What’s in the Shops: A brilliant LNER ‘Toad E’ from Hornby

Hornby’s new Toad E 20t brake van is delicately tooled and well detailed – definitely no toad in the amphibian sense, writes Nigel Burkin.

The newly-introduced models of London and North Eastern Railway-origin ‘Toad B’ and ‘Toad E’ 20t brake vans by Hornby feature a great deal of delicate and imaginative tooling which allows the modelling of details specific to the various builds, including early versions with wooden side duckets together with the later ‘Toad E’ with steel duckets and end stanchions.

The brake vans were built for the LNER from 1924 onwards, with changes to the design appearing in the 1930s – and it’s the later version with steel fittings that’s represented by the review model, finished in BR grey with early markings (R6834).

Separately moulded fittings include fine plastic handrails, lamp irons, brake shoes and tall torpedo roof ventilators. Subtle weathering will pull out the fine moulding in the body and underframe.

‘Toad E’ brake vans survived into the 1970s as departmental vehicles, bringing them into the sphere of transition and diesel era modelling.

Body and interior

A mixture of plastic mouldings makes up the main body, with fine planking in the body ends and sides, together with neatly-moulded lamp irons on the verandah ends.

Clear plastic parts make up the ducket and cabin end mouldings, which are painted in the body colour with the windows masked to leave them clear of paint. The result is very effective window glazing with no moulded edge, allowing a view of the cabin interior.

The plastic is clear, with the right level of shine to mimic the reflective appearance of clean glass. In reality, the glazing would not be so pristine, and the discerning modeller might wish to apply a very thin wash of matt varnish to grime it a little.

For the full article and to view more images, see the December edition of Modelling – available now!

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