Author Topic: Tandems on Trains  (Read 55763 times)

bhoot

  • MemSec (ex-Mrs RRtY)
Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #100 on: 22 October, 2020, 04:07:35 pm »
Looking distinctly more tandem friendly on the West Highland Line.... just leaving the problem of getting to Glasgow!
New active travel carriages

Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #101 on: 22 October, 2020, 05:09:59 pm »
The Leeds to Newcastle photo demonstrates two things: It's not only GWR who have messed up the bike cupboards, and (presuming this was recent) some trains are still busy – or else some people are taking a huge amount of luggage.

The train was actually very quiet, all that luggage belongs to one very large family.  They were a decent bunch though.

Demonstrating the issue of a cupboard that’s says luggage or bike but no way of saying it’s reserved for bikes. 

Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #102 on: 22 October, 2020, 05:11:10 pm »
Looking distinctly more tandem friendly on the West Highland Line.... just leaving the problem of getting to Glasgow!
New active travel carriages

Oh that does look a lot easier, just roll bike in and secure.

bhoot

  • MemSec (ex-Mrs RRtY)
Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #103 on: 21 June, 2023, 10:25:17 am »
Just noticed this on the Scotrail website (they do seem unusually well informed about the topic!):

Tandems and larger cycles including cargo cycles

Due to the size of tandems and cargo cycles these can only be carried on a limited number of our services on routes where we can guarantee which type of train will operate on all services. ScotRail operates ten different types of train across the network in Scotland and our safety assessments only allow tandems and larger cycles to be carried on three of our types of train.

Please plan your journey before wishing to board any of our trains with a tandem or larger cycle, like a cargo cycle. Our guide to travelling with a bike on trains will let you know if you able to join our services and check that your cycle is within the permissible maximum length shown.

Please note that for safety reasons split tandems or 3 wheel cargo cycles or trailers cannot be carried on any ScotRail service.


That is the first time I have seen a ban on split tandems - and we always assumed it was our insurance policy for train issues "we will split it then" (although we never have and our tandem is well travelled by train)

Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #104 on: 21 June, 2023, 03:47:44 pm »
We had a frame with S and S couplings built last year (at great expense) to allow us to take our tandem on trains. It has been a game changer for us, allowing us to take it in particular on LNER Azuma trains with their "bike cupboards", but also on other trains with similar bike storage. We have also always split it when taking it on other trains with cupboards. What on earth is the logic behind Scotrail's policy?

bhoot

  • MemSec (ex-Mrs RRtY)
Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #105 on: 21 June, 2023, 06:15:25 pm »
I was a bit puzzled too, we have s&s for the same reason, although never had to deploy them yet. I assume it must be something like having sharp ends which people could impale themselves on, or instability of halves so more likely to fall over. Generally though they have a super detailed website and some trains take them.

Kim

  • Timelord
    • Fediverse
Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #106 on: 21 June, 2023, 06:26:53 pm »
My bet is they reckon (correctly, tbh) that dismantling a bike makes it awkward and therefore slow to load, which might delay their train and get them fined.

In a sane world, this concern would be addressed by not having dangly bike spaces in the first place.

Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #107 on: 22 June, 2023, 11:32:30 am »
I'm hoping to get some more information about the Scotrail position on separable tandems soon in my Tandem Club Rail Liasion rôle.  Scotrail have been communicative about cycle carriage over the last couple of years so I expect they will be clear about why they see a problem with separable tandems.

We have found we can load faster with our separable tandems than with an all-in-one, provided of course that the cycle space is not stuffed full of luggage.

We do (nearly) always cover the S & S couplers when we carry our Thorn Adventure by car or train. Milk bottle tops and an old oil can thread-on plastic cover work for the coupler halves without the collars but I have yet to find anything fully satisfactory for the other halves. A bit of effort to get the external thread is all that is needed.

I will update here and on the Tandem Club rail page if there is any progress with Scotrail.

Overall Scotrail has moved a long way in the right direction with the full information they give about rolling stock and services which can accept longer bikes. I'm not sure all station staff are fully onboard with the new policy yet.

Martyn

Kim

  • Timelord
    • Fediverse
Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #108 on: 22 June, 2023, 12:59:04 pm »
IME most railway staff live in a fantasy world where heavy wheeled objects become easier to load onto a train when folded rather than wheeled, which is why the attitude to dismantleable tandems seems strange.

Of course, in reality it rather depends on where and when you do the dismantling, how much other luggage you're also trying to carry, and whether you're going to have to carry it the length of a crowded platform after the train arrives because you don't know which end the bike space will be at.

It may be that they don't want you blocking the vestibule while you get the spanners out...

Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #109 on: 22 June, 2023, 05:18:45 pm »
Yes it's no good dithering about how you are goint to load and hoping to do it on the fly as the train rolls in. We find our 2/3 + 1/3 coupled bike is quite fast to split as there is no messing about with carefully storing the synch chain. Leaving rear panniers on the rear section until at the train door is OK provided they release easily as I can wheel the bike on its back wheel holding the stoker bars. Starting five minutes before the train arrives is plenty. With four panniers and full camping load it does require a bit of strength and planning. Our front chainwheel has a chain guard which helps as it hits the ground first if I lower the front of the rear section to the platform.

Scotrail have come back to me and I'm following up on their initial reply.


Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #110 on: 27 June, 2023, 06:47:34 am »
I'm hoping to get some more information about the Scotrail position on separable tandems soon in my Tandem Club Rail Liasion rôle.  Scotrail have been communicative about cycle carriage over the last couple of years so I expect they will be clear about why they see a problem with separable tandems.

We have found we can load faster with our separable tandems than with an all-in-one, provided of course that the cycle space is not stuffed full of luggage.

We do (nearly) always cover the S & S couplers when we carry our Thorn Adventure by car or train. Milk bottle tops and an old oil can thread-on plastic cover work for the coupler halves without the collars but I have yet to find anything fully satisfactory for the other halves. A bit of effort to get the external thread is all that is needed.

Martyn

Totally agree with you. We can load our two halves just as fast as two solo bikes. Re covering the coupling we use a pair of old socks. My drawer is full of ones which have lost their other half!

Cudzoziemiec

  • Ride adventurously and stop for a brew.
Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #111 on: 27 June, 2023, 11:08:35 am »
Widow socks!
Riding a concrete path through the nebulous and chaotic future.

Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #112 on: 21 November, 2023, 10:02:26 pm »
Scotrail are taking a new look at carriage of separable tandems and I have posted an appeal for help with a loading trial as a new subject. The day is 1st of December and place is central Glasgow. Specifically we need a small wheeler like a Bike Friday or a Circe Helios with separable system, we have the more usual big frame and S&S couplers covered for this trial.

Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #113 on: 29 April, 2024, 08:29:28 pm »
Separable tandems are now welcome on all ScotRail services. The new policy has been in place since the start of April when the ScotRail webiste was updated. Staff have been briefed on the change but not a bad ideal to take a printed copy of the new policy or have it linked on your phone.

We took an S & S coupled Thorn to Glascow in December for the first day of loading trials and the Tandem Club's RO for Southern Scotland took his coupled bike to two days of trials in February. In both cases Sustrans Scotland were on board helping with the trials.

Follow link below, then Bikes on Trains > What types of cycle can be carried > Separable/split tandems
https://www.scotrail.co.uk/guide-travelling-bike-train

LittleWheelsandBig

  • Whimsy Rider
Re: Tandems on Trains
« Reply #114 on: 29 April, 2024, 08:55:14 pm »
Well done.
Wheel meet again, don't know where, don't know when...