What’s in the Shops: BR Mark 1 ‘Motorail’ Carflat A wagons released

Nigel Burkin reviews Bachmann’s excellent new model of the BR Mark 1 Carflat A wagons that will fit well with its BR coaching stock range.

Introduced in the mid-1960s, the BR Mark 1 Carflat A wagons were built using redundant 63ft Mk 1 suburban coach underframes and a number of withdrawn Mk 1 corridor coaches.

The conversions were simple, involving the removal of the coach body to reveal the steel underframe that was covered with a planked floor. A solebar supported low ends that could be lowered for the loading of cars, and low fixed sides consisting of guard rails and stanchions.

The wagons retain some coach features, including the characteristic headstocks and underframe trussing. They utilised the brake equipment and bogies from the donor coaches, including BR B1 and B4 bogies.

Brake levers were added to the wagons, which were vacuum braked and coded FVV after the introduction of TOPS. Airbrakes also made an appearance, resulting in dual braking as represented by the BR blue ‘Motorail’ FVX coded wagon (38-902) and BR bauxite wagon (38-900) also released by Bachmann at the same time as the featured FVV model (38-901).

Excellent representations of BR B1 bogies are fitted to the FVV model that also has metal coach disc wheels. The neatly applied printed details are sharp and legible.

In addition to the Motorail traffic on which Carflat wagons were added to long-distance passenger services for the transport of private cars, the wagons were used extensively for commercial automotive traffic for the distribution of new cars and vans.

Body moulding and details

The body is a simple structure consisting of a single moulding for the deck, guard rails and ends, which includes the headstocks.

The decking is of neatly moulded planking running across the body, which is ripe for distressing with wood grain and weathering. Plastic buffers and rubbing plates are fitted to the headstocks, and there are holes for the fitting of brake pipes and couplings supplied as add-on details.

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

For a complete list of stockists and how to get your copy, visit: www.railwaymagazinemodelling.co.uk/distributors

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