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Bachmann City Of Truro

Review by Peter Morgan

 

The City of Truro is the second collaboration between Bachmann and the national Railway Museum. The model has once again been a superb seller for both Bachmann and the commercial arm of the NRM.

The model arrived in the newer style of packaging with a slide of dust cover and a loft out plastic section. I quite like this packaging. it holds the model safe and secure.

On opening the package I was suppressed to see the number of extras provided in the box, including a second bogie that appears to be identical to the one fitted to the locomotive (its doesnít appear to be for P4 conversion or anything like that), there are numerous grab rails and fiddly bits to keep the modeller busy for an hour or 2.

The loco looks stunning. I remember seeing the real loco on the Gloucestershire and Warwickshire railway just a week or so after it emerged from York after its last overhaul. It was a picture of Edwardian elegance. Bachmann have captured the livery beautifully.

Of particular interest is the beautiful printing of the GWR logo. This especially difficult logo has been captured perfectly.

It has to be pointed out that this model is really meant to be sold in a gift shop at the museum and us railway modellers are really of secondary importance. The plaques are not quite as crisp as some I have seen but are still perfectly readable which is pretty amazing in itself.

The coal in the tender is the only thing about this loco that I thought was pretty shocking!

Is this the first confirmed specimen of a bach man dropping? but for any modeller, this would be a very easy thing to fix with some coal from any of the accessory ranges and some watered down PVA (I will do a little tutorial on this soon).

The cab detail is very well done but again perhaps not quite as detailed as some we have seen, but frankly I couldn't care less! It also demonstrates one of the problems with OO, the cab splashers intrude so far from the sides of the cab in order to clear the wheels.

Overall the loco does justice to a difficult prototype and as I understand this was done with an old fashioned tape measure and notepad instead of any high tech scanning I think this is an even greater achievement. I have done a few measurements and its within 1 or 2 millimetres of the most accurate drawings I have.

I have not had a chance to run in my model yet but the running qualities are already very good and I expect that to cross the line into superb after a couple of hours of running in. I have not had mine to bits (and I donít particularly want to try) but I understand there is a 21pin DCC socket in the tender. It pulls well and negotiates my test track with ease.

When a model of an NRM loco is announced I have very mixed feelings. The museum is full of legendary locomotives and the collection is unmatched anywhere in the world. I am always glad that a manufacturer has taken on the challenge of producing a model of one of the exhibits but I also feel that they have a duty to get it right. Models of these locomotives come around so rarely that it could easily be 25 years before we get another chance. Hornby did it with the Scotsman and Bachmann did it again with the DP1 and have repeated that with the Truro.

The model is not perfect but the only noticeable deficiency is the coal and its so simple to rectify that even an inexperienced modeller will not have any problems in rectifying them. Bachmann should be congratulated on producing an exceptionally fine loco.

Peter Morgan

March 2010

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