Spare Vehicle 749


The only other vehicle which is left is Driving Trailer 749 which is still in its final passenger livery and is kept as a spare for 752

Belfasts Last Thumper

On the 14th of October 2017 I finally managed to get to Belfast to see the last Thumper in service which had been demoted to non passenger departmental use.

It is now a Sandite Unit, whats Sandite I hear you all say. Well its a sticky sandy material which is applied to the track during the autumn leaf fall period and the thumper is whats used to apply it.


​Sadly 2017 was the last year for the Thumper so I had to make the trip to see it and I was lucky enough to get access to York Road Depot where it is kept to see it


The unit is made up of 4 vehicles so I'll cover them vehicle by vehicle.



Power Car 90


This is a recent addition to the formation, it replaced 94 in as it failed drastically so is the odd one out as it is still in the passenger livery​​

Sandite Car 97


This is the vehicle what does all the work in the unit, former Power car 97

​It originally done its sandite work under its own power but had catastrophic engine failure back in 2009 and it was  decided to keep it as a trailer  rather than transplant the sandite equipment into another vehicle.

​I aplogise for the poor photos but as there was another train parked alongside I couldn't get a wider shot

Even though the unit has run its last Sandite its looking like all the vehicles except 97 will be going to Downpatrick so hopefully my next article about it will be about its new home

Power car 69


​The original Power Car in the formation is the bright yellow number vehicle.

​When repainted it was mistakenly numbered 8096 so a quick fix was needed so you ended up with 8069.

Driving Trailer 752

The last vehicle in the unit is driving trailer 752

This is only here to provide the correct coupling formation as the vehicles have to be coupled cab to cab with 97 in the middle it would cause connectivity issues  and would also give more breaking force in slippery conditions