17 June 2022
Photographs of engineering prototypes show Rapido Trains UK's latest OO gauge wagon.
Selecting two diagrams of the SR’s most numerous wagon, Rapido Trains UK has broken silence on a new 4mm:1ft scale project that has reached engineering prototype stage. The manufacturer is to produce models of the eight-plank Southern Railway (SR) open wagon to diagrams 1379 and 1400 for OO gauge, expected to arrive early-2023.
Samples of both diagrams have been received, and the manufacturer is reportedly "delighted with them", adding, "they require only very minor tweaks before they’re ready to enter production.”
Two Dia. 1379 with Morton brakes with split spoke and disc wheels.
Several versions of these versatile wagons existed, all sharing the same body and they could be found throughout the Southern’s network. Its Diagram 1379 was the first eight-plank design to be introduced and 7,950 were built between 1926 and 1933. They featured a standard RCH underframe with 9ft wheelbase and, originally, all were un-fitted.
The first 3,000 were built with Morton brakes but this was subsequently changed to what the SR called ‘Freighter’ brakes on later batches. The SR increased the wheelbase to 10ft in 1935. The first of these 10ft wagons were fitted with vacuum brakes. However, two batches of unfitted 10ft wagons were built during 1936 and 1937. These 1,400 vehicles were, fittingly, given the diagram number 1400, and re-used old wheelsets on new chassis and bodies, being fitted with Freighter brakes.
Two Dia. 1400 with Freighter brakes with split spoke and disc wheels.
Sales & Marketing Manager Richard Foster said, “Our all-new model features a number of alternative parts to allow us to make the most comprehensive OO gauge model of an SR eight-plank wagon yet. We have tooled parts to produce both 9ft and 10ft wheelbase, Morton and Freighter brakes along with disc and split-spoked wheels.
He continued, “These wagons could be found all over the Southern’s network, including the Isle of Wight, so it’s the perfect wagon to run with our forthcoming LBSCR ‘E1’."
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