Showing posts from July, 2012

British Rail Class 375, 377

I've got to known these two types of nice little (well, British equipment is small) EMU's a little bit during my trip south of London, the Class 375 and 377. They belong to the ADtranz (Bombardier now) Electrostar family of electric trains for Great Britain, built at where used to be BREL Derby Works (the Gautrain in South Africa are also Electrostars by the way but they were first built for the British and there are A LOT of them kicking around in England, mostly south of London). The two classes of EMUs are almost identical nowadays; only interior fittings and minor details differ after Class 375 being converted with Dellner Scharfenberg couplers. Initially the Class 375 had AAR/APTAType H tightlock couplers with electrical receptacles. Some of the early Class 375 also had pantographs. Later sets, including the 377s had recess on the roof where pantographs may be fitted in the future if needed. Class 375s and 377s work mostly south of London, where 3rd rail electrification i…

British Rail Class 319

The Class 319 EMU operated the first service I was traveled on in England during my trip this year. She was operated by First Capital Connect on the line referred to as the Thameslink. The Thameslink is one rarity because it crosses London in the north-south direction. Originally I had planned to take the Southern or Gatwick Express service from Gatwick Airport to London Victoria. I would then hop onto the Underground Victoria Line to London St Pancras and change to the East Midland Trains service to Sheffield. But as I was reading the departure screens, I saw this interesting service going all the way from Brighton to Bedford, with London St Pancras as an intermediate station (I had originally thought St Pancras was a stub end station, but there were actually 2 underground tracks that went through!) and decided to try it out. It was a busy rush hour ride and the train was packed. The trip itself was interesting nevertheless, as the train hopped on and off different lines across Londo…

British Rail Class 222

The East Midland TrainsClass 222 Meridian Diesel Electric Multiple Unit was the first main line service I had been on during my trip in England this year. Boarded at the beautiful London St Pancras International, the service took me to Sheffield, 160 some miles to the north in just over 2 hours time. Due to the track condition of the Midland Main Line, the Class 222 was not developing her full potential to achieve her top speed of 125 mph, it was definitely a very comfy and relaxing ride (although in North American standards, the seats were very hard and small). More technical jargon about the Class 222 can be found on my post about the Class 220/221, as the 222 was an prettier and slightly evolved version of the 220 (lightweight non-tilt truck design). At her heart, Cummins QSK19 engines (1,159 cu. in. 6 cylinder) pumps out 750 horsepower under each car body. After some rearrangement by the Train Operating Companies over the years, the Class 222 now comes in 4, 5, or 7-car formations…

British Rail Class 185 Pennine Desiro

The Class 185 Pennine Desiro is a 3-car diesel-hydraulic multiple unit operated by First TransPennine Express. Fifty-one sets have been built by Siemens to replace the Class 158 on the TransPennie routes and have been in service since 2006. Although the combined output of the Class 185 is more than twice the output of a 3-car Class 158 (2,250 hp versus 1,050 hp) and with the Class 185 is much heavier than the 158 (62 tons versus 42 tons per car), the 185 uses less fuel than the 158 due to an automatic engine shutoff system. The Pennie Desiro only uses all her 3 engines when launching out of stations or climbing up heavy grades. There is also an engine stop start system which shut engines off when trains are idling at stations. My experience with the Class 185 had been great. The cabin is modern and clean and the DMU is quiet. This was the train that took me between Leeds and Scarborough and from Sheffield to Stockport.