Video: On test – Hornby's 'Hitachi' Sentinel

09 February 2022
Arriving for review from the manufacturer is a sample of its 0-4-0 Sentinel 'Chiaki Ueda' in Hitachi livery.

Already firm favourites among OO gauge enthusiasts – and rightly so – Hornby’s 0-4-0 Sentinel shunters in chain-driven and hydraulic form have attracted collectors and modellers of industry alike. Selling well, it’s hardly surprising that the manufacturer has widened its livery offerings on the models since its introduction of the diesel-mechanical variant, almost a decade ago in 2013. We’ve since seen models of the outside crank 0-4-0 diesel hydraulic emerge, and announced in January as part of its 2022 range, so we can look forward to diesel hydraulic 0-6-0 models, too.

Arriving with Hornby stockists, and kindly sent for review by the manufacturer, is a sample of its first variation on the 0-4-0DH tooling, depicting refurbished No. 10089, fitted with Dellner apparatus and Hitachi branding, as used for shunting Class 395 ‘Javelin’ EMUs at Hitachi’s Ashford site in Kent. Constructed in 1962, the 37T locomotive was stripped at Hunslet’s parent company LH Group Services Ltd in Staffordshire, before being refurbished. The locomotive features a Programmable Logic Control system (PLC), giving drivers a more predictable throttle response.


Watch a video of the model in action here:

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Further modifications to the locomotive in its current guise include the plating over of directional lights, and relocation to the upper section of the grilles, while plated bodyside handrails are replaced with open handrails. Included in an accessory bag are newly-tooled Dellner couplings, mounted to a frame, with an integral solebar infill which hides the NEM socket. These are in place of tension-lock couplings, but before installing these, drawhooks must first be removed. Although glued in place, I found grabbing each gently with a pair of pliers and moving back and forth carefully the best option, allowing them to be retained for future use. With Dellner attachments fitted, the locomotive is shown to best effect. These fit tightly against the plated solebars, to the extent that it’s difficult to tell that they’re a separate item. Very clever, and solid, too. Black and yellow warning stripes on the solebars match perfectly with the solebar ‘blanks’ attached to the Dellner accessories.

Hornby Hitachi Sentinel

Read the full review in the Spring 2022 issue of BRM, on-sale February 12 at the Festival of British Railway Modelling at Doncaster Racecourse, available as a digital edition from February 18, and in stores from February 25.


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