Long Haul VLocities

 
  GeoffreyHansen Minister for Railways

Location: In a FAM sleeper
In recent years has Vline considered putting a Velocity on standard gauge bogies and running it to Albury?

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  woodford Chief Commissioner

In recent years has Vline considered putting a Velocity on standard gauge bogies and running it to Albury?
GeoffreyHansen
Almost certainly not, when questioned about any new rolling stock during meetings along the line a couple of years ago neither VLine or the state government had any ideas at all, of any new rolling stock.

I believe also the bogies are made to be able to take SG axles, so only axles and probably new wheels would be required for such a test (IF they had the funds).

woodford
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
NSW 'fans keep on insisting Vline should buy their clapped out old XPTs when they are replaced.  Or we buy the same units as NSW.

Regards,
David Head
dthead

An XPT style arrangement is exactly what is required.  Anyone who believes the VLocity trains are the answer to all the v/line requirements are kidding themselves.  Long Distance trains are required for longer distances and the XPT Style of train allows for extra carriages where required,.
  LancedDendrite Chief Commissioner

Location: Trapped in a meeting with Rhonda and Karsten
Anther issue is the running cost of the units. A loco hauled set with 6 carriages is cheaper to run than a six car DMU in terms of fuel consumption. I think at 5 cars it is even and at 4 cars the DMU comes out ahead. I take the point about speed, but as the long haul routes are probably going to stay on 115 - 120 kph I don't think that is a major factor. Plus a loco and six cars are cheaper to build than a six car DMU.
Duncs
Acceleration is more important than top speed on Victorian lines, despite all the promotion of the VLocity DMUs having a 160kph top speed when they were introduced. That's the real advantage of the VL sets and that's where the Long Haul VLocity will be a step change from the existing N sets. The reality is that while the RFR lines may have quite a few 160kph rated sections services rarely get to cruise at such speeds thanks to lower-speed curves, passing loops that have 65kph turnouts (80kph if you're lucky) and the ever-growing number of intermediate stops that nominally express services are burdened with.

But really, it's pretty simple to see why V/Line want to go for a Long Haul VLocity design to replace the N sets - it's all about fleet commonality and the maintenance savings that comes with that. Within the next few years V/Line will have fully decommissioned the H sets (the P class having just recently been retired), which will be replaced by EMU substitution from electrification to Melton and even more VL sets being built. Once the Long Haul VLocity comes into service and the N sets are decommissioned there's going to be no loco-hauled fleet left - it'll be 100% DMUs, the vast majority of which will be based on one Bombardier platform.

An XPT style arrangement is exactly what is required. Anyone who believes the VLocity trains are the answer to all the v/line requirements are kidding themselves. Long Distance trains are required for longer distances and the XPT Style of train allows for extra carriages where required,.
bevans
All that is required for long-distance services is a different internal carriage fitout - nothing to do with push-pull vs DMUs.
And how regularly do the XPTs have their consists changed again?
  Mr Gus Meister Junior Train Controller

NSW 'fans keep on insisting Vline should buy their clapped out old XPTs when they are replaced.  Or we buy the same units as NSW.

Regards,
David Head

An XPT style arrangement is exactly what is required.  Anyone who believes the VLocity trains are the answer to all the v/line requirements are kidding themselves.  Long Distance trains are required for longer distances and the XPT Style of train allows for extra carriages where required,.
bevans
Although buying XPTs from NSW would be stupid because they are old and dated. A remodeled and longer VLocity would be great. They would have to be more spacious and also with a buffet and first class. Longer as in 6 cars, not the 3 or 2 car trains at the moment. And yes, VLocities wouldn't be suitable for all VLine lines, as people do need refreshments and food, but a benefit of having VLocities is speed and better toilets.
  bevans Site Admin

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Whilst I share your passion to get this right A 6 car Vlocity would that even be possible as a DMU?
  Mr Gus Meister Junior Train Controller

Anther issue is the running cost of the units. A loco hauled set with 6 carriages is cheaper to run than a six car DMU in terms of fuel consumption. I think at 5 cars it is even and at 4 cars the DMU comes out ahead. I take the point about speed, but as the long haul routes are probably going to stay on 115 - 120 kph I don't think that is a major factor. Plus a loco and six cars are cheaper to build than a six car DMU.
Acceleration is more important than top speed on Victorian lines, despite all the promotion of the VLocity DMUs having a 160kph top speed when they were introduced. That's the real advantage of the VL sets and that's where the Long Haul VLocity will be a step change from the existing N sets. The reality is that while the RFR lines may have quite a few 160kph rated sections services rarely get to cruise at such speeds thanks to lower-speed curves, passing loops that have 65kph turnouts (80kph if you're lucky) and the ever-growing number of intermediate stops that nominally express services are burdened with.

But really, it's pretty simple to see why V/Line want to go for a Long Haul VLocity design to replace the N sets - it's all about fleet commonality and the maintenance savings that comes with that. Within the next few years V/Line will have fully decommissioned the H sets (the P class having just recently been retired), which will be replaced by EMU substitution from electrification to Melton and even more VL sets being built. Once the Long Haul VLocity comes into service and the N sets are decommissioned there's going to be no loco-hauled fleet left - it'll be 100% DMUs, the vast majority of which will be based on one Bombardier platform.
LancedDendrite
Yes, most definitely, acceleration is more important. It feels like there are lots of 160km/h sections on the Ballarat line, but I couldn't find anything to support this. It is about the maitenance savings and having it a lot cheaper to operate. It will be sad to see the locos go but it will mean we are getting newer and more modern trains.
  Mr Gus Meister Junior Train Controller

Whilst I share your passion to get this right A 6 car Vlocity would that even be possible as a DMU?
bevans
I am not sure if it would be possible to have it as a 6 car DMU, but I reckon it would be able to be done. VICSIG says that
up to four [3 car] units can be coupled together.
VIGSIG
  Mr Gus Meister Junior Train Controller

In recent years has Vline considered putting a Velocity on standard gauge bogies and running it to Albury?
Almost certainly not, when questioned about any new rolling stock during meetings along the line a couple of years ago neither VLine or the state government had any ideas at all, of any new rolling stock.

I believe also the bogies are made to be able to take SG axles, so only axles and probably new wheels would be required for such a test (IF they had the funds).

woodford
woodford
To do it they would have to have a first class and a buffet. They wouldn't do it yet as the train would be limited to 80km/h since there are unprotected level crossings. A loco would be able to go faster as it is more crash resistant.
  simstrain Chief Commissioner

NSW 'fans keep on insisting Vline should buy their clapped out old XPTs when they are replaced.  Or we buy the same units as NSW.

Regards,
David Head
dthead

As a NSW fan may I say that I don't want Victoria to buy the same units as what NSW trainlink buy. What vline considers regional is intercity for NSW trainlink and runs on electricity.

As for the XPT's it is the track on the southern side of the border that is clapping them out. A friend just coming back from Victoria a couple of weeks ago said that the ride quality was atrocious still on the NE. Those clapped out XPT's are still miles better then vlines n sets and as they are loco powered they would be able to run at 115km/h vs the 80km/h of the vlo's.
  simstrain Chief Commissioner


Removal of Shunting and in train redundancy to prevent total failures in distant parts of the network is what will win out at the end of the day, even if it has a penalty in fuel which going forward will be cheap enough.
RTT_Rules

Fuel might be cheap in the UAE where it is grown but it is most definitely not so in Australia. In fact in the news tonight it was noted that we might not have enough fuel if the US and N Korea go to war.
  BrentonGolding Chief Commissioner

Location: Maldon Junction

Removal of Shunting and in train redundancy to prevent total failures in distant parts of the network is what will win out at the end of the day, even if it has a penalty in fuel which going forward will be cheap enough.
Fuel might be cheap in the UAE where it is grown but it is most definitely not so in Australia. In fact in the news tonight it was noted that we might not have enough fuel if the US and N Korea go to war.
simstrain
Well what a surprise! You shut down local refining capacity and rely on fuel shipped in from Singers etc. to an island nation. Then you go to war and what happens? Your shipping routes get cut off (strategically or otherwise) and boom - instand fuel shortages!

Idiots. (running the joint that is)

BG
  hbedriver Chief Train Controller

Lots of assumptions in this thread. Mind you, some are amusing. That said, a few points;

1. It is deemed that active protection of level crossings (booms, even interlocked gates!) provide an adequate level of defence against road vehicle mis-behaviour, minimising the risk of a collision. Stop signs just don't cut it.

2. The Warrnambool and the Albury lines are currently seeing heaps of level crossings upgraded from passive to booms. When all on these corridors are complete, this immediately makes operation of V'Locity trains practical at line speed (115 to Warrnambool, 130 to Albury). There are probably only a few passive ones left to do on the Albury, I think the one at Gravelside, maybe a couple around Baddaginnie. Only a few Occupation Crossings, some of those closed in recent years.

3. Velocity trips Traralgon - Sale are allowed, but in practice were not happening that often. The last TT may have changed that, I could be mistaken. Locals may know more.

4. Several passive crossings remain between Traralgon and Sale still, mostly Occupation Crossings. One would expect some upgrades to them.

4. About 3 level crossings Sale - Bairnsdale have speed restrictions for all trains; personally a couple of others should as well (e.g. Falls Road, near Montgomery).

5. About 6 or so crossings between Seymour and Shepparton have TSR's, there are probably a couple of dozen passive crossings on this track.

6. Around 412 level crossings between Eaglehawk and Swan Hill have TSR's (feels like it, anyway!). Distance from power sources may make introduction of active protection quite expensive. Sorry, Vinelander; still probably cheaper to run loco-hauled this track.

7. The mass of the locomotive is deemed to provide protection for the passengers in a level crossing prang (notwithstanding Kerang). Locos tend to resist collisions well (see the two G class at Ararat some years back, both drivers in the moving train survived at 70km/h). The cab on a Velocity train is regarded as a crumple zone, something which tends to make drivers nervous.

8. Many of the objections to loco-hauled (run rounds, etc) would be overcome by running in push-pull mode, with a loco at one end and a crew cab at the other. This is common in the USA, so perhaps the Pommie imports will resist that on principle. Still, if you are building a new train...

9. Current standard gauge availability/reliability reflects spending way too much money, and not nearly enough. Given that loco-hauled equipment is usually well over 30 years old, and has for decades been maintained at the bare minimum, faults are hardly unexpected.

10. A long-distance version of Velocity trains could be good, especially if they install only a "spare" traction engine in the 1st class/cab car. Run the engine only if others have failed; if all goes well, they have a lovely quiet ride (and so do the drivers). Really not much need for it otherwise. And those passengers WOULD have a first class experience!
  woodford Chief Commissioner



2. The Warrnambool and the Albury lines are currently seeing heaps of level crossings upgraded from passive to booms. When all on these corridors are complete, this immediately makes operation of V'Locity trains practical at line speed (115 to Warrnambool, 130 to Albury). There are probably only a few passive ones left to do on the Albury, I think the one at Gravelside, maybe a couple around Baddaginnie. Only a few Occupation Crossings, some of those closed in recent years.
hbedriver
The level crossings around Baddaginnie have both been done, I assume from what you have said the crossings between Winton and Glenrowan have been done. There was also a couple between Euroa and Violet Town, next time I go down to Euroa I will check these out.

woodford
  x31 Chief Commissioner

Location: gallifrey
A question for the group please.

Why has the XPT been able to run at higher speeds on the line and the V/Line has not even without the level crossing upgrades?
  tazzer96 Deputy Commissioner

A question for the group please.

Why has the XPT been able to run at higher speeds on the line and the V/Line has not even without the level crossing upgrades?
x31
The albury line itself is 130 limited (most of it is rated however for 130+) however the xpt must slow down to 120 for all unprotected crossings.   NSW has similar rules for slowing to 120 at unprotected LX's in NSW. (mostly used by moree and broken hill xpl's).
Its just that V/line doesn't have any trains that can get to 130 on the SG.  

The XPT can also run faster in the dual gauge metropolitan area as BG trains are limited to 80 when on dual gauge.
  The Vinelander Minister for Railways

Location: Ballan, Victoria on the Ballarat RFR Line
Lots of assumptions in this thread. Mind you, some are amusing. That said, a few points;

6. Around 412 level crossings between Eaglehawk and Swan Hill have TSR's (feels like it, anyway!). Distance from power sources may make introduction of active protection quite expensive. Sorry, Vinelander; still probably cheaper to run loco-hauled this track.
hbedriver

The government is well aware the growing population of Mildura has been screwed over in the provision of affordable public transport by a succession of governments since the Kennett era, therefore whilst every other large regional city in the state will enjoy the increased comfort of air-bag equipped VLocity's, it's unlikely the government will overlook Mildura and Sunraysia's plight in that regard.

The Regional Network Development plan...

http://economicdevelopment.vic.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0019/1311184/CRV-Loddon-Mallee.pdf

and specifically...

FUTURE DIRECTIONS

• Retire classic fleet and procure replacement stock.
• Extra passing loops, track and signalling upgrades on the Echuca and Swan Hill lines to allow for higher speeds, more trains and more freight.
• Improve safety at regional level crossings.

Mike.
  GeoffreyHansen Minister for Railways

Location: In a FAM sleeper
Didn't Victoria decide against push-pull loco hauled trains with the Harris cars?
  tazzer96 Deputy Commissioner

Didn't Victoria decide against push-pull loco hauled trains with the Harris cars?
GeoffreyHansen
They decided against having a single loco pushing and it being controlled from a refurbed harris cab.  They still ran push/pull with loco's on each end.
  duttonbay Minister for Railways

8. Many of the objections to loco-hauled (run rounds, etc) would be overcome by running in push-pull mode, with a loco at one end and a crew cab at the other. This is common in the USA, so perhaps the Pommie imports will resist that on principle. Still, if you are building a new train...
hbedriver
The Poms have been running push-pull trains, loco at one end, crew car at the other, for very many years. On the East Coast Main Line they run at 225 km/h in both directions, loco at one end, and a Driving Van Trailer at the other, starting in 1989 or thereabouts. I reckon they have pushed trains at 100 mph (160 km/h) in the South for much longer than that.  It's also exceptionally common in Europe (of which Pommie-land is not part) to be pushed at speeds of 160 km/h or more.
  GeoffreyHansen Minister for Railways

Location: In a FAM sleeper
Auckland even had push-pull trains with a driving trailer.
  Big J Assistant Commissioner

Location: In Paradise
Occurs in the USA as well.
  kitchgp Chief Commissioner

You'll end up with half a VLocity, ie limited to 80 kph in push-mode whilst LXs are an issue.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2005_Glendale_train_crash

https://ntl.bts.gov/lib/37000/37900/37907/JRC2011-56132_January_26_Glendale_CA_Accident.pdf
(Page 8 of the second article gives an analysis of the fatalities.)


The XPT can also run faster in the dual gauge metropolitan area as BG trains are limited to 80 when on dual gauge.
tazzer96

All Albury trains are SG and, hence, do not have DG speed restrictions. Other NE BG passenger trains follow a different metropolitan route which has little DG.
  speedemon08 Mary

Location: I think by now you should have figured it out
You'll end up with half a VLocity, ie limited to 80 kph in push-mode whilst LXs are an issue. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2005_Glendale_train_crash

https://ntl.bts.gov/lib/37000/37900/37907/JRC2011-56132_January_26_Glendale_CA_Accident.pdf (Page 8 of the second article gives an analysis of the fatalities.)
kitchgp

I have seen other videos of Push Pulls hitting cars and not nearly having anywhere near the same result.

ALSO

Eight fatalities occurred on the southbound passenger train, seven of which resulted from the impact of the southbound passenger train with the standing freight locomotive.

Three of the fatalities occurred on the northbound train. One fatality was the conductor of the northbound train, who was located in the front mezzanine level of car 623 where there was significant intrusion into the occupant volume

At this point it's a train hitting another two trains that caused the deaths.
  duttonbay Minister for Railways

You'll end up with half a VLocity, ie limited to 80 kph in push-mode whilst LXs are an issue.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2005_Glendale_train_crash
kitchgp
The British DVT which leads 225 km/h trains carries no passengers, but others which operate at 160 km/h do. Of course, the concept of an open level crossing, even protected with flashing lights and half boom barriers is unheard of in the UK. If the object is operating efficiency, quicker turn-arounds, then a passenger-less driving trailer would be fine. Of course, it adds unproductive weight, so one set of bean counters would be competing against another department's bean counters.

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