FART 2014

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moley
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Re: FART 2014

Post by moley » 15 Aug 2014, 07:47

Any news on the otter teams? Appears not the best of days for the sub-surface lines from what I could see.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by palkanetoijala31 » 15 Aug 2014, 08:55

we decided to with rhys and iain quite at around 5-6pm a certain stretch where we were on time led us to being 27 mins down in the space of an hour.

a good day though and using that new pathway is cool! good to try out new stuff even now!

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Re: FART 2014

Post by DrainBrain » 15 Aug 2014, 14:07

Well, although I was out and about I had an awful day.

- Kept missing connections, which on the Overground often means a 10-15 minute wait.
- Connections in the NW bad too, though I did enjoy the nice views on the run up to Chesham.
- It rained quite a bit, usually while I was on a between-stations walk.
- Didn't complete all the Overground stations. Still 9 left to do.
- Arrived at KenO at 18:55 expecting an 18:58 departure only to find that that particular departure is timetabled for 18:55. Missed it, but came back later via Earl's Court.
- Checking things today, I appear to have never been to Bethnal Green. So still one more station to do for a lifetime full network.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by The Orange One » 15 Aug 2014, 19:51

You have never visited Bethnal Green??? I find this hard to believe. There are normal last stations (like Olympia), slightly bizarre ones (like Epping) and then there's Bethnal Green for a 270th station.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by tractakid » 16 Aug 2014, 01:35

Summary of the day-

Nice to start off with everyone. Bumped into Marc Gawley (Still not sure exactly what he was doing at Chesham), and was awesome to see the Barton team, both of whom have done 20+ parkruns and Peter had chosen the same t-shirt to wear as me, parkrun 10 top! (Andrew, Tube_b, time added to the parkrun top times thread)

Was still on time until Uxbridge, having just made the Harrow and Wealdstone intended train after being a train down for several connections. Initial loss due to a slightly late departure from Edgware Road.

Train out of Uxbridge was late, which meant I lost time later switching Olympia round. Oh, also, managed to pee at Northwick Park which was handy. Train from here was also late but didn't cost me a connection.

Went from Wimbledon to South Wimbledon on the bus, and met the Bartons again going down to Morden and then Wimbledon!

I kept losing time, and the chedule was out the window. As I was going out to Upminster I looked at the c2c connection at West Ham and decided to go for the 5 minute wait- not ideal but not too bad and I wasn't sure how it would work at Upminster doing it the other way round.

This was the worst section. I was the only one on the District departure at Upminster, I just managed to squeeze through the doors- the next departure screen had been lying! It was a few minutes before departure and I was soon to find out why.

Signal failures around the Elm Park/Hornchurch area. I found this out as I managed to actually have a conversation with the driver at Upminster Bridge. He gets my driver of the day award. (despite the 'one iphone away from an apple store' lost property joke from the driver going to Amersham) He had noticed my wrestle with the door and took an interest in what I was doing, handing out the advice not to do it when it has been raining! After getting past the problem signals with the SPAD procedure, he made an announcement that we would be travelling at line speed again, I was at the front and said a loud 'woohoo' and the driver responded to that on the speakers :D Gave him a thumbs up when departing at West Ham.

Further delays at Lambeth North due to a 'passenger incident'.

Mill Hill East wasn't great, indicator said 9 minutes while at Camden Town but that was down to 6 at Finchley Central.

Perfect 307 bus. That takes so much stress/effort away!

Delays on the Chingford line. Should have gone to Queens Road. Ended up with a 20 minute wait at Woodford for a Hainault.

All went smoothly after that. Bumped into the Bartons again at T123, they had been behind me at Richmond, but had caught me right at the end, having done completely different routes.

I haven't heard back from Al yet, but assuming he didn't complete, it was just the Barton bothers and I that completed in a time of 17:22:53. 5 minutes outside of my PB and well over an hour behind my optimistic schedule, but nonetheless it was a good day to refresh my knowledge of the network and to prove to myself that I can do a full network all by myself- two of my now 4 completions have been somebody else's route.

Getting home was interesting... departed T5 about midnight on a train heading for Hammersmith, changed at Acton Town for Alperton. Got a bus to Wembley to catch the very last train back- 0146 from Wembley Central. But not before having an egg thrown in my direction (thankfully it missed everyone) from a passing car. Welcome to Alperton!

Met two cool people on the way home- guy called Afi who was also travelling to Wembley on the bus- got chatting about what I had been up to. He was concerned that Wembley Central would be all closed up, but I assured him there was one more train! He was right though- I got to the station about 0100 and it was locked up. It was only because he made some noise trying to open the door that I found out that they only unlock the doors for the train at 0130. He headed off but informed me about a nearby 24h McDonalds where I could go to kill some time, in the warm! I wasn't cold and wasn't hungry, so I just waited outside the door anyway.

Which is where I met cool person #2. Vanessa from Watford who had missed the last bus home and was incredibly worried about being stranded. She acted on a whim, something in her instinct told her to try Wembley Central just in case there was a train. She was incredibly relieved there was- and also relieved I was there, as she says that if I hadn't been she would have tried the locked door and given up, assuming no more trains.

Thankfully station staff did end up letting us early- and resulted in an interesting conversation with station staff. She expressed her concern at the locked doors, and eventually the station staffed liked an idea we had- that a note was put near the door explaining that there was 1 more train, and when the doors would be unlocked. Such an easy thing to do and is certainly reassuring for passengers that haven't used this train before.

Vanessa also had an interesting point about the locked door preventing people from topping up Oyster. There were about 2/3 people in the time I was there that needed to top up from the ticket machines, and couldn't do it, at least immediately, due to the locked door. Especially now that buses are cashless- it seems silly that at a staffed station with a train yet to depart they were unable to do this.

I do appreciate the safety concerns especially at Wembley Central with regard to the enclosed main line platforms, but surely one of the staff members can just at least supervise a 2 minute transaction in order to allow someone to get home?

Was strange to board a London Midland train at Wembley and as expected it was full of drunk people, one of whom was sick in a connecting corridor between carriages. Lovely.

Got to bed about 3am, shattered.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by Nigel » 16 Aug 2014, 07:52

Thanks for the write up. I'll try to find out if anyone else completed on Thursday and then update the top times list.

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Re: FART 2014

Post by moley » 16 Aug 2014, 08:07

Tractakid, you know exactly why Marc Gawley was there, you're just not considering the possibility. It was Marc's third attempt that week. I understand that he found himself with a spare few days and thought what the hell....!

Marc was the quickest on the day, finishing (too) close to the record for comfort.

Btw, the record is one today.
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tractakid
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Re: FART 2014

Post by tractakid » 16 Aug 2014, 11:23

He lied to me, then.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by hopeful traveller » 16 Aug 2014, 12:31

moley wrote:Btw, the record is one today.
It took me ages to work out what this meant.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by DrainBrain » 16 Aug 2014, 15:01

The Orange One wrote:You have never visited Bethnal Green??? I find this hard to believe. There are normal last stations (like Olympia), slightly bizarre ones (like Epping) and then there's Bethnal Green for a 270th station.
I know, it's very weird, and I could easily have gone there if I'd realised.

Also, my starting station appears to be Royal Oak during R15 Round 1 last September.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by nozzacook » 16 Aug 2014, 16:46

moley wrote:Tractakid, you know exactly why Marc Gawley was there, you're just not considering the possibility. It was Marc's third attempt that week. I understand that he found himself with a spare few days and thought what the hell....!

Marc was the quickest on the day, finishing (too) close to the record for comfort.

Btw, the record is one today.
If he finished at t5 I didn't see him and was there from 22:30 to 23:10 to see if any one got close.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by tractakid » 16 Aug 2014, 17:55

I think he started on the 0703? Possibly?
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Re: FART 2014

Post by moley » 16 Aug 2014, 23:19

I do not hold that information!
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Re: FART 2014

Post by Iain » 17 Aug 2014, 10:17

I'd say so - he was at Chesham with us but there was no sign of him on any of the changes, and Moor Park was so tight he couldn't have avoided us if he was on the same train. He could have waited for an even later train I guess.

Our day went pretty well, at least at first. The NW corner went smoothly - the tightest change of two mins at Amersham as fine as the incoming train was on time, and only the four minute change at Moor Park, where the target train was four minutes early caused any rise in adrenaline. This meant an early arrival at Watford, but sadly no chance to get a train up as we sat there for a while. N Harrow to Rayners worked a treat as a quick check on buses told us one was due, and we sped past several runners, having not expended any unnecessary energy.

And so down to Ealing Common. I've not done the upside down figure four option around Ealing before, and didn't really this time, as again a bus was due and we used this to get a train up at Ealing Broadway. We used this time to double back to White City, one further than originally planned, so that we didn't have to do it later which would make a run from Ken O tough. The train to W Ruislip left on time, but crawled. There should have been a nine minute run from there to Ickenham, which would be fine, but this was cut to five which was too tough for any of us. We decided to leave the Preston Road double back until later, meaning we were otherwise on our schedule so that we were following a planned route until much later in the day when we had to include Preston Road, by which time the big three could have been done.

Everything down the Bakerloo and out to Upminster went fine - we stayed on schedule and actually got a few minutes up. This meant a long wait at Aldgate so Rhys got a Subway, but the Circle line train was late and crawled, making us seven or eight minutes late back at Victoria. However thanks to a run of sexy changes down to Morden, we'd got back on our plan by the southernmost point of the network. The transfer to Wimbo as tighter than expected but we made the train just, and headed up to Earl's Court. We were late in so missed our planned Baron's Court double back ad also the extra Ken O train although I'm not sure what we'd have done if we'd caught it as we'd have been right in the middle of two loop trains. We used this time to get food, and then up to Ken O and then Shepherd's Bush without a loop train. We'd met up with Andi and Nozza by this point but our loop train got held at Roding Valley for an age, meaning we missed our three min connection up to Epping. This messed up our change to the Victoria line so we were fifteen minutes down, but made a nice use of the Tangy Bypass up to Walthamstow Central. Down to Warren Street, and we considered a handy MHE train that was three mins away, but by this point the bottom of the Circle was going belly up and we needed that next so went for the Edgware option first. This crawled dropping us further down, with more of the network we needed going tits up. Rhys had a coach home booked for relatively early and if Rhys wasn't gong to complete and I wasn't going to get sub 17 then I wasn't that interested in continuing, so we hit a KFC and subsequently a pub. It was still a really fun day but the sub 17 eluded us once again.
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Re: FART 2014

Post by MarcG » 17 Aug 2014, 15:08

Hey everybody!

As Chris says it was fairly late on that I got this sorted. It was prompted by Barton’s claim that he had a 15h route. Reading the forum posts it was clear not everyone was convinced by this, thinking he must have missed something somewhere, but why not? Is there a way to demonstrate what the fastest possible time is without knowing the route?

He got me thinking and I ended up doing this analysis a couple of weeks ago about the minimum theoretical time to visit the 270 London Underground stations. It came out at 15h 18m. Other interpretations and assumptions are available…(insights and improvements to the approach appreciated. Also if you think it’s too much information to have public, let me know, I don’t want to spoil things.)

Looking at the Tube Challenge fresh after a few years (and, credit where it’s due, on one point prompted by something Mr Barton had said about his route) I noticed a few ways I could tweak mine for the better. I also put my old route through journey planner and noticed that some of the stretches had faster running trains now.

In total I ended up with a couple of options with different start times that comfortably beat Geoff and Anthony’s time by quite some margin and I thought, ah, go on then, I’ll just do it every day this week until it works, easy...

But as I’m sure everyone on this forum is aware, paper times and actual times are not the same thing!

Tuesday:
The second train of the day from C&L back out to Amersham showed up 15 minutes late, so that was a bit annoying. To put it mildly.

Wednesday:
Going ok until there was a broken down train on the Jubilee line. I had just run to Stanmore when the line shut down for 30 minutes or so, and not being in the centre meant I was completely out of alternative options. That killed it.

Thursday:
I hoped to avoid the crowds with a different start time, but was spotted by Tractakid. Firstly, let me apologise to you! I was quite flustered you recognised me, and wanted to talk to you for longer than the 10 seconds we did, but I was pretty stressed about my trainers (more below) and the time and wanted to get into Chesham and the first thing I could think of to cut short the conversation politely was “Er, I’m just going to get some supplies...”. But alas, that was only the beginning of my amateurishness of the day...

The new trainers I had were far too slippery in the wet and I couldn’t run properly – thankfully the gf brought me a different pair later on, but the slowness had already accumulated into being many trains down.
http://youtu.be/tjhTqGSmQYY

By early evening my phone battery died meaning I had to do the last two runs without Google maps, and got them both wrong costing more time. You’d be surprised how hard it is to get someone in 2 minutes to explain to you “how do I run from Mill Hill East to Finchley Central?” when
• You are both on a train due to leave Finchley Central to go to Mill Hill East.
• The same train comes back to Finchley Central in 5 minutes anyway.
• They are adamant that the choice of where to get off the train to exit the station is between left and right, not front and back, and you use at least 1.5 minutes up on that.

Heading out to Heathrow at the end of the day it looked to be just out of reach as there was a big gap in the Heathrow service with everything for the next 10+ minutes going out on the Uxbridge branch. It didn’t help that I almost made the worst connection ever earlier on the line (in fairness, everyone else on the first train had the same first thought as me):
http://youtu.be/brMn4sUK1R4

However, we carried on with a 1% hope that the T4-bound train wouldn't wait at T4 before stating back to central London, and would go straight around again to 123 to regulate the service. In this case we'd have a shot of a quick connection to the T5 departure to possibly beat the record by a v small amount of time.

But it didn't, it waited at T4, so that was that.

In the end it was a 16:3something completion but I stopped paying attention once the signal board at T4 said 7 minutes (Nigel, Chris, I take back the “16:2something” I wrote to you on Friday. I had just presumed it would have been a high 16:2something but speaking to Kate yesterday she’s certain the stopwatch was already onto 16:3something - 16:36 she thinks - when I got off the train at T5 to meet her).

Friday:
I stay asleep in bed until midday. I wake up. My girlfriend is not there anymore. I hate the tube.

Olympia Thoughts:
I ended up in the control room at Earl’s Court on Monday, i.e., the day before the Olympia service started. The difference between i) how helpful the staff are and ii) how backward the process/infrastructure is was quite marked.

I asked a group of 4 staff on the platform to confirm what time the Olympia services would be tomorrow. Only one had an idea there could be any. A few minutes later I am in the control room and another couple of people are trying to find out for me. They work out that indeed there will be a different service, but do not have those particular 2 pages of printed information in their binder that gives the revision to the timetable.

It’s not available online anywhere for them.

They start phoning around various acronyms (I don’t know what they stood for) and eventually find a controller or a manager or District Line God or something who has a copy.

That person then has to fax it to them.

In total it was the best part of ¾ of an hour to get the information on the trains that would be going through their station the next day. As I say, the difference between i) and ii) was quite startling.

As someone else has written, the Olypmia service didn’t always run according to this timetable anyway. I waited for one on Wednesday that left [having got into] Earl’s Court 14 minutes late. The guy on the platform didn’t know if it was coming or not, couldn’t find out, and thought I was a moron for not taking his advice to go to West Brompton and switch to the Overland every time a Wimbledon train left next to us. (“Why are you still waiting, you could have been there by now mate...”).

Beer thoughts:
The reason we all did this was because of the beer festival. So how about a meetup over a beer and share our stories of the day? What about this Wednesday at King’s Cross/St Pancras, say around 5pm so it’s early enough for Tube_b to join? Tracktakid, can I buy you a beer?

Cheers,
Marc

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