The trams of Brno on a cold weekend
I don't often go to the Czech Republic for tramspotting, because I don't really like Tatras, and that is what most cities there have to offer. I can re-phrase that: Bohemia is a wonderful place with tons of sights-to-be-seen, and their trams are one of the lesser interesting ones, at least as far as vehicles are concerned. Because system-wise they have some wonderfully operating public transit systems - I wish our transit systems were as good as their's!
On December 28 my friend NZA came up with the idea of making a short visit to Brno, and two days later we were there, despite by bias. It was a cold, unfriendly saturday, but I must admit, the tram system there kept my heart warm :)
We've parked our car somewhere near Komenského námesti and as soon as we saw the first pair of rails, we started taking photos. Please excuse me for not knowing the exact subtype of every vehicle. Basically, this above is a Tatra K2 - it might be a K2P or a K2MM.
Oh, and here's _the_ classic, the T3. It might be a T3P, but much more interesting is that this very car made some test runs in Budapest in '75/76. Fortunately CKD Tatra (and the BKV) went a new way afterwards: instead of adapting the T3 for Budapest: they developed the T5C5.
Ulica Masarykova is the main shopping street/pedestrian area...
... and this function harmonizes well with trams running through there. The one on the picture is called a "Vario-LF" (or T3R.EVN at other places): it's basically a newly-built T3 with a strecthed body featuring a low-floor part in the middle (between the trucks).
Namesti Svobody seemed to be the main square. The single Tatra tramcar on the photo...
... is I believe a T3G, with a retrofitted chopper instead of the PCC accelerator. I could not really tell apart the diverse submodels, because there were modernisations at different times with different changes on the outside.
The interior of a T3.
For a short break: two non-tram photos...
... of the inner city. And now let's...
... get back to the trams! There's a four-track section near the mail railway station (Hlavni Nadrazi), where these KT8D5 articulated trams were literally running like they were racing on their parallel lanes :)
And then there are some nice gradients, too, which the trams take flawlessly.
I believe this is one of the KT8D5Ns built in the nineties, with a low-floor middle-piece.
A rebuilt K2 with a face-lift. Or it might be that it was already built with this "new face"...
... because there are some like that, too.
Despite that fact that it was saturday, tram traffic was remarkably intense...
... with trams departing...
... and arriving every minute!
Oh, and here's another interesting modification: the K3R-N, which is a K2 with an added low-floor middle part. Two were rebuilt from already existing cars, and two were newly fabricated, I believe.
And here's what I wanted to try in real life: the 03T partly-low-floor tramcar. In fact it's a "two-rooms-and-a-bath" with the riding qualities of those constructions.
The interior did not impress me either...
... so we returned to the Tatras. Though I don't like the T3, the K2s seemed to be quite nice. And robust...
... and powerful enough to climb gradients under moist and icy conditions.
The interior of a K2.
There are K2s in the traditional cream-red livery, but I thought the better ones were those with an all-over advertisement.
Another K2 in "shrink-wrap", but this time one with a route number plate instead of a digital display on the front.
Terminus Obrany with a classic (though somewhat modernised) T3 and a Vario-LF.
A side-view of the same two cars...
... and an internal shot. I must admit, I had some prejudice against this kind of low-floor streetcar, but it ran very smooth - of course just as we expect from a bogie car, which it is.
Unfortunately it started to get dark quite early, so our visit ended soon. I believe I must come back here sometime, because there are types that we did not get to see this day, like the T6s and the low-floor trailers.
And whoever wants to see more
of those classic Tatras I don't really like, here are some pages with
pictures of them:
© Ákos Endre VARGA, unless stated otherwise. All rights reserved.
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