Re: BLS Liveries


Am 14.05.2021 um 08:22 schrieb Alan McMillan:
I was always under the impression that 50 85 was only the SBB?
As you say, it WAS.

In 1964 the freight stock got 12-digit numbers defined by UIC. Third and fourth digit indicated the owner. The following codes were given:
62 SP = Schweizerische Privatbahnen, Güterwagenpool
63 BLS

Other companies did not apply 12 digit numbers. But around 1990 SBB wanted the other companies to use UIC-numbers as well. In a first move, SOB and BT numbered their newly delivered EW IV 50 62 ...., even if this code was defined as "freight car pool of Swiss private railways".

But things moved, and UIC allowed to use 34-39 and 45-49 in a national context. In Siwtzerland 46 meant SZU, in Austria it meant GKB.

In 2006 OTIF and ERA took over, meaning that no longer it was a task of the railways to define the numbers but it was now the states. Third and fourth digit of the number became country codes instead of company codes. 85 now stands for Switzerland, no longer for SBB.

The few "private" codes had to be cleared. 62 became the code for Montenegro, 63 hasn't yet been attributed. To indicated the keeper of a vehicle, its VKM (Vehicle Keeper Marking) is now put behind the number.

It took some time until this change was done on the vehicles. In 2012 I could take a photo of two BLS vehicles, one numbered after the old and one numbered after the new system

Thus, driving trailer 951 of BLS originally had the number
50 63 20-33 951-4
and now became
50 63 80-35 951-3 CH-BLS

Freight stock was part of a wagon pool of Swiss Private Railways. In 1950 all wagons got new numbers and instead of the company only "SP" was written. Small companies had the lower numbers, the big companies (EBT/VHB/SMB, BT, BLS/SEZ/GBS/BN) had four-digit numbers. With the introduction of UIC-numbers these wagons should get numbers with 62 as owner code. Many wagons were withdrawn before that but BLS had an important number of "SP" wagons with 21 62 ... numbers. Last acquisition were four bogie cement wagons in 1972
31 62 9322 000-003 SP
At the end of the century, the pool was formally dissolved and these wagons became
31 63 9322 000-003 BLS
2002 these wagons were sold to Vigier Ciments at the time as private wagons
33 85 9322 000-003[P] SBB-CFF
2006 this changed to
33 85 9322 000-003 CH-VICEM
They are still around.

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