More Vlocity - Fix the seats!

 
Topic moved from News by dthead on 04 May 2017 19:58
  SamTheMan79 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Geelong
A record 1.7m trips in March 2017 and I wonder how many complaints V/line or PTV took about uncomfortable seats? What a non-issue! Hardly newsworthy.

More Vlocity - Fix the seats!

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  x31 Chief Commissioner

Location: gallifrey
Vlocity units are short journey times but if they are deployed to long routes will they be a different configuration as the letter specifically asks for the configuration to be reviewed which is not a bad thing I guess.
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

I don't mind the seats on the earlier (green) Vlocities if the arm rest is not wrecked.

The later ones (purple post-2010) are terrible. Not a hope of sleeping on those and often the cushions are half-collapsed.  Ugh.
  SamTheMan79 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Geelong
I seem to be able to sleep an hour each way daily without an issue and without being able to sleep at all in the past whilst travelling in any form of transport.

As I write this I can count at least a dozen commuters that are asleep around me, which from my observations is quite common.
  MetroFemme Chief Train Controller

Travelled to Bendigo return today for a meeting and concluded the velocities are loud especially on the hills when climbing and it was far from a quiet journey.

As for the seats well aside from being filthy bearable.
  TOQ-1 Deputy Commissioner

Location: Power Trainger
Travelled to Bendigo return today for a meeting and concluded the velocities are loud especially on the hills when climbing and it was far from a quiet journey.

As for the seats well aside from being filthy bearable.
MetroFemme

Put some headphones in.

I have never found the VLocities especially noisy. You want a noisy train? Go ride in the vestibule on a N Set, which is quite common for people to do on the morning down Swan Hill when it gets packed on the school holidays. The lack of soundproofing there ruins your ears.
  cabidass Chief Train Controller

I sleep on them too. My mum can sleep on a wooden chair. And my dog sleeps on concrete.

Doesn't mean they are comfortable.

I have spoken to a few people over the years and plenty have suggested they are less than ideal. How many got the motivation to put pen to paper and write to a politician re same I cannot say.

that was the purpose of the letter - to encourage more to be proactive.

1) The govt is ordering more trains.
2) The govt is also redesigning them and ordering more for long haul operations.

Ergo, now is the time to write and share your concerns before the things are built should you agree.

Either that, or be one of those people who says "she'll be Jake" and spend the rest of the train trip bitching cause govt doesn't do this and govt doesn't do that...
  x31 Chief Commissioner

Location: gallifrey
A record 1.7m trips in March 2017 and I wonder how many complaints V/line or PTV took about uncomfortable seats? What a non-issue! Hardly newsworthy.

More Vlocity - Fix the seats!
SamTheMan79

V/Line record trips mainly comprise of the swift from metro to RRL so what would the real growth number be without taking into account the new route stations?
  xxxxlbear Token Booking Clerk

Location: Geelong
In terms of railcars, I find the V/Locity seating ok, but the back is angled too far back for my long term comfort. The seating though, as mentioned previously, is becoming increasingly dirty - dried chewing gum, plus unidentified stains are now way too common.
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction
A record 1.7m trips in March 2017 and I wonder how many complaints V/line or PTV took about uncomfortable seats? What a non-issue! Hardly newsworthy.

More Vlocity - Fix the seats!

V/Line record trips mainly comprise of the swift from metro to RRL so what would the real growth number be without taking into account the new route stations?
x31
Yes, will be very interesting to see the line by line in the annual report. Unfortunately Sam as a Geelong line passenger is copping the brunt of the growth on the RRL corridor.

Re the seating issue, I agree re early Vlocity seat angle (I am sitting in one right now) but as mentioned elsewhere the newer units have a revised angle which is much more comfortable IMO.

I suppose the big Q is what is best practice for DMU seating arrangments, angles, ability to reverse etc. I am thinking Europe / UK etc etc.

BG
  x31 Chief Commissioner

Location: gallifrey
If you took away the Geelong line growth figures would the passenger numbers have grown at all across the network with all the issues?
  Carnot Chief Commissioner

Travelled to Bendigo return today for a meeting and concluded the velocities are loud especially on the hills when climbing and it was far from a quiet journey.

As for the seats well aside from being filthy bearable.

Put some headphones in.

I have never found the VLocities especially noisy. You want a noisy train? Go ride in the vestibule on a N Set, which is quite common for people to do on the morning down Swan Hill when it gets packed on the school holidays. The lack of soundproofing there ruins your ears.
TOQ-1
With Vlocities, it depends on where you sit.  Near the engine, genset, or exhaust pillar can be bad.  Other places are rather serene.  And it's a lottery since every car seems different.

I'm noticing a fair bit of wear and tear on the interiors these days - worn carpet with holes forming, broken armrests, cabinets that don't lock, wonky cushions on 2010-11 seats etc...
  Trainplanner Chief Commissioner

Location: Along the Line
The NSW V sets with their very comfortable flip over seats to me is the solution.  You don't have to worry about turning mechanisms, you can have any combination of seating arrangement that suits the customers for any combination of travelers in their group.   The mechanisms appeared very durable.   Short to medium journey segments are the primary area of operation of V'Locities.   The comfort level of a high back NSW V set seat works well for the relatively small ratio of longish trips that V'Locities do today with thru passengers like Ararat.

It's a wonderful compromise and if the N sets had been so fitted in economy class they would have a vastly higher level of customer acceptance than we have with the fixed seating now and dare I say it with V'Locities as well.   If you sit and watch a V'Locity taking onboard passengers at say SX station you'll see what seats ALWAYS GET TAKEN FIRST.    It's so bleeding obvious.

Our forefathers in rollingstock design knew this stuff so well and when I seat a fixed seating configuration like the V'Locity layout all I see is someone thinking they can sort of being "funky" with the end game being cost not passenger comfort and amenity.

And that's so typical.  After spending millions on all the "hard stuff" like engines and transmissions etc, we destroy it by skimping on the "soft stuff" like power outlets, comfortable seats with a flexible seating arrangement, and noise suppression.   DMU's are always going to be noisier but I've ridden many DMU's like the Prospector, Australind, Voyagers etc that are far, far quieter than a V'Locity!!!!
  woodford Chief Commissioner

A record 1.7m trips in March 2017 and I wonder how many complaints V/line or PTV took about uncomfortable seats? What a non-issue! Hardly newsworthy.

More Vlocity - Fix the seats!

V/Line record trips mainly comprise of the swift from metro to RRL so what would the real growth number be without taking into account the new route stations?
Yes, will be very interesting to see the line by line in the annual report. Unfortunately Sam as a Geelong line passenger is copping the brunt of the growth on the RRL corridor.

Re the seating issue, I agree re early Vlocity seat angle (I am sitting in one right now) but as mentioned elsewhere the newer units have a revised angle which is much more comfortable IMO.

I suppose the big Q is what is best practice for DMU seating arrangments, angles, ability to reverse etc. I am thinking Europe / UK etc etc.

BG
BrentonGolding
Brentongolding said.............

"I suppose the big Q is what is best practice for DMU seating arrangments, angles, ability to reverse etc. I am thinking Europe / UK etc etc."

Human beings come in a wide variety of both sizes and shapes, its not possible to build a seat even many would find comfortable. Comfort depends on a lot of things, state of health, age , any injuries, exact shape of the spine and on and on. I for instance cannot stand a seat with lumber support. Another factor is seats most people would rate as comfortable take up much space, therefore its also a matter of comfort V the number one can cater for.

I personal do not really like the VLocity's seats but they are also not that uncomfortable, The N sets first class seats are excellent, there second class seats are to low and to close together to be comfortable. I find the Sprinters excellent, an example of the effect of variations in design.................

A final point is I think you will find there's a standard for seating, that new rolling stock need to comply with, thats forcing seating in a particular direction.

The engine noise does not bother me, remember a QSK19R is a 19 litre, 800bhp engine weighing just under 2 tonnes, immediately under the floor near the centre of the car, it will always be difficult to keep it quite under all conditions, there's simply not enough space. Sound and vibration dampling, particularly for low frequencies, takes up a good deal of room.

woodford.
  N463 Locomotive Driver

Whilst there is quite a lot of engine noise in the passenger saloon of a V/Locity, I personally find the vibration to be much more annoying. Better insulation would be able to quieten the noise, but I'm not sure what (if anything) could be done about the vibration in a DMU.

As for the seats, I find the lack of leg room to be more of a problem than the seats themselves. I can't sit in any of the seats facing the back of another seat without ending up with bruised shins.

I agree that the ACN seats are excellent, and I don't mind the N set economy seats either.

If you are tired enough, you can sleep anywhere, including on uncomfortable seats with loud engine noise and vibrations; a bigger impediment to sleeping on the train (on down journeys) is worrying that the train goes past you station whilst you're asleep, and you end up in Swan Hill. It would be kind of difficult to get back to Bendigo if that ever happened, as the next train going back wouldn't be until the next morning!

N463
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Well there you go...I travel 800Km a week in VLocity's of all kinds and didn't realise I was being vibrated for the past 10 years Exclamation
  SamTheMan79 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Geelong
Ok, I am 6'1 in the old terms and 85kgs. I'm fit and healthy and (just) under 40.

The N & H set economy seats are no good for me. I feel that my knees are up around my head or at least banging into those sitting opposite. The seats aren't wide enough either. 1st class seats are fine.

Sprinter seats are no good either as I think they need a head rest as I get sore shoulders and back, especially if I fall asleep.

V/Locity seating in VL19-41 are too laid back for me. I'm happy to sit in them but far from uncomfortable. VL00-18 & VL42-65 I find are the most comfortable.





I have a noise meter on my phone (not claiming any accuracy here whatsoever!!!) and have measured the decibels on both N sets (avg 78) and V/Locities (avg 81) in the past few days. There's not much difference, however when heating/cooling kicks in, especially on a Z car it can get quite noisy, up over 90 decibels.

Similar to Mike I travel up to 750k a week on V/Line services and spent 6 weeks travelling through Europe mainly by train last May so I'd like to think I know a little about what I'm talking about.

As for vibrations on V/Locities, that's a new one!
  speedemon08 Mary

Location: I think by now you should have figured it out
Ok, I am 6'1 in the old terms and 85kgs. I'm fit and healthy and (just) under 40.

The N & H set economy seats are no good for me. I feel that my knees are up around my head or at least banging into those sitting opposite. The seats aren't wide enough either. 1st class seats are fine.

Sprinter seats are no good either as I think they need a head rest as I get sore shoulders and back, especially if I fall asleep.

V/Locity seating in VL19-41 are too laid back for me. I'm happy to sit in them but far from uncomfortable. VL00-18 & VL42-65 I find are the most comfortable.
SamTheMan79


Ditto, I'm similar proportions and agree with you wholehartedly. Well except for seat rake on the older V/los because I sometimes have my car set like that.
  Camster Chief Commissioner

Location: Geelong
I seem to be able to sleep an hour each way daily without an issue and without being able to sleep at all in the past whilst travelling in any form of transport.

As I write this I can count at least a dozen commuters that are asleep around me, which from my observations is quite common.
SamTheMan79
The 5:33 Waurn Ponds is a good one to sleep on as it runs express Sunshine to North Geelong. Lot of people sleep on that one, even when it was a sprinter.
  Camster Chief Commissioner

Location: Geelong
As pointed out by others, the seats vary fro V'lo to V'lo. I like the newer seats, the older ones are on a horrible angle.
  A4000Bear Junior Train Controller

Location: Taradale, Vic
Up until fairly recently I was travelling 200km a day on V/line, split evenly between Vlocity and N-class. Maybe my body is in different proportions to most as I find the Vlocity seats to be quite comfortable, and the N-class economy to be so bad, I sometimes find it better to stand. I have even had other passengers tell me that I actually look uncomfortable sitting on those seats!

For me the problems with the N-class seats are:

Too low.
Too narrow, though I do concede I have very broad shoulders.
No leg/foot room. I guess being shoe size 13 may have something to do with it, but I certainly find the 'club' seat arrangement to be very cramped and I have to be careful not to kick the person opposite me.
Padding on the seats is too soft and thin. After a 100km ride, my rear is very sore and flat. I would hate to go all the way to Swan Hill like that.

I do concur with others regarding Vlocity seats in that the newer ones are better, but I'll always take an old Vlocity seat over an N-class economy any day!

As a postscript, I almost always dozed off in a Vlocity, but never in an N-class!
  cabidass Chief Train Controller

See these comments to me are funny. I never knew there were different angles on the Vlos.

I only notice the fact that my middle back is floating and I have to curl it to male it fit. No lumbar support whatsoever.

And then some Muppet behind you puts the tray table down and you get a horizontal jab in the back like ya mum is smacking you across the spine with a broomstick...

N type are fantastic, albeit narrow. Which is not what were talking about here given they are laid out 3&2 as opposed to 2&2..

Maybe I need to get more obese like the rest of the country so I mould to the seats..?

I'm hardly skinny anymore though..
  skitz Chief Commissioner

A record 1.7m trips in March 2017 and I wonder how many complaints V/line or PTV took about uncomfortable seats? What a non-issue! Hardly newsworthy.

More Vlocity - Fix the seats!

V/Line record trips mainly comprise of the swift from metro to RRL so what would the real growth number be without taking into account the new route stations?
Yes, will be very interesting to see the line by line in the annual report. Unfortunately Sam as a Geelong line passenger is copping the brunt of the growth on the RRL corridor.

Re the seating issue, I agree re early Vlocity seat angle (I am sitting in one right now) but as mentioned elsewhere the newer units have a revised angle which is much more comfortable IMO.

I suppose the big Q is what is best practice for DMU seating arrangments, angles, ability to reverse etc. I am thinking Europe / UK etc etc.

BG
Brentongolding said.............

"I suppose the big Q is what is best practice for DMU seating arrangments, angles, ability to reverse etc. I am thinking Europe / UK etc etc."

Human beings come in a wide variety of both sizes and shapes, its not possible to build a seat even many would find comfortable. Comfort depends on a lot of things, state of health, age , any injuries, exact shape of the spine and on and on. I for instance cannot stand a seat with lumber support. Another factor is seats most people would rate as comfortable take up much space, therefore its also a matter of comfort V the number one can cater for.

I personal do not really like the VLocity's seats but they are also not that uncomfortable, The N sets first class seats are excellent, there second class seats are to low and to close together to be comfortable. I find the Sprinters excellent, an example of the effect of variations in design.................

A final point is I think you will find there's a standard for seating, that new rolling stock need to comply with, thats forcing seating in a particular direction.

The engine noise does not bother me, remember a QSK19R is a 19 litre, 800bhp engine weighing just under 2 tonnes, immediately under the floor near the centre of the car, it will always be difficult to keep it quite under all conditions, there's simply not enough space. Sound and vibration dampling, particularly for low frequencies, takes up a good deal of room.

woodford.
woodford
I find the unpleasantness comes from the auxiliary engine. They appear to get worse with age in terms of vibration and reverberation through the body  I don't mind the main engine and in general are pretty good for noise and vibration.  The transmissions whine during gear changes.   The noise varies significantly across the fleet.

The other item I notice is the dampers for the primary suspension failing, but I am supposing this.  Every now and then you will get a bogie that has a decisive 'clunk' as it takes the bigger hits in the track.
  cabidass Chief Train Controller

Ok, So I wrote a letter to the minister sorta like this, and got a reply today.
Summarised here:


"I acknowledge your concerns. I passed onto PTV to investigate with Vline.


Vline advised it has a seat change-out program, which is nearly done. It involved replacing 2140 seat backs, and upgrading 980 seat backs over the past 5 months. Additionally 2140 seat cushions were removed and cleaned, and replaced where necessary.

I asked Vline to consider your comments in the next generation of rollingstock planning. "

A record 1.7m trips in March 2017 and I wonder how many complaints V/line or PTV took about uncomfortable seats? What a non-issue! Hardly newsworthy.
SamTheMan79
Hardly newsworthy. But clearly enough of an issue for Vline to upgrade them.....
  SamTheMan79 Assistant Commissioner

Location: Geelong
Ok, So I wrote a letter to the minister sorta like this, and got a reply today.
Summarised here:


"I acknowledge your concerns. I passed onto PTV to investigate with Vline.


Vline advised it has a seat change-out program, which is nearly done. It involved replacing 2140 seat backs, and upgrading 980 seat backs over the past 5 months. Additionally 2140 seat cushions were removed and cleaned, and replaced where necessary.

I asked Vline to consider your comments in the next generation of rollingstock planning. "

A record 1.7m trips in March 2017 and I wonder how many complaints V/line or PTV took about uncomfortable seats? What a non-issue! Hardly newsworthy.
Hardly newsworthy. But clearly enough of an issue for Vline to upgrade them.....
cabidass
At least you got a reply. I have sent 3 letters in the past 3 months with regards to various issues and have received not one reply. I think they are sick of me and have been put on the "do not reply" pile.

The numbers quoted equate roughly to 140 seats in each upgraded 2 car V/Locity being replaced.

Let's hope there's something budgeted to fix the seats in VL19-41. All 4884 of them!

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