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No-speed Rail

Discussion in 'off topic' started by MJS, May 9, 2021.

  1. MJS

    MJS Technical Tinkerer

    I find it a little dis-concerting that after only 4 years in service we're seeing body cracks on the Hitachi 8xx series high-speed trains. I would have thought this sort of thing was known about and designed out ages ago. It turns out that a couple of weeks ago some were found to have fatigue cracks in the yaw damper fixings, and now they've been found in the suspension jacking points resulting in most of the class being grounded pending safety checks. Does anyone know more about this?

    Part of me is glad they've found these issues before something like an ICE incident happened (, although that was wheel related. I wonder if any of it was specific to the constraints of the UK rail system? .e.g. Loading gauge differences etc.

    So, what are the chances of the Intercity 125s being bought back out of retirement for a while? I'd love to see that out of my office in Paddington.
    Snufkin and hifinutt like this.
  2. gintonic

    gintonic 50 shades of grey pussy cats

    zero, most were scrapped IIRC
  3. Seeker_UK

    Seeker_UK Booyakashah, check out my avatar...

  4. herb

    herb music live

    A whole bunch of the old Intercity125 power units were sitting idle at Haymarket in Feb 2020. One was also being used in anger at Inverkeithing going to Waverly. It looked very beaten up and sounded horrible.
  5. Seeker_UK

    Seeker_UK Booyakashah, check out my avatar...

    That's a normal sound for a VP185. :p
  6. herb

    herb music live

    I remember when they were new the engines sounded beautiful and 'Italian'. I used to get to sit as near to the unit as I could to hear it accelerating. It was a long time ago..
  7. davidsrsb

    davidsrsb pfm Member

    Trusting computer design.
    When I was young, engineers would calculate the thickness needed and then x2 to be sure
    Snufkin likes this.
  8. MJS

    MJS Technical Tinkerer

    Bring back the Valentas
    herb, martin clark and Seeker_UK like this.
  9. Rob998

    Rob998 Scimmia Nordoccidentale

    I wonder if chucking a bloody great diesel genset in to a chassis designed to work off overhead cables has anything to do with it?
    sq225917 and Weekender like this.
  10. JonR

    JonR Brainwashed Bloke

    Some class 43s are still in service but I suspect the Wikipedia entry is slightly out of date. On the MML which goes through my neck of the woods they’re only used on fast Nottingham services and the occasional trip to Leeds in peak hours. On the Great Western and East Coast Main Lines they have been almost completely supplanted by the class 800/801s.

    It’s not great news and the worst aspect of this is that the railway, it seems, cannot be bothered to cobble together some replacement stock to keep a semblance of services running. Presumably the costs would be too high to rent something from another operator.

    A better case for re-nationalisation would be difficult to make, I’d suggest.

    It would be lovely to see HSTs or even Class 91s and mkIVs running again but the reality is that, quite apart from their increasing scarcity, there is also the issue of finding drivers and crews who are still ‘current’ on them.

    At the end of the day this whole story will turn out to be a storm in a teacup. New rolling-stock through the ages has suffered some sort of issue early doors. Thankfully this issue with the Azumas had been spotted before it had a chance to cause a potentially serious accident. Now it has been found, the trains will be inspected and (eventually) be modified with a fix.

    A year or two down the line we will probably forget all about it.
    Snufkin, cctaylor and Seeker_UK like this.
  11. Copperjacket

    Copperjacket pfm Member

    Hitachi could always have said no.
  12. cctaylor

    cctaylor pfm Member

    When I was a student in the 70s it was a great treat if the journey between Elgin and Edinburgh was in part by 125.

    ScotRail are planning to use a fleet of Class 43s on the Scottish Intercity routes. The will be run in 5 coach sets. I regularly hear them from my house them climbing the 1 in 50 out of Elgin station heading to Inverness.

    One of these sets was involved in the recent accident at Stonehaven.

    At one time the longest scheduled train journey in the UK was the Elgin to Plymouth service operated by Intercity 125s.
    Last edited: May 9, 2021
  13. cutting42

    cutting42 Arrived at B4 Hacker Erg \o/

    MJS and herb like this.
  14. Stuart Frazer

    Stuart Frazer pfm Member

    I would love to do that journey!
  15. Nic Robinson

    Nic Robinson Moderator

    Not on an Azuma...those seats are not comfy!
    Snufkin likes this.
  16. Nic Robinson

    Nic Robinson Moderator

    Here are a couple of shots of Valanta engined 125s I took in the 90s. Quite a sound they made:
    martin clark likes this.
  17. JonR

    JonR Brainwashed Bloke

    I think I preferred the MTUs myself.
  18. martin clark

    martin clark pinko bodger

    View(not mine) from the 'Up' platform of the start of my quotidian, at least as it used to be when I started on it about 6yrs after this vid was made; the commute went downhill when these were re-engined c.2008.

    And no video does justice to the sheer volume of that top-end wail as the Paxman-Valenta pair came on boost... esp. the double-tap of the driving cab leaving, then actually getting on the throttle out the station - and 15s later its now-screaming sister rolling past on exit just to remind you :D

    (wind-up starts c 1m15)
    cctaylor, MJS and JonR like this.
  19. Arkless Electronics

    Arkless Electronics Trade: Amp design and repairs.

    Do not attempt any of this without a flask of weak lemon drink to hand!
  20. Snufkin

    Snufkin pfm Member

    I am glad you mentioned that. I have been on one of those trains on a few occasions for a relatively short run (Reading to London) and I was surprised at how poor the seats were. For some reason I also found the slightly odd oscillations (I can’t think of another way to describe it) I sensed through the seat to be disconcerting. It may be a lighter and more efficient train but I was not impressed.

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