Thursday, June 15, 2017

EMU 700 Series: Leading Train on the Ohmi Railway

EMU Ohmi Railway 700 series stands at Hikone station yard

Ohmi is a local private railway company in Shiga Prefecture. Its eastern terminal is Maibara, about 450 km west of Tokyo. Maibara is well known as a key junction station of transportation, as four railways, namely the Tokaido Shinkansen, the Tokaido Main Line, the Hokuriku Main Line, and the Ohmi Railway trains run into this station.

Ohmi operates 59.5 km of track. The routes extend westward from Maibara to three terminals in the prefecture. They are Kibukawa on the Main Line, Ohmi-Hachiman on the Manyo-akane Line, and Taga-taisha-mae on the Taga Line. The track is single and electrified. The electric system is 1,500 V DC overhead. The gauge size is 1,067 mm. 

Because this local company belongs to the Seibu Group, its rolling stock has been provided by Seibu Railway. The EMU 700 series is no exception. It is the ex-Seibu 401 series, which was retired from the Seibu Line in 1997. After moving to Ohmi Railway, it was totally renovated and debuted as the EMU Ohmi 700 series on June 13th, 1998.

The 700 series is a two-car train (Mc + Mc') with streamlined bodies. Only one set (MoHa 701 + MoHa 1701) is operated on the line. Its large front windows are my favorite, since we can enjoy frontal views from the comfortable cross seats. Its specifications are rather old, but the 700 series is still maintained in good condition. The electric control system is classic rheostatic.

The EMU 700 series is the leading train on the Ohmi Railway.

EMU Ohmi Railway 700 series arrives at Hikone-guchi Station