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The merits or otherwise of BR Mk I coaches, ex-Bluebell Motive Power

Discussion in 'Heritage rolling Stock' started by david1984, Jun 13, 2017.

  1. david1984

    david1984 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Works better when you have suitable stock to hang on the back, Lancashire & Yorkshire Livery loco on Maroon MK1's ruins the effect somewhat.

    As for the Q1, I'd stuff n mount 44027 in York in it's place, There's 2 other operational or soon to be 4F's in preservation with 43924 and 44422, If we are going to steam NRM loco's I'd concentrate on the "sole survivors".
     
  2. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    Most tourist railways are "stuck" with Mk.1s.

    PH
     
  3. david1984

    david1984 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Indeed, But away from the Bluebell and Keighley etc there are few pre grouping loco's out there so it tends to be less of a problem for them.
     
  4. Johnme101

    Johnme101 New Member

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    The Maroon MK1's don't ruin the effect in my opinion and MK1's is what mostly used by heritage lines used. There do the job well and I don't how that is a problem. It is not always about making realistic looking trains and it is about having fun. With what we have available to us and most visitors don't usually care if the train. Is prototypical or not.
     
  5. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    Hmm! My experience is that whilst most passengers can't tell the difference between, say, L.B.S.C.R. or Highland vehicles a surprising number can identify if the stock is truly old or not.

    PH
     
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  6. S.A.C. Martin

    S.A.C. Martin Well-Known Member

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    But, as often said to you Paul, you play the cards you are dealt...

    Mk1s were available in bulk more or less, older rolling stock wasn't. Many railways make the best of what they have which ultimately we all should be doing.

    Obviously my preference is always for heritage rolling stock but the MK1 has proved itself of great value to our movement.
     
  7. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    Not really the point I was making. This was to answer a comment which can be paraphrased as "passengers can't tell the difference". My response, also paraphrased was "quite a lot of them can". However, it may suit some railways to believe they are unable to.

    Paul H

    P.S. Getting a bit away from "Bluebell Motive Power"!
     
    Last edited: Jun 18, 2017
  8. david1984

    david1984 Resident of Nat Pres

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    It shoulden't be surpising, Mk1's were still to be found in small pockets on service trains into the 1990's, A paint job won't hide the fact it's a vehicle you commuted behind a class 50 on a semi fast in.
     
  9. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    It can't give it character either, especially B.R. maroon which tends to look dirty even when it is not.

    I have been astonished how perceptive people who know nothing about trains can be. Of course there are the other sort as well.

    PH
     
  10. D1039

    D1039 Well-Known Member

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    Mk 1 s are also heritage stock, even Mk 3s are becoming so, but I take the point

    Patrick
     
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  11. Johnme101

    Johnme101 New Member

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    BR MK1s have loads of character and look good in BR maroon. BR MK1s are one best heritage coaches used on heritage lines and are comfortable. The BR MK1s are part of experience of heritage lines and they are part of steam history. There are more BR MK1s than other type of coach and some of people. I see on heritage don't know too much about the locomotives or railway.
     
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  12. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    Just my point. There are IMHO, just too many of them but they seemed like the easy (and cheap) option in the early days so we are stuck with them. Travel, for instance, in the Bluebell's Maunsell open third and you will see what I mean about vehicles with style. Plenty of passengers on tourist railways know nothing about trains but are remarkably perceptive. You ought to talk to a few.

    PH
     
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  13. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Part of the furniture

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    Be fair, in many cases they were the only option. I'd agree that there are many passengers who *can* tell the difference, but do they really care to the point of not visiting a line with only Mk1s? I doubt that. Far more important is the general condition; I suspect a clean Mk1 would be preferred to a tatty Maunsell 3rd.

    Also worth noting the distinction between wooden panelled Mk1s and Formica panelled ones, I suspect the former gives a better impression than the pattern especially when well varnished.

    Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
     
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  14. Jamessquared

    Jamessquared Resident of Nat Pres

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    A well restored Mark 1 can be an attractive vehicle (emphasis on the "well restored") though I'd agree with Paul that they aren't necessarily the peak for comfort: certainly, of our ordinary carriages, the Maunsell droplight 3rd takes some beating for general comfort.

    It was obviously true that for many lines that were finding their feet in the 1970s and 1980s, Mark 1s provided a ready source of cheap, runnable carriages to get up and going, whereas by that time, any pre-nationalisation carriages still available were likely to be departmental conversions that would have required time and money to convert back to passenger carrying - both commodities being in short supply at the time.

    However, I do wonder whether we are collectively getting to "peak preserved Mark 1"? Those carriages that entered preservation in the 1970s - 1990s will now have been running somewhere between 25 and 40 years since their last BR overhaul, and - quite conceivably - for many, the reason they were for sale in the first place was because they were tired even back then. From what I can see, Mark 1s can be quite reliable provided you keep them watertight; however, they are prone to corrosion of the end structure and once they start to leak, can go downhill very fast. Moreover, major structural steel replacement can suddenly get very expensive and / or time consuming.

    There was a case a year or so back on the WSR where a Mark 1 was revealed to have had a six figure sum spent on its overhaul. At the time, the amount was used a stick to beat the owners for their perceived financial inefficiency, though possibly a more accurate portrayal might have been "six figures for one coach - that could just be the first of many". I think there could be some nasty financial surprises in store when such overhauls can no longer be deferred. I also suspect that many railways are probably thinking hard about how many (and of which types) of coach they need to operate their services, allowing for a known overhaul schedule taking carriages out of traffic one by one, and might look to thin down their core fleets to a maintainable number that is sufficient for their predicted needs, but no larger. My hunch is that, for an asset whose primary mode of deterioration is simply caused by sitting outside rather than directly related to miles run, a smaller fleet worked harder is probably more cost effective.

    Tom
     
  15. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    Who knows what influences people to choose one line over another. I can say that one lady I have talked to, with no knowledge about trains was very scathing about her "local" line which is a Mk. 1 place. I won't say which.

    The Bluebell's Maunsell open 3rd is not tatty but I would take a tatty Maunsell over a tatty, or not so tatty Mk. 1.

    I am more concerned with style, rather than comfort. For instance the four wheeled Ventnor West set on the I.O.W.S.R has the expected rather lumpy ride. H0wever, the interiors are a joy and the first class compartment is the normal choice of accommodation for any Royal visitors there may be.
     
  16. Platform 3

    Platform 3 Member

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    I see your point of style over comfort, but that is always going to be a personal conclusion and will depend on length of journey. Four and six wheelers are something I love, but not for journeys over five miles. That's why I would, if at all possible, go for pre-nationalisation bogie carriages.
     
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  17. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Part of the furniture

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    I bet that was more down to the condition of said Mk1s than the fact that they simply were Mk1s though. I wasn't talking about comfort when I mentioned tattiness, and I'm surprised at you Paul, surely a clean journey is more important to the general public than whether a coach is a Mk1 or not? That was the point I was trying to make, and it's a sad fact that prenationalisation coaches tend to be much better looked after than Mk1s. That doesn't mean one is preferred over the other if both were in good condition.

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  18. paulhitch

    paulhitch Part of the furniture

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    Oh! I see. What you appear to call "tatty", I call "dirty". Rather like the vehicle I encountered (since disposed of) on a certain railway where the seats appeared to have been marinated in sump oil. Would you be surprised to learn it was a Mk.1?

    Paul H
     
  19. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Part of the furniture

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    Not in the slightest! As I said, it's a sad fact that most neglected coaches tend to be Mk1s, that doesn't mean a well respected and looked after MK1 can't be nice.
     
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  20. 35B

    35B Part of the furniture

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    It's not always about style or maintenance. My wife detests the LNER teaks, because she finds the seats incredibly uncomfortable because of the state of her back. She's no great fan of Mk1s, but she can walk afterwards.


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