Jump to content

Ron Ron Ron

Greater Anglia's Stadler Flirt - Class 745 & 755

Recommended Posts

Considering you can do most of the WCML & branches on two EMUs with Suburban door layouts (Euston-Crewe & Manchester-Glasgow on 350s), expecting a loco hauled service on the Anglia with piecemeal replacements has proved to be short sighted recycling when the best option would have been overhead versions of the Siemens 444s for the 2hr service. After all, the railway has to meet passenger demands for 2018, and you can't afford to loose platform space with a loco & DVT, or expect passenger numbers to be so low that you can walk on anywhere and find a table & four seats to yourself.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It makes me chuckle to think that all of the fuss and froth when the order was first announced was whether they would have carriage end doors or 1/3 2/3 doors. 

 

In fact the articulated bogie design means there is only one double door per carriage. On Eurostar 373 sets this does seem to make for quite slow boarding/disembarking - but I guess people routinely have much more luggage on Eurostar, and almost everyone is getting on and off at the terminal stations. The single door doesn't seem to be a problem on other comparable designs and routes, like DSB's very successful IC2, IC3 and Øresundståg units.

 

There are plenty of other examples of comfortable MUs - I think the Southeastern 375s are often overlooked in this respect. The vast majority of the fleet have 2+2 seating in standard, and actually very nice seats with good shape and upholstered armrests. There are a good number of groups of four with tables (possibly even more than an Anglia Mk3?) and the airline seats are mainly well aligned with the windows, and have decent flip down tables. I'm sure commuting with the flow in them isn't totally pleasant, but off peak or against the flow, they're actually very nice to travel in! Southern's 377s obviously show how the same bodyshell can give a totally different experience by jamming in 3+2 seating (and barely functional air conditioning). This is what 98% of people care about! 

 

And of course any EMU is much less likely than a 90+Mk3s to spill your coffee with violent snatching and jerking every time the driver touches the regulator :)

 

I'm guessing the "tram" comments come from the low floor and the articulated bogies? But why NOT have easier access for wheelchairs etc when its possible? And if lower weights and articulated bogies are easier on the track, presumably ultimately saving maintenance costs, why NOT use them? The railway is there to provide a service, as others have said, if it doesn't do that as well as it can, it might not even be there in future for enthusiasts to enthuse over!

 

J

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem I find with some modern trains is ride quality, whether or not they are loco hauled coaches or MUs is less important than the bogies and suspension settings I think. In terms of cabin comfort, that's just a question of interior fit out.

 

I think ride quality went into reverse with the mk. 4 coach, and some modern MUs are awful. The class 350 units have an awful yaw motion which is associated with an initial sideways movement followed by a violent deceleration as the suspension intervenes to control it. Roger Ford often talks about the very stiff bogies of some modern trains. I don't suppose the heavy weight of the 350 helps.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem I find with some modern trains is ride quality, whether or not they are loco hauled coaches or MUs is less important than the bogies and suspension settings I think. In terms of cabin comfort, that's just a question of interior fit out.

 

I think ride quality went into reverse with the mk. 4 coach, and some modern MUs are awful. The class 350 units have an awful yaw motion which is associated with an initial sideways movement followed by a violent deceleration as the suspension intervenes to control it. Roger Ford often talks about the very stiff bogies of some modern trains. I don't suppose the heavy weight of the 350 helps.

The Electrostars on the Fenline are much livelier than the 365s they replaced last year. It’s the violently lurching lateral movement that seems to be the big problem (it seems to be a particular problem on this line as it drifts between single and double track).

 

Without being too vulgar, gents will find it impossible to use the toilet with any degree of accuracy in some places. Which is pretty disgusting for all concerned.

 

Paul

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder how much of the ride of modern trains is due to the kinematic envelope and network rail no knowing for sure how big the network is? After all, the only way to be sure your train will fit is to make the space it occupies a little bit smaller than the train it replaces. If you want to introduce a train bigger than what went before, network rail will charge you to find out if it fits. Network rail should know how big the network is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Without being too vulgar, gents will find it impossible to use the toilet with any degree of accuracy in some places. Which is pretty disgusting for all concerned.

Having used the toilet at many gig venues and pubs, I'm not really sure the ride quality of the train has much to do with that. Quite how anyone can miss a stationary floor level trough is beyond me, but there you go...

 

Though less facetiously, I don't generally find ride quality to be especially noticeable whilst sitting down. The only trains I've had to walk around on at speed recently are 390s, and they're pretty much OK.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It makes me chuckle to think that all of the fuss and froth when the order was first announced was whether they would have carriage end doors or 1/3 2/3 doors. 

 

In fact the articulated bogie design means there is only one double door per carriage. On Eurostar 373 sets this does seem to make for quite slow boarding/disembarking - but I guess people routinely have much more luggage on Eurostar, and almost everyone is getting on and off at the terminal stations. The single door doesn't seem to be a problem on other comparable designs and routes, like DSB's very successful IC2, IC3 and Øresundståg units.

 

There are plenty of other examples of comfortable MUs - I think the Southeastern 375s are often overlooked in this respect. The vast majority of the fleet have 2+2 seating in standard, and actually very nice seats with good shape and upholstered armrests. There are a good number of groups of four with tables (possibly even more than an Anglia Mk3?) and the airline seats are mainly well aligned with the windows, and have decent flip down tables. I'm sure commuting with the flow in them isn't totally pleasant, but off peak or against the flow, they're actually very nice to travel in! Southern's 377s obviously show how the same bodyshell can give a totally different experience by jamming in 3+2 seating (and barely functional air conditioning). This is what 98% of people care about! 

 

And of course any EMU is much less likely than a 90+Mk3s to spill your coffee with violent snatching and jerking every time the driver touches the regulator :)

 

I'm guessing the "tram" comments come from the low floor and the articulated bogies? But why NOT have easier access for wheelchairs etc when its possible? And if lower weights and articulated bogies are easier on the track, presumably ultimately saving maintenance costs, why NOT use them? The railway is there to provide a service, as others have said, if it doesn't do that as well as it can, it might not even be there in future for enthusiasts to enthuse over!

 

J

 

Having recently visited Copenhagen, I don't see the single door arrangement on the Oresundstog trains as a success. Dwell times at the airport station were very long.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Electrostars on the Fenline are much livelier than the 365s they replaced last year. It’s the violently lurching lateral movement that seems to be the big problem (it seems to be a particular problem on this line as it drifts between single and double track).

 

Without being too vulgar, gents will find it impossible to use the toilet with any degree of accuracy in some places. Which is pretty disgusting for all concerned.

 

Paul

 

Interesting, I find the Southern Electrostars provide a noticeably smoother ride than the LNWR Desiros on the WCML. I deliberately choose to use Southern if I'm travelling between MK and Watford (or intermediate stations) for that very reason. 

 

What I find about the Desiros is that the vertical damping and ride quality is fine, it is the lateral/yaw motion which is dreadful.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Having recently visited Copenhagen, I don't see the single door arrangement on the Oresundstog trains as a success. Dwell times at the airport station were very long.

 

Those odd SA type trains which operate the CPH S Tog network work very well. The concept of very short but wide cars using single axle offset articulation is a bit odd but the walk through nature of the trains means the short cars don't lose capacity of the overall train and they give a smooth ride.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I wonder how much of the ride of modern trains is due to the kinematic envelope and network rail no knowing for sure how big the network is? After all, the only way to be sure your train will fit is to make the space it occupies a little bit smaller than the train it replaces. If you want to introduce a train bigger than what went before, network rail will charge you to find out if it fits. Network rail should know how big the network is.

 

NR do know how "big" their "network" is. But the relationship between Structure Gauge and Dynamic Envelope is much more complex than you make out.

 

This may help - https://www.rssb.co.uk/Library/groups-and-committees/2013-guide-vehicle-structure-sic-guide-to-british-gauging-t926.pdf

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting, I find the Southern Electrostars provide a noticeably smoother ride than the LNWR Desiros on the WCML. I deliberately choose to use Southern if I'm travelling between MK and Watford (or intermediate stations) for that very reason. 

 

What I find about the Desiros is that the vertical damping and ride quality is fine, it is the lateral/yaw motion which is dreadful.

German vs. British bogie design philosophy.

 

The Germans tend toward achieving high speed stability by using stiff suspension, whereas the British approach (Bombardier's bogie design is British led) is more oriented toward bogies that use softer suspensions but steer better on indifferent track. Electrostars go in and out of Paddington without fuss, but the Siemens engineered 360s and HEx units protest loudly on the curves into the station.

 

Jim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

German vs. British bogie design philosophy.

 

The Germans tend toward achieving high speed stability by using stiff suspension, whereas the British approach (Bombardier's bogie design is British led) is more oriented toward bogies that use softer suspensions but steer better on indifferent track. Electrostars go in and out of Paddington without fuss, but the Siemens engineered 360s and HEx units protest loudly on the curves into the station.

 

Jim

Thanks for that, interesting. I find the same thing on Eurostar, I'm typing this sitting in a class 374 and I find the lateral motion much worse than the older class 373, and not just on the UK side of the water.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It was with little surprise I read of the binning of the plan for a depot at Cattawade for AGA's new fleet of trains. Anyone familiar with the location and road/rail infrastructure in the locale could've speculated on the folly of such an idea...Oh, that's right, we did!

 

C6T.

Edited by Classsix T

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

Thanks for sharing that, very interesting.

 

I'm looking forward to seeing these in use on the Norfolk branches, time will tell how well received they are, but at least it looks like the seats line up with the windows! I wasn't expecting the diesel units in an extra half-length 'carriage' like that, to me it gives them a bit of a unique character compared to other MU options. I can count on 1 hand how many modern locos/units I like the look of and these will be added to that list (even the intercity sets, even though the enthusiast in me likes 90s and mk3s, and would have preferred seeing 88s on push/pull mk5s as an 'upgrade'!)

 

I do wonder if they're leaving the shorter sets with just 2 engines in open to future power experimentation (batteries?) as there's some empty space there. Plus on the 4 engine sets there's a good amount of redundancy if an engine fails.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for sharing that, very interesting.

 

I'm looking forward to seeing these in use on the Norfolk branches, time will tell how well received they are, but at least it looks like the seats line up with the windows! I wasn't expecting the diesel units in an extra half-length 'carriage' like that, to me it gives them a bit of a unique character compared to other MU options. I can count on 1 hand how many modern locos/units I like the look of and these will be added to that list (even the intercity sets, even though the enthusiast in me likes 90s and mk3s, and would have preferred seeing 88s on push/pull mk5s as an 'upgrade'!)

 

I do wonder if they're leaving the shorter sets with just 2 engines in open to future power experimentation (batteries?) as there's some empty space there. Plus on the 4 engine sets there's a good amount of redundancy if an engine fails.

 

The new Wales & Borders franchise are getting some Flirts with tri-mode capability. The batteries enable easier electrification as no need to wire under bridges and in tunnels.

 

They also seem to be getting two sets of doors. I can see that for East Anglia, one set of doors and more seats is probably the right equation.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

post-1467-0-49068700-1530091421_thumb.jpeg

 

Certainly look like a significant upgrade over a single Class 153!

 

Tom.

  • Like 9

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those odd SA type trains which operate the CPH S Tog network work very well. The concept of very short but wide cars using single axle offset articulation is a bit odd but the walk through nature of the trains means the short cars don't lose capacity of the overall train and they give a smooth ride.

 

Agree. They are a superb design for a suburban train.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That looks fantastic - dare I say it looks like a FLIRT rather than something redesigned to suit the UK perceived 'style.'

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Zooming in the diesel engine module looks a bit misaligned, but otherwise that looks like a decent modern train. 4 doors per side might increase station dwell times a little, but if they accelerate better than a 156 then that shouldn't be such a disaster. The GE branches won't know what hit them...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for that, interesting. I find the same thing on Eurostar, I'm typing this sitting in a class 374 and I find the lateral motion much worse than the older class 373, and not just on the UK side of the water.

How much is that down to the bogies, and how much to the absence of articulation, I wonder?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

German vs. British bogie design philosophy.

 

The Germans tend toward achieving high speed stability by using stiff suspension, whereas the British approach (Bombardier's bogie design is British led) is more oriented toward bogies that use softer suspensions but steer better on indifferent track. Electrostars go in and out of Paddington without fuss, but the Siemens engineered 360s and HEx units protest loudly on the curves into the station.

 

Jim

 

Interesting - but in this case, why do the 379 Electrostars ride so badly on the ECML Cambridge fasts, even compared to the old 365s? The last few times I've travelled on them the ride has been so poor as to feel dangerous! Lots of yawing and hunting.

 

Zooming in the diesel engine module looks a bit misaligned, but otherwise that looks like a decent modern train. 4 doors per side might increase station dwell times a little, but if they accelerate better than a 156 then that shouldn't be such a disaster. The GE branches won't know what hit them...

 

Do we know if the smallest "three car" FLIRTs that will presumably serve the branches include the engine compartment in that three cars? or is it three passenger cars, plus engine compartment? Either way, I can imagine platform lengths could end up being a problem!

 

The always-an-afterthought Sudbury branch certainly has a terminus platform at Sudbury that is only just long enough for a 156, and I'm sure there are countless more rural stations of similar length. Is there going to be a programme of platform lengthening? Or just reliance on SDO? (which might be tricky as the engine compartment doesn't look like the gangway is wide enough to be properly accessible).

 

Justin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have seen a photo somewhere of the 'power car' standing alone; the diesel engines are relatively small, giving a gangway about the same as a normal one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The 3 cars will have 3 passenger carriages and an engine module.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...