Thursday, 12 May 2022

NSE: The Essential Exhibit in the Romancecar Museum

The EMU Odakyu 3100 series, "NSE Car", is exhibited in the Romancecar Museum

Let me resume from where I left off my post from five days ago.

After a reunion with the SSE (Short Super Express) Car, I observed the NSE (New Super Express) Car in the Romancecar Museum. The EMU Odakyu 3100 series, also known as the NSE Car, was launched in 1963 to increase transportation capacity for Hakone resort mountain. It was composed of 11 motorcars with articulated bogies. 7 sets in total were built by Nippon Sharyo and Kawasaki Sharyo from 1963 to 1967. The maximum speed in operation was 110 kilometers per hour; however, its designed maximum speed was 170 kilometers per hour.

The most distinctive feature of the NSE Car is that the cockpit is located upstairs. Passengers can enjoy a front view through the wide window. When I was a kid, the NSE Car was a special, admired presence for me. I failed to sit on the front observation seat, because it was a "platinum ticket", but I often used the NSE Car with my parents to visit Hakone Mountain. My question was how did a driver climb up into the cockpit of the NSE Car. You can see the answer in the following picture. A ladder is equipped underneath the cockpit. Of course, the ladder is retractable, so, it's stored during the operation. All of the mystery has been solved.

For your information, three of the 77 total NSE Cars, namely DeHa 3221, 3223 and 3231, are exhibited in the Romancecar Museum; meanwhile, one unit, DeHa 3181, is currently preserved in Kaisei Town, Kanagawa Prefecture.

The ladder to climb up into the cockpit of NSE Car