Sunday 29 January 2023

Sunday Variety

Un Nom AppropriƩ Pour Un Nouveau Service

The French Government really doesn't like the idea of new and competitive operators running on the national network. Likewise S N C F is very dischuffed by the idea, but then S N C F IS the French Government! But La France is an enthusiastic member of the EU (well, enthusiastic when it suits them!) so "Open Access" must happen.

The rather garish yellow and white train (only a "suggested" styling at the moment - computer generated) is for a company called, with stunning originality, "Le Train". The name is unimportant, so fbb will leave his keener readers to struggle with the translation!
The plan is to grow to run 50 services daily thought France.


If you geographical knowledge of France is as bad as fbb's you will need a map.
There is Bordeaux at the bottom and Rennes, on the main line between Paris and Brest, at the top. 

No sign of Arcachon at this scale. It is actually west of Bordeaux.
Arcachon is a commune in the southwestern French department of Gironde. It is a popular seaside resort on the Atlantic coast 34 miles west of Bordeaux, in the Landes forest. It has a sandy beach and a mild climate said to be favourable for invalids suffering from pulmonary complaints. Arcachon is twinned with five cities.

fbb had no idea either and, presumably, neither did the writer of the Le Train piece as he put it in the wrong order!

Looks a nice place, though.
It seems particularly good if you like sand ...
... and intriguing properties on stilts (Les Cabanes).
As yet, Le Train is not advertising itself with a web site - so these are early days.

Is expensive Talgo Train technology a commercial proposition on routes that do noy serve the capital? Although the georgraphy is different, it would be like running HS2 stock between Bristol and Newcastle.

Time will tell.

Flixbus Forges Forward ...
McGills is on the expansion trail yet again.
Here a Flixbus liveried coach outside one of McGills depots.
And here one with a subtle Scottish hint!
The blue and the green together don't seem to work visually 

Currently Flixbus only serves six destinations north of Hadrian's Wall, those shown here ...
... plus Aberdeen, just off the map top right.

McGill's expansion seems spectacular. Let's hope they've done their sums correctly.

Noy quite, Pinterest!

Isn't Technology Wonderful - Puzzle Picture
"It looks like a tin opener," suggested Northampton Alan. 

It is actually one of these:-
It is a wire stripper, of course! When a youthful fbb was previously wiring his model railway, stripping wire was achieved using human teeth. A similar device was used for domestic wiring jobs and very effective it was, too. But alas, 70 year old teeth are not ideal for such tough work. So fbb bought a wire stripper.

It is an amazing bit of kit,
It has a blade for cutting wire and wiggly bits for crimping.  Do you crimp, missus?

You crimp spade connectors ...
... and ring connectors ...
... to the stripped ends of your wire.

But it is the stripping that is so sensuous.

You poke the end of your wire at right angles to what might appear to be its jaws.
You squeeze the handles and, piff paff pouff, the insulation is stripped revealing the three wires within, the brown, the blue plus the yellow and green.
But the jaws do not even graze the internal wires. 

But then you need to strip the inner three to fit them to your 13 amp plug, ot, in fbb's case to a Peco point motor.

3 amp wire for a 12 volt solenoid? Don't ask?

So now you poke the thin wires into the chomper, one by one, as below with the blue ...

... and, lo and behold it strips that effortlessly - with a squeeze of the red handles.
Now the baffling technology question is this. How does this mechanical contrivance know how deep to cut. fbb makes no adjustments, just poke'n'strip.

Technically beautiful. And not a computer in sight.

It is slick and quick - the answer to an old railway modeller's dream.

Even if fbb didn't need such a device, he ought to have bought one, just to gaze on its mechanical magnificence.

Surely Stagecoach gave up on rail?
It certainly has a touch of the South West Trains about it.
The one car unit was photographed in India and fbb forgot to note where.
It is certainly not up to the standard of the Bearded Bus Beautifier from the Bush and not really good enough to be creating desire!

Here is real desire creativity ...
... on a GoAhead Salisbury Red at Wilton House. The duck does not seem to have had its desire created!

A demonstration from America showing why we need LESS cars ...
... rather than electric cars to save the planet.

 Next Isle of Wight blog : Monday 30th January