01 April 2013

Super Swoop Swap

Keep an eye out from today for Plymouth Citybus 91 which has received this experimental application of the swoops livery to see if its saves money. After issues with the swoops peeling off on a few of the earlier applications a new stronger glue has been used recently. This has indeed solved the peeling issues but the raised profile of the stripe has potentially increased the running cost of each bus as it becomes less aerodynamically efficient. In recent wind tunnel experiments performed as part of Go Ahead Groups recent partnership with Williams F1 team it was found that the raised profile of the swoop could in theory cost as much as £5 a day for each bus in extra fuel costs. It might not sound much but over the next couple of years over a hundred buses in the new livery could see a cost of over £500 per day – which adds up over a full year. By simply reversing the swoop the wind tunnel tests reduced this to less than £1 a day per vehicle which is quite a saving.

Of course these wind tunnel experiments may not work out in the real world so 91 will be tested against number 88 with both buses in use on the same duties each day to see if the savings can be achieved and also to see if the cost of reversing the swoops comes to more than the savings in which case then the current swoop application will remain in place.

Plymouth Citybus 91 WA56OZR

©B George.

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  1. I would suggest that the wind tunnel tests will only make a marginal saving in fuel consumption by reversing the direction of the swoops. A more meaningful saving could be made by streamlining the body and removing all protrusions. Looking again at this photograph, it seems to me that the rear view mirrors present the greatest interruption to smooth air flow over the bodywork.

    In order to make greater savings in fuel, I would suggest that they be removed from the front corners of the bus and replace them onto the rear corners. In that position, they could actually produce a benefit in developing a vacuum effect when the bus is moving, which would help to disperse exhaust gases.

    Perhaps this experiment could be implemented in a year's time.

  2. Those April Fools are coming thick and fast!

  3. As part of the experiment bus 91 will also have a short nearside mirror arm fitted in place of the current long sticking out arm.
    Not only will this potentially save more fuel but it will save the cost of continual damage with these mirrors being damaged against bus stops which have been placed too near to the pavements edge at various places around the City.

    1. This may have been an April Fool Joke...but on a serious note a much better livery has been achieved,the swoop is shown going the correct way.

  4. A recent letter I received from Richard Stevens clearly demonstrates that customer are not given a damn about. This company is all profit now.

    Got a complaint? Don't bother, they don't care.

    The ridiculousness of the cost of the livery is enough for me.

    1. Richard Stevens is a great bloke though. He has brought a totally fresh view to Citybus, for example the Chatterbus alone is something I believe would never have previously happened. I believe he really has changed the face of the company, as they do seem to now be looking to expand and improve services as opposed to cutting back. Before Richard Stevens was appointed MD, what services were improved? Nearly every batch of timetable changes included cutbacks, with very few if any improvements. Sounds a bit negative and grumpy but that's the case. Look at what they're doing now. Last year's Chatterbus consultations were an amazing step-forward, they really did listen to customers and in the network today there are suggestions that customers put forward that are actually happening.

      Had the pleasure of meeting Richard Stevens himself at one of the Chatterbus consultations last summmer, he was really friendly, cheerful and really did want to know your opinions on the proposed network changes.

      Would the 45 to Ivybridge be running under 'old management'? I very much doubt it. I really do believe had Richard Stevens not joined, many features of the network (e.g. lots of extra evening and Sunday services), would not be running today.

  5. Obviously however, this is an April fool.

    Citybus and profits is sad, but not this sad :P

  6. Photoshop was clearly used here, look at the poor patch up on the side.

    1. Dear oh dear it's an April Fool jest for God's sake. Get a life.

  7. mike hudson PCTPG1 April 2013 at 21:04

    even tho its an april fool, I actually prefer it! at least the swoop doesn't mask part of the dest glass like it did when it was the other way round. I reckon it should be reversed as in the picture!


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