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Monday Train Blogging: Winter In Bulgaria

by DoDo Thu Feb 16th, 2006 at 04:21:17 AM EST

back from the frontpage

BDZ (series) 45 (no.) 155, built in then Czechoslovakia by Škoda (3,140 kW / 4,200 HP, 1982) with a freight train near station Kostenets, 8 February 2006. Photo by Ivo Radoe from RailFanEurope.


Below an image of another locomotive of the same class, BDZ 45 187, arriviving in the capital Sofia with a freight train during a blizzard, 7 March 2005. Photo by Miroslav Georgiev also from RailFanEurope.

Sorry for another ad-hoc story, but I again didn't have time – so Western Front story delayed another week, will wait for Alex's return.

Previous Monday Train Bloggings:

  1. (Premiere/ modern Austrian trains & locos)
  2. Adventure
  3. Fast Steam
  4. Heavy Haul
  5. Forgotten Colorado
  6. The Hardest Job
  7. Blowback
  8. Highest Speed
  9. New England Autumn
  10. Trainwreck
  11. Bigger Than Big Boy
  12. Tunnels
  13. Failed Designs
  14. Demarcations
  15. Crazed Designs
  16. Trains In The Arts
  17. Railway Cathedrals
  18. Design Dictators
  19. Slippery Slope
  20. Alta Velocità

:: :: :: :: ::

UPDATE: Repost of the modern Bulgarian Desiro and the two photos from Italy in the comments (whose links moved since):

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Traffic on the new Torino-Novara high-speed line did start, albeit only with two train pairs each to Milano and Milano's airport. The 300 km/h ETR500 trains got a new paint:

Here is the picture of a low-floor tram in Milano (all equipment is on the roof) with Olympics advertisement on some of its windows:

Again both images from RailFanEurope.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Mon Feb 13th, 2006 at 12:19:26 PM EST
Interesting juxstaposition of the pictures...
Should I think that there is ironic and malicious note behind this diary. It is more like showing a picture of a
plentiful lunch of Europeans and then commenting on the hunger in Africa.....
Bulgaria lived under communism and now the economic development of the country has taken the hard path of transition.
No one gave us anything from the Marshall Plan but we still try to progress, as much as possible.

I'm not ugly,but my beauty is a total creation.Hegel
by Chris on Mon Feb 13th, 2006 at 05:57:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I can't say I do not understand your arguments about communism and the transition period, because my initial reaction was similar, but I don't think the purpose of the diary was to ironize.
And one more thing- communism is long gone and although we still bear its burden, it is high time to stop blaming everything bad on the past. We need to look at the future and be positive about it. At least, I am:)


I can resist anything but temptation.- Oscar Wilde
by Little L (ljolito (at) gmail (dot) com) on Mon Feb 13th, 2006 at 06:08:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Should I think that there is ironic and malicious note behind this diary. It is more like showing a picture of a plentiful lunch of Europeans and then commenting on the hunger in Africa.....

No no, sorry if I left that impression! The Italian stuff is just update for last week's stuff, while I love these old-look Škoda locos. Just to give you a balance, BDZ also has 25 Siemens Desiros (as series 10) - here is the first:



*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Mon Feb 13th, 2006 at 06:09:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I apologize too!
I guess I misunderstood you, DoDo :)))

I'm not ugly,but my beauty is a total creation.Hegel
by Chris on Tue Feb 14th, 2006 at 01:36:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Acela!  (hey, pronounce it "achelah) and it sounds Italian.

Stephen Karlson ATTITUDE is a nine letter word. BOATSPEED.
by SHKarlson (shkarlson at frontier dot com) on Wed Feb 15th, 2006 at 04:59:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Indeed there is a striking similarity between the styles, though the ETR500 predates the Acela (Acela built from 1998, ETR500 prototypes built 1988 and 1990, first series from 1993, second from 1997), and the Acela has French TGV technology.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Thu Feb 16th, 2006 at 04:18:59 AM EST
[ Parent ]
This is also a test for 100% image resizing. Is it alright, or does it blow up some screens?

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Mon Feb 13th, 2006 at 05:47:03 PM EST
It blew my screen, but that is OK. I was just checking the website before going to bed and needed something to refresh me as I am planning to study in bed (it never works out, but I keep trying though). And it is always nice to see a piece of your own country on the front page:) I can't tell you much about the trains in Bulgaria, I never use them, but as far as I remember they are sort of antiques and they really stink.

I can resist anything but temptation.- Oscar Wilde
by Little L (ljolito (at) gmail (dot) com) on Mon Feb 13th, 2006 at 05:56:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Works fine on my screen and make for a striking image.
by Alexandra in WMass (alexandra_wmass[a|t]yahoo[d|o|t]fr) on Mon Feb 13th, 2006 at 10:51:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It blew my screen as well. But the picture's great.

BDZ can be good and bad. I love taking the overnight train from Sofia to Istanbul. Bring some food, some beer & wine, and get several places in the sleeper car. A late party, sleep some, get out of the train at the Turkish border at about 2:00 in the morning, go back to sleep, and wake up in the center of Istanbul. The sleepers are clean and conductors are good guys.  

by gradinski chai on Tue Feb 14th, 2006 at 05:52:37 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes, that's actually very true. However, during winter time you would be playing something like Russian "freeze"ette as it sometimes happen that the heating does not work. The conductors will bring extra blankets but then the party is ruined :) But I must admit, it is one hell of a fun ride.
by AmonRa on Tue Feb 14th, 2006 at 07:02:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Oh, guys, believe me...BDZ can only be bad! I had been travelling every day for five years from my home town to the capital (the distance is approximately 40 kilometres). In the winter it is either too cold or so hot that you can't breathe. You usually couldn't get a seat because it was too crowded... Furthermore, there are all those people that never buy tickets and are constantly bribing the conductors...I just hated that!
by Denny on Tue Feb 14th, 2006 at 09:13:27 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Whenever I think of BDZ, the first thing that comes to my mind is a summer time school break, bunch of friends around the car on a night train to the sea coast, laughter, some drinks, some smart tunes flowing out of pc speakers plugged into a cd-man. In no time you are about to hit the beach. Love that feeling.
by lukewarm on Wed Feb 15th, 2006 at 04:33:02 PM EST
Wow, DoDo, this is a standart-tired-of-seeing-it Bulgarian engine. We still have them everywhere in Bulgaria, but the good news is that BDZ (the Bulgarian State Railway) bought several new Siemens Desiro diesel engines (I am almost certain I am not spelling the name correctly). I consider buying diesel engines a weird choice, especially having in mind the pride the Bulgarian government put in the fact that we have one of the biggest percentages of electrified railroads (uhm... at least untill the 80's).

Is diesel cheaper than electricity, or are the old engines on the photos using too much electrical power compared to the mpg of the new diesel ones?

Be careful! Is it classified?

by darin (dkaloyanov[at]gmail.com) on Wed Mar 1st, 2006 at 04:06:14 AM EST
standart-tired-of-seeing-it Bulgarian engine

You are tired of it, but having seen it less often, I still like it :-)

BDZ (the Bulgarian State Railway) bought several new Siemens Desiro diesel engines

I actually posted the image of one upthread, but the webpage I linked it from moved the file in the meantime to another library - so here is it again (and your spelling was flawless BTW):

Is diesel cheaper than electricity, or are the old engines on the photos using too much electrical power compared to the mpg of the new diesel ones?

Diesels are cheap (but now with the rise of oil prices, that may no longer be valid), but they are also good at going without a stop on routes partially unelectrified.

However, in Bulgaria's case, I think this was an intermediate solution: for, you also have 25 electric Desiros ordered (delivery is slated from the summer of 2007 until the summer of 2008), after which I guess the diesel versions will go to branchlines and the line towards Turkey.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.

by DoDo on Sat Mar 4th, 2006 at 05:25:44 AM EST
[ Parent ]


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