Chūō West Line | Nakatsugawa - Nagoya

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by Commiee, Apr 29, 2021.

  1. Commiee

    Commiee Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]
    A Rapid Service 313 series EMU and a Shinano Limited Express train at Tajimi Station (photo by Hironoyama)

    I've decided to replace my first suggestion - the Shōnan Limited Express - with this route. My second proposal, for Shinonoi Line, has a more varied scenery than the Shōnan service, so the latter did not look as interesting any more in my view.

    We already have two suggestion threads for Chūō Lines, with one being the Chūō Rapid and the other the Chūō East. I like both of those and upvoted them as I came across the proposals. Then one day, in my YouTube subscriptions, a cab video for a journey between Kōzōji and Nagoya (part of this Nakatsugawa - Nagoya route) appeared, and in it, I saw everything I love about suburban Japanese routes - narrowly packed lines running very close to residential homes, city skylines, lots of curves and more. So I decided to complement the two Chūō suggestions by fellow enthusiasts of Japanese rail with this one.

    The route

    This 80 km (50 mile) section is a part of the JR Central-operated Chūō West Line, which joins the Chūō East Line to ultimately form the Chūō Main Line - a 424 km (264 mi)-long major link connecting Tokyo with Nagoya to the west. The Nakatsugawa - Nagoya section is the westernmost part of the entire line and serves the Greater Nagoya Area.

    Chūō Main first opened in 1889 and expanded towards the western and eastern directions subsequently. The line reached Shiojiri in 1906 - the year it was nationalised - and Tokyo two years later. On the Nakatsugawa - Nagoya section, the Nagoya Station was the first to open in July 1900, followed by Tajimi in December 1902 and Nakatsugawa in August 1908. Electrification from the Nagano end of the line began in 1966 and was completed by 1973.

    The route features the typical Japanese 1,067 mm (3ft 6in) narrow gauge tracks, 1,500 Volt DC overhead electrification, and a maximum operating speed of 130 km/h (80 mph). There are 20 stations where trains stop at or go via. The starting point, Nakatsugawa, is in Gifu Prefecture, while the Nagoya Station is located in Aichi Prefecture. The section is covered by local trains in about one hour and 20 minutes, and by limited express services in about 48 minutes.

    Notable locations along the route include:
    • The town of Nakatsugawa, which lies on the Edo Period Nakasendo hiking route between Kyōto and Edo (Tokyo) through a mountainous landscape
    • The Hachiōji Shintō shrine, located in the town of Mizunami
    • Kokeizan Eihoji, a historic Zen temple in the town of Tajimi
    • Jokoji temple, the site of the mausoleum of Tokugawa Yoshinao - a 17th century warlord - in the town of Jokoji

    Cab view of a journey between Kōzōji and Nagoya on 313 series EMU. The entire journey between Nagoya and Nakatsugawa can be seen in another cab view video here

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    From left: stations on the route - dots mark stations where all trains stop, lines mark stations trains go via (via Wikipedia); the route highlighted (via rome2rio.com)

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    From left: platform of Jōkōji Station (photo by KKPCW/CC BY-SA 4.0); a pedestrian bridge on the platform of Kokokei Station (photo by KKPCW/CC BY-SA 4.0); view of Kasugai Station (photo by Nryate/CC BY-SA 4.0); platform of Tsurumai Station (photo by 経済特区/CC BY-SA 4.0); platform of Chikusa Station (photo by 円周率3パーセント); panoramic view of Nagoya Station platform (photo by z tanuki/CC BY 3.0)

    The rolling stock

    The current JR Central local service rolling stock on Chūō West includes the 211 series, 213 series, 311 series and 313 series EMUs. The route is also navigated by the 383 series Shinano Limited Express EMU. I will expand slightly on 313 and 211 series, as they are represented in far greater numbers than the other two above-mentioned current local service EMUs.

    Freight locomotives on the line include the EF64 and EH200 - the former being a mainstay of Japanese freight operations for decades, and the latter being a newer locomotive. Operated by JR Freight, they are used on directions including Seba-Shiojiri, Sakamoto-Nakatsugawa and Yabuhara-Narai.

    Commuter rolling stock


    A look at a 313 series EMU at the Jinryō Station, including elements of the interior

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    From left: cab controls of the 313 series (photo by Cassiopeia sweet/Public Domain); seating arrangement in a 313 series (photo by Lalapon+Lalapon/CC BY-SA 3.0); alternate seating arrangement in a 313 train (photo by Lalapon+Lalapon/CC BY-SA 3.0)

    First introduced in 1999, the 313 series was built by Kinki Sharyo, Nippon Sharyō and Tokyu Car Corporation until 2014 and again in 2019, with 541 units constructed. In recent years, more than 500 were still in service, used in services of central Japan regions. These EMUs replaced the 113 and 115 series trains on their introduction, and were intended as modular units to be used on both local and Rapid services. They are formed in sets of two, three, four and six cars. Made of stainless steel, 313s operate with dynamic, regenerative and pneumatic braking systems and feature ATS-ST and ATS-PT onboard safety systems. Versions of the EMU are capable of reaching a maximum speed of 130 km/h (80 mph) or 120 km/h (75 mph).

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    From left: a 211 series EMU (photo by LERK/CC BY 3.0); cab controls in a 211 series train (photo by 300VVVF/Public Domain)

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    From left: seating arrangement in a 211 series (photo by MaedaAkihiko/CC BY-SA 4.0); an alternate arrangement in the train (photo by 300VVVF/Public Domain)

    Constructed between 1985-1991, the 211 series was built by Hitachi, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Kinki Sharyo, Nippon Sharyō and Tokyu Car Corporation. Over 1,910 were built, with over 800 still in service over the recent years. The sets still in operation are used by JR East and JR Central, with JR West having retired its only 211 series in 2010. Featuring stainless-steel construction, these EMUs can reach speeds of 110 km/h (68 mph) or 120 km/h (75 mph). With power output of 120 kW, the train also operates regenerative braking systems.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
    From left: a 213 series EMU (photo by Toshinori baba/CC BY-SA 3.0); a 311 series EMU (photo by Tennen Gas/CC BY-SA 3.0)

    Built by Hitachi, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Kinki Sharyo, Nippon Sharyo and Tokyu Car Corporation, the 213 series were constructed between 1987-1991 to replace the 199 series. A total of 65 were produced, with over 50 still in service in the recent years. Made from stainless steel, the different sub-variants of the train feature ATS-SW, ATS-ST or ATS-P safety systems and are able to reach a top speed of 110 km/h (70 mph) or 130 km/h (80 mph).

    The 311 series were built between 1989-1991 by Hitachi, Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Kinki Sharyo to replace the 113 and 115 series EMUs. Of the 60 constructed, all were still in service in recent years. Operated in four-car sets, they serve the Tōkaidō Main Line and Taketoyo Line under JR Central operation. These stainless steel construction trains are equipped with ATS-ST and ATS-PT safety systems, regenerative brake technology, and can reach a maximum speed of 120 km/h (75 mph).

    Limited express rolling stock

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    From left: a view of the 383 on a scenic location (photo by Saigen Jiro/CC0); a 383 seen between the Ochiaigawa Station and Nakatsugawa Station (photo by Tennen-Gas/CC BY-SA 3.0)

    Used on Shinano Limited Express and Home Liner services, the 383 series EMU is built since 1994 by Hitachi, Kawasaki Heavy Industries and Nippon Sharyo. Over 75 were produced between then and recent years and are operated out of the Jinryō Depot. The train was awarded the 1996 Laurel Prize. Using the GTO traction system and ATS-ST safety system, the EMU has dynamic, regenerative, pneumatic and snow-resistant brake technology and can reach 130 km/h (81 mph).

    Freight locomotives


    A JR Freight EH200 hauling containers on the Tachikawa - Hachioji section of the Chūō Main Line in November 2020


    Cab view of EH200

    The EH200 is a design built since 2001 by Toshiba to replace the EF64, with dozens in service in the recent years. Based out of Takasaki depot, they are seen hauling consists on a number of lines, including the Chūō. The twin-unit locomotive features the Bo′Bo′+Bo′Bo′ wheel arrangement, IGBT traction system and ATS-SF safety system. The power output of 4,520 kW (6,060 hp) allows it to reach a top speed of 110 km/h (70 mph).


    A JR Freight EF64 locomotive as seen on Chūō West Line route from Narai through Kisohirasawa

    The EF64 locomotive was built between 1964-1976 and 1980-1982 for JNR by Kawasaki and Toshiba, with a total of 132 units of the six-axle, 96-ton locomotive produced to replace the EF16 model. By 2016, around 45 of these vehicles were still in service. Chūō Main was the second line to receive the vehicle, starting with the EF64 13. JR Freight operates them from Shiojiri and Aichi depots of the Chūō Line. Starting in 1996, the locomotives underwent refurbishment, with EF64 67 becoming the first to go through the process. The EF64 features the Bo-Bo-Bo wheel arrangement, a power output of 2.55 MW (3,420 hp) and is able to reach a top speed of 100 km/h (62 mph). A few EF64s have been preserved, with one found on Chūō Main Line in the city of Kōshū and another in Tottori Prefecture.

    Sources:
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Chūō_Main_Line
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Nakatsugawa_Station
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Hachiōji_Station
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Tajimi_Station
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Jōkōji_Station
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Kokokei_Station
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Kasugai_Station_(JR_Central)
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Tsurumai_Station
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Chikusa_Station
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/Nagoya_Station
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/313_series
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/211_series
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/213_series
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/311_series
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/383_series
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/JNR_Class_EF64
    https://www.wikiwand.com/en/JR_Freight_Class_EH200
    https://www.japanallover.com/2015/12/hachioji-temple-komainu/
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2021
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  2. Dinosbacsi

    Dinosbacsi Well-Known Member

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    Great suggestion, my man. The route looks really nice. And just as I've said at your other route suggestion, the rolling stock is really pretty as well. Not the usual boxy commuter EMUs, they look more rounded at the edges and a bit more "elegant", I suppose?

    And from the cab ride video I've found the stop markers at station platforms really interesting. The correct one flashes and indicates where the train should stop, instead of just being the usualy small white squares they usually have at stations.

    Would be a route with a nice feel, that's for sure!
     
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  3. Commiee

    Commiee Well-Known Member

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    Thank you, I really appreciate the attention you give to Japanese route threads across this forum section. I also like the rolling stock for this one, especially as it also has freight locos.
     
  4. Purno

    Purno Well-Known Member

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    Japanese commuter route? Yes please!
     
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  5. fabdiva

    fabdiva Well-Known Member

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    Given the number who demand a 313 in the streams this should be popular!

    From the cab ride this looks pretty interesting, and JR Central seems to have a pretty standardised fleet without line liveries so that gives a lot more AI potential
     
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  6. Dinosbacsi

    Dinosbacsi Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I'm a big fan of Japanese railways, so I'm happy to see any suggestion regarding Japan. And it's nice to see they seem to be gaining popularity around here, as I think I see more and more japanese suggestion threads. Hopefully not too long until we see one happen.

    And that's also true. Especially after the recent suggestion for a japanese freight route, I bet this would be a good candidate for a mixed passenger/freight route.
     
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  7. HaibaraHariko

    HaibaraHariko Active Member

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    313 is considered by many as one of the best modern EMU in Japan. Its performance is nice and the interior (like the seats) is much better than the old JNR trains. Also 313 is used on all electrified JR Central lines - all the way from Kameyama in Mie to Kozu in Kanagawa and Shiojiri in Nagano. That's a large area.

    On the other hand the unelectrified lines are served by a lot of Kiha 25 DMU - which is pretty similar to the 313 EMU and sharing a so-called "Standard JR Central design". Personally I don't like their exterior that much, but the interior is quite new and comfortable.
     
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  8. Dinosbacsi

    Dinosbacsi Well-Known Member

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    It certainly is nice. The only thing I dislike about it is that it's just a bunch of 2-car units coupled together, no proper middle cars like on usual EMUs.

    That's good, because if they were to ever make it, then it could potentially be used on many other JR Central routes as well, if we assume they would make several of them. One can dream I suppose, lol
     
  9. fabdiva

    fabdiva Well-Known Member

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    They do have middle cars - it depends on the batch - There are 2, 3 ,4 and 6 car versions
     
  10. Dinosbacsi

    Dinosbacsi Well-Known Member

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    Oh then alright. From the videos it looked like they're all just 2-car sets coupled together to make longer sets.
     
  11. fabdiva

    fabdiva Well-Known Member

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    They do that too - it'll depend on what the local depot has. A depot that runs a mix of routes will prob have a fleet of 2 cars and combine them as required for the routes they work. Other depots may be dedicated to a specific route that runs 6 car sets all day, so will get a fixed formation 6 car fleet.
     
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  12. Dinosbacsi

    Dinosbacsi Well-Known Member

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    I suppose that makes sense, yeah.
     
  13. driverwoods#1787

    driverwoods#1787 Well-Known Member

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    Excellent idea and if JR Chubu West Line does have a Track connection with Meitetsu Tonkoname Line to Chubu Airport one can use scenario planner to send a JR Chuo West Train towards Chubu Airport.
     
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  14. KCRCRailway

    KCRCRailway Member

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    This is really a nice suggestion consider you could control freight service on it to provide variety on line. :)
     
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  15. Commiee

    Commiee Well-Known Member

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    Actually, I need input from those with knowledge of freight operations on the route. I included the two freight locos on this route but I only know they operate on Chūō Main. Does anyone know if they operate on the Nakatsugawa-Nagoya section? I might have been wrong to include them in the suggestion.
     
  16. jamesbaby286

    jamesbaby286 Well-Known Member

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    It appears to do so judging by this map of operations by JR freight.

    [​IMG]

    This doesn't mean freight locomotives can not appear elsewhere, and in fact they often do. This map just depicts where freight operations occur and does not count trains for the purpose of rail maintenance. Typically pulling Hoki 800 ballast cars.

    It seems though that JR Central ended its rail maintenance services pulled by JR Freight locomotives in 2020 as they now have dedicated and specifically designed maintenance locomotives owned by JR Central.
    Before 2020 the EF64 and DE10 typically ran these services I believe.
    https://train-fan.com/jr-east-hoki800/
     
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  17. HaibaraHariko

    HaibaraHariko Active Member

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    Yes. There are regular freight services on almost the whole Chuo Line. The exceptions are the extremely busy commuter-only part near Tokyo (or precisely, freight trains will change to Musashino Line from the junction near Kunitachi Station) and the branch line (Okaya - Tatsuno - Shiojiri) in Nagano Prefecture. Therefore there are freight services near Nagoya.

    I don't know much about how freight trains work in this specific area, but I believe the freight trains from central Japan will travel down all the way to Nagoya as there is no freight yard that is really famous (as far as I know I have to say) in this section. There are large freight yards in the west part of Nagoya or Inazawa on Tokaido Line, so I guess most freight trains will go there.
     
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  18. Dinosbacsi

    Dinosbacsi Well-Known Member

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    It does look really nice! Those orange lines on the side give it a kind of retro vibe.
     
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  19. Commiee

    Commiee Well-Known Member

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    Here's JR Central's official PDF plan of its routes, including the Chūō:

    [​IMG]
     
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  20. Renfe cercanias

    Renfe cercanias Active Member

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    Hello . How do you do to put more than 5 images? A message tells me that the maximum limit of images is 5 and I can not put more. so ... how do you do it?
     
  21. Commiee

    Commiee Well-Known Member

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    That is weird - when I was making my suggestion threads, the limit was 20 for images and five for videos. Maybe they have reduced it since?
     
  22. Renfe cercanias

    Renfe cercanias Active Member

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    [QUOTE = "Commiee, post: 361643, member: 24776"] Eso es extraño - cuando estaba haciendo mis hilos de sugerencias, el límite era 20 para imágenes y cinco para videos. ¿Quizás lo hayan reducido desde entonces? [/ QUOTE]


    I make the suggestions from the mobile. Does that have something to do with the limitation? Do you make suggestions from the pc?
     
  23. Commiee

    Commiee Well-Known Member

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    Yes I make threads from desktop PC. It definitely is possible that the mobile version of the forum has lower limits on images.
     
  24. Blacknred81

    Blacknred81 Well-Known Member

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    Uploaded photos directly to the forum limits you to 5 photos.

    Using an external site like Imgur and linking the photos can have up to 20 photos.
     
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