The Class 319 dual-voltage, four-car Electric Multiple Units were built by British Rail Engineering Limited (BREL) in York between 1987 and 1988 (Class 319/0) and 1990 (Class 319/1) for use on the north-south cross-London services, notably the then-new Thameslink service which commenced in May 1988 running between Bedford and Brighton. Entering traffic in Network SouthEast colours, the units later received Thameslink livery, and many have subsequently found use with other operators away from London including Northern Rail.
372-875 No. 319004 in the colourful Network SouthEast (Revised) livery of red, white and blue as the units would have been when fresh into traffic, this model is fitted with a Sprung Stone Faiveley pantograph.
372-876 The Thameslink franchise was operated by Thameslink (Govia) from 1997. The Class 319/1s built in 1990 were the only 319s to feature first class seating but this was quickly removed by Thameslink, following which the units were reclassified as Class 319/3s. No. 319382 depicts a typical Thameslink Class 319/3 in its bold blue and yellow livery and fitted with a Sprung Brecknell Willis pantograph.
372-877 As new trains were acquired for Thameslink services, many 319s found work away from London including twenty 319/3s with Northern Rail. Following light refurbishment, the units were decorated in Northern Electrics livery as carried by No. 319362 which is fitted with a Sprung Brecknell Willis pantograph.
The new model boasts an impressive specification with highly detailed bodyshells, underframes and bogies. Fitted with a sprung pantograph (Brecknell Willis or Stone Faiveley depending on the unit modelled) and with conductive couplings between each vehicle, just one Next18 Decoder is required for use on DCC. Installing a decoder is a simple process due to the easy-access decoder socket which is accessed by removing one of the underframe panels which is held in place by a single screw.
The powerful coreless motor is coupled to a flywheel, all of which is fitted into the underframe of the MSO vehicle meaning that all four vehicles have unobstructed interiors which are further enhanced by the interior lighting. The models feature switchable directional lighting, plus a pre-fitted speaker.
The Graham Farish Class 319 feature:
Rapido Trains UK have announced their first 00 gauge ready to run South Eastern and Chatham Railway (SECR) / Southern Railway wagons. These new models cover the Diagram 1355 seven-plank open and both the Diagram 1347 and Diagram 1349 five-plank opens built by the South Eastern & Chatham Railway on the same Maunsell/Lyons steel underframe.
The 7 plank open, later SR Diagram 1355, were the SECR’s most numerous wagon with 2,121 wagons built between 1915 and 1927. The SR later fitted a sheet rail. British Railways had over 70 wagons still in service in the 1960s and the last withdrawals were not until the 1970s. Several were sold into private usage, including the Port of Bristol Authority. Three of these wagons are preserved on the Bluebell Railway.
The 5 plank opens utilised the same steel chassis as the 7 plank wagons, 550 were built between 1920 and 1925 with standard buffers that became SR Diagram 1347. A further 150 were built 1921/2 with self contained buffers and became SR Diagram 1349. There were withdrawn in the early 1960s. Two D1347 wagons are preserved, with one at the Bluebell Railway and the other at the Severn Valley Railway.
The model tooling allows for variations to be produced including the 7 plank open with or without sheet rails and the two different buffer styles on the 5 plank versions. They will include high levels of body and underframe detail, metal stamped parts, metal bearing cups and NEM coupler pockets.
The initial versions being produced are as follows:
My friends, Andy and Richard at Rapido Trains UK advised: “that it their long-term aspiration to undertake some manufacturing in UK. Having a UK design team is the first step towards that. These wagons have been researched and designed 100% in the UK. All we’ve done is to send the completed CADs to our factory in China for manufacturing. We have a number of wagon projects that our UK designers are working on and we’ll announce these shortly. As the business grows and our range increases in size, we’re hopeful that more and more rolling stock projects will be designed in this country.”
21c7 was one of the first batch of ten Merchant Navy pacifics, she was introduced in June 1942 in malachite green livery but was quickly repainted in plain black as a wartime measure. Hornby have produced her in a similar early condition to the previous R3435 21C3 ‘Royal Mail’ model released in malachite green back in 2017, see my review here. The body captures the shape and curves of the original well, with ‘widows peak’ cowl above the smokebox and no smoke deflectors. The extensive suite of tooling by Hornby for the Merchant Navy pacific range includes the correct 5000 gallon tender, as fitted to the first ten Merchants, complete with its air smoothed curves to the front of the coal space and roof over the footplate.
21c7 remained in this condition until August 1944 when she gained the more familiar cowl above the smokebox and also received short flared smoke deflectors. She gained the to become standard length and style of smoke detectors whilst still in black in June 1947. Prior to full rebuilding in May 1958 she received the modified wedge shaped cab , losing the curved swept cab front, in March 1950. She carried malachite green from June 1947, BR Blue from March 1950 then BR Green from December 1952. She was finally withdrawn in her rebuilt form in July 1967 due to a broken cylinder.
I wont repeat all of my past reviews, as the mechanics of the model are the same as the other original Merchant Navys in the range with a 5-pole motor and a large flywheel, with pickups on all driving wheels and the tender giving impressive performance all round. The outstanding high level of detail especially within cab is present as we have come to expect with Hornby’s other Merchants. Also as with the previous releases the brake rodding and front steps come pre fitted, whilst a standard accessory pack contains buffer beam pipes, front coupling and two sets of cylinder drain pipework. The additional set of drain pipes are supplied, in addition to the standard accessory pack, to allow for the lower fairing in front of the cylinders on this version.
As with other Merchant Navys in the range the front edge of the body side, due to the limitations of the tooling for a mass production model, are perhaps slightly too thick I may well look to bevel these from the inside edge slightly to deceive the eye in the area. The decoration whilst simple is very well applied with the SR Sunshine lettering and its green shading lifting the mood against the black sides. The ‘C’ of the loco number is correctly slightly larger than the numbers. The nameplates although separately applied are printed and therefore flat looking and I will be replacing these with etched plates from Fox Transfers. The front electric lamps and lamp irons above the buffer beam have like all the versions released a slight backward lean to them. The electric lamps are in reality are hung from the underside of the swan neck style lamp iron and also had electric conduit attached. However, on the model the lamp is attached via a perpendicular lug on their back into holes on the sloping front casing. Like I did on 35024 I will probably replaced these three lamp irons with etched brass versions so they are stronger and correctly face forwards. The lamps are correctly black (the lamp casing were black painted brass on the front and body livery colour painted steal casings on the tender). Each lamp has a silver blob to represent the lens, however in reality these lens appear more gloss black unless the lamp is actually lit.
I also intend to forward the date the front end of mine to add the later standard cowl above the smokebox box, but I am still deciding which version of the smoke deflectors to fit; either the early short flared type or the what was to become standard style and length. The latter is a slightly easier conversion as can be seen in the image to the left. Once I have decided it will become the topic of a future post.
Despite the few points above the model even in its plain black livery captures the imposing look of this early condition Merchant Navy Pacific is a welcome addition to the Hornby range that also see the release this year in BR Green of R3649 3502 ‘Ellerman Lines’, R3716 35022 ‘Holland America Line’ and R386135017 ‘Belgian Marine’.
All ten versions of the much-anticipated Kernow Model Rail Centre 00 ex LSWR / SR Diagram 1541 10T Road Vans have now been manufactured, are on route to the UK and due for the dispatch of pre-orders at the beginning of July.
First introduced by the London & South Western Railway (LSWR) in 1884 they were later classed as Southern Railway Diagram 1541. Almost 500 of these were built between then and 1905 making them the most numerous LSWR Goods Brake Van. Brake Vans with side doors through which parcels or other goods could be loaded were known as road vans.
Included within the ten versions are different liveries from the original LSWR, both Southern Railway variations, early British Railways, departmental through to as preserved examples. The tooling has also catered for the Mainland and Isle of Wight versions with either straight or cranked step board supports (as fitted on the IoW versions) and round or ribbed shanked buffers.
The models will arrive in in the UK at Southampton, that was appropriately the main docks for the London and South Western Railway, at the end of June. KMRC have included in the range van number 56046 as preserved on the Isle of Wight Steam Railway. that we originally laser scanned, and number S54663 that was the last road van in service based at Wadebridge, although officially withdrawn in July 1958, it survived in some form of service until 1961. It was then purchased by the Bluebell Railway as their first item of goods rolling stock in May 1962.
Announced as part of the Hornby 2021 range, the Gangwayed Bogie Luggage vans have now arrived at retailers. An old version of these vans with a Triang heritage has been in and out of the Hornby catalogue for some time and were very much something of a comprise (and it is not even worth comparing it with these new models). These newly released models are totally new tooling from the ground up and are a very welcome addition to the range.
Diagram 3098, 25/26 ton 51’ 3” bodies with 36’ 3” bogie centres. Numbered 2331-54 & 2482-90
Diagram 3099, 27 ton 53’ 3” bodies with 36’ 3” bogie centres. Numbered 2355-70 2461-81
Diagram 3100, 25/26 ton 51’ 3” bodies with 34’ 3” bogie centres. Numbered 2281-2330
The Southern coded all these vans as ‘GBL’ (Gangwayed Bogie Luggage) and later COR PMV (Corridor Parcels Miscellaneous Van) by British Railways. They we utilised mainly on Southampton Docks and other South Western Section trains and also the various overnight newspaper and mail trains.
30 of the GBLs were converted for use within casualty evacuation trains as stretcher vans. Most of these had received droplights in the centre pair of doors and when returned to the SR in 1945 these and a small number of other vans were allocated new diagram numbers as follows:
Diagram 3096 for the 17 ex Diagram 3098 51’3” GBLs
Diagram 3097 for the 16 ex Diagram 3099 53’3” GBLs
They were initially introduced in SR Olive Green livery, a very small number gained malachite. Under British Railways they were in crimson, with as few as six gaining BR(s) Green.
Hornby have initially released five versions of the 53’3” Diagram 3099 / 3097 vans
R60020 – SR GBL Gangwayed Bogie Luggage van No.2362 to Diagram 3099 in SR Olive Green livery (it should be noted that 2362 was one the vans that received centre door droplights and reclassified to Diagram 3097 in 1945, so is modelled by Hornby in its pre-war guise)
R60020A – SR GBL Gangwayed Bogie Luggage van No.2471 to Diagram 3099 in SR Olive Green livery
R60021 – BR COR PMV Gangwayed Bogie Luggage van No.S2477S to Diagram 3097 (modified from Diagram 3099 with centre door droplights) in BR Crimson Lake livery
R60021A – BR COR PMV Gangwayed Bogie Luggage van No.S2467S to Diagram 3097 (modified from Diagram 3099 with centre door droplights) in BR Crimson Lake livery
The bogies are a well detailed recreation of the LSWR 8 foot bogies that were used on these vehicles. They are fitted with steel disc wheels, it should be noted that prior to 1945/48 these vans ran on Mansell wooden cantered wheels.
The NEM coupling pockets are mounted on close coupling cams. However, the tension lock coupling fitted already extends beyond the buffers by approximately 4mm and although the cam allows the coupling to pivot in a arc and is sprung it is hardly driven by any bogie movement except at the very extremes of bogie swing. Even on the short radius turnouts and tight curves of Canute Road Quay the coupling and cam hardly moved, so I will be fitting a shorter tensions lock coupling in mine.
Livery application is to the standard that you would expect from Hornby with the shaded numbers and letting on the SR version clearly well reproduced and includes the extremely small by legible “Distributed Load 10 Tons”, the end lettering and data panel, sole bar cast number plate (although the plate on the crimson version still shows the ‘R’ of ‘SR’ whereas under BR only the ‘S’ would have been picked out in white) and brake wheel notations.
First announced in October 2019 and following amendments to the first livery samples, examples of all seven versions of the South Eastern & Chatham Railway D Class 4-4-0 from the Dapol production line have been received by Locomotion Models and Rails of Sheffield. These have now completed extensive running trials and final checking. Following approval, shipping from the factory can now commence.
On the whole these look very good and I am looking to receiving my SR Sunshine version (although I will be renumbering as the numbers size shown above do appear to be slightly too large). Definite improvements have been made since the initial livery samples were shown, especially with the colour rendition of SR Olive and the toning down of the bright handrails on some versions (although strangely not the BR lined black version). The only other issue that has been noted is also with respect to the BR lined black version in that the cycling lion early emblem is facing backwards on the right hand side, at the time these emblems usually faced forwards on both sides as it does on at least one photo I have seen for 31574. As these are production samples it is likely to be too late to amend this.
It was back in February 2015 when Hornby announced that they were to produce an original air smoothed Bulleid Merchant Pacific as part of their 2016 range, however they were then moved into the 2017 range. These first three R3434 21c1 ‘Channel Packet’, R3435 21c3 ‘Royal Mail’ and R3436 35028 ‘Clan line’ arrived in March 2017, see my review of 21c1 here.
Since then the high seas between China and the UK have been devoid of Hornby ‘Merchant Navys’ despite further versions being announced in the following years.
Hornby advised in January 2020 that the delay was due to one of factories that they use being unexpectedly at very short notice closed, due to a compulsory purchase of the land by the Chinese government! This impacted the production of the new Merchant Navy pacifics, versions of the Peckett industrial tanks, the Class 800 Azuma units and the GWR 61xx large Prairie tanks locomotives. Work to move the tooling to another factory appeared to take longer than had been hoped, however the backlog is slowly being cleared and 35024 should hopefully now be the first of the overdue excellent Merchant Navys to arrive.
35024 ‘East Asiatic Company’ was the first Merchant Navy to appear in the Express Passenger Engine Blue for the newly formed British Railways. Whilst in Eastleigh works in March 1949 for Minor ‘D’ examination she was first painted in a dark blue (note: not recorded as being the experimental purple seen on some other non SR loco classes, including the wheels with three horizontal crimson bands and a hand painted early emblem on the tender. She however re-entered service in what was to become standard express passenger blue with two horizontal black bands with white lining, following inspection of the livery by members of the Railway Executive at Brighton Works.
The blue paint of the time wasn’t very practical in practice, due to the elements and the heat from the engine causing the paint to discolour and fade quite quickly hence the change to BR Green for all Passenger Locos only a couple years later.
Hornby have released 35025 in the condition in which she first ran for a while in this livery from Exmouth Junction, as she does not carry the later BR shedplate (72A) it would have been fitted sometime before May 1949 when she was also fitted with the battens on the smoke deflectors to carry the ‘Devon Belle’ wing plates.
I wont repeat my full review of 21c1, as that can be read here, and all the positives are also on this model such as: the powerful 5 pole motor with large flywheel, all wheel pick up, the excellent coupling rods, the loco and tender brake rodding being factory fitted. Included with the loco is an accessory pack that contains a pair of front steps for the loco buffers (which might like the wheel tyres benefit from being toned down from the bright steel) and rear steps for the bufferbeam on the tender, cylinder drain cocks and also steam and vacuum pipes.
As with previous Hornby Bulleid pacifics the front steps in particular require glue to affix and is a little tricky.
The fixed rear pony truck has flangeless wheels as is Hornby’s current way for pacific wheel arrangements allowing for a better representation of the ashpan etc. It may be possible if your curves allow to fit a flanged wheelset if you wish.
The paint finish, whilst a slightly different hue to the printed box not that it maters, I think captures the drabness of the BR Passenger Blue well.
If the carpet crawler YouTube reviewer is to be believed this should along with the flat casing top be a stain finish just because another manufacturer has done so on a totally unrelated model, he also claims the nameplates are etched but printed, and that the brass cab side window frames are wood (to be fair they are wooden on the Light Pacifics). For the record whilst the blue could perhaps be only slightly more satin for an ex works condition, the casing tops should be matt black.
I only have two niggles are firstly the nameplates, whilst separately applied plastic parts are printed with none of the casting relief and I have already replaced these with etched plates from Fox Transfers.
Secondly the characteristic electric lamps that in reality are hung from the underside of the swan neck style lamp iron and also had electric conduit attached. However, on the model the lamp is attached via a perpendicular lug on their back into holes on the sloping front casing them to point upwards slightly and the very fragile plastic lamp irons to lean backwards.
I have replaced these three lamp irons with etched brass versions so they are stronger and correctly face forwards, this in itself helps trick the eye away from the lamp angle. The lamps are correctly black (the lamp casing were black painted brass on the front and body livery colour painted steal casings on the tender). Each lamp has a silver blob to represent the lens, however in reality these lens appear black unless the lamp is actually lit. I have touched away the sliver and again it helps disguise the incorrect angle of the lamps.
Little niggles aside, I stand by my earlier review these models have raised the bar, capturing splendidly the front face and overall look and details that Bulleid intended. Along with the excellent smooth running powerful drive system and chassis we can look forward happily to adding other versions to the fleet when then arrive, with hopefully more versions from the tooling suit that Hornby have produced to cover most of the potential variations.
Following on from the excellent Steam’s Lament – Bulleid’s Light Pacifics is the next title provided to me by my friends at Strathwood Publishing being Steam’s Lament – Bulleid’s Merchant Navy, Q1, Leader and Other Works . This follows the same wide landscape format and contains 208 pages often with multiple black and white photographs per page along with well researched and informative captions.
Steam’s Lament – Bulleid’s Merchant Navy, Q1, Leader and Other Works features every one of the Merchant Navy Pacifics in both original and rebuilt condition, together with a photograph of every one of the forty Q1s and all three of the Leaders that were built. Also included are some of Bulleid’s other works including his diesel & electric locomotive designs.
The photographs are from a number of sources such as: Colour Rail,Rail photoprints , Anistr.com, Rail-Online.com and the Transport Treasury so will not be new to many of us, there are also a number of photographs from other sources such as Strathwood‘s own library, that are not so familiar and many that I have not seen before. The selection of photographs covers details and variation in liveries and naming and shows the locomotives in action, on shed and in close up. The benefit is that the they are all nicely reproduced in the one book and at a good size afforded by the wide landscape format.
As well as the Leader, the book includes a few examples of: Bulleid’s drafting improvements with Lemaitre multiple-jet blast pipes and their associated large diameter chimneys, his 500hp 0-6-0 shunter 11001, the 350hp 0-6-0 shunters, the 10201-3 main line diesels and also the Bulleid/Raworth electric locos 20001-3.
By covering each locomotive in turn and including images from different periods of their working life it provides a great reference for railway historians and modellers alike, a welcome addition to my library and wholeheartedly recommended.
This weekend at the second Gauge 0 Guild Virtual exhibition, Dapol announced that they are to produce an 0 Gauge version of the ex LSWR/SR/BR 0-4-0 Dock tank, These follow from their well received 00 gauge range, you can read my review here.
The B4 Class were produced in 3 batches (all overall classed as B4) commencing in 1891 as follows:B4 batch numbers 85 to 94D6, batch, finished in 1892, numbers 81, 95 to 100, 102, 103, 76, K14 batch, built 1907, numbers 82-4, 746/7 (later renumbered 101, 147).
Each batch had detail differences between them especially the last batch of 5 which had Drummond style boilers rather than Adams style, other detail differences included open / closed cab, cab roof profile (K14 batch) and buffers (appears to vary over lifetime).
Dapol have are initially producing six models in the first production batch:
7S-018-001 – L & SWR B4 0-4-0T “NORMANDY” – As Preserved – Open Cab
7S-018-002 – L & SWR B4 0-4-0T “CAEN” Southampton Docks lined brown 90
7S-018-003 – B4 0-4-0T SOUTHERN Black 88
7S-018-004 – B4 0-4-0T (Drummond Boiler) BR Early Emblem 30084
7S-018-005 – B4 0-4-0T BR Late Crest 30096
7S-018-006 – L & SWR B4 0-4-0T Lined Green 91
Normandy in preservation has an open cab whilst 88 and 90 both had closed cabs. 30096 before preservation in BR days had a closed cab that differs from 88 and 90 as it was modified from an open cab at the start of the war. 30084 being part of the later K14 batch originally had a Drummond boiler with dome mounted safety valves and a Drummond style chimney rather than the Adams stove pipe.
Dapol advise that the tooling will allow for four cab types, two different boilers, two forms of chimney as well as other prototypical features catered for such as water injectors and buffers. Hopefully but yet to be confirmed the 0 Gauge versions might also include, features missing / needing improvement: such as the tool box positions, extended lower middle lamp iron from the base of the smokebox and correct some of the cab sheets details, although again this might required more that four cab variants.
The specification includes:
Slide in PCB – With space for 2 x sugar cube speakers and a 21 pin decoder socket
Removable cab roof held in place with magnets to allow easy crew insertion
Highly detailed cab interior with fire box glow
High torque five pole skew wound motor driving the rear wheels
Fully compensated die-cast chassis to give excellent running capabilities
All wheel pick up
DCC Ready, DCC Fitted and DCC Sound Fitted models available
Dapol have released an update on the development of their all new ex LSWR/SR/BR M7 0-4-4T along with images of their latest Engineering Prototype.
A total of 105 Drummond LSWR M7 0-4-0 passenger tank locomotives were built between 1897 and 1911. They were built in a number of batches with detail differences. The first batch had a short overhang at the front, sandboxes combined with the front splashers. In 1900 the design was changed to have the sandboxes inside the smokebox. The 1903 batch had a long overhang on the front end. During 1904 and 1905 construction moved the sandboxes back to the front splasher. It was some of those that had the longer frames that were later fitted for pull-push working.
The models being produced are all short frame versions with sandboxes incorporated into the front splashers. They will feature a highly detailed body with many separately added parts die cast chassis, a 3 pole can motor and all wheel pick up.
Dapol however have advised that “no DCC decoder will supplied in this model”, as they say “the space has been used to add more weight to the model and provide improved, balance, traction and running properties”, by this I assume that no DCC socket will be present either, which I am sure will be seen as a negative factor by many.
Initially eight versions will be released as part of the first production run as follows:
2S-016-005 M7 0-4-4 Southern Lined Green 37 (I assume Olive Green)
2S-016-006 M7 0-4-4 SWR Lined Green 245 (sic, I assume LSWR)
2S-016-007 M7 0-4-4 Southern Black 246
2S-016-008 M7 0-4-4 British Railways Lined Malachite 30038
2S-016-009 M7 0-4-4 British Railways Lined Black 30248
2S-016-010 M7 0-4-4 BR Early emblem Lined Black 30673
2S-016-011 M7 0-4-4 BR Late Crest Lined Black 30245