As the old saying goes, you wait ages for a bus and then two come along at once. 4mm etches or kits for the Diagram 6 Brake Van certainly bring this adage to mind.
Many years ago one was available within the late John Boyle’s Decent Models range of kits. Sadly, it doesn’t appear that many of these kits will ever reappear. However, some still have the Brake Vans salted away and, with a range of TLM wagon transfers becoming available recently, Jim Summers wasted no time in finally completing his model :
But, what if you don’t have that Decent Models kit salted away? Missed the last bus home? Well, it seemed that way until that nice young man, Ian Terrell, over at NBR 4mm Developments whilst preparing artwork for several NBR Brake Vans just happened to squeeze in the etched parts for the CR Diagram 6 Brake Van – not just for one van but for both the broad and narrow panelled versions. And here are the test builds of both :
So, prepare yourselves for these becoming available sometime in the not too distant future. Probably no need to save up your pocket money as the indications are they should be very reasonably priced. It’s all a bit early to say how, when and what will be available but with acceptable builds having been proven it would seem that further etches can now be ordered for sale. Chances are that it may be etches only but virtually all parts are readily available from a number of sources to complete the model, and chances are that like me you may already have all of them to hand. At first I reckoned castings would be needed for the stove chimney and brake standard, however I’m not sure these are even needed : there isn’t a drawing of the chimney and few images that exist are indistinct, so an acceptable representation can be put together from a couple of diameters of brass or plastic tube; and the brake standard and etched handle (provided) are barely noticeable within the enclosed veranda so again nothing too sophisticated is needed. Well, that’s my opinion at least.
I haven’t been over every measurement of the parts but things look good and when put together they are good representations of the prototypes – judge for yourself. The parts go together fairly easily with some nice touches to ease construction so, apart from taking care with a couple of delicate folds, completion shouldn’t be beyond the average modeller. The ones I built are P4, so EM and 00 can be accommodated with separate slots for the brake hangers depending on gauge modelled. There are some minor discrepancies with the etches but it wouldn’t be economic to have these corrected without the price going up dramatically. One is so small it barely needs corrected, others can be lived with or can be rectified, certainly nothing is insurmountable or glaringly obvious. I certainly think that a very nice and accurate model can be created for what I think should be a very acceptable price. Definitely a welcomed addition for the CR modeller.
As a wee bonus, there are a few signal parts added to spaces on the etch (takes you back to Mr Boyle's etches, what?)
Clear your workspace for a new build – or two.
To assist modellers plan and build a Caledonian Railway layout with the appropriate stock. A list/catalogue of supplies and components is available to members in the Association Resources section of the Forum below.
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