Another fishy vehicle is added to Hornby’s ‘OO’ gauge range.
FOLLOWING ON FROM the release of the ‘Seacow’ and ‘Sealion’ wagons a couple of years back, Hornby has continued its fascination with engineer’s vehicles by producing the natural bedfellow to the ballast hopper, the ‘Shark’ ballast plough brake van.
The first of the three liveries to be produced is No. DB993753 in EWS maroon (Cat Ref. R6411, RRP £14.75). TOPS coded ZUV, this vehicle is an excellent representation of the prototype as built. As such, it is not strictly correct for this particular wagon in the time period that it is supposed to represent as DB993753, like many of its colleagues, has received extensive new plywood bodywork and other body strengthening (the real ‘Shark’ with this number has now also been extensively modified for its role as a RUQ vehicle).
The ‘Shark’ is supplied with tension lock couplings fitted with special cut-away ploughs to accommodate the NEM sockets, but correct pattern ploughs and guards are supplied for the consumer to fit. Also included in the detail bag are air-pipes, drop-down vacuum pipes and high-level vacuum pipes, although sadly, in the case of the latter, the holes are on the wrong side of the bufferbeam at each end to fit them! Unlike the Seacow, sprung buffers are not part of the specification, while it’s also a shame that the doors can not be modelled in the open condition.
The livery, however, is perfectly applied, with accurate TOPS date panel, EWS logos (correctly on a yellow) background and PPM markings.
The release of this vehicle leaves just departmental grey/yellow (R6412) and Loadhaul black/orange (R6413) examples to make it to the UK.
Overall, this is an excellent addition to Hornby’s wagon fleet, and it would have formed the perfect ‘full stop’ to Hornby’s range of engineer’s vehicles before the company moved onto a potentially much more interesting range of revenue or private owner wagons. Maybe next year?
Look out for the next issue of RAIL EXPRESS which will feature an extensive review of these vehicles.