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Hi Mark, are you sure the night stock made it to Heaton? I was on most of the braking trials with that and we only ever went Doncaster to Darlington and back

 

Russ

 

It is not a livery that you forget in a hurry, especially the catering vehicle. However I have no idea where the photo I took is!

 

Mark

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Your not wrong there Mark, it must have gone there with Mr Goodman.

I remember having a tour of the train and the engineers even at that early stage 96/97 were under the impression that the stock would never enter service.

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Your not wrong there Mark, it must have gone there with Mr Goodman.

I remember having a tour of the train and the engineers even at that early stage 96/97 were under the impression that the stock would never enter service.

All depends which engineer you talked to Russ ;)  

 

In '96/'97 there was little doubt that it would enter service, notwithstanding a number of technical difficulties which occasionally crawled out from beneath various stones and considerable delays in fitting out the vehicles.  It was only really knocked on the head when LCR undertook a serious financial review and agreed with Govt that the scheme could be dropped and it no longer needed to abide by its original agreement to carry on with it as part of the conditons of acquiring Eurostar UK.

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Hi Mike, the whole technical crew were very downbeat about the train. No train supply was allowed to be coupled to the train as the electrics aboard the stock wasn't finished and the lighting on the train was provided by petol generators inside the train which seemed pretty unsafe to me.

We were testing brake performance with a class 90 which I believe was the only time the train exceeded 100mph in this country

The braking performance was superb and that was without the track brake which was not passed for use on Railtrack

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Hi Mike, the whole technical crew were very downbeat about the train. No train supply was allowed to be coupled to the train as the electrics aboard the stock wasn't finished and the lighting on the train was provided by petol generators inside the train which seemed pretty unsafe to me.

We were testing brake performance with a class 90 which I believe was the only time the train exceeded 100mph in this country

The braking performance was superb and that was without the track brake which was not passed for use on Railtrack

The track brake worked to perfection when tested on DB (where it was a requirement of course).  I know the set which went on to overseas testing was a somewhat short of complete but I understand the vehicle tested at Vienna (climate testing) was wholly complete although it would have been considerable 'fun' to put right the fault in the plumbing which developed during that test.

 

However while it was getting more & more geared up for launch - and actually missed the commercially intended date (well and truly) there were I think more than enough outstanding problems, particularly with (hotel power) load shedding which would have caused considerable grief, especially in 3rd rail territory. had it ever gone into operation.

 

 A good idea in many respects but one doomed to commercial failure on most of the intended routes because they had been added solely for political reasons rather than with any proper business sense;  London - Amsterdam would basically have been killed by cheap air fares although it looked as if London - Frankfurt stood a reasonable chance of commercial success and it was to be the first one to open.  the Uk Regional routes were in reality next to useless for business travellers and had a limited leisure market - they wouldn't have lasted a year if they'd ever opened.

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It was always said that the track brake suffered from a large helping of ' not invented here ' syndrome.

I didn't realise that they had ran on test on the continent. What was the plumbing problem?

 

I heard an interesting thing about that stock a while ago.

Apparently mk3 stock has some patented design of joining panels. When BREL didn't get the contract for either mk4 or nightstock they wouldn't licence the panel joint design so this stock is based on a hybrid of 156 and mk2 stock which I presume applies to 175/180s as well

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It was always said that the track brake suffered from a large helping of ' not invented here ' syndrome.

I didn't realise that they had ran on test on the continent. What was the plumbing problem?

 

I heard an interesting thing about that stock a while ago.

Apparently mk3 stock has some patented design of joining panels. When BREL didn't get the contract for either mk4 or nightstock they wouldn't licence the panel joint design so this stock is based on a hybrid of 156 and mk2 stock which I presume applies to 175/180s as well

When they did the low temperature test at Vienna part of the compartment plumbing system (which was fairly complicated and well hidden away inside various other parts of the vehicle as you probably know) froze at somewhere around -20C; that was reportedly the only fault to show up in the climatic tests.

 

Apparently the DB track brake test is quite a fearsome procedure as it involves somehow slipping the test vehicle at around 100kph and relying on the magnetic track brake to stop it with a specified distance - reportedly it did exactly what it said on the tin and the DB test engineers pronounced themselves fully satisfied with the performance and duly signed it off.

 

I think the only big problem on the continental testing was when somebody pinched the train - or to be a lot fairer to him, took it away in error.  The set had been stabled over the weekend in the yard at Tourcoing works and when the engine arrived on Sunday evening to take it forward for the next stage in the test programme the Driver asked where it was, was duly told and then found that it wasn't there.  Apparently another engine had arrived about an hour previously to collect some other stock and had attached to the wrong set and had duly set off with it heading over the border into Belgium in the opposite direction the train was supposed to be going.  By the time everybody cottoned on to what was happening the set was well away in the wrong direction and duly knocked up extra mileage on SNCB getting it back to the route where it was supposed to be.

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It was always said that the track brake suffered from a large helping of ' not invented here ' syndrome.

 

Apparently mk3 stock has some patented design of joining panels. When BREL didn't get the contract for either mk4 or nightstock they wouldn't licence the panel joint design so this stock is based on a hybrid of 156 and mk2 stock which I presume applies to 175/180s as well

This sort of restrictive practices probably added justification to the privatisation of railways.
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If the railway company insists on using only a device that is patented by one supplier of trains then that is a restrictive term in the specification and contrary to procurement rules. I don't see how that is an argument for retaining railways in state ownership.

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I vaguely recall Eurostars being tested to Manchester or thereabouts via the WCML. The working of EPS 37s and match wagons may in connection with that, as the Thunderbird contingency.

 

 

I think you are spot on dp123, because a little further into the Atherstone batch I found this one.

 

 

post-4474-0-63197000-1453810374_thumb.jpg

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 A good idea in many respects but one doomed to commercial failure on most of the intended routes because they had been added solely for political reasons rather than with any proper business sense;  London - Amsterdam would basically have been killed by cheap air fares although it looked as if London - Frankfurt stood a reasonable chance of commercial success and it was to be the first one to open.  the Uk Regional routes were in reality next to useless for business travellers and had a limited leisure market - they wouldn't have lasted a year if they'd ever opened.

I disagree. To get to Brussels from York we regularly used Eurostar, my ex colleagues continue to do this. It meant leaving between 13 - 15.00 [we didn't like risking the last Eurostar from London] and an overnight hotel. Although in the early days Sabena had up to 8 flights a day from Leeds this was cut back to 3, so flying was even worse - slightly later departure from York but by the time the Eurostar had all of the track up grade we were home before we could arrive back at a UK airport - MAN or LBA. [21.20 into York being the norm now] Flying was also expensive especially when costs of getting to and from LBA or MAN were taken into account.

What killed it was that the Europeans appeared incapable of getting the overnight Eurostar into Brussels at a reasonably early hour, threading its way through the suburban services. The timetable I saw some years ago of early proposals would have meant we arrived too late to get to a meeting starting at 10.00 which was the usual time for our meetings (and 09.00 for some others would have been totally impossible). I don't believe Paris proposals were any better.

 

http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/eurostar

 

Paul

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I disagree. To get to Brussels from York we regularly used Eurostar, my ex colleagues continue to do this. It meant leaving between 13 - 15.00 [we didn't like risking the last Eurostar from London] and an overnight hotel. Although in the early days Sabena had up to 8 flights a day from Leeds this was cut back to 3, so flying was even worse - slightly later departure from York but by the time the Eurostar had all of the track up grade we were home before we could arrive back at a UK airport - MAN or LBA. [21.20 into York being the norm now] Flying was also expensive especially when costs of getting to and from LBA or MAN were taken into account.

What killed it was that the Europeans appeared incapable of getting the overnight Eurostar into Brussels at a reasonably early hour, threading its way through the suburban services. The timetable I saw some years ago of early proposals would have meant we arrived too late to get to a meeting starting at 10.00 which was the usual time for our meetings (and 09.00 for some others would have been totally impossible). I don't believe Paris proposals were any better.

 

http://paulbartlett.zenfolio.com/eurostar

 

Paul

Using Eurostar to get from York to Brussels/Paris was no problem (and will be even quicker now of course) but that is a very different situation from the night train - or would have been until SNCB withdrew from the project and the Brussels trains were taken out.  However with - as it originally existed - a stop at  Kensington for security purposes and to change engines, a stop at Dollands Moor to attach a second engine, a stop at Calais Ville to detach two engines and attach another one, and then a further stop in the vicinity of the Belgian border to change engines, plus single line working through the Chunnel it was hardly going to be a rapid journey even before getting tangled with Brussels commuter workings (most of which would have finished by the time it got there).  And of course none of the continental running would have been on high speed lines as they are all closed overnight and even 'though the  Brussels train - had it survived - got there after the LGV opened in the morning it would have been too slow to path on it.

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The Eurostar depot was across the main lines from Longsight and the sign "le Eurostar habit ici" did remain in place for a long time but has now gone, the depot seems disused but has been used by Alstom to bring 175s into traffic, the wheel lathe on the site is well used though

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Using Eurostar to get from York to Brussels/Paris was no problem (and will be even quicker now of course) but that is a very different situation from the night train - or would have been until SNCB withdrew from the project and the Brussels trains were taken out.  However with - as it originally existed - a stop at  Kensington for security purposes and to change engines, a stop at Dollands Moor to attach a second engine, a stop at Calais Ville to detach two engines and attach another one, and then a further stop in the vicinity of the Belgian border to change engines, plus single line working through the Chunnel it was hardly going to be a rapid journey even before getting tangled with Brussels commuter workings (most of which would have finished by the time it got there).  And of course none of the continental running would have been on high speed lines as they are all closed overnight and even 'though the  Brussels train - had it survived - got there after the LGV opened in the morning it would have been too slow to path on it.

As an adjunct to this, at various points between Calais (Riviere Neuve) yard and Calais Ville station are to be seen SNCF signs for a 'Piste Cyclable'; nothing odd in this, except that the signs are in French and English.  An image comes to mind of a smartly-attired E* driver getting his bike out of the cab, putting on his cycle clips and high-visibility cape, and cycling off to look for his lodgings.

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Can anyone point me to, or provide, further details about this?

 

I have searched on Google, but as I am not sure about the exact whereabouts it is not so simple.

 

The unit is 156403 and the date on the slide mount says 2/92, so winter of 1991/2 would be right.

 

 

post-4474-0-16080300-1453825889_thumb.jpg

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