London Underground (LU) has taken delivery of two new tamping machines.
Costing £3.5 million each, the B45 Matisa units arrived at Ruislip depot on December 4 for seven weeks of acceptance trials, prior to entering into full service. LU will now phase out two of its three Class 07 Plasser plain line machines that are unable to tamp points and crossing (P&C) layouts.
LU also retains a Plasser compact P&C machine, but this is not capable of lifting and slewing large concrete modular track layouts efficiently, necessitating the B45s that had been ordered in 2014.
LU Senior Project Manager Lee Gladstone told RAIL that the existing machines, built in the 1970s, had become life-expired. This is because current P&C renewals use a newer design of long concrete bearers that weigh considerably more than the older timber layouts they often replace.
- For more on this, read RAIL 790, published on December 23.