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  1. One of the faster turnarounds in Japan, I reckon. *additionally notice the peculiar to Hankyu practice of announcing the train arrival track using "~go sen" rather than the common "~ban sen". Apparently this is because the "ban sen" term is used only for rolling stock depot/coach yard tracks on this railway.
  2. bikkuri bahn

    Hankyu 3 way switch

    A little excursion on the Hankyu Takarazuka Line this Monday yielded this discovery- a three way switch at the “down” end of Shounai Station. These type of switches are relatively rare due to their expense of construction and maintenance, but Hankyu saw it fit to construct one at this location, possibly to keep conflicting movements to a minimum should a turnback service be required. View from an “up” direction train: From the end of the up platform: Apparently, in addition to this location, there are six other places on the Hankyu system where three way switches are in use. Given that there are only 4 other known locations of this type of switch elsewhere on other railways in the nation, it can be said that Hankyu is the “Mecca” of the three way switch.
  3. Years ago, perhaps in a previous century, my first exposure to Japanese traction and trains was an ancient VHS tape called Rising Sun Traction. The tape opened with a sequence in and around Umeda Station in Osaka and there was a sequence across the river at Juso Station. Lots of maroon trains coming and going. All highly organized and very consistent. To this day the maroon trains are all highly polished, immaculate railway specimens. No aluminum trains here. That old video said the Hankyu was modeled on the Pacific Electric and I would believe it. Hankyu was also the originator of railway department store. So for those not familiar here is a video of the triple main line at Juso Station.
  4. Mitch

    Ring Tone

    Like you all haven't heard enough from me this morning. Is there any way to obtain a ring tone, or make one like the departure tune at Hankyu's Umeda depot? If pointing and calling doesn't get me thrashed by "The Lovely Renee'" (Mrs. M.) this one will. My son could do it but he's deaf and wouldn't exactly know even tho he's mad at me for making airbrake gestures and noises in the car. Mitch
  5. A short video showing a Hankyu shin 1000 series being assembled at Hitachi's Kasado plant. Some other educational points in the latter half of the video, courtesy of the railway museum in Saitama.
  6. Saw this non-consumer product Toshiba CM on TV tonight. There are two versions, a general version and a version for Kansai. Products include pmsm motors, hd300 hybrid loco, and passenger information displays. General version: Kansai version (this version uses Hankyu 1000 series rather than Tokyo Metro 1000 series):
  7. Company video featuring the manufacture of rolling stock at the Kasado Plant:
  8. Was flipping through the channels last night, and stopped at the variety program "kenmin show", which highlights unique aspects of each of the 47 prefectures in Japan. I usually wouldn't bother to pay much attention, but the theme was Osaka, and specifically the characteristics of the railways there, particularly Hankyu. Two little trivia factoids came out: 1. at one time, Hankyu was thinking of changing their rolling stock colors (probably to seem more "up to date" or "modern"), but community opposition from people living along the line(s)* quashed that. For that we are thankful, as Hankyu has kept their classic maroon livery. I shudder at the thought of unpainted stainless steel stock running on Hankyu.(other than the subway run-through services). 2. Hankyu's rolling stock is known for its spotlessness, and higher than the usual standard for comfort in commuter stock. Particularly, the plush, heavily cushioned olive green seating on trains is made of felt fashioned from Turkish Angora goats. *likely places like Ashiya, with high real estate values, where the maroon color of Hankyu trains is symbolic of the cachet of living in a chichi neighborhood.
  9. http://www.citylab.com/commute/2014/11/kyoto-can-teach-the-dc-metro-a-lesson-about-express-tracks/382286/ I don't know why Kyoto is used as an example, as this practice is widespread in Japan, maybe it's because Kyoto is trendy nowadays, especially among the waspy liberals that likely read urbanist and transport blogs. *The caption for the Eizan picture is a little misleading though, implying some kind of seamless transfer to Keihan, like a cross platform deal, when in fact the Eizan terminal is at ground level, which requires you to exit the ticket gate, walk and go down an escalator to the Keihan terminus underground.
  10. Did anyone post this yet? http://en.rocketnews24.com/2014/09/07/the-most-crowded-train-lines-during-rush-hour-in-tokyo-osaka-and-nagoya-are/ Pretty interesting, data is apparently from MLIT, so I think it's trustworthy. I never lived in Kanto, so the figures for those lines don't mean a lot to me, other than explaining why JR East buys so many new trains . The figures for Osaka and Nagoya, however, help me picture train interiors, platforms, and seas of people at the gates :). The private railways really take the prize in Osaka, and in Nagoya, the municipal subway system appears the most in the list. Also interesting to see how Meitetsu places. JR Central only appears once, at number 5, further reinforcing my impression that they probably don't want to worry about the zairai lines too much :).
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