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Japanese tramway handbook.

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Rick Kerr asked for a review of this book. To my knowledge this has never been available from the usual suspects before.




Manyosen track map




This an annual publication of the Japan Tramway Society.  It covers 23 tramways (including the Keihan Electric Railway Keishin and Ishiayama-Sakamoto lines) and two heritage tramway lines.


Basically this is a 212 page tramway data book. For me its primary features are the detailed track map for each system and detailed fleet lists for each system.  Most of the text is in Japanese, but there is a two page summary of tramway developments since 2011 in English and a five page English How to Use This Handbook legend for maps and tables.


Track maps for each system are very detailed showing details like each track, junctions, scissors crossovers, crossovers, various types of tram stops: tram stop with safety island without shelter, tram stop with safety island with shelter, JR railway line,  private railway line, depot or workshop and traverser in depot or workshop.


Fleet lists the include the number of cars, length and width in meters, passenger capacity (seated), current collector, control system, equipped with air conditioning symbol,  and type of car.


There is a lot of information on schedules but this requires knowledge of Japanese to read them.


All photos are very small, but this clearly is not a focus of this publication.


In in all a very interesting publication that I am happy to add to my library. Probably not much here if you are not interested in Japanese tramways.

Edited by bill937ca
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Thanks for sharing.  I remember seeing it come up for pre-order.

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Gordon Werner

I haven't seen this particular book/publication ...


but I do have "Japan's Colorful Tramways" by Colin Brown via LRTA ...


is in English, has route maps, as well as information on each system's various car types and history





Edited by Gordon Werner
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That map of Hiroshima much less detailed than the maps in Tramways of Japan

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Robert Schwandl publishing of Berlin has published two volumes of a three volume set titled Metros and Trams of Japan.These are softback and printed I German and English.

Volum1 covers Tokyo Region while volume 2 covers North and Central Japan,Shikoku and Okinawa.Volume 3 will cover the rest.

Very interesting and well illustrated.

I got my copies from Platform 5 publishing in Sheffield


Edited by scotspensioner
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Thanks, Bill!

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The Japan Tramway Society has just issued their 'Japan Tramways Handbook, 2018'.

A5 size, 212 pages.

This handbook covers all of Japan's tramways in extensive detail.

All routes are shown diagrammatically, with all stops, crossovers, adjacent railway stations, all depot track layouts, even including distances in metres between the stops.

Other information includes stock lists, fares, timetables, list of firms which supplied trams to Japan

For anyone visiting Japan to look  at the tramways there, this book is an essential tool. 

Even for the non visitor but tram fan, it would still be of considerable interest.

Text in Japanese, but there is a good English language key explaining all of the symbols used on the track diagrams and other  parts of the book.

Four pages at the front each has eight colour shots of various Japanese trams, there are other b&w shots at the beginning of each organisations section, and colour shots on the front and back covers.

The cover title is 'Japan's Tramways', 2018', in Kanji and Katakana.

Also a sub-title in Roman:' Tramways of Japan STADTBAHN 19  Twelfth Edition 2018'.

Strangely, cannot find an ISBN. Published by 'The Japan Tramway Society', Editor: Takeshi Nashimoro.

Now to the important thing, what is the cost of this book?

Cover price, Y1,500. therefore 2 books = Y.3,000

I bought two from my usual mail order  house, Hobby Search.

Shipping cost SAL, Y3,850, two books to Australia., total Y6,850

 Therefore, $A 41.05 per book.

Sounds high, but I reckon well worth it.

Looking at the Japan Tramways Soc.web site, it appears that this book could be bought from them, but the process to do so looked very complicated to me.

One would suspect that this book should be available at a big book shop such as Shosen Grande in Tokyo.









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