Northampton Fortune Favours the Brave

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Photograph Taken On Tuesday, October 27, 2020

I wasn't planning to go to Northampton tonight but at the last minute decided to head down to see what was on the front of 4S88.... Thanks to Tim Moran for persuading me to go. Freightliner racing green class 86/6 no. 86607 stands during a crew change at Northampton in multiple with classmate no. 86638 working 4S88 Felixstowe to Coatbridge intermodal on 27th October 2020. The Class 86 locomotives built upon the Class 81-5 however they included some improved features such as quieter fans. The locos were initially notorious for causing track damage due to a large amount of unsprung mass however, after modifications which led to the fitting of large flexicoil springs, the problems diminished. The initial class 86/0 subclass was limited to 85 mph due to the track-wear issue, those which were fitted with flexicoil springs were renumbered into the 86/2 series and were 100mph capable. 3 test bed class 87s were numbered 86101-103 and were 110mph locos. Many locomotives have been exported to operator Floyd in Hungary and are used on freight trains over there. The 86/7 subclass of two locomotives was 110mph capable however they were withdrawn in early 2013 due to lack of GSMR fitment. After several unsuccessful attempts to find work for 86701 and 86702, both locomotives were exported. The 86/6 subclass is limited to 75mph and are used on Freightliner trains on a daily basis as working pairs. From 2015 to 2019, 86101, 86401 and 87002 were hired in by GBRf in order to work ECS moves between London Euston and Wembley ICD for the Caledonian Sleeper. After the arrival of mk5 stock to the Caledonian Sleeper, 87002, 86101 and 86401 came off lease. 86101 and 87002 were sold to Locomotive Services Limited in Crewe and 86401 was sold to the West Coast Railway Company and is currently based at Carnforth.View image on Flickr

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