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Dining Train Electrical Power Supplies

Discussion in 'Heritage Rolling Stock' started by brennan, Aug 27, 2017.

  1. brennan

    brennan New Member

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    Any thoughts on the provision of a suitable power supply? I'm well aware of the relevant regulations and guidance for the installation but wondered what people's experience is with the alternative of fitting a silenced generator under one or more of the coaches versus the provision of a dedicated generator coach or compartment.
     
  2. Wenlock

    Wenlock Well-Known Member Friend

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    Or heavy duty batteries plus inverter. Charged while train stabled for cleaning/laying up/storage between trains.
     
  3. weltrol

    weltrol Part of the furniture Friend

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    Depends what you need power for.
    There are a number of 24v fridges and freezers on the market, of adequate size for on train use, which can run off the coach batteries, the Festiniog Railway used to use 24v freezers back in the 1980s!. A 3kw inverter would be adequate for most microwave needs, again powered off the coach batteries. If the coach batteries were doubled up from the usual 240a/hour, to 480a/hour, and often RBs etc had two sets of batteries, then at the traditional low speeds of heritage railways and the average 'dining turn' of three hours, these could easily provide for several hours use. Decent charging facilities would be needed though to ensure the batteries were kept at a decent charge. Gas cookers to run on LPG are also readily available in 'ranges', if I remember rightly, the only item not available is a 'Still's type' water boiler. (Electric catering in 'modern' trains is taken off the 'hotel' supply of the ETH, which is a totally different ball game, as the ETH is live from the start of the duty, and shore supplies keep everything ticking over.... ).
    Lighting is also a problem area. Several railways have replaced the traditional tungsten lamps with new-fangled LED replacements, these take a smaller current off the batteries, yet give similar lighting characteristics.
     
  4. 61624

    61624 Part of the furniture

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    Both the "Royal Scotsman" and "Queen of Scots" trains were fitted with silent-running generators on their underframes and I believe these worked very well - they were approved for mainline running, and it was barely possible to tell they were running if standing beside them. I think the SVR also fitted a similar generator to their Gresley buffet car.
     
  5. thegrimeater

    thegrimeater Member

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    The NNR's RBR and Kitchen car have generators fitted. Both of these go mainline (albeit only to Cromer) The 2 other dining coaches are on charge when not in use and I would assume just run on battery power for the few hours of a turn that require lights. @M59137 will know more.
     
  6. M59137

    M59137 Well-Known Member

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    That is all correct. There are fridges etc in the kitchen car which are fed either from a mains shore supply (when the set is out of service) or the underfloor generator (when in service).

    The Gresley Buffet car is also generator fitted.

    Sent from my HTC Desire 620 using Tapatalk
     
  7. Andre

    Andre New Member

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    Here at the K&ESR we use combination inverter/chargers which effectively create a UPS using the standard coach batteries. Perfectly sufficient for most electrical needs and the charger element is excellent at caring for the battery cells - very little maintenance required.
    Our RMB has commercial refrigeration, an ice cream freezer and microwave. It will run all these quite happily all day & into the night. All of the Wealden Pullman dining train carriages also have them & we power bottle coolers, commercial fridges, vacuum cleaners etc etc. All carriages now have LED lamps which are all but indistinguishable from incandescent lamps and reduce the load dramatically.
    The best bit is that the inverters are completely silent in operation - important on a premium dining service.
     
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