Last fruits from Friday in The Shire



The grounds of  Hazelhurst Cafe Gallery, Gymea


Gymea Station


Kiama via Wollongong express train arriving at Sutherland, 4pm.

It’s understandable that people complain about the Oscar as less satisfactory than the old V-Sets they have now replaced. The seats ARE harder, and the peak trains are overcrowded. I was lucky to get a seat on Friday.

V-Sets could come as six or eight car sets, which they quite often did. So even though Oscars have marginally greater seating capacity (on less comfortable seats) the fact the trains on our line are now always four car sets cancels out that advantage.


Interior of a V-Set car.


In service 1970–present

Manufacturer Comeng

Constructed 1970–1989

Formation 2, 3, 4, 6 (2 x 3-car or 1 x 2-, 1 x 4-car sets), 8 (2 x 4-car sets)

Capacity 96 seated (driving cars), 112 seated (trailer cars). 192 in 2-car set, 304 in 3-car set, 416 in 4-car set.


In service 2006 – present

Manufacturer United Group Rail

Constructed 2006 – present

Formation 4 and 8 car – but in the RARE case of 8, you cannot walk through from car 4 to car 5 as the 8 set is just two 4-sets coupled. The Waratah – and I saw one the other day – does seem capable of 6 or 8 car configuration. In fact I see that it has a seating capacity of 896 with 16 wheelchair spaces. No toilets though. Not used on the Illawarra Line.

Capacity 432 seated (four car set – 102 in driving car, 118 in motor car, 110 in motor car with lavatory)