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  1. Hi Friends, I know that @Tony Galiani was waiting for this report ... So that, let's begin this (very) long serie of posts, depicting my travel to the Rising Sun Country. As it's somewhere my 10th or 11th travel ... I'm familiar with Japan. As I've announced it a couple of weeks ago ... ... I was in Japan for a mix of leisure and work, landing on september 10th, 2023 at Tokyo Narita airport, rsp 17:35 JST (time is important ...). Landing doesn't mean disembarquing (at 17:45 JST). As usual NRT is really convenient and fast and despite I've got a checked luggage to collect, I'm around 18:10 in front of the Skyliner desk, queuing, absolutely not stressed. Guess what ? you're in Japan ... people are efficient ! (to be fair, I was flying First Class with Emirates, and you're given a 'Fast lane' card. Anyway, even without 'fast lane' it's really fast at NRT) Why not the N'EX ? First of all the N'EX is slower and less comfortable (to me) but .... look at the waiting line full of tourist exchanging their JR Pass voucher It's 18:13 when I've got my Skyliner ticket ... and the train leaves at 18:16 meaning in less that 3 minutes. Welcome in Japan, no stress two minutes after you're on the platform, boarding the Skyliner (reason why I didn't made an orgy of photos ...) (this shot below is from a former travel in 2016, just to show you how it looks like ... at that time there were no fences and sliding doors) It's really a comfortable place to travel (to answer a question below, yes N'EX has free Wifi as Shinkansen and other JR limited Express). Anyway, I do not need it as I've purchased an 'unlimited' Data Card for 29 euros in France ... very easy to use, and cheap too) and if you need to plug your laptop of cellphone charger, everything is there (sorry for the poor quality) Commuting in Nippori (instead of Ueno... it was raining) a looooong corridor to the JY Yamanote line direction Shimbashi, my favorite place to stay in Tokyo
  2. First time in 24 years that new commuter rolling stock will be introduced. 10 sets of 4 car formations, for a total of 40 carriages. Initial assignments are Kyoto, Nara, Tenri, Kashihara Lines. Seating will be the rotatable longitudinal/transverse type (called the l/c system). Kintetsu press release: https://www.kintetsu.co.jp/all_news/news_info/sinngatasyaryou.pdf Norimono news with Gami:
  3. The new 3-car train will ply the route between Kintetsu Osaka-Abenobashi station and Yoshino station in southern Nara prefecture in about an hour twenty minutes. Aboard the train, cars 1 & 3 are seating with a 1+2 across formation. Car 2 is the lounge car which features a long bar and lounge style seating. Drinks, cocktails, and light meals will be served aboard the train, and an attendant will point out particular scenery over the PA system while en-route. The Yoshino-gawa area is famous for its fruit and wines, and a selection will most likely be served aboard the train. We can expect to see it go into service during autumn of 2016. Cost is very reasonable; Regular fare (970 yen as of today) + 720 yen for the premium class charge. Personally, I'm surprised to see it take this long for Japan's largest private (Non JR group) railway to get into the resort train business. With other prime destinations like Kyoto, Saidaiji, Nara, Iga, Ise, Toba, and Nagoya, I expect this to only get bigger as time goes on. (Translated by me from Tetsudo Shinbun coverage.)
  4. ...Or rather the Amagasaki stargate? Anyway, at this station, up trains utilize a cross-platform transfer between limited expresses/expresses on the Hanshin mainline and trains going on the Hanshin Namba Line. What makes this unique is a local train is traversed by passengers to do this, saving them the bother of using two flights of stairs, and also minimizing the dwell time of the Namba bound train.
  5. Kintetsu rolling stock is well known among fans for having a vigorous dumping of air at full stop when arriving at terminal stations- even more recent stock have their air dumped. Apparently the old system is kept for compatibility as much mixing of old/new stock occurs in services. Most modern rolling stock have brake systems that don't emit such a vigorous sound. *above mainly at Kintetsu Nagoya Sta, and some scenes at Uehonmachi Sta. In the Kanto region, Tobu's 8000 series is known for dumping the air (scene at Kashiwa Sta.):
  6. Took the Kintetsu Kyoto Line today. Highlight of this route is going across the Yodogawa Bridge, which actually crosses the Uji River despite its name. One of my favorite bridges, it is a Pennsylvania Petit truss type, and is the longest single span truss bridge in Japan. https://www.jstage.jst.go.jp/article/journalhs1990/12/0/12_0_197/_article
  7. Just a couple of shots of the cab of these units. Wonderful full analog layout, with four big dial readouts and no digital displays or TIMS. Of course the traditional motorman layout of brake handle on right and throttle on the left.
  8. Film from 1958 about the testing of the pioneer 10000 series Vista Car trainset, specifically the air-cushion bogies. The air-cushion suspension was developed with Bridgestone Tire Corporation, and fitted to Kintetsu standard Schlieren-type bogies. Ride quality as well as noise levels were measured on a portion of the main line between Haibara and Nabari. Some nice scenes on the Kintetsu Main Line as well as glimpses of other Kintetsu rolling stock.
  9. Last month Kintetsu repainted a 5200 series in the old limited express (pre-Vista Car) colors of yellow and dark blue used on the 2250 series, which was the first post-war Kintetsu limited express design (1953). This is a tie-in with the eastern Nara Pref/western Mie Prefecture tourism destination campaign. passing through Iga-Kambe Station: passing through Mihata Sta. in Nabari City: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R5tr8uK2S6E vintage film, brief view of the 2250 series at 0:19:
  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 :).
  11. Another excellent video (like the Nankai one) produced by jiyuukimamanatetsudodouga, this time from the up direction platforms at Matsuzaka Station, on the Kintetsu Yamada Line. Some notables: -5200 series box seat stock used on express services, this type is common on this and the Nagoya Line. Less common on the Osaka Line, as the seating arrangement is inappropriate for rush hour crowding prevalent on that line on the inner urban portions. Many of the express services from Nagoya terminate at Matsuzaka, utilizing the middle road as the arrival track. -note the relatively sparse services on the (single track, non-electrified) adjacent Kisei Main Line. -station announcements refer to all-stops local services as "futsu" rather than the "kakuekiteisha" used in Osaka region Kintetsu stations. -at 27:51 the premium ltd. express Shimakaze passes through. *I like the low angle used here, gives more of a "you are there" feeling.
  12. h/t to quashlo at SSC forum for this. Locations (in order) are Nishinomiya, Ashiya, and Mikage. Mikage is one of my favorite stations on the Hanshin Line, curved platforms and a 35km/h speed restriction for through trains. Like those low profile departure signals(出発信号機).
  13. Here is a revival color that I like, and that is basically identical to the original livery, and on rolling stock directly descended from the original type that had it. Kintetsu Minami Osaka Line, 6000 series. Occasion was a special train promoting an animated film DVD release: This rolling stock with this livery was nicknamed the "Rabbit Car", not for being high speed, but rather having high acceleration in local services, to enable fast runs between stations on the Minami Osaka Line, threading paths between the express and semi-express services, which were in the hands of older (axle hung motors?) rolling stock. The original 6800 series that had this livery no longer run on Kintetsu Lines, but refurbished examples are used by the Yoro Railway. Here are a couple of photos I took of one in the revival colors at Ogaki:
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