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BR Shark ballast plough brake van

Model Ref.: R6434

Review by Doug Teggin



Photo of the actual DB993792 Shark ballast plough brake van that the Hornby Model is modelled from.
Photo courtesy of Paul Bartlett. For more photos of the Shark vans, visit Paul Bartlett's site.

The Shark in action:

Class 20, ballast wagons and Shark plough repairing the Severn Valley Railway line.
Photo Johnathan Symonds 11th March 2008

The actual sharp end! As ballast is deposited from the hopper wagon in the four foot
the "Shark" ballast plough follows to spread the ballast as evenly as possible.

Photos above from Severn Valley Railway - Floodline News: http://www.svr-vlo.org.uk/floodline.htm


The Hornby model:

The Hornby Sharks, new for 2008 arrived in March. This particular livery was released in September. They have been well received as it is a great looking model and very well detailed.

A substantial model with a good weight. Heavier out the box than most guards vans or similar models.

The detail is fantastic. The condition is pristine, but I'm sure there were not many pristine Sharks around on the railway network except those leaving the factory. This model cries out for some weathering.

I have fitted a Kadee #19 coupler to the front and the scale plough (two are supplied in the options bag) to the rear of the van. Like this, you don't see any NEM coupler socket sticking out the back. I've fitted the hoses too that give it a nice accent. The hose holes do have to be drilled out to allow fitting and then frustratingly the red paint comes off the pipe-work. I touched it up with some Humbrol Matt red #60 which matched quite well.

The NEM pockets are at the right height for a simple Kadee swap. Not like the Bachmann hoppers in front that were way too high.

The detail is spectacular. Lamp brackets on the corner posts, neat tampo printing, detailed brake wheel. The one odd thing: According to Rail Express Modeller: "... the chassis is still fitted the wrong way round - the brake V hanger should be on the same side as the stove chimney! It is a simple fix to unscrew the chassis to correct this, but it is strange that this has not been corrected in China." (link). Looking at the photo of the prototype (here), it seems that they are right. I wonder how that came about?

A great model. I just wish this model had a plough that could be lowered and be used to spread ballast around my entire layout. Working hoppers dropping the ballast up front and a PVA sprayer at the back sticking it all down ;-)

- November 2008

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