Special Sub-Topic: The Japanese Bullet Train
|What date was the Sanyo line fully completed?
1975. The line operates between Shin-Osaka and Hakata with the fastest trip taking just over two hours. Pretty impressive, as it is over 620 kilometers (380 miles)! Work commenced in 1967, and the line to Okayama was completed in 1972. The Tokaido Shinkansen (Tokyo to Shin-Osaka Bullet train service) was opened in 1964, and was the first bullet train.
|When did work start on the Yamagata line?
1987. This line runs from Tokyo to Shinjo, a distance of just over 421 kilometres. The line to Yagamata was opened in 1992, with the extension to Shinjo being completed in 1999.
|Which of these is a correct length that a 200 series Yamabiko formation has run?
13 cars. When the double deck cars were introduced in 1990-91, some 12 car sets had only one car added initially, and ran as 13 car sets until the other double deck car was ready, and then the configuration went to 16 cars.
|What was the first name used to designate the new 300 series trains?
Super Hikari. During pre-production, the name 'Super Hikari' was used until the eventual name 'Nozomi' was decided on. The 'Hayate' is the name for the newer E2-1000 sets running on the Tohoku line extension to Hachinohe.
|What type of speedometer does a 0 series Shinkansen (Bullet train) have?|
Horizontal bar graph. Many other sets eg 100, 300 use the angled/horizontal type. The other two types are not used on Shinkansen.
|What is the minimum radius of the curves on the main line of the Sanyo Shinkansen?
3500m. When the Sanyo line was planned, the 2500m minimum radius of the Tokaido line was increased to 4000m, however there are sections of 3500m track before and after Shin-Kobe station.
|Which series was the first to use AC rather than DC motors?
300. The changeover was done because AC (alternating current) motors are smaller, lighter and more powerful that DC (Direct Current) power plants. This took place in 1989, and all bullet trains since then operate on AC.
|When the 400 series created the national speed record of the time, which line was it running on?|
Joetsu. This speed record was set in 1991, and was an awesome 345 kph! The record has since been raised to 443kph for a 'normal' bullet train, and over 581kph for the Maglev (Magnetic Levitation) train.
|Which series was the first to introduce a "Ladies Only" toilet?|
E1. Before 1994, Japanese women had to have good forward planning, or excellent bladder control skills. Just joking, folks, toilets were unisex before the E1 trains.
|The 6 car 300X test train's cars were built by how many different manufacturers?|
4. Car 1 was made by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, cars 2/4 by Nippon Sharyo, car 3 by Kawasaki Heavy Industries & cars 5/6 by Hitachi. These combinations were used for testing purposes only, and all have been retired from service.
If you are interested in Japanese model railways, have a look at Doug's website- http://japanese-trains.com/
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