Box Vans

Simple title, for a far than simple subject.

Currently working through weathering wagon stock, first up is a ratio LMS unfitted Van (my first wagon kit too). It was rather a straight forward kit to go together. I must admit I’m particularly pleased with this one, as the RTR equivalent dimensionally incorrect (It’s part of the Bachmann range, but ex mainline and is far too squat.



Next up is a slightly modified Bachmann BR standard 12T Van. This is the ply bodied version. The first thing I added was the tie bars (using L strip) before removing the rain strips. Ian Fleming had pointed out that a number of the ply bodied vans had the three strip version, rather than the curved rain strip and suggested I have a look in Geoff Kent’s Book 2 of the 4mm Wagon. Using a scalpel I removed the moulded rain strip, cleaned up with some wet and dry before replacing with microstrip. Finally I added instanter couplings (was all BR stock fitted with instanters?

Last night and this morning I weathered the van, using as many reference photos as possible.




They are now all set for my demonstration stand at Expo Thirsk. Sunday 26th July, Thirsk Towh Hall 10.30am – 4.30pm

£4, child & OAP £2 Family £10, 14 layouts, demos and traders.



6 thoughts on “Box Vans

  1. Out of curiosity, and also the finescale approach of getting things right, what was the date of the photos you used to guide your weathering on the BR van? I ask as the plywood bodied vans did not appear until 1955, with a roughly 3 year build programme, and I wondered if the weathering might be based on something from a later period? (You have an excuse for it being virtually clean, if you so wish!)

    Like what you are doing – that line-up of Panniers is very nice. Did 1600s get used on the line as well?


    • Hello Simon, thanks for your comment.

      If you look closely you will see I renumbered the Plywood van to represent one of the first batch built by Darlington in the early part of 1955 (transfers courtesy of CCT). My modelling period is roughly 1954-1960. Used several colour photo graphs of BR vans in the late 1950s from various books for reference and particularly focused on trying to contrast the ply and steel.

      Regarding 16XX class, I have a photo of one at Llangollen, but as short trip working locos, I think that will have been the limit of their range.



  2. Simon, I believe the ply variant appeared slightly earlier – 1954 or possibly even ’53, dependent on the source consulted for build dates. My records show Wolverton’s lot 2541, B764031 – 764480, as being plywood – unfortunately being a small lot, neither of Messrs Larkin or Bartlett appear to have images, but I must have drawn the impression from a photograph somewhere when I drew up the list some years ago. The build programme was also longer than three years – the last ones, lot 3398, were turned out in 1962.

    • You’re sort of on the right lines, Tom. Three types of ‘modern’ (non-spindle) buffers were used with the BR version of 8-shoe clasp brakegear, which was progressively applied to several wagon types from 1957/58.

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