SEmG

Class 159

 

One benefit of NSE taking up part of the 158 order was that it obtained its new rolling stock quicker than with any other viable option. NSE drew its stock from the 3 car 400hp 158 variant. However, the interior layout was not to NSE's liking, particularly the 2+2 seating in the first class (NSE preferred 2+1) and the buffet trolley stowage arrangements. Remember - this was in the early days of BR having to work with professional procurement procedures between it and its newly privatised suppliers, and not merely issue a late change of specification to its own workshops. It did not prove possible to arrange a mutually agreeable variation order with BREL, so as a result standard specification RR 158s in NSE colours were shipped to another contractor at Rosyth Dockyard to perform the conversion to what had become new class 159.

After considering various options, which I will not go into here, to house and maintain the 159s a new depot was built at Salisbury on the site of the former GWR station. In service the 3 car 159s work in multiple, dropping off excess capacity at Salisbury as necessary according to the timetable.

The 159 units were built at BREL Derby and are of welded aluminium construction. They consist of :

* DMCL diagram DP322 lot number 31051 weighing in at 38.5 tonnes seating 24 first (facing) and 28 standard (facing and unidirectional) with one toilet suitable for the disabled

* MSL diagram DP209 lot number 31050 weighing in at 38 tonnes seating 72 standard (facing and unidirectional) with two toilets

* DMSL diagram DP260 lot number 31052 weighing in at 37.8 tonnes seating 72 standard (facing and unidirectional) with one toilet and a parcels area.

The cars are 23.21 long by 2.82 metres wide, and each is powered by one Cummins 14 litre NTA855R 300kw (400hp) engine feeding a Voith T211r hydraulic gearbox and torque converter , which then feeds a Gmeinder final drive. Each car has one BREL P4 and one BREL T4 bogie. Maximum speed is 90mph. The units are gangwayed throughout and the platform side doors are of the sliding plug type.

 
159005 Another Waterloo bound service at Yeovil Junction formed of 159005 on 2nd October 1999.

photograph by Colin Duff

 
159022 heads westbound from Yeovil Junction into the setting sun on 2nd October 1999.

photograph by Colin Duff

159022
 
159016 On the afternoon of 17th April 2002 159016 was stabled in platform 1 at Salisbury.

photograph by Colin Duff

 
Bogie on the DMS of 159016.

photograph by Colin Duff

159016
 
159016 Underframe of the DMS of 159016.

photograph by Colin Duff

 
SWT first class branding on the window strip of 159016.

photograph by Colin Duff

159016

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This page was last updated 3 December 2002

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