Phibsborough's brand new SG10 is seen on the Diswellstown Road operating Route 37 on the 19th September 2014.
The latest additions to the Dublin Bus fleet have started to appear on the city streets. The SG class are Wright Gemini 3 bodied Volvo B5TL buses. They are quite similar to DM1, featured recently on these pages, which is still in service with Dublin Bus on Route 9. They have a distinctive appearance with the small windows upstairs, necessitated by the need to save weight due to the engine size reduction. This reduction in engine size itself was necessitated by the Euro6 requirements no enforced on newly built buses. The SG's are quite distictive looking versus other Gemini 3 bodied buses in that they have the backward sloped windscreen to minimise glare. It is always a testiment to Dublin Bus that they invest heavily in safety, such a bespoke arrangement cannot be cheap. This time Wrights have moulded a new body front, which emphasises the step between this sloped windscreen and the destination box. The appearance is quite unattractive, especially when viewed side on.
Donnybrook's SG34 is seen on Blackrock Main Street operating Route 7 on the 19th September 2014.
Donnybrook's first SG's entered service on Tuesday 16th September 2014. Phibsborough's entered service on Thursday 18th September 2014. In total 70 buses are due to be delivered this year. The allocations are as follows:
- Phibsborough: SG1-14 (Route 37)
- Donnybrook: SG15-37 (Routes 7, 7B, 7D and 8)
- Clontarf: SG37-45 (Route 42)
- Harristown: SG46-70 (Routes 17A and 27B)
The 37 has already been partially GT operated for some time, the 37, among other routes in Phibsborough getting allocated GT buses off the 9's allocation. The 7 is an interesting choice because it was the first route to get GT class buses. It is understood the reasoning for this is to compare fuel efficiency between the two classes of buses. The 42 is already partially GT, so Clontarf may just float these buses into the general GT allocations. Finally the 17A and 27B are being muted as the Harristown routes to be converted, though it may be recalled that the 140 was the route that was muted to be GT class operated after the last delivery of buses. So we may have to wait for delivery to see which routes they settle onto.
Phibsborough's SG12 is seen at the Blanchardstown Shopping Centre terminus of Route 37 on the 19th September 2014.
Donnybrook's SG32 is seen on Temple Road Blackrock operating Route 7 as dusk begins to settle on Dublin on the 19th September 2014.
Its always good to catch a rarity, so lets hope the SGs do end up on other routes from time to time. So far it has not been too bad. SG17 has operated Route 44, SG32 has operated Route 46E, SG10 operated Route 9 and the photo below shows SG3 on Route 39A. No doubt there's been others.
Phibsborough's SG3 is seen operating Route 39A to UCD Belfield on Baggot Street on the 19th September 2014.
Update: Clontarf and Harristown SGs enter service:
Harristown's brand new SG50 is seen at the Monkstown Avenue terminus of Route 4 on the 8th November 2014.
The fist Harristown SGs entered service on Monday the 3rd November 2014. Rumour had it they were destined for the 17A/27B, but they have ended up on previously GT routes, principally the 4, though they have also been on Euro duties, as per the first one to appear in service. Tuesday 4th November was the first day they appeared regularly on the 4. GTs have been cascaded onto other routes, though there seems no logic in it thus far. I was wondering whether Harristown where ver going to put the SGs into service, especially when AV85 and AV86 entered service at the end of October. A number of Harristown's batch have still to enter service.
A rear shot of SG50 at the Monkstown Avenue terminus on the 8th November 2014.
Clontarf put there first SG into service on the 15th October 2014. These have also ended up on a former GT route, the 29A. This time, the 42 had been chosen but was deemed unsuitable in the end. Again, GTs have cascaded to other routes. The 27X in the evening also has shown a few sightings, the evening departures on the 27X often sharing buses from the 29A allocation. I caught up with SG43 at the Baldoyle terminus of Route 29A on the 8th November, the threatening sky in the background probably expresses well how drenched I got that day.
Clontarf's new SG43 is seen at the Baldoyle terminus of Route 29A on the 8th November 2014.