Sunday, 4 August 2019

Subtle Change of the Stripe Color: EMU 205-500 Series

Set R6 (new stripe color) of the EMU JR East 205-500 series on the Sagami line

I have recently visited the JR East Sagami line for the first time in three years. The Sagami line penetrates the western part of Kanagawa Prefecture from north to south. Connecting Hashimoto and Chigasaki stations, its total length is 33.3 kilometers. The entire route is electrified and single. The electric system is 1,500 V DC overhead. 4-car trains named the EMU 205-500 series are operated every 20 minutes on average.

What was new with this local line? I found that there were subtle differences in the body stripe colors among the EMU 205-500 series. Some sets had a blue-green stripe; meanwhile, the other sets had a simple blue stripe. Which is the newer? The answer is the latter one (simple blue stripe). I am very happy to perceive this kind of fine difference among the trains as a trainspotter. Trainspotters are easy-going people, aren't they?

Incidentally, the EMU 205-500 series was launched in 1991, when the route was electrified. A total of 13 sets, 52 units were built by Tokyu Sharyo and JR East Ofuna Factory. Its technical specification is rather old at this distance of time, but the 205-500 series is still operated as the only model on the Sagami line. It will be replaced by a new model or the E231 series moved from the Tokaido line in the near future, but it has not been officially announced yet. I am biding my time and waiting for the official announcement by JR East.

Set R7 (old stripe color) of the EMU JR East 205-500 series on the Sagami line