Friday, 19 March 2010

Guest appearance

Just finished for the day and found this optare in the depot. I'm sure some hearts will flutter in glossop tomorrow when they read that the mega rider is 13.50. Nothing to worry about though. This optare is preston branded and is on loan for the week as our optare has some work done. Nothing serious. Not sure how many optares we have in manchester but there seems to be a demand. It's here for a week on the 390 should anyone fancy getting a proper shot of it.


  1. Anonymous19/3/10 21:17

    Is the corrie bus out of action two? Normally its the merc minibus that stands in for the solo on the 390. Maybe its filming.

  2. the merc mini bus has played a part on the 216....for some reason

  3. Do you not find them more difficult to maneouver with the front axle being so far forward?

  4. its prob something to do with the fact that the 390 must be run with a low floor bus, and the old biddies do nothing but moan when the step-entrance merc turns up. as for maneouverability, i find there isnt much difference between the solo's and the old vario's (which the solo's replaced), aside from a slightly worse turning circle. apparently the solo's are only 3" wider than the vario's!

  5. also, is it just me who thinks its a shame that most stagecoach subsidiaries have fancy route branding, like this, and we dont?

    i can see it now, plastered all over the 216's, the "frisbee" (similar to prestons boomerang, except they dont come back) "ashton - manchester in who-knows-how-long"

    217/218 "tour of tameside"
    "ashton - manchester in 2-and-a-half-hours"
    "via tameside general, and what seems like the rest of the universe"

    347 "stay on board and get to know your driver well, he has another 4 trips, yet"
    "be amazed at stagecoaches slowest and shittiest MANs in the fleet, which get dumped on here because it has no hills"

  6. Anonymous20/3/10 17:51

    'mh' what a typical anti-stagecoach comment.
    Firstly, the 390 is indeed low floor but quite often the merc 709d is used when the solo is out of action - which is normally at least once a week.

    Stagecoach Manchester do use route branding on some of there routes. The 250/X50 are branded, as will be the 11 soon i belive. However as most of the Manchester fleet arn't limited too the same routes it would be pretty foolish to route brand them for just one route.

    The 217/218 are long routes but they serve there purpose, otherwise why would Stagecoach run them?

    Lastly if you bother to read some of the earlier posts you should know that Stagecoach are limited to what vehicles they can allocate to Ashton because theres no adblue[bio fuel] tanks set up there, hence why the Mans and older Enviros are used - because they use diesel.

  7. I don't see the point f route branding for large operations though. You saw what first did with their 'colour line' theme and they're ripping it off now because too many people get confused when a route 8 branded bus is on the experienced and seen when the OAPS complained, despite the fact it was one of the first 59 reg buses on that route ever.

    I do like stagecoach but how did this shortage happen? it seemed like it happened when Maynes got bought out and theyre buses got scrapped or sent for Magic bus branding....I'm guessing they didn't get replaced or something

  8. Anonymous20/3/10 21:15

    I think the problem has been alot more recent than the Mayne's takeover William. Stagecoach had plenty of vehicles at both the Mayne's and Bullocks Takeovers. The problem has been that there slowly withdrawing low floor Tridents, Painting them blue and putting them back out on Magic Bus routes, thus the shortage of standard 'white' low floor buses. I think there planning to make a big order for new buses soon or cascade a big batch from another Stagecoach Group.

    First have always got there route branding wrong. I remember when they launched a service to the trafford centre and the buses used had route branding. The problem was some of the windows were completley covered. Where are the passengers surpose to look? Buses always look tatty and scruffy with route branding and even worse when they are working a route with branding for another.

  9. It could be but I assumed because they obtained a load of new toutes and passed them fleet to magic bus. Aslong as they get more buses in soon the better I guess, and as a driver I bet you' like some decent ones aswell???

    I would like to see more solos because Stagecoach do make them look nice. I would rather see them on the 217/8 anyway becuase they would probably stick to time easier and would've had much better manouverability.

  10. can i just point out to mister "anonymous" that i am a driver for stagecoach manchester, at ashton depot, and am well aware of the situation regarding the use of 40660 on the 390, and have been on the receiving end of the moaning and groaning when i have arrived on henry street driving the step-entrance 709d instead of the solo. obviously 47559 is going to be out of action for longer than expected, hence why a replacement has been drafted in from preston.

    what is anti-stagecoach about what i said?

    also, the route branding thing was a joke, im aware of some of the routes being branded (i still see a few 192's and 378's about). i meant it would be interesting to see some of our routes at ashton being branded

    the buses that are usually on 347's are shit, i know, i drive them!

    btw, adblue isnt biodiesel, but an additive to normal diesel to enable it to burn cleaner. the euro 4/5 engined buses dont just run on neat adblue!

    i suggest getting ur facts straight before criticising others!

  11. There was a Magicbus on the 236 yesterday morning.

  12. Anonymous21/3/10 16:51

    Well MH why didnt you share your views with Mr Souter last week. I wonder what he would of made of your comments.
    I dont work for Stagecoach so know very little about how there buses run, im only going off what ive read on this blog in the past.
    MH if you dont like the buses or Stagecoach do us all a favour and leave. I bet your one of them misrable drivers who just grunts and nods at the passengers like we've all done something wrong.

  13. A magic bus on the 236 has been common recently, mainly because they use a spare double deck for the large loads rather than a single deck ALX 300.

    I'm pretty sure MH is only joking around about stagecoach plus he works for them so no need to argue on Oldham100's blog.

    What is the deal with using magic buses though? I mean do they charge the usual stagecoach fare or offer or magic bus rate?

  14. That magic bus is at ashton for one thing, it's a short wheel base bus.

  15. M Branson22/3/10 17:14

    I think a permanent second Solo is needed at Ashton. Can't we nick one of Stockport's? Or even better, a band new one, seeming that Ashton Depot haven't had any brand new buses to their name yet partly due to the Enviro400 ad-blue situation?

  16. Anonymous22/3/10 17:39

    I carn't see Stockport parting with one of there fleet, but AZ does need another solo. Carn't belive Manchester dosen't have a spare Solo they could have loaned to AZ for a week though.

    Will be interesting to see if Stagecoach hang onto the Mossley school service that requires the short wheel base bus in September. I would imagine there keen to get rid so the bus can be cascaded with its sister.

  17. its a short wheelbase bus for the 842 longdendale high - gamesley via broadbottom (therefore via broadbottom bridge. if anybody dosent know said bridge, the approach and departure are both tight bends, hence the need for a short wheelbase bus. it makes me laugh every time i cross that bridge to see the stagecoach colours permanently gouged into it.

    its funny, but years ago i went over that bridge on what i swear was a (non-stagecoach) B10 coach on a rail replacement. i remember the driver having to shunt coming off of the bridge (going into broadbottom village)

  18. the majic is used on the 842 school bus (longdendale high - gamesley via broadbottom, and therefore, broadbottom bridge)

    for those who dont know said bridge, it has tight bends on both the approach and departure, hence the need for a short wheelbase bus.... and why the bridge is permanently gouged with stagecoach colours!

  19. That one is usually on the 150/151 Preston Bamber Bridge Circular route. Seen the Boomerang Buses like this one all the time in Preston Bus Station...