CAS Weekly 20/02/15

Image by Phil Sangwell

Modelling

  • IC82 is back this Sunday with a new YouTube series.

UK Rail

  • GBRf are enlisted by Serco to haul the Caledonian sleeper for the next 15 years. They’ll be using a mixture of Class 90’s, 47’s and refurbished 73’s during their stint.
  • The East Anglia franchise, currently operated by Abellio, is out for tender.
  • A recent survey highlights the continuing decline of rail customer satisfaction…
  • …And surprise surprise, the rise of Social Media as a tool for passengers to voice this dissatisfaction.
  • But what we really want to know is, which train operator has the best ticket punches?
  • And which train operator went all gooey for Valentines Day?
  • …in a time where critics are calling for the return of nationalisations, the BBC’s Timeshift will take a look at the golden age of BR next Thursday.
  • Speaking of which, The Beauty of Transport is doing a series on British Rail’s corporate identity.
  • London Underground’s D-Stock trains could find a new life for themselves in Manchester.
  • Whilst back home The Victoria Line will be part closed for a month.
  • Danny Dyer has a go at tube announcements. Warning: It’s dreadful.
  • The London Transport Museum will host Londonist’s Matt Brown, who will be talking about Tube Secrets at the Hidden London Treasures Exhibition in April.
  • This article surfaced on Twitter this week, showcasing this rather quirky Brighton curiosity: The first every Electric Railway in Britain.

World Rail

Review: Bachmann Class 20 – GBRf and London Transport

A special double review for you today – two Bachmann Class 20’s!

Overview

Image by Dave Hitchborne

228 Class 20‘s were designed by English Electric and built between 1957 and 1968 in Newton and Darlington. They were initially intended to service light mixed freight work and were fitted with the English Electric’s 8 SVT Diesel engines capable of producing 1,000 horse power and a top speed of 75mph. For today’s standards the Class 20 is unusual in the fact it has a single cab at the rear of the loco giving the driver poor visibility in the ‘forward’ direction. Despite this, English Electric’s design proved more successful than their competitors of the time: Both the Class 15 and 16 by Thompson-Houston and North British Loco Company respectively featured off-set central cabs giving poor visibility in both directions; and although the Clayton Class 17’s (of which I reviewed last week) had better visibility, their reliability let them down. BR therefore continued to order the ever reliable class 20’s coupling them nose-to-nose in multiple to solve the visibility problem. This practice effectively gave you 2,000hp of tractive power enabling the 20’s to be utilised in heavier freight duties. Some were also retrofitted with train heating and were deployed on passenger routes in the Scottish Highlands.

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