A cheaper way to retrofit rly rakes

An economical way devised by the Central Railway (CR) to retrofit railway rakes to run on dual current traction systems is expected to extend the life of old rakes by 15 years.

“About 400 coaches will be retrofitted by December 2012,” said Kul Bhushan, General Manager, CR.

The work is on at Kurla carshed, and the first rake to be retrofitted, at a cost of Rs 4 crore, is expected to roll out in January. Work has already begun at the Kurla carshed to convert DC rakes with a residual life of 15 years into dual current (AC/ DC) rakes.

“We expect to complete the retro-fitment of at least one rake in the second week of December. Each rake has three cars; a driving trailer, a motor coach or power car and a trailer coach,” said a senior CR official.

CR’s electrical department has set up its own transformer and rectifier to retrofit the old trains, using a new method, which it says is cheaper than the others.