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DB Schenker

Project: MA sets overhaul


Houghton International carried out an overhaul to improve the performance and reliability of MA sets on DB Schenker’s fleet of vehicles.

The challenge

Houghton International was awarded a contract from DB Schenker to improve the performance and reliability of all MA sets on DB Schenker’s fleet of Mark 2 rail coaches. Houghton International was to deliver the overhaul in accordance with a required specification and against rigid repair programme.

The solution

Houghton International sent a qualified team to DB Schenker’s site in Scotland to carry out further investigations on the failed MA sets. After consultation with the customer, the units were sent to Houghton International’s workshop for the overhaul to be carried out. Retaining all resources in-house to fully comply with the required specification, Houghton International overhauled, repaired and rewound the failed MA sets where required. Applying the HiTRANS transient dynamic load test process meant that each MA set was electrically simulated at full load conditions to replicate exactly what happens in service.

Why Houghton International

Houghton International’s strong reputation and experience in the Rail sector
HiTRANS load testing facilities to simulate MA set operating conditions
Direct access to engineering support and technical expertise

Related Services

Motor Alternator Set Repair Services

The Results

Houghton International’s innovative HiTRANS dynamic load test process was developed to combat the issue of premature in-service MA set failures by fully simulating the full load characteristics prior to install. This has significantly improved the performance and reliability of DB Schenker’s assets.

The team at Houghton International maintained consistent communication with the customer throughout the overhaul, ensuring that they received regular updates and could raise any queries with the engineering. An invitation was also extended to DB Schenker for them to visit Houghton International’s workshop to see the progress of the overhaul.

After suffering a poor run of reliability from our MA (motor alternator) sets for our fleet of Mark 2 rail coaches, we at DB Schenker Scotland decided to investigate services supplied from alternative companies rather than the one we were using.

After a tip off from a colleague in the rail industry, I contacted Houghton International who, very quickly, sent a team on to site in Scotland to listen to our problems and to look at the feasibility of overhauling these units. They quickly realised that it was similar work to what they were already undertaking for other Train Operators and we decided to send an MA set to their factory for repair.

I was invited, along with colleagues, to visit the factory to see the work in progress and also the testing facilities that prove the completed unit. We found this very interesting and useful.

We received the completed unit which we fitted onto the coach and it is performing well to this day. Nothing was too much trouble, and the level of after sales service was excellent.

Allister McDonald, DB Schenker

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