Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Class 175

The Class 175 is part of the Coradia DMU family along with the Class 180 and was built for long-distance services in Wales and the West. The fleet was originally operated by First North Western, then Wales & Borders before being transferred to Arriva Trains Wales in 2004 where they still remain. Some were leased to First TransPennine Express for a time.

Information
Number built: 27 train sets (2 or 3-car)
Built: 1999-2001
Builder: Alstom Birmingham
Engine: Cummins N14 diesel per car
Power: 900 hp (670 kW) / 1, 350hp (1, 005kW)

The Class 175 has 2 sub-classes, the 175/0 being 2-car sets (11 sets) and the 175/1 3-car (16 sets).
ATW 175 106 at Cardiff Central

ATW 175 003 at Crewe

ATW 175 004 at Hereford

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Class 40

The Class 40 was one of the early classes of diesel locomotive built by British Railways as part of their modernisation plan which would ultimately replace steam. Class 40s served across the rail network being allocated to London Midland, Eastern, North Eastern and Scottish Regions. Initially the class was used on top link expresses though their performance, while adequate on some routes like the West Coast Main Line, was not on other routes and they were replaced by more powerful locomotives on expresses before long.

One drawback with the Class 40 was their weight, at over 130 tons, and the long 1-Co-Co-1 bogies with extra unpowered wheels to carry the bulk. One Class 40 gained a bit of notoriety early in it's career as it was hauling the train involved in the Great Train Robbery in 1962.

Information
Number built: 200
Built: 1958-62
Builder: English Electric
Engine: English Electric 12CSVT Mark 2
Power: 2, 000 hp (1, 490 kW)

The popular Class 40, known as the Whistler due to the sound they make, continued to serve BR well, much of the time on freights and secondary passenger duties. Withdrawals began in the late 1970s and all were withdrawn by 1985 though 7 have been preserved though not all currently in running order.
40 106 at Highley

40 118 at Tyseley Loco Works

Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Class 108 [Updated]

The Class 108 was the second of the so-called "Derby Lightweight" DMUs being a lot lighter in construction than other units like the Class 114. The Class 108 was designed for branch line and local services having a low-density interior and toilets and were allocated to British Rail's London Midland and Eastern Regions. They served as 3-car sets, some later reverting to 2-cars, until the early 1990s.

Information
Number built: 333 cars
Built: 1958-61
Builder: BR Derby
Engine: 2 BUT AEC / Leyland 6-cyl diesels
Power: 300 hp (220 kW)

Because of the good condition of the Class 108 units on withdrawal a number went into departmental service and also preservation. Over 30 cars are currently preserved and most of these operational on various heritage lines.
Preserved Class 108 on the Severn Valley Railway

Cab view
Preserved Class 108 DMU at Duffield

Monday, 19 October 2015

Class 332

The Class 332 EMUs are used exclusively on the Heathrow Express out of London Paddington. The trains leave for the airport every 15 minutes on a journey which is non-stop and only takes 15 minutes.

Information
Number built: 14 4 and 5 car sets
Built: 1997-98, 2002
Builder: CAF Siemens
Engine: 4 Siemens traction motors
Power: 1, 877 hp (1, 400 kW)

The EMUs were originally delivered as 3-car sets but have been reformed as 4 and 5 car sets. They were the first electric trains to operate on the Great Western Main Line after a portion was electrified as far as the airport junction.
332 001 on jacks at its depot

Cab view

Standard class interior

Wednesday, 7 October 2015

Class 158

The Class 158 DMU is one of the mainstays of cross country routes having being built in the early 1990s to replace loco-hauled trains and older DMUs on provincial and regional services. Nearly 200 sets were built and they currently serve with no fewer than 6 Train Operating Companies across Britain. Some have been converted to Class 159.

Information
Number built: 182 sets
Built: 1990-92
Builder: BREL Derby
Engine: Cummins NTA855R1/3 or Perkins 2006-TWH diesel engine per car
Power: 350 hp (260 kW) or 400 hp (300kW) per vehicle

The Class 158 operates as either a 2 or 3-car set, mostly with a Cummins engine though a few were fitted with Perkins engines instead. Currently the fleet is split into the 158/0 and 158/9 sub-classes. The latter were originally 2-car sets but were beefed up into 3-car by the addition of an extra driving coach though the cab of this is locked out of use.
Arriva Trains Wales 158 836 at Aberystwyth


South West Trains 158 889 at Leamington Spa

First Great Western 158 957 at Cardiff Central

Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Class 92

Designed for freight and overnight passenger traffic through the Channel Tunnel the Class 92 is an advanced and powerful electric locomotive that can operate on electricity drawn from both with 750v DC third rail and 25kV AC overhead lines. Unfortunately for the Class 92 a lot of their planned work disappeared while they were being built meaning that many were stored out of use for a number of years, at one stage in the early 2000s over half the fleet was in storage. Nowadays more have been activated, some being exported to work in Europe. However the reliability of those that do remain in service on British rails has sometimes been questionable.

Information
Number built: 46
Built: 1993-95
Builder: Brush Traction
Engine: ABB 6FRA 7059B traction motors
Power: 6, 700 hp (5, 000 kW) - 25kV AC
5, 360 hp (4, 000 kW) - 750v DC

The Class 92 is a complicated locomotive with many systems duplicated to avoid the chance of failure in the Channel Tunnel. Most of their work (of those not in storage or working in Europe) these days is on freight but some are also being used on Caledonian sleeper services from London to Scotland, however a number of failures have seen the introduction on these services delayed. One interesting piece of trivia is that the very last train to be run on British Rail late on 21/11/1997 was hauled by 92 003.
Euro Porte 2 92 028 and Caledonian Sleeper 92 014 at Stafford

EWS 92 011 at Peckham Rye

Saturday, 26 September 2015

TOPS

The following is a list of the number bands allocated to the various types of locomotive and multiple unit operated by British Railways (and successors) since the mid-1960s. TOPS has been modified over the years, and there are a number of areas of overlap especially where a number band has been exhausted.

Diesel Locomotives (01-79)

01-13 Diesel Shunters
14-20 Type 1 (1000hp or less)
21-31 Type 2 (1001-1499hp)
32-39 Type 3 (1500-1999hp)
40-54 (and 57) Type 4 (2000-2999hp)
55-79 Type 5 (3000hp plus)

Electric Locomotives (70-96)

70-79 DC powered and electro-diesel
80-96 AC powered

Diesel Multiple Units (100-299, 600-699)

100-199 Diesel mechanical
200-299 Diesel electric
600-699 New DMU allocation, as yet not used

Electric Multiple Units (300-899)*

300-399 AC powered (original allocation)
400-499 DC powered (Southern Region)
500-599 Other DC powered
700-799 AC/DC powered (new allocation)
800-899 New high speed units

* Bi-mode units (e.g. AC and DC powered) tended to be listed under the 3xx range

There are also numbers allocated to departmental vehicles and other special vehicles in the 9xxs.

Welcome to British Diesels & Electrics

British Diesels & Electrics is a railway blog which will aim to cover every single class of locomotive and multiple unit on British Railways (and it's successors) rails. Metro systems, especially the London Underground, will also be covered.

The vast majority of photography is by myself, some photos have been purchased and scanned for classes of locomotive and unit i did not manage to see in the past (and probably wouldn't be able to ever unless they invent a time machine). See the footer of this blog for copyright information.

Total Operations Processing System (TOPS)

TOPS which is a computer system adopted by British Railways in the 1960s to help keep tabs on, organise and control its fleet of rolling stock. Under TOPS every class of locomotive and multiple unit was given a unique class number and running number derived from it. More on TOPS can be seen here.

For example the BR DJ15 class of shunter was renamed the Class 03 and individual locomotives numbered 03 001, 03 002 and so on.
From the Class 03 shunter 03 073