Your preference - Steam, Diesel or Electric?

What is your preference?

  • Steam

    Votes: 13 19.4%
  • Diesel

    Votes: 38 56.7%
  • Electric

    Votes: 16 23.9%

  • Total voters
    67
  • This poll will close: .
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Bittern

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Just as the title says, basically. What do you prefer - Steam, Diesel or Electric traction?

For me, it's a very hard decision. I grew up with Electrics. The 314s, 303s and the Intercity 225s highlighted my childhood, plus my love for the 390 Pendolinos, and the 318s are some of the reasons why I'm so into railways today. I remember the old 303s and being scared of them at first (I was like, very young at the time) and thought the 314s were the better looking ones. I still think that, although I miss the 303s dearly. My and my Pap used these two classes to get to Motherwell often, where we would sit and watch Main Line trains go by. To me, the star(s) of the show were the Intercity 225s (or as I knew them, GNERs!).

I phased out of railways for a few years, and was reintroduced to them by the power of the 318s, 334s and the Pendolinos. Trips to and around Glasgow on the former two, never actually been on a Pendo, but love them all the same, as well as rediscovering a peice of my childhood on the 314s on the Cathcart Circle, which shocked me to no end - I thought they had been scrapped long ago!

Around this time I began learning more about Diesel trains, specifically, the 158 caught my interest. I had seen a few 156s pass Newton, and thanks to my lack of experience with train classes at the time, I mistook them for each other. Upon learning of the 158, I learned of the 170's existance. My first journey on a 170 was QS - Waverley late last year, and loved it. I have since also come to love Super Voyagers like no other. Diesel was quickly building its way to the top.

But then I need to stop and recall the last remaining piece of my love. While never experiencing it when it was in full operation, Steam has always had my interest. Who doesn't love the sight, sound and smell of a beautiful Steam locomotive? It's been a long time since I've even seen a Steam Locomotive in person, but I've been on the Bo'ness railway as a kid, and the Isle of Wight Steam Railway plenty of times. There's also the Glasgow Transport Museum where Single No. 123 (Caledonain Railway), No. 103, the Jones Goods (Highland Railway) and Gordon Highlander No. 49 (Great North of Scotland Railway) are displayed. Not to mention Tornado, who I have every desire to see in person sometime. And also, perhaps the pinicle of my railway love...

Mallard.

If there is anything on this Earth I want to see, to be in the tow of it's power, it's her. The record-breaking beauty has always fascinated me in every way. So much so, that I have my old 00 model of her sitting right here in front of me. I have an old VHS telling her story, right from her record run to her 1988 return. I hope that she steams again one day. I really do.

I haven't given a clear answer to my own question. Electric has nostalgia for me, as well as the enjoyment factor, diesel has the enjoyment factor and the desire to do more journeys by, while Steam has the fascination, and Mallard.

I would love to pick Steam. So I will!

It's an unfair call as not having travelled under it for long (nor in a very long time!), but my favourite all time locomotive is the fastest Steam Locomotive on Earth (and Mars!). Out of Electric and Disel, there is no winner. I love them both equally. They both have equally loving factors.

I don't know how your views are on this entire post. I don't know if you understand my feelings that I have expressed here or if you think I'm a total crazy dude. But these are my views, andn ow I'm curious as to hear yours!
 
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Swift-Deere

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St Helens, UK
Only one Winner am afraid STEAM:D

Diesels are class because they clag and make massive noise

Electrics are cool because they are fast and high tech

But and the end of the Day steam is AWESOME because the trains look cool, the smoke out of the chimney adds drama, the make an amazing sound, they take skill to drive and they are both mucky and elegant at the same time

Go STEAM:D!!!
 

4SRKT

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9 Jan 2009
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4,409
Diesel all the way for me. I grew up with it (pre-electrification York), and although I do like steam, it's a museum piece as far as I'm concerned. Electric locomotives are just traction motors on wheels. Diesel-electrics with the glamour stripped away!
 

EM2

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16 Nov 2008
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The home of the concrete cow
Electrics. They've been almost constant in my life.
Brought up on the Tube, and the AC EMUs from Ilford to Liverpool Street. Then it was third rail EMUs from Kent and Sussex. And now it's back to 315s on the GEML!
I've probably only used a couple of dozen diesel trains in my life and they've been nearly all HSTs (which I do like a lot though)
 

Drsatan

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Land of the Sprinters
Definitely electric. Having lived in Porchester for the first 4 years of my life I grew up around 421s, 423s, 411s, and even a 319! Electric trains are more powerful, quieter, and a lot quicker!
 

4SRKT

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Definitely electric. Having lived in Porchester for the first 4 years of my life I grew up around 421s, 423s, 411s, and even a 319! Electric trains are more powerful, quieter, and a lot quicker!
I'm guessing you must be quite young, as my (good) memories of that area are of 33s and thumpers.
 

Aictos

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I'm probably going to get shot but despite having a thing for diesels and their fumes, I'm more then happy to ride behind nearly anything as long as it's comfortable.

Which yes that does include Virgin's 390s as well as 153s to far back as steam.
 

Captain Speaking

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Wilmslow
The only one I've driven is steam (big 2-8-0), and to be honest, it's the only one I'd want to drive. From the 'enthusiast's' view, it has to be steam. Nothing else has the character or the 'presence' of a big steam loco working hard.

From the passenger's point of view, it has to be electric. Fast and reliable, quiet and clean. Pendelinos are soul-less and have squinty windows, a claustrophobic narrow interior, and awful seats. But they are fast and reliable.
 

4SRKT

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The poll results say it all. Diesel is romping ahead, despite most people who are bothering to post having a preference for steam or even (bizarrely) electric.
 

Daimler

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Hertfordshire
I like trains of all forms of traction - they each offer something different.

From a passenger's point of view, I don't think there's any doubt that the electric train is the way forward. It's the fastest and cleanest way of powering trains.

Diesels can be great too - principally as a result of their noise/smoke!

But, for me, despite not having grown up with it, despite never having known it in day to day action, there is only steam. Steam is what made the railways magical. Country branch lines, rushing expresses, beautiful liveries, magnificent coaches. The romance, the drama, the beauty, the sheer awe-inspring nature of a 'Duchess' pounding up Shap with an overnight train to Perth.

Just imagine being there...it's a cold winter's night, the wind is whistling through the telegraph poles at the lineside. Looking down the line the lights of Scout Green signalbox can just about be made out. Suddenly, a sound is heard - quiet now, but ever growing louder. It's obviously a powerful engine, and it's working hard. The beat of the exhaust begins to echo round the valley, and the distinctive sound of an LMS whistle is heard as the train approaches. The noise now is almost deafening - the two lamps indicating an express can be seen emerging from the gloom. Suddenly, the train is storming past - a brief glimpse of driver and fireman, silhouetted in the glow from the open firebox, the gentle glow from the heavy sleeping cars rolling past, their bogies providing the perfect accompaniment to the locomotive's exhaust as they rattle over the jointed track. As the train's tail-lamp is seen receding into the distance, the sound of the locomotive can still be heard over the night air, pushing on towards Scotland.

Only steam has that magic for me. Ah, how I'd love a time machine...
 

4SRKT

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Ah, how I'd love a time machine...
Wouldn't we all. I'd be going back only as far as the early 80s, armed with all the gen I've gleaned on the web recently, and would become absolutely the top man with regard to 40 bashing!

I'd also show people back then a picture of a class 70, as a warning of what can happen if people don't treat railways with respect!
 

Drsatan

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I'm guessing you must be quite young, as my (good) memories of that area are of 33s and thumpers.
I'm 18 btw:)

However, I do remember seeing two 37s and several tank wagons rumble through Porchester station in 1993-4. They probably originated from that oil terminal near Chichester (now closed), but I don't know where they were going to.
 

Waddon

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I see this poll says it closes on 11 April 2037, so maybe the categories of 'nuclear' and 'fusion powered' should be added to the list, just to be on the safe side?;)
 

Suffolk Arty

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stowmarket
Diesels for me thanks, bought up in suffolk i loved the 31s 37s & 47s as a teenager, then the 56s 58s & 60s as i headed into my early twentys. I dont know why nut i never had this "thing" for deltics or hydraulics.
 

4SRKT

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Diesels for me thanks, bought up in suffolk i loved the 31s 37s & 47s as a teenager, then the 56s 58s & 60s as i headed into my early twentys. I dont know why nut i never had this "thing" for deltics or hydraulics.

I've never had the hydraulic thing, but growing up in York in the 70s and 80s, it's unavoidable that I have the deltic thing big time!

Strange, but although I also grew up surrounded by 31s, 37s and 47s, I generally regarded them as a necessary evil rather than loving them. Came to appreciate tractors much more after a trip to Kyle of Lochalsh in 1983, but as for goyles and duffs.... not for me!
 

37401

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Birmingham
hmmm I like diesel but I also like electric, which ones better? theres only one way to find out..... FIIIIGGGGHHTTT!

seriously

I like 86`s 87`s 90`s 91`s and 92`s (god i love 92`s powering up)

but I love 20`s 37`s 50`s 56`s 60`s

I grew up with North wales 37`s and 86`s 87`s and 90`s on virgin services and the VXC HST`s screaming me out at aston many moons ago

im going to say diesel, because electric can only get you so far before a grid drags you along :), and nothing beats the sound of a EE12CSVT powering up
 

fgwrich

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I see this poll says it closes on 11 April 2037, so maybe the categories of 'nuclear' and 'fusion powered' should be added to the list, just to be on the safe side?;)
Or Hybrid Hydrocell:lol:

Diesel For me...Grown up them on the southern, favourate class is the 47/57s, and most diesels have been designed with some thought in mind...Oh and they are quite nice to drive aswell:)
 

SqUaShIe P

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England
for a hauled set, I would have said diesel. for a multiple unit, I would have said electric until this afternoon, I got to the station about 30 seconds too late for my train to work, while I was waiting for the next metro into liverpool street, a huge cloud of smoke appeared in the distance, and it was getting closer. anyway, a 315 or a 321 just isn't the same after a beastly steam service passes by, so steam for me.
 

Vulcan

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Seaton, Devon
Operationally, diesel and electric is far superior to steam, for obvious reasons. Steam engines are nice, but they are all a bit 'sameish'. TBH i'd be more excited about riding behind a Deltic then Tornado, for example.
 
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