CAF Civity for TfW: News and updates on introduction.

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Bob Price

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Saw 001 heading for Chester depot from Crewe this morning. A second unit is on the Llandudno run. Problem is the webcams are covered in rain and couldn't see which was which. Sure someone will know.
 

wobman

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Having spoken to members of the 197 project team and actually going on board a 197 myself, the units are a huge upgrade from any units tfw have had before.
They are not perfect and there's issues to resolve, but thats expected with new traction. I'm very impressed by the cab environment and the far better customer experience they offer compared to the aging sprinters.
In the summer they have working air con wow that's a huge upgrade over the awful 158s failing air con each summer.
Being able to isolate systems and investigate unit problems from the cab is great from a drivers perspective aswell.

Recent news is that A 197 visited Atherton depot as it had experimental engines and they have been replaced with production engines now, plus tfw are recruiting a mobile fitter for Llandudno as 197s will be stored at that location I've been told.
 

6Gtraincrew

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Can I ask if anyone knows which two units are at Donnington now (I saw one of them is 006) and when they're likely to head to Crewe?
 
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The_Train

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I've seen a suggestion that 197007 has been out on test but I have no records of this appearing out of the factory yet - could this be the mystery unit a couple of asked about above and can anyone confirm the start of it's test period please?
 

childwallblues

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I've seen a suggestion that 197007 has been out on test but I have no records of this appearing out of the factory yet - could this be the mystery unit a couple of asked about above and can anyone confirm the start of it's test period please

There is a photo on WNXX of 197007 on test at Bagillt.
 

The_Train

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There is a photo on WNXX of 197007 on test at Bagillt.

The CAF crew took 001 out today. Has someone read the 1 as a 7 by mistake maybe. Or if it's the photo on FB taken there on 20th that was also 001.
WNXX is where I saw it but the photo and caption is user supplied and as @6Gtraincrew says it could have been mis-read.

I've seen it suggested elsewhere that 007 has turned up at Donnington today so looks like the photo in question was of 197001
 

wobman

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There's quite a few 197s now at Donnington terminal awaiting there move to crewe, someone posted a few oils on fb recently.
Speaking to a DI recently they are getting trained on them at the end of January covid dependent, then once the DIs are trained up they will start on the traincrew.

The latest covid restrictions have slowed things down again, but the DI was optimistic that things will be beginning soon.

Another point he raised was caf are struggling to hit the testing trouble free mileage accumulation on the units, they seem to have plenty of software problems he was told!!!!!
 

sw1ller

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There's quite a few 197s now at Donnington terminal awaiting there move to crewe, someone posted a few oils on fb recently.
Speaking to a DI recently they are getting trained on them at the end of January covid dependent, then once the DIs are trained up they will start on the traincrew.

The latest covid restrictions have slowed things down again, but the DI was optimistic that things will be beginning soon.

Another point he raised was caf are struggling to hit the testing trouble free mileage accumulation on the units, they seem to have plenty of software problems he was told!!!!!
I believe a lot of those software problems come from the un/coupling procedure. A month ago when I had a chat to the main bloke that’s doing the testing, I was told the software wasn’t even installed so they can’t run the tests. So I’m just assuming it’s only recently gone in and the issues are to be expected at this time. (Purely speculation though)
 

wobman

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I believe a lot of those software problems come from the un/coupling procedure. A month ago when I had a chat to the main bloke that’s doing the testing, I was told the software wasn’t even installed so they can’t run the tests. So I’m just assuming it’s only recently gone in and the issues are to be expected at this time. (Purely speculation though)
Let's hope they resolve them before the end of January as DI training begins then & coupling is a part of the practical handling traction training.
It's more concerning as tfw plans lots of coupling and uncoupling in the future timetable changes, I've heard it takes 9 mins to couple 197s with doors / pull away test / brake release etc but we only get 3mins with sprinters !
More fun and games hey......
 

krus_aragon

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It's more concerning as tfw plans lots of coupling and uncoupling in the future timetable changes, I've heard it takes 9 mins to couple 197s with doors / pull away test / brake release etc but we only get 3mins with sprinters !
That can't be the designed time, given the huge amount of coupling expected at Chester/Machynlleth/Swansea. That detail ought to have been specified in the contract, so here's hoping that's staffroom gossip and no more.

For contrast, what's the scheduled time for coupling 175s?
 

LNW-GW Joint

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That can't be the designed time, given the huge amount of coupling expected at Chester/Machynlleth/Swansea. That detail ought to have been specified in the contract, so here's hoping that's staffroom gossip and no more.
For contrast, what's the scheduled time for coupling 175s?
And why is it any different to coupling/uncoupling 195s which have several years of experience with Northern?
 

wobman

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There'll be a little bit extra to do with opening the gangway, but it shouldn't be that much.
The 197s are completely different to couple than the 195s, there's a cab wall panel with cab equipment to unlock move then lock into position.
Then unlock the first inner door move then lock into position, next step is to unlock and lock the floor leveling plate, finally unlock the concatener doors then move and relock safely.
Then you start the coupling procedures draw 6ft then 2ft, check couple alignment and press coupling speed control to power onto unit and then the unit runs coupling and test procedures.... then the driver ensures brake release try doing that in 3mins.......

Also the 197s electrical boxes are located in a different configuration than the 195s.
 

craigybagel

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AIUI it's obviously not designed to take such a long time - just at the moment it's proving quite a faff. It's hardly the first time new trains have come with teething issues.
 

mmh

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AIUI it's obviously not designed to take such a long time - just at the moment it's proving quite a faff. It's hardly the first time new trains have come with teething issues.
Well, with any luck the teething issues won't be solved so in future TFW will stop doing ludicrous detachments / decoupling and turning trains around at silly places, like my local station.
 

berneyarms

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Well, with any luck the teething issues won't be solved so in future TFW will stop doing ludicrous detachments / decoupling and turning trains around at silly places, like my local station.
Care to give an example?
 

berneyarms

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Of course, Llandudno Junction.
Presumably you’re referring to the detachments which take place there in the afternoon when the normal timetable is in operation.

They’re not ludicrous at all as they allow several afternoon trains along the busiest stretch of the North Wales coast line between Chester and Llandudno Junction to be strengthened where the demand necessitates it.

Sending one unit back to Chester allows a further westbound train to be strengthened along the coast rather than wasting the unit unnecessarily by sending it to Holyhead and it is needed less.

It focuses the capacity where it is needed.
 

Anonymous10

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Well, with any luck the teething issues won't be solved so in future TFW will stop doing ludicrous detachments / decoupling and turning trains around at silly places, like my local station.
how is strengthening trains where they are needed ludicrous they have to uncouple somewhere even without gangways units work in multiple in all sorts places and do this
 

Rhydgaled

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Presumably you’re referring to the detachments which take place there in the afternoon when the normal timetable is in operation.

They’re not ludicrous at all as they allow several afternoon trains along the busiest stretch of the North Wales coast line between Chester and Llandudno Junction to be strengthened where the demand necessitates it.

Sending one unit back to Chester allows a further westbound train to be strengthened along the coast rather than wasting the unit unnecessarily by sending it to Holyhead and it is needed less.

It focuses the capacity where it is needed.
Indeed, if done well portion working is not ludicrous at all - as well as strengthening services where needed it potentially reduces the need for passengers to change trains on journeys which would otherwise involve one (such as from the Cambrian Coast to Shrewsbury/Birmingham).
 

Doveymain158

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Pre-Covid the 1708 from Bham International Mondays to Fridays use to split at Shrewsbury for Llandudno & Aberystwyth
 

Sheridan

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The 197s are completely different to couple than the 195s, there's a cab wall panel with cab equipment to unlock move then lock into position.
Then unlock the first inner door move then lock into position, next step is to unlock and lock the floor leveling plate, finally unlock the concatener doors then move and relock safely.
Then you start the coupling procedures draw 6ft then 2ft, check couple alignment and press coupling speed control to power onto unit and then the unit runs coupling and test procedures.... then the driver ensures brake release try doing that in 3mins.......

Also the 197s electrical boxes are located in a different configuration than the 195s.

The times that are currently allowed for 158s aren’t great, e.g. the 0653 Chester to Manchester Airport, the rear portion arrives from Holyhead at 0648, when you take into account the extra time for permissive working, coupling and then waiting for the ERTMS, it’s all a bit tight. Hopefully the new timetable will allow sensible times for coupling and uncoupling.
 

wobman

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The times that are currently allowed for 158s aren’t great, e.g. the 0653 Chester to Manchester Airport, the rear portion arrives from Holyhead at 0648, when you take into account the extra time for permissive working, coupling and then waiting for the ERTMS, it’s all a bit tight. Hopefully the new timetable will allow sensible times for coupling and uncoupling.
That's what I'm trying to explain with my posts, the timings are too tight with the factors involved. The times will need looking at with the new 197s and the extra coupling planned with the new timetables in the future.
 

Sheridan

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That's what I'm trying to explain with my posts, the timings are too tight with the factors involved. The times will need looking at with the new 197s and the extra coupling planned with the new timetables in the future.
I wholly agree, but I’m hopeful that the 197s won’t take any longer than current stock once the process is formalised (and assuming that any ERTMS equipment on board is quicker to boot up). If it really takes 9 minutes once in service then that will be yet another stick to beat the 197s with!
 

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