London Underground D78 Stock
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (November 2012)|
|In service||1980-present (due to be replaced in 2015)|
|Length per car||DM 18.37 m
UNDM/T 18.12 m
|Weight||DM 27.46 tonnes
UNDM 26.11 tonnes
T 18.40 tonnes
|London Transport portal|
The London Underground D78 Stock electric multiple units are used on the London Underground District Line (except the Wimbledon-Edgware Road service). It is due to be replaced by S Stock by 2015, but as this process has yet to start, no D Stock has been withdrawn.
The stock was ordered in 1976 to replace the pre-war CO/CP Stock and post-war R Stock on the District Line. 75 trains were built by Metro-Cammell, the first entering service on 28 January 1980 with final deliveries in 1983.
The stock consists of six-car trains, as opposed to the seven-car trains of CO/CP and R Stock, whose cars were shorter. The traction motors are the same LT118 type as on 1973 Tube Stock, but the bogies are different. With single-leaf doors and transverse and longitude seating, the style is very similar to 1983 stock on the Jubilee line.
The stock brought many innovations. The rubber coil suspension meant a smoother ride for passengers. The driver's cab is more ergonomic, the seat swiveling to move forwards, backwards, up or down. The dead man's handle is replaced by a joystick that needs to be twisted for the dead man feature, and moved fore and aft for motoring and braking. There is a Train Management System replacing the original Train Equipment Panel that highlights faults to the driver.
The most noticeable difference between the stock and earlier trains is that the doors are single leaf. Originally, passengers pressed door-control buttons to open them. Posters explaining how to operate the doors were put up around Tube stations in English, French and German when the stock was introduced. The stock had a "POGO" switch (Passenger open/Guard's open) that could switch control of the doors from passengers to the guard (when the stock was introduced, the guard controlled the doors from the rear cab). While this function proved useful at above-ground stations and termini (especially in winter), station dwell time was significantly increased, and passengers had trouble getting used to the new system, not knowing how to open the door. By the late 1990s, the control of the doors went to the driver, but the buttons remained until they were removed on refurbishment between 2004 and 2008.
At over 18 metres, the cars are the longest on the Underground.
The windows had to be modified because of overheating when new, with pull-down opening windows installed in each car.
Usage and withdrawal
The stock is used on the District Line, except the Wimbledon-Edgware Road service, provided by C Stock: platforms north of High Street Kensington, at Notting Hill Gate, Bayswater, Paddington and Edgware Road, are not long enough for the stock.
Between April 1985 and May 1987 the stock ran the East London Line service in three-car formations, there being enough stock spare because of reduced services on the District line. This allowed A stock to be sent for One Person Operation (OPO) conversion. A stock took over the service again in 1987.
The stock is scheduled for replacement by S Stock in 2015. The District line will be the last line to receive S Stock, largely due to the recent refurbishment and newness of D Stock. Because the stock has been extensively refurbished there may be scope to sell it abroad.
In July 2011, Harrogate Chamber of Commerce proposed to use the stock on the Harrogate Line from York to Leeds via Harrogate to increase capacity. Stations in the Harrogate and Leeds urban areas are close together; the superior acceleration of the stock over the Class 150 diesel multiple units currently used is intended to cut journey times. The line would be electrified with third rail similar to the Docklands Light Railway, as opposed to the Underground or the Southern electric network.
On 24 July 2012, unit 7007 was designated as the Olympic 2012 Train with Chief Operating Officer Howard Collins carrying the Olympic torch from Wimbledon to Wimbledon Park. This is the only London Underground train to be an Olympic Torch train.
The mid-life refurbishment was the first to be carried out under the PPP, by Metronet, and was delayed until contract negotiations were completed. A prototype unit of three cars was prepared by London Underground's Train Modification Unit (TMU) at Acton Depot in 2001. This had some detail differences from the eventual refurbishment, and has now been brought up to the standard of the rest of the stock. The refurbishment programme began in summer 2005 with the first two units coming into service that June. The refurbishment consisted of:
- applying LU livery anti-vandal paint and window film
- restyling the interiors in green and white
- replacing maple flooring with rubber
- adding end-of-car windows
- replacing hanging straps (bobbles on springs) with grab bars
- covering the door buttons
- adding dot matrix indicators showing the station and destination on the inside and exterior front and sides
- adding an audio passenger information system guided by GPS and odometer, voiced by Emma Clarke: announcements for each station name include connecting lines, and provide warnings to "mind the gap between the train and the platform"
- adding a flip seat/disabled multi purpose area
- fitting air conditioning to driver's cab
- adding CCTV
It is the first Underground stock to have electronic side-of-carriage information displays: some pre-war trains had slot-in or reversible destination or non-stopping plates.
On 15 February 2008, the final unpainted train was taken out of service to be refurbished. Units 7534 west to 7115 east were the last unpainted train on the Underground. Its run could have been extended into the weekend, but due to planned weekend engineering works on the District line it was taken out of service at close of operations on the Friday. It left Ealing for its refurbishment on 28 February 2008. It ran on the line that introduced unpainted trains in 1952.
- "Transforming the Tube" (PDF). Transport for London. July 2008. Retrieved 28 May 2009.
- "HARROGATE LINE NEWS 1 1st Meeting supports bid" (PDF). Harrogate Chamber of Commerce. August 12, 2011. Retrieved 26 August 2011.
- "Olympic torch: Flame rides on London Underground train". BBC News Online. 24 July 2012. Retrieved 24 August 2012.
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