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serotta1972

3 Day Japan Excursion

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I managed to negotiate a 3 day trip to Japan during our trip to the Philippines.  I will arrive in Japan on July 20th in the evening and leave on the 24th so I have 3 full days.  And here's the best part, I will be by myself - my family will go directly to our Province while I hop on a plane to Japan.  Riding trains isn't very appealing to them.  

 

The sole purpose of this 3 day trip is like my layout, nothing but trains.  I will be staying near the Uneo Train Station.  Not sure if any of the members live nearby but would love to meet up if it's convenient.

 

 

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Sounds like a great plan Junior, I'm sure you'll have a great time!  Don't forget to take pictures of the stations/surrounding areas too, don't tunnel vision like me and only take pictures of the trains.   :P

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The sole purpose of this 3 day trip is like my layout, nothing but trains.  I will be staying near the Uneo Train Station.  Not sure if any of the members live nearby but would love to meet up if it's convenient.

 

Nowhere close but it's not entirely unknown for me to be seen poking around Akihabara on Friday evenings. Can't guarantee anything this far in advance though.

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Posted (edited)

I might be able to negotiate an evening off as well. Friday would also be the most convenient date, but I can't make promises, as we would have just finished off a very very busy time before that and the wife might need some assistance at that point.

Edited by Kabutoni

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Nowhere close but it's not entirely unknown for me to be seen poking around Akihabara on Friday evenings. Can't guarantee anything this far in advance though.

 

I might be able to negotiate an evening off as well. Friday would also be the most convenient date, but I can't make promises, as we would have just finished off a very very busy time before that and the wife might need some assistance at that point.

 

Will be awesome to meet up with you guys.  I will be posting shortly a list of trains I would like to ride and would appreciate your input if it would be possible to ride them with my limited time and also starting point.  I would not mind riding trains all day and then going back to the hotel and rest.

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Sounds like a great plan Junior, I'm sure you'll have a great time!  Don't forget to take pictures of the stations/surrounding areas too, don't tunnel vision like me and only take pictures of the trains.   :P

 

Oh yeah, aside from trains - I have always been fascinated with transit terminals and stations.  I spent a lot of time at the Union Station in DC and Penn Station in Philadelphia and I would be doing the same here.  Actually I might actually enjoy watching trains more than riding them so I'm looking for good spots to just watch trains.

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Oh yeah, aside from trains - I have always been fascinated with transit terminals and stations.  I spent a lot of time at the Union Station in DC and Penn Station in Philadelphia and I would be doing the same here.  Actually I might actually enjoy watching trains more than riding them so I'm looking for good spots to just watch trains.

 

The southbound platform at Keikyu Shinagawa is always worth a visit, it's a small station but lots going on and still an eclectic variety of stock, especially the Keisei/Hokuso stuff, and at peak hours there's a lot of train detaching/attaching (at least I assume they still do that).

 

The new terrace over the south end of Shinjuku Station is also quite nice for watching trains, especially in the evening.

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There are great views of the action at Tokyo station from the Japan Post building rooftop terrace.

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Wow that sounds like a massively fun 3 days coming up! Will you be getting a rail pass?

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There are great views of the action at Tokyo station from the Japan Post building rooftop terrace.

 

Now that I didn't know...

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Posted (edited)

 

 

 

There are great views of the action at Tokyo station from the Japan Post building rooftop terrace.

We have a lot of those so called public rooftop access here in San Francisco but accessing them is something different and must have special knowledge, at times even the folks that work in the building don't know the entrance.  Is the access to the rooftop easily found and how long can someone hangout up there?  Thanks for the tip! 

 

Wow that sounds like a massively fun 3 days coming up! Will you be getting a rail pass?

Yes, I will be getting the 7 day JR National Pass which isn't much more than a regional pass.  Come on Sammy come meet up with me for the weekend and let's go ride all trains we have. ;)

Edited by serotta1972

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We have a lot of those so called public rooftop access here in San Francisco but accessing them is something different and must have special knowledge, at times even the folks that work in the building don't know the entrance.  Is the access to the rooftop easily found and how long can someone hangout up there?  Thanks for the tip!

 

This is Japan :D it's shown on the website:

 

http://jptower-kitte.jp/floor_info_en/index.html

 

I imagine it would be open as long as the restaurants on the same floor are (just avoid the "wellhole" on 3F ;) )

 

I'll check it out next time I'm in the area.

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Here are the trains I would like to ride:

 

Shinkansens:

W/E7

E3

700 Series, preferably Railstar

E4 Max

 

Limited Express:

E259 Narita Express - I think this one is a given, would have preferred the 253 but will go to Nagano to ride the Snow Monkey

383 Series

21000 Series Urbanliners - is this still running or have been replaced

Keikyu 2100

 

Commuter/Suburban:

E233 - any line

313 Series

115 Series - any of these still running within 3 hours of Tokyo? 

227 or 323 Series -  I will be going to Kyoto for a day

 

DMU's:

Kiha 110

Kiha 85 Wide View

Kiha 40 or 50 Series

 

These are my preferred trains to ride and everything else will be a bonus.  Suica already helped me put together a day trip to Nagano that will allow me to ride an E/W7, 383, Snow Monkey and E351 or hopefully an E353.   I will be going to Kyoto and Nagano on separate days and staying local for one day. I am soliciting the expertise of folks in the forum and would like some insight and feedback if it's possible to ride these trains within my limited time and also being based in Tokyo.  Thank you in advance for your input.

 

-Junior

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Posted (edited)

 

Yes, I will be getting the 7 day JR National Pass which isn't much more than a regional pass.  Come on Sammy come meet up with me for the weekend and let's go ride all trains we have. ;)

 

I would love to my friend! We could have so much fun together riding the rails! Now, let me grab my hypnotizing rod to try it out on the Mrs.... wish me luck!

 

 

 

Here are the trains I would like to ride:

 

Shinkansens:

W/E7

E3

700 Series, preferably Railstar

E4 Max

 

Limited Express:

E259 Narita Express - I think this one is a given, would have preferred the 253 but will go to Nagano to ride the Snow Monkey

383 Series

21000 Series Urbanliners - is this still running or have been replaced

Keikyu 2100

 

Commuter/Suburban:

E233 - any line

313 Series

115 Series - any of these still running within 3 hours of Tokyo? 

227 or 323 Series -  I will be going to Kyoto for a day

 

DMU's:

Kiha 110

Kiha 85 Wide View

Kiha 40 or 50 Series

 

These are my preferred trains to ride and everything else will be a bonus.  Suica already helped me put together a day trip to Nagano that will allow me to ride an E/W7, 383, Snow Monkey and E351 or hopefully an E353.   I will be going to Kyoto and Nagano on separate days and staying local for one day. I am soliciting the expertise of folks in the forum and would like some insight and feedback if it's possible to ride these trains within my limited time and also being based in Tokyo.  Thank you in advance for your input.

 

-Junior

 

What, no 500 series? That's a crime you know....

 

Moving along the list, you can possibly grab all the shinkansens, with the E3 possibly running as Nasuno or Yamabiko services. You can also take the E4 Max to Omiya from Tokyo for a nice ride. You gotta ride the E4 before they go mate! Remember, reserved seating on upper decks!

 

E259 you can almost take it when you arrive at Narita, but the 253 you might need to either go for the Snow Monkey (a little out of the way) or try for the Nikko limited express from Tokyo which might be nearer~ Try to go for the Skyliner when you return so you can grab both Ltd Exp trains to and from airport...

 

I am thinking the 21000 series might already been retired, with the 21020 Urban Liner Next taking over... I would try to go for the Vista car and Sakura Liner instead, they seem to be more fun to ride in!  :)

 

E233s prowl the Tokyo lines, like Keihin-Tohoku, Keiyo, Chuo, Saikyo etc. just to name a few, you shouldn't have any trouble with these, so as with the 313s when you get to Nagoya. I rode a 115 series from Takasaki on the Ryomo line, and boy you really need to ride this train! The springy seats along with the remote views from the Ryomo line makes this ride so enjoyable for the rail fan and so sleepy for the non rail fans. Heck my Mrs even remembered this line (she forgot most of the others) for its memorizing hypnotizing ride to dreamland!

 

323s prowl the Osaka loop line, which should be fairly simple to ride on, while the 227s need to be further west.

 

Kiha-110 could also be found on the Hachiko line, and the Kiha-85 can be rode from Nagoya.

 

Depending on how you would like to run, these trains can be accommodated to fit in mostly in the 3 days, and it certainly helps when you are riding alone!

 

Your trip is getting me all excited!  :)

 

 

Oh yes, forgot to add on, how about the rail café in Akihabara?

 

http://en.rocketnews24.com/2015/02/27/awesome-akihabara-restaurant-sandwiched-by-busy-train-lines-offers-more-thrills-than-a-maid-cafe/

Edited by JR 500系
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115 Series - any of these still running within 3 hours of Tokyo? 

Well~ Look a your forum avatar. :)

Shinano Railway. It's all 115 series there. I rode them from Karuizawa to Komoro. They recently started the Rokumon tourist train, which is also a 115 series EMU.

On the way to Nagano you could do a detour on the Shinano line. Get off the Hokuriku Shinkansen at Karuizawa, then ride the Shinano line to Ueda and get on the Shinkansen to Nagano again.

At Karuizawa station you can also see the preserved EF63 2

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Posted (edited)

You can do a modified "Itturokken Circle":

(route colored in light blue)

http://www.imagehosting.cz/images/itturokken.png

Steps (bold is rolling stock present on your list, with the exception of the E501 seires).

1) Joetsu Shinkansen (E4 series) from Ueno to Tokyo. I suggest taking some pictures of Tokyo Station.

2) Yamanote Line (E231-500s and E235s)

3) Keikyu Main Line - express (Keikyu 2100 series) from Shinagawa to Yokohama.

4) Yokohama Line (E233-6000) from Yokohama to Hachioji.

5) Kwagoe / Hachiko Line (rolling stock is your choice: 205-3000, 209-3000 or the unique 209-3100, former TWR Rinkai 70-000 series bought second-hand by JR East), from Hachioji to Komagawa.

6) Hachiko line (the line has no electrification, so it uses KiHa 110s) from Komagawa to Shim-Maebashi.

7) Ryomo line (115-1000 series) from Shim-Maebashi to Oyama.

8) Mito line (either E501 or E531 series) from Oyama to Tomobe.

9) Joban Line (stock is your choice, identical to the Mito line, with the addition of the E321-0 series), from Tomobe to Ueno.

The E531 series is a close relative of the E233 series.

Inspiration came from "Tetsuko No Tabi" (Episode 2) where they make a similar circle, starting from Tokyo Station.

I don't know much about the timetables, but the whole thing should take about6/6.30 hours; starting at Ueno at 7.00 or 8.00, you get back to Ueno at 13.30 /14.00, taking advantage of Express services on the Keikyu Line, the Yokohama and the Joban Line, and skipping a couple of stations with the Shinkansen between Ueno and Tokyo.

Then go have lunch in the area. In the Afternoon, Akibahara and Model shops.

While for the evning i suggest taking the Tokyu Toyoko Line to Yokohama and go see the Sunset at the Minatomirai.

Also there are some 115s in the Kyoto area, but i suggest taking a classic 103 series instead.

Shinknasen 700 Railstars are in use only between Osaka and Hakata, so i guess you should take a regular 700 instead from Tokyo to Nagoya and from Nagoya to Kyoto.

 

Edit: Corrected subseries of the Yokohama Line subseries, removed Siemens GTO-VVVF from E501 series.

Edited by Socimi
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Posted (edited)

While you are there you should ride the Yamanote E231-500.  The first production E235s enter service on the 22nd of this month and before you know it the E231-500s will be gone.

Edited by bill937ca
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interesting Itturoken! Only thing is the Yokohama line is a E233-6000 ~  :P   The E233-7000 is the Saikyo line ~

 

At least you got the rail pass so you didn't need to worry about ticket checkers!

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While you are there you should ride the Yamanote E231-500.  The first production E235s enter service on the 22nd of this month and before you know it the E231-500s will be gone.

Oh yeah, I will most definitely be riding the loop and would like to ride the E231.

 

Thanks for the tips and suggestions guys!  It looks like I'll be able to ride most of the trains I listed which I am very happy about.

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There are great views of the action at Tokyo station from the Japan Post building rooftop terrace.

 

The views:

 

DSC 0828

 

DSC 0832

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I managed to negotiate a 3 day trip to Japan during our trip to the Philippines.  I will arrive in Japan on July 20th in the evening and leave on the 24th so I have 3 full days.  And here's the best part, I will be by myself - my family will go directly to our Province while I hop on a plane to Japan.  Riding trains isn't very appealing to them.  

 

The sole purpose of this 3 day trip is like my layout, nothing but trains.  I will be staying near the Uneo Train Station.  Not sure if any of the members live nearby but would love to meet up if it's convenient.

 

Pare ko... lol. If you're going to be in Akihabara to gather up some train souvenirs/memorabilia, let me know! I'd be willing to send $$ as I didn't have a chance to pass by this place called Trainiart -- https://www.ejrt.co.jp/trainiart/about/index.html.. I was trying to get my hands on a number of things train related but ran out of time :(

 

Enjoy your trip, though! My only regret this past May was not being able to stay longer.

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In regards to the 115-1000 Series on the Ryōmō line, it's rare to encounter them, as most trains are ran by 211 Series and the 107 Series next to that. I haven't seen any 115s last week.

 

The E501 Series on the Mito line have all had their Siemens VVVF inverters removed a few years back, so no more singing sounds there.

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Pare ko... lol. If you're going to be in Akihabara to gather up some train souvenirs/memorabilia, let me know! I'd be willing to send $$ as I didn't have a chance to pass by this place called Trainiart -- https://www.ejrt.co.jp/trainiart/about/index.html.. I was trying to get my hands on a number of things train related but ran out of time :(

 

Enjoy your trip, though! My only regret this past May was not being able to stay longer.

kumusta pare?  I'm gonna stay away from hobby stores as I have very limited time and also pera (money) for model trains or souvenirs.  My budget only covers hotel, trains and some food. :)

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In regards to the 115-1000 Series on the Ryōmō line, it's rare to encounter them, as most trains are ran by 211 Series and the 107 Series next to that. I haven't seen any 115s last week.

 

The E501 Series on the Mito line have all had their Siemens VVVF inverters removed a few years back, so no more singing sounds there.

Suica suggested I go ride my avatar - get off the Shinkansen in Karuizawa and take the Shinano Railway to Ueda.

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Posted (edited)

Suica suggested I go ride my avatar - get off the Shinkansen in Karuizawa and take the Shinano Railway to Ueda.

 

For the Ryōmō line, it's rarer to encounter a 107 Series, as there are only 8 cars left (2x 2+2 car sets), as opposed to the 115 Series which has 30 sets left (10x 3 cars).

 

A help may be this website where some trains are tracked from the Takasaki depot: http://takasaki-115.bbs.fc2.com/ Service numbers can be referenced from here and matched to the trains that are in operation on that service number: http://app.torepa21.com/mita/list/ct/jretkk/cd/tkskrm Please note that all the 4xxM numbers are Takasaki - Oyama services, so you can practically ignore all other numbers (yes, it's complicated, but that's just how it is...).

Edited by Kabutoni
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