On the morning of the Warley National Model Railway Exhibtion at the NEC we received direct from China the first factory samples of the forthcoming TEA tankers in 4mm scale/00 gauge.
Like their smaller N gauge counterparts that are now with customers the models feature photo etched catwalks, numerously separately fitted parts and many details that are type specific.
There are some areas where the larger size of these models permits greater fidelity; the ladders are correctly modelled with or without anto-climb guards, and the lifting lugs under the barrel are correctly formed of twin leaves.
Details below the tanker – clearly visible from most angles – have not been forgotten. This image shows the distinctive larger air tank and bifurcated discharge nozzles unique to the EWS and Freightliner versions.
In this view of the undersides the longer EWS version (bottom) can be compared to the smaller airtank of the original VTG owned wagons.
Visitors to our stand at Warley who picked the models up commented on their weight. They are to NMRA guidelines which tend to be heavier than the British market is used to but ensures good track holding and smooth running, especially in long rakes. For this reason the bogies are fitted with brass axle bearings as can be seen in the image above. The bogies have been designed to be wide enough for drop-in conversion to EM or P4 standards.
Once the models have been thoroughly tested to ensure they run as they should we will approve them for production. Paint sampling should not take long as they will be in the same liveries as the well-received N gauge versions.
As ever we will send out a newsletter informing subscribers when the deadline is set order and only produce enough models to satisfy pre-orders.
In N we have seen a significant amount of “non-buyers regret” since models were delivered and we are hoping 00 modellers interested in these vehicles will not miss out!