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  1. The history of rail freight in Nagoya is an interesting topic. The never-completed Nanpo Freight Line, the West Nagoya Port freight line which became the passenger Aonami Line, and the active, but not as big as it was, Nagoya Rinkai Railway which interchanges with JR at Kasadera. I have wanted to write this post for a long time. Only in the last several months have some very interesting videos been made by the cmesgx YouTube channel which illustrate what otherwise requires a lot of google mapping. Additionally, and unfortunately, JR Freight has announced that the Nagoya Port Line will be shutdown in 2024. Nagoya Port Line The Nagoya Port Line is I believe the earliest dedicated freight line, opening on May 1, 1911. Starting as a Japanese Government Railways line, it passed on to JNR and is now a JR Freight property from Sanno junction, just northwest of JR Central's Otobashi Station, down to what's left of the port infrastructure. Most available YouTube videos of activity on this line, made in the last 10 to 15 years, appear to be movement of new rails on flatcars or JR Central KIYA 97 rail carriers, which while basically DMUs, are usually behind a DE10 or DD200. Perhaps JR Central crews are not qualified on this line. https://plus.chunichi.co.jp/blog/ito/article/264/3870/ However, in an age before the ubiquitousness of 4k smartphones, this line had a lot going on. The Shirotori Line was a short spur that diverged southeast to a log pond (not sure the correct term here as it was man made, not natural) along the Hori River which had freight barges and floating timber. This was Shirotori Station, although there were no passenger operations. Whether these trees were for lumber or paper industries I don't know, but aerial photos of Nagoya up to the mid 1980s seem to show a lot of trees stored in the rivers and canals. This spur began operation in 1916. Immediately north of Shirotori Station, the Nagoya Wholesale Market opened in the mid 1940s and sidings were added to service it. These operations continued until 1978, and the spur itself was formally closed in 1982. The Nagoya Congress Center, a convention center not a government building, and Shirotori Gardens are now in place of the former station/yard. Further south, there would have been a connection to the Nanpo Freight Line, sidings to service the Toho Gas Works, and ultimately a sprawling port with numerous sidings, spurs, and a drawbridge. The excellent YouTube channel cmesgx has been animating old aerial map from the 1970s and 1980s to highlight rail infrastructure. These show Japan's rail network at its peak. First example: Aerial photography from October 1977. 0:46 Sanno Junction. Otobashi station would be built just southeast of this point in 1995. 1:08 Yawata Junction, beginning of Shirotori Line. Light blue lines are the Tokaido Shinkansen. 1:25 Although now filled with buildings, this right of way is still obvious on maps. 1:31 Hibino Station of Nagoya Municpal Subway Meiko Line opened in 1971 under this intersection. 1:40 Shirotori Station log ponds. 1:55 Nagoya Wholesale Market, which still exists but has no rail connection. 2:25 Crossing national route 1, the old Tokai-do (original path?) connecting Edo and Nagoya/Kyoto/Osaka, for which the mainline and shinkansen were named. 2:33 Crossing under the Nanpo Freight Line, with connector line following. I believe construction on this freight bypass would have been suspended by the time these aerial photos were taken. Unbelievable how much they built only to cancel it. 2:45 Toho Gas Works. This is gone now, with a large mall on the east side of the line, and the plot on the west side under development. 3:05 Nagoya Municipal Subway Meiko Yard. This and the immediately following JR Freight Nagoya-minato Station (nothing much to see) are now the end of the line. 3:51 Horikawa Drawbridge. All this track is gone but the bridge is still there and is a registered tangible cultural property of Japan. Continuing on from this point is Horikawa-guchi Freight Station. Additionally, there is a blog Tsushima Keibendo with photos of the port rail operations. 1969 and 1971: http://tsushima-keibendo.a.la9.jp/rinkou/rinkou1.html mostly 1982/3, including the drawbridge: http://tsushima-keibendo.a.la9.jp/rinkou/rinkou2.html. At the bottom of the page, older photos of the Shirotori Line level street/tram crossing in the vicinity of Hibino subway station. I actually lived along this street, north of this point, about 20 years ago. There are still signs designating it the Egawa-sen, which I believe was a nickname of the municipal 08 tram line. On September 19, 2023, JR Freight announced that the line's last day of operation will be March 31, 2024. West Nagoya Port Line and Nanpo Freight Line Planning for the West Nagoya Port Line began in 1947, and construction started a year later. In 1950, 12.6 kilometers of track opened between Sasajima and West Nagoya Port. There were steam operations on the line until 1971. Nagoya Freight Terminal opened October 1, 1980. From October 10th to the 12th 1986, in the twilight of JNR, a passenger excursion called the Omoshiro Ressha Katatsumuri-go (fun train snail service?) was operated on the line. With top-and-tail DD51s (engines 819 and 820), it started at Nagoya Station, went up to Gifu, and then came back down to Nagoya West Port Station. The route was then retraced in reverse. Sasajima Freight Station was closed on November 1st. With the dissolution of JNR, JR Central became the class 1 operator of this line, and JR Freight the class 2 operator. This is what Japanese Wikipedia says, I don't understand the detail or business/operational implications. Seems like an obvious JR Freight property to me. The Nagoya Rinkai Rapid Transit company was established in December 1997 (this is not the same as the Nagoya Rinkai Railway [Meirin] which operates industrial lines running west from Kasadera Station). The West Nagoya Port Line was only electrified in 1998, and only down to the Terminal. The line south of the Terminal ceased operation in 2001, while the construction of the elevated line proceeded. The passenger Aonami Line opened October 6, 2004. Aerial photography from December 1982 0:34 Sasajima Freight Station. This is the northern terminus of the Nagagawa Canal. The Aonami Line, the passengerization of the West Nagoya Port freight line, has Sasajima Raibu (Live) Station here. 0:50 The dark blue lines at the right of the video are the Meitetsu Main Line. The light blue lines are the Tokaido Shinkansen, and the red lines in between are the Tokaido and Chuo Main Lines. The dark blue lines northwest of the yard are the Kintetsu Nagoya Line an associated sidings. 0:57 Most of this yard is gone, but some still exists as a depot and shops for DMUs. 1:12 The West Nagoya Port Line diverges. To the west you can see what was going to be another connector, part of the Nanpo Freight Line plan. This is still visible in aerial maps. 1:20 On the west side of the track, Takabata yard for Nagoya Municipal Subway Higashiyama Line. 1:35 Nagoya Freight Terminal. This still exists. 2:04. What a mess. The factory on the east side of the track is the Chubu Kohan, aka Chubu Steel Plate. They're still there. On the northwest side of their plant are viaducts that I guess were going to serve it when the rest of the elevated line was completed. There is YT video of these structures, they're still standing. The part running off to the right was the Nanpo Freight Line. More later. 2:25 At the right of the video, the Nagoya Horse Racetrack. Just recently closed in favor of a new track out in Yatomi. 3:25 West Nagoya Port 3:55 Back to Nagoya Freight Terminal for the tour of the Nanpo Freight Line. Something like 90% completed by 1975, it was canceled and never carried a single train. 4:29 Crossing over the Nakagawa Canal. 4:34 Passing the connector with and then crossing over the Nagoya Port Line 4:50 Running along side the Tokaido Shinkansen, which it mostly follows all the way to Kasadera Station. 5:08 Crossing the Meitetsu Tokoname Line 5:25 Converging with Tokaido Main Line north of Kasadera. 5:37 Kasadera Station with Nagoya Rinkai yard to its west. There is unused space on the west side of the Tokaido Main Line from Kasadera almost all the way down to Obu. This would have been part of the Nanpo Freight Line. Two more pages of photos on the Tsushima Keibendo blog, here showing the West Port Line. Again from 1969, 1971, and 1983. http://tsushima-keibendo.a.la9.jp/rinkou/rinkou3.html http://tsushima-keibendo.a.la9.jp/rinkou/rinkou4.html Katatsumuri passenger excursion photos: https://hekiden.web.fc2.com/arcives/3rd-spc/3rd-spc-22.htm At an 'open day' in November 2019 at Nagoya Freight Terminal, DE10 1597 wearing the headmark. Whoever has been in charge of the archives over the years, they did a great job. https://twitter.com/ecopower0157/status/1328701141027209217/photo/1 Five pictures at the bottom of the blog: http://b1hanabusa.cocolog-nifty.com/blog/2012/01/post-9b06.html Nagoya Rinkai Railway (Meirin) The Nagoya Rinkai Railway operates a freight network that interchanges with JR at Kasadera, and also has a physical connection with the Nagoya Railway (Meitetsu) via their Chikko Line. The current Meirin company only dates from January 1965, but parts of the system were prefectural lines dating back to the 1930s. Some parts of their network do not currently see active service, but the company designates these as suspended, not abandoned. The company provides service in the large industrial area of southern Nagoya City, which stretches down through the cities of Tokai and Chita. Additionally, they are involved with switching operations at Nagoya Port, West Nagoya Port, Tajimi, Kasugai, and Yokkaichi. They also own some automobile parking (some of the suspended lines are paved over), have scrapped retired railcars and locomotives for JNR, and grew kiwis at one point. Another cmesgx video tracing the Meirin network: Aerial photography from October 1977. 0:00 - the Toko Line, starting at JR Kasadera 0:45 - cross the Meitetsu Tokoname Line 1:07 - Toko Freight Station 1:25 - Showa-machi Line 2:20 - Shiomi-cho Line 2:47 - Funami-cho Freight Station 3:20 - Shiomi-cho Freight Station 4:45 - Tochiku Line 5:13 - diamond crossing with Meitetsu 5:30 - Nanko Line 6:58 - sidings for what is now Nippon Steel Nagoya Works. Immediately after this, the video shows blue lines which are the plant's industrial lines 7:55 - Nagoya Minami Freight Station 9:00 - Chita Freight Station and sidings for Toa Chemical and Nisshin Flour Former Plans Lastly, I have read a few times about a sort of freight outer loop for Nagoya. In the 1960s, JNR's freight trains were made up of 2-axle cars which were limited to speeds lower than that of passenger trains. The Tokaido and Sanyo Lines in Kanto and Kansai had been quadruple tracked prior to the Second World War, but the Tokaido Line through greater Nagoya was still double track. It was concieved that there should be a way to bypass this busy, exclusively double track section of the line. The Seto Line, now the Aichi Loop Railway, diverges from the Tokaido Main Line at Okazaki Station. Imagining it from the direction of Tokyo, it runs roughly north to Kozoji on the Chuo Line, merging with it heading west. JR Kachigawa is only 3 stations ahead, and just northwest of the station is the physical end of the Tokai Transport Johoku Line and their Kachigawa Staton. Well, if you look at JR Kachigawa, it has two island platforms but only the outer tracks exist. The inner track paths are empty, and you can see how this aligns with the end of the Johoku Line. Had this connection been completed, a west bound train would come off the Johoku Line and merge with the Tokaido Main Line just north of Biwajima, heading south. A freight train from Tokyo would proceed south through Nagoya Station, follow the Kansai Main Line west for a short distance, then turn south on the West Nagoya Port Line to go down to Nagoya Freight Terminal. There would have been a delta where the West Nagoya Port Line diverges, so a train coming from the west (Osaka) could enter the West Nagoya Port Line without a reverse movement. There was also a consideration for a line paralell to the Tokaido to its west, but as this was all developed land, construction costs would have been too great. Links of interest and map references Nanpo Freight Line Wikipedia article (English): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nanpō_Freight_Line Nagoya Rinkai Wikipedia article (English): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nagoya_Rinkai_Railway Port of Nagoya Wikipedia article (English): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Port_of_Nagoya Google map centered between JR Central Kachigawa and TKT Kachigawa: https://www.google.com/maps/@35.2286956,136.9541445,642m/data=!3m1!1e3?hl=en&entry=ttu Google map centered on planned delta junction of Kansai Main Line and West Nagoya Port LIne: https://www.google.com/maps/@35.1502254,136.8598929,17.68z?hl=en&entry=ttu Google map centered on Nagoya Port Line where Nanpo Freight Line crossed. Freight Line structure is visible to the east; no trace of connector in the southwest corner of the junction, it's now a Konan home DIY store: https://www.google.com/maps/@35.1181888,136.8828309,97m/data=!3m1!1e3?hl=en&entry=ttu Corrections and additions welcome!
  2. A week ago Bill posted another video by jitensya37 about Musashino Yard (link below), this one covers now and then aerial images of 31 yards from Goryokaku in Hokkaido to Kumamoto in Kyushu. Hmmm the forum software makes an image out of that list... anywho... It's very interesting how some have been preserved as 'freight terminals' losing only some of their tracks to paved areas for the container and lifts, while others are completely gone.
  3. A few days ago JR East posted a bunch of videos on their YT channel about the C58 239 restoration. This was done in late 2012 to 2013. Most videos have a date at the beginning in year-month-date format. The preservation group cleaning 239, plus a seeing off ceremony Partial disassembly, moving it on the display track, and hoisting it on to trucks for travel south to Omiya Several videos on the work at Omiya, as well as the boiler's transfer to Sappa Boiler in Osaka and some of the work there. Their corporate page lists the loco boilers they've worked on, which starts with D51 498 in 1988 and most recently lists this one in 2013. This expertise must be pretty rare, and preserving it seems like a challenge. In Europe, most of this work is done in the former East Germany isn't it? I don't know how this is handled in the US. Maybe industrial boiler companies do it. Test runs at Omiya Station and in the Takasaki area, plus its return to Morioka and test runs on the Kamaishi Line with the converted KIHA 141 4-car set. Two videos about steam loco maintenance and inspection, also showing C61 20. 239's return on SL Ginga services Thank you for looking at the end of this post. JR Freight posted this aesthetically appealing video starting with work on EF510-1 and then showing scenes of it running plus an EF210 and EF66-125. Previous posts about C58 239
  4. Recent delivery of the kiha 261 trainset "Hamanasu" from KHI Kobe works to the JR Hokkaido Naebo Depot/Works. First scene is somewhere on the Hokuriku Main Line, rainy season haulage by Toyama-based EF510 through the rice fields. Next is a (delayed) arrival Saturday AM in the Sapporo area. First scene at Chitose, then the Toyohira River crossing, and at Naebo rolling stock works.
  5. Some years ago JR500 created a thread about company songs, but this appears to be a new performance, by employees, for the Nikkei Company Song Contest https://shaka.nikkei.co.jp/. The JRF Okayama Terminal sign is shown, and a few of the locos have the 'oka' depot boards. I assume all the video is from there, but other than the elevated line in the background, which matches up with the Sanyo Shinkansen, it's difficult to pick out landmarks. You can grab a bite at the diner at the east end of the yard, it's open to the public. It's a heartwarming rendition. I hope they win the contest 🙂 https://www.google.com/maps/@34.6583587,133.9041691,17.33z
  6. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1WnIkPvnOgM A small diner/shokudo kind of place right next to JR Freight's office building at Okayama Loco Depot (google map link below). At :40 he shows an 'authorized personnel only' sign, but then at 1:07, out at the corner there's a sign that says, I think, anyone can go in. When I get back to Japan, I'm definitely going https://www.google.com/maps/@34.658505,133.9093089,3a,75y,121.12h,80.98t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s43zBlH_-gMwYfdYO7ovQeA!2e0!7i13312!8i6656
  7. EF510-509 has been transferred from JR East's Tabata Depot to JR Freight's Toyama Locomotive Depot. -509 is one of the two EF510-500s, along with -510, in the Casseiopia livery. It doesn't look like English or Japanese Wikipedia is updated yet, does anyone know if JR East has sold this one to JR Freight? I'm still a bit surprised that JRE bought all of those locomotives only to sell them on just a few years later. Or was that the plan to begin with? I'm just not sure what their reason would be for subsidizing JR Freight's fleet. It will be the tenth EF510-500 transfered if that's the case. I think -509 and -510 are two of the sharpest looking electric locomotives ever built. http://railf.jp/news/2015/01/19/170000.html
  8. Here's a new container car type, the KOKI73. Interesting design, those low profile wheels will be tiny in N scale :). Also mentioned in the Tetsudou Fan news link, Nippon Sharyo also shipped two new KOKI107s with this, so road numbers 1259 and 1260 are now prototypically correct, in case you buy a lot of KOKIs . http://railf.jp/news/2016/01/09/205000.html http://blogs.yahoo.co.jp/takemas21/35580912.html by 101seibu: by ASUKOOTO: by dd51de10: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJyGX4dL7Qs
  9. Who wants some new freight cars? JR Freight (or Taiheiyo Cement) does! I noticed this Tetsudou Fan news item about HOKI1100-1 going for test runs. It was actually delivered last month from Nippon Sharyo. I seem to remember Taiheiyo cars at Kasadera, I wonder if these will have the same duties in the future. I'd go along on these tests provided I can ride in the caboose and not the so-called "research cabins" on the KOKI. Iyada! http://railf.jp/news/2015/11/16/123000.html https://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/JR%E8%B2%A8%E7%89%A9%E3%83%9B%E3%82%AD1100%E5%BD%A2%E8%B2%A8%E8%BB%8A at Toyokawa Station, by TrainPochi between Shizuoka Freight and Higashi Shizuoka, by tobiiro3go
  10. In this thread, it's claimed that the photographed loco is a new Meitetsu DEKI. Another poster says it's a replacement for the ED79. I can't tell if this is a joke or not, nor can I tell if the photo is a 'shop. It doesn't seem to be one half of an EH800. This is at the test track of Toshiba's Fuchu factory. http://rail-uploader.khz-net.com/index.php?id=35010
  11. Big box retailer/supermarket behemoth Aeon and JR Freight will be running a dedicated freight train from the latter half of July to the beginning of August, just before the Obon season when freight traffic reaches a high volume. Citing a lack of truck drivers restraining road haulage capacity, Aeon has opted for rail haulage of some of its products, mainly those of its private brand Top Value, which is manufactured by third party companies. The train will run during this period every Sunday, departing from either Tokyo Freight Terminal or Kudara Freight Terminal in Osaka around midnight, and arriving at the other terminal early in the morning. Each train will be hauling 120 12ft containers each loaded with 5tons of cargo. Though single customer dedicated trains are not rare (e.g. Toyota Longpass), dedicated trains with multiple manufacturers cooperating together (Aeon and its suppliers) are not common. http://www.sankei.com/premium/news/150704/prm1507040002-n4.html
  12. First I thought this was the truest expression of tetsudou mania I'd seen in a while--someone noticed that EF510-1 was taken to Umekoji (from Suita, not its home base of Toyama) to be turned 180 degress. Is this for wheel wear? Or maybe for repair purposes, as it wasn't driven there under its own power? But then, it seems common to use a DE10 or whatever to move other locos around. Handy having Umekoji available, else they'd have wye it somewhere. http://railf.jp/news/2015/01/23/163000.html
  13. For any of you into freight on grades, here are three videos by YT uploader JRwehksf of the Senohachi section of the Sanyo Main Line. Lots of footage of freight, some closeups of the new EF210-300s, and some 115 EMU run-bys as well. There are I think two different 4-car 115 series sets in some kind of livery for tourism promotion, they look good.
  14. I was just looking for info to answer Vadim's thread in another forum and I found this: http://www2s.biglobe.ne.jp/~hidepon/5inch/ef210.html Apologies if this has been posted before. I'm more of a railfan than a modeler, I don't know too much about this, but based on what the page says, this is 5-inch gauge, about 1/8.4 scale. Its length is 2160mm, and it weight 95 kilograms. It uses 24VDC power. Even more: http://www2s.biglobe.ne.jp/~hidepon/5inch/5inch.html .
  15. This Wednesday the MLIT announced that it was setting up a committee to promote the shipping by rail of import/export containers. The first meeting will take place today (Friday). Currently over 90% of these containers move by road. In efforts to promote modal shift and address labor shortages (truckers?), the ministry will consult with shippers and forwarders, to find out their needs and requirements. Currently such container traffic has not moved on rail due to issues such as tunnel clearances. A new container flatcar design that allows clearances may be necessary. http://response.jp/article/2014/12/05/238999.html
  16. HD300-501, the first 500 subseries unit of the HD300 hybrid locomotive, has arrived in Hokkaido at Naebo Depot. All have been built by Toshiba. The title of the video below, by tobu2181, says it's a cold weather variant. http://railf.jp/news/2014/11/09/173000.html
  17. This looks like a new concept to me, and it's really well done: filming a train while bicycling along side it. Yes, it's not going very fast. But still, I don't know how he got the video so steady. It's amazing. Also some footage of a draw bridge. By RailKingJP.
  18. Here's a nice video compilation of JR East Tokyo-area services that have changed with the March 15, 2014 schedule revision. Videos by tiyodarain (chiyoda line, I think).
  19. This came up in Tetsudou Fan's newsfeed twice in the last few days: http://railf.jp/news/2014/03/15/194500.html http://railf.jp/news/2014/03/13/150000.html The functions served by this Nippon Paper Industries warehouse will be moved to Soka City in Saitama, and there are no other customers on the line. Official decommissioning will be July 1st, but it saw its last revenue train on March 14th around 2:45 PM. Fortunately the railfans were on site and have provided some nice YouTube videos: DE10 1666 on its way to Kita-Oji Station, by dd51de10 Arriving at Kita-Oji Station (basically Nippon Paper's loading dock, as far as I can tell) and then leaving with the last load, by tebure1 Back to Tabata yard, by dd51de10 A run-by at Oji passenger station, by Daisuke FUJII: Paper or printing operations at this site go back to May 1910. Japan's National Printing Bureau had a printshop near or on this site at that time, and the station was known as Shimo-Jujo. Oji Paper acquired this in 1916, and permission to operate a spur was obtained in August 1926. Transport began soon after, with chemical companies being providing other work for the line. In the early Showa period, Japan's armament industry was expanding, and as this line served an armory near Oji 6-chome, it was nationalized under the Ministry of Railways on December 20, 1927. The line was not electrified, but because of the munitions there was hesitation about using steam locomotives, so the battery-powered AB10 was developed for this application. It seems that it was electrified at some point; pantographs were added to the AB10s in 1931 and they were reclassified as type EB10. Factories and warehouses along the line continued to operate in peacetime, and at its peak in 1969, the line saw 5 trains daily. Recently, Nippon Paper's warehouse has had 3 services per day. In the second google map below, you can see the station's yard, which looks like good source of inspiration for a layout . There are 4 sidings plus the main track at the platform. There's a fair bit of switching, which appears to provide escape track for a locomotive toward the north end of any track in the yard. Kind of a shame about closing this down, I think these freight spurs (this was 4km long) add operational interest and a bit of mystery in that as a passenger, it's difficult to figure out what they're for and where they go, and they provide something for me to read about on Wikipedia . It's also unfortunate from a practical point of view; according to the station's wikipedia page (http://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E5%8C%97%E7%8E%8B%E5%AD%90%E9%A7%85 in Japanese) tonnage was going up from about 1998 to 2008, the last year that figures are provided on that page. Nippon Paper currently has a warehouse in Soka City Aoyagi 1-chome. It's not clear if this is the facility taking on the work of the Kita-Oji Warehouse, but if it is, it has no rail connection. The line starts somewhere in Tabata yard: http://goo.gl/maps/qizQJ And after passing Oji and Kami-Nakazato, it splits off and ends at the warehouse, here: http://goo.gl/maps/5lc5M
  20. Today was the last day of pedestrian access on the Akagawa Bridge spanning the Yodo River in Osaka (Awaji area). The bridge will be double tracked, the additional track taking the space now occupied by the boardwalk pedestrian path. Youtube poster ayokoi's medley of recent action on this stretch of railway:
  21. Spring is still some two months away where I am, and thoughts drift to scenes of greenery and life, rather than the deathly silent white outside my window... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_LfjRORnvBA *the clouds move across a perfect blue sky, rice fields swaying with the summer breeze, the cry of the insects, and heavy traffic on the Tokaido Line somewhere in the Tokai region- what a nice scene... by the same contributor, light not as nice with the heavier cloud cover, but at 0:30 you see the Toyota Long Pass Express pass by, some Nittsu 31ft Big Echo Liner containers are mixed in along with the auto parts containers: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6jY4uu_a6gQ
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