222 are the loudest. Luckily the IETs are quiet again.

    In the case of 150s (and 153s, 155s and 156s) they are loud when accelerating but quiet on idle. 165s/166s are loud in both cases :D (I miss them being my local units for that reason, but with the "normal passenger" hat on the electrification and 387s are an enormous improvement in noise).
     
  17. John C

    John C Member

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    In my opinion the 333’s are fairly quiet units both inside and out.
     
  18. matacaster

    matacaster Member

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    The whooping noise of the 323 regenerative braking is a bit annoying internally.
     
  19. w1bbl3

    w1bbl3 Member

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    I'd say that noise is mostly entering the cabin via the doors which isn't really something that can be addressed on commuter design with doors within the passenger compartment. The vestibule areas of intercity style stock are equally noisy.
     
  20. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    Mainly down to the idle speed. Sprinters and Pacers tend to idle around 700rpm versus 900 ish for 158s and almost 1000 for Voyagers/185s etc. 172s are noticeably quieter at idle than 170s for the same reason.
    Therefore, theoretically so too should 195s.
     
  21. J-2739

    J-2739 Established Member

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    185s are not the exact loudest, but they certinately make the strangest noise!
     
  22. Pokelet

    Pokelet Member

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    For me the gentle humm of a 170 is fairly unobtrusive until something (table, fitting, panel) starts rattling/vibrating.

    180's very pleasant.

    Noisiest in my neck of the woods is a 150, however the sound under acceleration from a stand makes you feel something is happening.
     
  23. Cowley

    Cowley Established Member

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    I loved the Thumpers.
    I remember as a teenager sitting in them back in the 1980s at night. As they ticked over on idle the engines used to slightly 'hunt' up and down, and the bulbs inside the carriages used to do the same - glowing slightly brighter or dimmer as the tickover revs went up and down.
    The whole of the motor coach used to be infused with the scent and feel of the substantial engine built into one end of it, there was always a lovely deep down bass feeling underneath the rattling windows and the dim lighting.
    When you set off (especially if it was on a route that meant that full power was applied for a good few minutes) it was properly exhilarating, and hard to believe that you were actually on a little unit.

    Life moves on, but I'm so glad that I got to enjoy them.
     
    Last edited: 13 Jan 2019 at 23:49
  24. gimmea50anyday

    gimmea50anyday Established Member

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    Oh, I don't know. I think being in the centre cabs of a 6 car 185 hammering through Standedge Tunnel sweet music can be heard there too!!! XD
     
  25. gimmea50anyday

    gimmea50anyday Established Member

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    Oh, I don't know. I think being in the centre cabs of a 6 car 185 hammering through Standedge Tunnel sweet music can be heard there too!!! XD
     
  26. gimmea50anyday

    gimmea50anyday Established Member

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    185s and voyagers idle at 850. When one engine drops out and the engine pitch increases to power the alternator the revs increase to 950. When a voyager powers up a little during the train doors closing this is also 950. The highest power output in 1st gear (if you like) of a 185 is 1786. This is where they emit their distinctive growl under Darlington trainshed! A voyager at full power also runs at 1786rpm.
     
  27. gimmea50anyday

    gimmea50anyday Established Member

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    If we add locos to this thread, I would suggest EE locos (and Ruston/GEC derivatives) were nosier than Sulzer. However it would be between the screaming Valenta and the growling Napier Deltas for a thrash bash!!! XD
     
  28. samuelmorris

    samuelmorris Established Member

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    I'm sure you're correct that those are the intended speeds set by the ECU, but frequency analysis of the noise they actually produce suggests it's a bit higher than that. The figures I posted are estimates of course but that's how I interpret things. The 1786rpm at full power (89.3Hz) sounds about right.
     
  29. Journeyman

    Journeyman Established Member

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    I completely agree. I find the assorted rattles and squeaks of the Mark 3 far more grating and irritating than the noise of an underfloor engine, which I can easily tune out and ignore.
     
  30. Journeyman

    Journeyman Established Member

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    Absolutely - the Thumpers were a unique and rather enjoyable experience, although probably not much fun if you had to commute on them daily well into the 21st century, by which time they were falling to pieces and quite badly vandalised. I'll always have fond memories of them, though.
     

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