Monday, February 25, 2013

KiHa 52 125, Classic Rail Car on the Isumi Railway


Classic diesel rail car, KiHa 52 125, Express "Isumi", stands at Kuniyoshi Station, Isumi Railway

Following the standard diesel rail car, Type 200' (see my blog on January 4th, 2013), I am going to show you the other car, Type KiHa 52, on the Isumi Railway today.

Isumi, which is a local railway company in Chiba Prefecture, is well known for drawing sightseers. The operation of a classic diesel rail car is one of the major events on weekends to attract passengers.

Isumi Railway introduced a classic rail car, No. 125 of Type KiHa 52 to the Track in 2011. KiHa 52 125 was manufactured in 1965 by Niigata Tekko. It had been operated on the JR West Ooito Line, but was retired to be replaced with new DMUs in 2010. Isumi then purchased this classic rail car to promote sightseers.

The body of KiHa 52 125 is frequently called "JNR color". JNR, which stands for Japanese National Railways, was Japan's largest railway network. It was split into seven railway companies and privatized as the JR Group in 1987, due to financial difficulties. Although JNR has been abolished, many rail fans are still boosterish about this coloring, as it fits into any kind of scenery in Japan.

I got on this classic rail car recently. It was beautifully maintained. The plate of "Express, Isumi" on the front of the rail car was very cool and nostalgic. The sound of two DMH17H diesel engines was still powerful. During the operation, the rattling sound from the track was like sweet music to my ears.
 
Frontal face of the classic diesel rail car KiHa 52 125 on the Isumi Railway