Unveiled during our virtual exhibition on November 7, the manufacturer is to produce RTR models of the British Railways unfitted 21T mineral wagon, to two design codes, tooled samples of which have already been seen.
Accurascale has unveiled models for 21T mineral wagons to diagrams 1/107 and 1/120. Expected to arrive in the third quarter of 2021, samples of the models have already been shown which have been tooled.
The wagons are to form part of Accurascale’s 'Powering Britain' plan of recreating wagons that fuelled Britain by rail. This began with its 24.5T HUO hopper wagons and will be represented by the forthcoming HYA bogie hoppers, IIA biomass hoppers, and these 21T mineral wagons. The manufacturer has plans for further models, too.
The wagons feature a highly-detailed underframe with a wealth of separately-applied parts and full chassis detail is represented. Pinpoint axles (26mm) are expected to permit conversion to EM/P4 standards if desired, while kinematic couplings with NEM pockets should allow simple coupling changes for modellers. Provision has been made to represent the MDW variant and other wagons based on the chassis in future production runs.
Fran Burke, Director of Marketing and Public Relations at Accurascale said, "Announcing models with tooling samples completed reduces the waiting times for the modeller considerably, and makes a firm commitment that the models will be released in a timely manner, with expensive and time-consuming tooling already carried out and paid for. It also demonstrates that the models have been in development for a significant period of time, with research, surveys, CAD development and tooling creation already completed."
The 21T wagons primarily conveyed coal, but were sometimes used to carry scrap metal, rock salt and gypsum. The MDO and MDVs saw widespread use, often associated with coal trains on the Midland Region and the South Wales coalfields, supplying coal to power stations, steel works, and docks for export. They were also used for used to supply coal concentration depots. MDVs could also be seen in use in other areas such as Kent, East Anglia, West Midlands, The Potteries and Central Valley of Scotland.
The unfitted 21T mineral wagons (later MDO) were introduced in 1950 building on previous GWR wagon designs. A total of 1,500 wagons were built to the 1/107 pattern and featured oil axle boxes, two doors either side with another at one end only for end tipping. These wagons remained in service until 1987, running in block trains and mixed with other coal wagons such as 16T minerals, 21T hoppers, 24.5T hoppers and others. The last outpost for MDOs was on workings between Llanelli and Swansea Docks as the unloading facility couldn't end-tip vacuum-fitted wagons at the time.
Meanwhile, the vacuum-braked 21T mineral wagon (later MDV) began service in 1961 as a development of the diagram 1/107 platform, featuring additional flap doors over the side doors, roller bearings and vacuum braking. A total of 3,950 wagons were built to diagram 1/120, as represented by Accurascale. The MDVs soldiered on in service until 1992, representing an interesting traditional wagon throwback in the exciting Railfreight sectorisation era.
Underframe detail on this tooled sample of its MDO is commendable, with clearly-defined trussing.
Accurascale is to offer both wagons in packs of three with multiple running numbers across several packs, in both pre-TOPS and TOPS guises, with grey and bauxite liveries represented. For more information, pricing and availability, see the Accurascale website.