What to do with an old Pacer

Status
Not open for further replies.

AndrewNewens

Member
Joined
24 Jun 2011
Messages
51
Now that there is serious talk about replacing Pacers with proper trains, is it time to consider what other uses they could be put to? Here are a few suggestions. Any other ideas?

Cut down the bodywork leaving cabs and:
1) Add to Network Rail fleet of railhead treatment trains
2) Modify to carry skips so that all the scrap and other detritus which blights the network can be cleared easily
3) As above with cranes to quickly remove thousands of tons of abandoned rail littering the network
4) Add paint spray modules to eliminate graffiti - keep on top of it and it will go away

Light freight uses

1) Modify to carry brake gear from Knorr Bremse in Melksham Wiltshire to Newton Aycliffe Hitachi factory (it will go by road otherwise)
2) ??

Hated they may be, but surely a self propelled unit has to have some use?
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

andyb2706

Member
Joined
21 Jan 2013
Messages
747
Location
Manchester
Filled with rock armour and used as breakwaters on the Dawlish coast.:D
Not a bad idea....apart from the fact that they are already rusting away. Think what the salt water would do to it. ;)

I think melt them down to make pet food cans would be the most productive thing you could do with them. Sorry but 30 odd years of putting up with them I won't be sorry to see them go.
 

asylumxl

Established Member
Joined
12 Feb 2009
Messages
4,260
Location
Hiding in your shadow
Put a Valenta engine in it, bench seats that don't line up and make the windows narrower. Enthusiasts will have to choose between Valenta haulage or things they hate.
 
Last edited:

185143

Established Member
Joined
3 Mar 2013
Messages
3,140
asylumxl:2042375 said:
Put a Valenta engine in it, bench seats that don't line up and make the windows narrower. Enthusiasts will have to choose between Valenta haulage or things they hate.
I can think of a lot of things to do to you for this post!
 

GrimsbyPacer

Established Member
Joined
13 Oct 2014
Messages
1,804
Location
Humberside
I genuinly want them to be modified as the Porterbrook broucher suggested. They will be useful for replacing 153s.
If not allowed to run as normal on the "national" network I would suggest:

1, used to make heritage railways services cheaper and with decent service levels. North York Moors, East Lancs, 7 Valley, Wensley Dale, West Somerset and so on.
2, Fully modded into true metro trains(fewer seats) for use on possible new metros which it would help to cut the cost of opening. Teesside metro or Bristol metro.
3, Ripping the roof off and add a vista dome, a Pacer like train with a dome like this was actually drawn up by BR for Highland lines.
4, Backup trains, if a few new trains are strandard or full one might come to the rescue as a Rail Replacement Railbus!
5, Sell them to some bankrupted nation like Spain.
6, I don't think freight would be suitable for them despite the fact they are partially based on the High Speed Freight Vehicle as it would only be small amounts of cargo. Network Rail could use them as crew trains.
7, Used for "parly" lines. I'm certain people in Brigg, Denton, Okehampton or other similar towns won't mind them as they never see many trains.
They could also run over unserved lines linking two stations.
Burton to Northampton? Mansfield to Alfreton?
 
Last edited:

DarloRich

Veteran Member
Joined
12 Oct 2010
Messages
23,934
Location
Work - Fenny Stratford(MK) Home - Darlington
I genuinly want them to be modified as the Porterbrook broucher suggested. They will be useful for replacing 153s.
If not allowed to run as normal on the "national" network I would suggest:

1, used to make heritage railways services cheaper and with decent service levels. North York Moors, East Lancs, 7 Valley, Wensley Dale, West Somerset and so on.
2, Fully modded into true metro trains(fewer seats) for use on possible new metros which it would help to cut the cost of opening. Teesside metro or Bristol metro.
3, Ripping the roof off and add a vista dome, a Pacer like train with a dome like this was actually drawn up by BR for Highland lines.
4, Backup trains, if a few new trains are strandard or full one might come to the rescue as a Rail Replacement Railbus!
5, Sell them to some bankrupted nation like Spain.
6, I don't think freight would be suitable for them despite the fact they are partially based on the High Speed Freight Vehicle as it would only be small amounts of cargo. Network Rail could use them as crew trains.
7, Used for "parly" lines. I'm certain people in Brigg, Denton, Okehampton or other similar towns won't mind them as they never see many trains.
They could also run over unserved lines linking two stations.
Burton to Northampton? Mansfield to Alfreton?
May i ask if these are serious suggestions?
 

Xenophon PCDGS

Veteran Member
Joined
17 Apr 2011
Messages
26,376
Location
A semi-rural part of north-west England
I genuinly want them to be modified as the Porterbrook broucher suggested.
Unfortunately, Porterbrook only do "nice" Pacers...What most up here think of when the word "Pacers" are mentioned are the "Newton Heath's Finest" variety that are the sole preserve of Angel Trains...<(

Perhaps a new booklet could be produced with suitable illustrations about the Pacer fleet along the lines of the one called "50 ways to kill a slug"....:D
 

GrimsbyPacer

Established Member
Joined
13 Oct 2014
Messages
1,804
Location
Humberside
May i ask if these are serious suggestions?
They were. Why what problems are they with these ideas?
--- old post above --- --- new post below ---
Unfortunately, Porterbrook only do "nice" Pacers...What most up here think of when the word "Pacers" are mentioned are the "Newton Heath's Finest" variety that are the sole preserve of Angel Trains...<(

Perhaps a new booklet could be produced with suitable illustrations about the Pacer fleet along the lines of the one called "50 ways to kill a slug"....:D
Good comment.
I know the 142s aren't to be modded but the 143-144s will all be in Northern Rail's operation when South Wales gets electric wires.
It would therefor make sense to mod all Pacers, the current booklet can easily be used on 142s for much of the work. If Angel aren't to moddify them they may sell them to Porterbrook??
 
Last edited:

fgwrich

Established Member
Joined
15 Apr 2009
Messages
5,553
Location
Between Edinburgh and Exeter
Can I just remove FGWs 143s from this discussion as they're actually not that bad for the job and area they work, thanks to CWR along the majority of the Devon Metro and a high quality refurbishment? Northern and ATW's Fleet on the other hand...
 

Tracked

Member
Joined
30 May 2011
Messages
908
Location
53.5440°N 1.1510°W
I think they'd be too life-expired to be converted to freight wagons.

How about using them on Crossrail?

cjmillsnun's suggestion is the most useful, but we need to have a giant Pacer Conker Contest beforehand :D
 

Harpers Tate

Established Member
Joined
10 May 2013
Messages
1,307
Keep them for peak-only strengthening...Better a seat in a rubbish train than standing in a posh one.
This.

Somehow the bright sparks that decide such things, whenever there is a mass replacement project, seem to want to replace more with less. At least, that's what appeared to happen last time. If this pattern is followed when pacers are replaced, then every 100 pacer spaces will be replaced by 80 new train spaces and then someone will wonder why the overcrowding is worse.

Put it this way - when we still had a fleet of 1960's DMUs a two-car train was a pretty rare sight. Indeed, head for Scarborough in the summer peak and practically every train was 8 cars - even on the Wolds coast. Now, two is the norm on the coast; three if you're lucky and three on the York route.

So, we keep them and use them for peak services and/or to alleviate overcrowding. Unless/until there is in fact (as opposed to in theory) enough rolling stock to carry everybody who wants to travel in sufficient comfort.
 
Last edited:

rf_ioliver

Member
Joined
17 Apr 2011
Messages
583
Strip them of their current interiors, put in place noise insulation etc. Air conditioning, thick carpets, triple glazed windows, place a door between to isolate the vestibules, curtains, a few armchairs and sturdy oak tables tables, drinks cabinet etc.

Make it a modern day version of some royal train. Use it for rail tours for semi-masochistic people with too much money

:)

Ian
 

sprinterguy

Established Member
Joined
4 Mar 2010
Messages
10,521
Location
Macclesfield
Cut down the bodywork leaving cabs and:
1) Add to Network Rail fleet of railhead treatment trains
No need to go to such drastic lengths of re-engineering: One of the redundant class 141s was converted into a weedkilling unit without the need to remove any of the bodywork: I would have thought that a similar conversion could be made to turn a Pacer into a sandite unit.

Not that I'm sure where the demand for such a conversion is, when we already have quite an extensive fleet of MPVs to fulfil the need, that can earn their keep being used for other purposes at other times of the year.
 

dgl

Established Member
Joined
5 Oct 2014
Messages
1,158
replace fixed axles with bogies and put in standard sliding doors?, should that not remove a lot of the pacers problems making them a lot more useful
 

Bletchleyite

Veteran Member
Joined
20 Oct 2014
Messages
51,293
Location
Up and down the south WCML (mostly)
replace fixed axles with bogies and put in standard sliding doors?, should that not remove a lot of the pacers problems making them a lot more useful
Fitting bogies would not be a simple matter - they wouldn't fit.

As for the doors, they've already been replaced once - in the 1990s they swapped the 4-leaf Leyland National bus doors for the 2-leaf modern bus doors they have now.

Neil
 

WelshBluebird

Established Member
Joined
14 Jan 2010
Messages
3,177
Assuming 150's and any other compatible classes are still in use, I don't see why pacers couldn't be given a slight upgrade (even if it reduces the number of seats) and used to strengthen existing busy services. I'm not sure about the rules regarding DDA etc, but if a train has some carriages compliant and some not would that be ok?
 

D6975

Established Member
Joined
26 Nov 2009
Messages
2,086
Location
Bristol
1, used to make heritage railways services cheaper and with decent service levels. North York Moors, East Lancs, 7 Valley, Wensley Dale, West Somerset and so on.
Several heritage railways have already tried this with first generation DMUs providing 'commuter' services on days when normal services don't run. None have been particularly successful that I know of.
 

alexl92

Established Member
Joined
12 Oct 2014
Messages
1,775
I like the Top Gear idea. Could they be redesigned slightly so that a shared bogey sat under the gangways in the middle, like an articulated set? It would surely improve the ride a bit... But honestly, they need a smaller number of seats. The current ones are too close together to be comfortable.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top