Japan, Trip to Tokyo by Shinkansen

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Modellbahner, Sep 6, 2005.

  1. Modellbahner

    Modellbahner New Member

    Hi Guys,

    last weekend I got the chance to visit Tokyo and since all flights from the little city where I´m working at the moment where booked I got first class tickets for a train ride from Fukui to Tokyo (ca. 400Km) by train. A colleague and I started in Fukui with an Express Train to Maibara where the line is crossing the Tokaido Sanyo Shinkansen tracks.
    The first pictures are made at the train station in Fukui, which is at the moment under construction but it is a very busy place, mostlikely commuter trains and many locals. Every 20 minutes a freight train is passing, nearly all cars are loaded with container which are very short (20Foot or less). I think they are made for truck transportation later on.
    The last picture shows our Express.

    Attached Files:

  2. Modellbahner

    Modellbahner New Member

    Since we had only 8 minutes for changing the tracks to the Shinkansen and we could not read or speak any japanese I had no chance to take pictures at Maibara. The ride in the Super Express Shinkansen was very smooth and fast. It took only 2 hours for the last 350Km from Maibara to Tokyo inclusive five stops.

    Attached Files:

  3. Modellbahner

    Modellbahner New Member

    Tokoy train station is the biggst underground shopping mall I have ever seen. You can get everthing but the price is very high. Especially the price for model trains is so high the I only bought two train sets, one of a commuter local and one of an Express. The Shinkansen models are very expensive and to big for my display case :) Steam engine like the C51 starts at 250$ but these model are very fine detailed, porbably the next;-)

    The design of the shinkansen series is very versatile. For more information:

    http://www.h2.dion.ne.jp/~dajf/byunbyun/ or similar.

    Attached Files:

  4. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

    Wonderful pictures! Thanks for the tour! Those white trains look super sleek and built for speed. Your last shot with the three trains at the station almost looks like a publicity shot by the Japanese railroad! Very nice!
  5. N Gauger

    N Gauger 1:20.3 Train Addict

    Great pics!!! Thanks for the tour :D :D :D
  6. Modellbahner

    Modellbahner New Member

    It was realy a nice trip and espacially in regard to the timetable. Our train was going at 7:26 p.m. in Tokyo back to Fukui and we had plenty of time to get some pictures. Every 10 Minutes a new train arrived at our platform. In general the trains have a 3 minute gap between two train at the Tokaido Line, this means every 3 minutes a new train was arriving. Some where terminating at Tokyo, some are running to the north area of Japan. The 3 trains at the last picture where running north. They where not using the stub end area of the train station.

    If a train was arriving the cleaning personal was waiting already, but never longer that two or three minutes. If a train was not longer used at our platform it was running back to the service facility outside the station. The cleaning of a train was very fast inclusive turning all seat rows in the other direction because you are riding everytime forward :)
    Under the platforms where acces tunnels so that the technical inspection could be done at the platform.

    Very interesting was also to see the restrooms at the trains. There were two kinds, japaneese and western style but don´t ask me how to use the japaneese style in a rinding train. I think it is already difficulty enough to use it in the japaneese company;-) Should I post some pictures of that:D ?

  7. Ralph

    Ralph Remember...it's for fun!

    "Should I post some pictures of that ?"

    Actually, yes! You have me curious!
  8. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

    Thank you Axel, for showing us some pictures from the Japanese Railroads. One of the 'heads' of these hi-speed trains really looks futuristic - very much like a rattlesnake! :eek: (I hope that it doesn't rattle, though! :D :D :D )

    (When we see a JR picture in the press, it is ALWAYS a Shinkansen hi-speed train, mostly on an elevated track - and the mount Fujijama in beckground. I'm glad you showed us some other perpectives - and yes, keep them photos coming! :thumb: )

    BTW: Perhaps a silly question, but: It seems to me, that the gauge of the Japanese track is narrower than standard gauge. Is JR running on narrow gauge, perhaps 3-1/2 ft.?

  9. Dave Flinn

    Dave Flinn Member

    I was in Japan a couple of years ago and rode several of the trains. Also spent a little time just watching and taking pictures. Good question about the gauge. I don't know what it is and will be curious to find out, if anyone knows.
  10. baldwinjl

    baldwinjl Member

    I could be wrong, but I believe the Shinkansen runs on standard gauge, every thing else I think is 1 meter.

  11. sidneylopsides

    sidneylopsides New Member

    There is a Shikansen front car at the National Railway Museum at York, as far as I remember it is sat on a normal piece of track.
    I've just been checking and the "0" at York was transported part way on UK rails, the wheels had been machined to match UK profile, but otherwise standard.

    I think I like the 300 and 500 series the best :)
  12. babydot94513

    babydot94513 Member in training

    Excellent railfan report.

  13. Modellbahner

    Modellbahner New Member

    Hi Guys,

    the shinkansen is riding on standard gauge. All other traffic is riding on (I only know that name) Cape Gauge. I think it is something around 1 meter. The difference is caused by the mountainous layout of Japan lines. If you travell outside the shinkansen lines the track is made with narrow curves and sometimes steep grades.

    In regard to the restrooms attached two pictures. One shows the western style and the second the japaneese style. It is difficulty enough not to fall in the hole in a restaurant but how are they doing it in a rocking and moving train?:confused:


    Attached Files:

  14. RailRon

    RailRon Active Member

    That's where the agility and dexterity of somebody who has an intense Judo training really pays off! :D :D :D

    Thanks Axel! I didn't know that they had different gauges - but at least for the Shinkasen is seems logical that you really need a broader than Cape gauge.

    And yes, Cape gauge ist 3'-6" gauge, which translates to 1067.5 mm. The name relates to South Africa (Capetown...) - it is the 'standard' gauge of the SAR.

  15. siledka

    siledka New Member

    It is narrower. Fancy thing - we Russians kept the old Japanese gauge in Sakhalin - never brought it to the country-wide standart. So it is considerer a narrow-gauge railway in this country - but once again - the width is different from the standart narrow-gauge lines. Were building special locs for Sakhalin all these 60 years!
  16. PRRman

    PRRman Dum-Dum Pop Addict

    Hey, Axel, is it? Did you happen to get any good pics of the 500 series?
  17. bill937ca

    bill937ca Member

    You correct Shinkansen is standard, but otherwise JR is 3ft6in gauge.
  18. Triplex

    Triplex Active Member

    Call it what you will - I think more people would agree with me when I say it looks like a duck! Streamlining isn't always intuitive.

    As a railfan more interested in freight, I can't say I'd find Japan especially interesting to tour. I certainly respect them for having electric passenger trains that are fast, frequent, on time, and well-maintained. They have a right to be proud of their system, and supposedly, they're the most dedicated railfans and modellers on the planet.
  19. bill937ca

    bill937ca Member

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