The DM&EE's Test Cars

The DM&EE's Testing Section based at the RTC, Derby utilised a number of purpose-built or converted test cars over the years. Here are various pictures of most of them.

Other numerous vehicles were used by R&DD and DM&EE - see here for more info

See index at the bottom of the page

Click on the picture for a bigger image and on the links for more detailed information- all photos are BR official unless otherwise credited

Dynamometer Car No:1 The LMS Dynamometer car No:1 M45050 was built by the L&Y in 1912 and was used by the Testing Section at RTC until about 1970.

It is preserved at MRC, Butterley and has been restored to its original condition - have a look here for more information and pictures

Test Car 1 The first conversion to produce a Test Car which was carried out at RTC was to a former BR/GWR autocoach built by BR in Swindon to Diagram A38, Lot 1736 and was formerly number W233W. It was re-numbered DW150375  not long after its arrival at RTC. Originally in maroon livery it was re-painted and equipped with a hand-cranked generator set and became Test Car 1. Later a more permanent conversion was undertaken. It is pictured on a test train in RTC yard with two BSC bogie tippler wagons circa 1972
Dynamometer Car LMS Dynamometer car No:2 numbered M45051 and pictured at Derby in 1949 - not sure what happened to this
LNER Dynamometer Car Pictured in crimson and cream BR livery this is the Thompson-designed ex-ER Dynamometer Car DE320041, completed in 1951and photographed on 4th April 1953. This later moved to RTC and became Test Car 2.
Test Car 2 The third Test Car 2 ADB 975397 in the EDU around 1990 was converted from a Mk1 BSK.
Test Car 3 Test Car 3 was the former LMS Dynamometer Car No:3 M45049 built during the war and now part of the National Collection.
DW150192 Test Car 4 was the former BR Western Region Dynamometer Car - Built at Swindon in 1947 as a third class corridor carriage to a design by F W Hawksworth, on lot number 1691, this vehicle originally carried the number W796W and is pictured here when freshly outshopped at Swindon.
Test Car 4 The later Mk3 version of Test Car 4 behind a class 47 at the test track in 1999. This was originally part of the prototype HST (originally E10000 then W40000), then it was converted into R&DD Lab Coach 15 'Argus' and later became DM&EE's Test Car 4.

Test Car 4 RDB975984 was to have been scrapped in early 2003 but was rescued and now forms part of the New Measurement Train - below


First Test Car 5 The first Test Car 5 was converted from a BSK and numbered ADB975051. It is pictured in the loop at the top of the RTC yard when new on 22nd December 1972. It is still in existence at Peak Rail in Rowsley where it was moved in May 2007. However it has had a hard life, since being disposed of by the DM&EE, having all its windows welded up and was used for a long time in the Crewe Works test train fleet. See here for a recent photo
The second Test Car 5 was the former R&DD Lab 6 'Prometheus'. numbered RDB975422 This was converted from a Mk1 BSK W34875 in 1975 but has now been scrapped.
RTC Test Car 6 was converted at RTC from a Mk2C coach and renumbered RDB975290. Pictured at the RTC in 1982, This vehicle was scrapped in 2011

Colin Marsden

Test Car 10 Class 89 at Old Dalby with Test Car 10, another Mk3 coach conversion from the prototype HST, in tow with R&DD's test coach Lab 6 'Prometheus'
Somewhere on WCML The overhead line test vehicle MENTOR ADB975071, which was normally based St Andrew's Wharf, Derby, near the CM&EE offices at Nelson Street, was operated by the Testing Section for a while in the mid 1980's
Test cars A line up of the DM&EE test cars in 1987 - from left, TC1, TC2, MENTOR, TC6 and TC10 with the class 89 loco
RTC yard 1990 A view of the yard at RTC in the late 1980's. In the foreground is Lab One No:RDB975000 and one of the APT-P vehicles which was converted into a test coach. Also in the picture in the mid-distance is Test Coach Argus RDB975984 (later to become Test Car 4 and now in the NMT), Laboratory 21 RDB977089 and a class 155 unit. Note the Provincial liveried class 150/1 units on Etches Park depot in the background.
HSFV4 Auxiliary Test Vehicle RDB 787319 was the former high speed freight vehicle HSFV4 known colloquially as 'the Ferry Van' and is seen here at the RTC in February 1983. For more information and pictures look here

Colin Marsden

HSFV1 Former high speed freight vehicle HSFV1 at RTC in the early 1980's. For more information about RDB511023 and pictures look here

Dave Bower

Click the links for more information

Test Car 1

Test Car 2

Test Car 3

Test Car 4

Test Car 5

Test Car 6

Test Car 10

More pictures will be added as time permits


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