Thursday, 8 May 2014

EMU 6000 Series in Keio Rail Land

Unit number 6438 of the EMU Keio 6000 series is preserved in Keio Rail Land
Keio Rail Land is the newest railway museum in the Tokyo metropolitan area. It was opened by Keio Electric Railway Company on October 10th last year in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the Keio Line.

Keio Rail Land exhibits train driving simulators and train instruments such as a pantograph, but more importantly, five units of historical trains are exhibited in an outside covered facility. They are the EMU 6000, 3000, 5000, 2010, and 2400 series, which were retired from the Keio and Inokashira lines.

The EMU 6000 series was operated until its retirement in 2011. It was launched in 1972 as the first long (20m) body commuter train on the Keio Line. A total of 304 units had been manufactured over 19 years by Tokyu Sharyo, Nippon Sharyo and Hitachi. Since the 6000 series was not transferred to other local railway companies after its retirement, most of the units have already been scrapped. Unit number 6738, which is exhibited in Keio Rail Land, is a precious survivor.

The 6000 series was not my cup of tea to be honest, when it was operated on the Keio Line. The design was not too hot... it looked tame compared to that of its predecessor, the 5000 series. It had low lighting in the area behind the cockpit. The spec was unspectacular... just DC compound motors with a field chopper control system... but now, it has become a nostalgic memory, because all the 6000 series have disappeared from the track.

Unit number 6438 (left) and 3719 (right) in Keio Rail Land near Tama-dobutsu-koen Station