Okay, I've finished laughing now..."But I know most of you are thinking this is crazy right? Just hear me out. The Victorian Government along with Metro Trains Melbourne Pty Ltd are phasing out their older air-conditioned Comeng trains which have been retrofitted to have desto boards inside and out (electronic none the less) and with announcements.So why not purchase these sets which are being sold off or scrapped altogether, I mean it would make perfect sense in a way."
- No I don't think it's crazy. However I see multiple insurmountable obstacles to it ever happening.
- To your line of thinking it "would make perfect sense in a way." However to those in power who make all the big decisions it does NOT make sense.
1 - Why are they being phased out/retired? How compatible are they with our current rollingstock? from an operational and maintenance perspective?
Not being familiar with the Victorian networks, I can only assume they have been deemed obsolete. In which case why would we take someone else's trash and
possible troubles? Particularly if it means they will require some level of major refit to be compatible with our network, and our regulations etc.
Remember ALL our current rollingstock has been purposefully designed to our requirements, specifications and regulations. We currently have all the logistics, parts and equipment in place to maintain and service our current rolling stock. To introduce a "NEW" but second hand set type to the fleet as a stop gap measure will mean having to purchase, outlay and install all the logistics required to maintain the new set type. Where will all that be put? From the political perspective, no NSW government is going purchase discarded and obsolete stock from Victoria. Can you imagine the headlines? How to make a world class railway by buying 2nd Hand Obsolete trains? Political laughing stock of the nation, if not rail world. Particularly after the immense amount of money splashed on Waratarts.
2 - All passenger rollingstock being acquired by RailCorp are required to meet strict specifications, many of which are required to comply with recommendations from the "Waterfall" inquiry. Many of these are safety systems and features, which are now standard on Waratarts such as IEDRs, and in process of being retrofitted to OSCARs and Mills. There is no way foreseeable that they would purchase a new set type without these and other new features. Everything being purchased is with the view of a 40-50 year lifespan into the future. With that organisational direction, where do 20-30 year old, clapped out second hand, not approved/accredited/certified for our network, trains fit into that vision? For all the hassle it would involve, it isn't worth the effort or cost.
If it were that simple, the powers that be could have just sent a 4 car V-Set to China to be reverse engineered, with the instructions, make more of these, with AC traction motors, Disc Brakes, and a computerised train operating system (TOS) and other features demanded on their wish list. Obviously it isn't that simple.
Hopefully that fresh dose of reality helps put the viability of your suggestion into perspective.
Perhaps a Left Hand operated, Overhead power converted verison of Alstom's R-160 (for NYC) which is a currently produced, and modern design, might be viable for the task. Management however seems to love having brand new designed trains just for our network rather than just adapt already existing designs, and nearly always pay the price - refer to Millenium and Waratart fiascos if in doubt... Reality it is, that management want more or less (perhaps with the exception of the number of carriages)
what Seb pointed out :"We need 6 car single deck trains, no guards, no station staff and signals every 20m to give us 10s headways." and "Currently, it is not the drivers role or responsibility to do anything with customer service. This is why we must also have driverless trains. I dream of a system where the workforce is eliminated, and thus the impact of the unions."
Again, the easiest way to achieve the single deck fleet is to sell the operations off to a private company to run and supply their own single deck rollingstock that the government won't have to purchase...