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  1. Last Thursday saw the Super Rail Cargo train run during the midday, due to a seven hour late start. Typically runs during the night, so hard to catch in light except early AM in the spring and early summer. At Inazawa, Aichi Pref. Later, in the Numazu area, Shizuoka Pref.
  2. From my last Japan trip, as far as I am aware there were just 6 remaining EF66 0 series still in use by JRF although of these I saw 3 were resident in the "out of use" lines at Suita depot which also housed 4 of the remaining 9 EF200 also as "out of use". From reading a blog I follow by an enthusiast who lives by Suita depot, it seems that EF66-21, -26 and -33 are now moved into the scrapping area at Suita, as of yesterday, in preparation for imminent demolition. This just leaves EF66-27, -30 and -36 extant although EF66-36, which moved recently down to the JRF plant in
  3. Looks like the JR Freight EF210-0/100 series locomotives will receive a new livery based on the EF210-300 series livery.
  4. Digest feature of an interesting cab ride aboard EF 210 163 on train 1155 from Tokyo Freight Terminal to Sagami Freight Station in Kanagawa Prefecture. It starts with 24 cars, dropping off 8 at Kawasaki, another 4 at Hazawa, and continuing on with the remaining 12 to Sagami Freight Station. Rare footage of freight only tunnels which allow freight trains to bypass the heavily trafficked passenger train routes in the Keihin corridor. A Jiji Tsushin production. Hat tip to Sr. Horn over at SSC for this.
  5. I have a trip to Japan confirmed for March next year and I will have free time (2 or 3 days) whilst I am staying near Omiya Station in Saitama. As this is an area I have not been to for any significant amount of time, so apart from "The Railway Museum" at Omiya, has anyone any suggestions for good spots to go for photographing freight trains through stations and locos in depots? As I will have quite a bit of free time, I am happy to make longer trips out to get to more interesting places so do not have to be just in or around Omiya.
  6. All JRF locomotives in active use carry at least one and sometimes two "区名札" (translates as Ward Name Tags) usually below the cab window at one end on both sides, as metal or latterly plastic plates slotted into a pair of holders. These tags identify the depot or agency district within Japan that the loco is allocated to (first or left tag position) and any specific use they are to be put to (second or right tag position). These tags date back to the early days of steam and are collected by train enthusiasts in Japan with particularly old and rare examples or those from long defunc
  7. Of possible interest to members in Japan. Topics to be covered: the Hitachi IEP class 800 project team, steel wheel production, twilight express mizukaze and how bathtub water won't spill in a train, JR Freight and its on-time record of 94%. Next Saturday from 9pm on BS3 (satellite) domestic only. Repeat broadcast of the previous episode (originally broadcast last March) will be on same day from 11am. http://www.nhk.or.jp/docudocu/program/9999/1623466/index.html
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