Laboratory 4 'Hastings'

To test the tilt system for APT-P a redundant former Class 201 6B Buffet car No:60750 was converted into a test vehicle and fitted with APT trailer bogies and re-numbered RDB975386. This vehicle had been originally built to the Hastings line narrow profile and was therefore ideal. Known as 'Hastings Coach', officially Laboratory 4 the conversion had dispensed with the original bogies, and almost everything else under the body shell as well. It was used to test the APT-P bogie, tilt and suspension systems as it could tilt 6 deg and still stay within the C1 gauge.

It had H4X bogies, two of only four ever made, and it had big secondary air springs which had solid rubber emergency springs inside in case the air pressure failed, which it did once or twice. 'Hastings' still exists at the Electric Railway Museum nr Coventry Airport. It's in pretty bad shape but is slowly being restored and has now been found a new home at Churnet Valley following the closure of the museum.

It's owned by the APT-E Conservation and Support Group.

Photos as credited

Lab 4 at the RTC sidings on 10 June 1985

Colin Marsden

Lab 4 outside EDU

Unknown

Negotiating Syston North Curve on its way back from Old Dalby to the RTC

Kit Spackman

Showing off its tilting ability at Sandbach station

Kit Spackman

Lab 4 on Way & Works Sidings at RTC with Brunel House in the background

Unknown

Outside the EDU wearing the later red and biege livery

BR Official

Outside the EDU wearing the later red and biege livery

BR Official

At the Electric Railway Museum in October 2014  

Author

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