What’s in the Shops: Faux teak LNER Thompsons

Bachmann OO-gauge LNER Thompson coaches are released in imitation varnished teak livery, writes Nigel Burkin.

Bachmann’s completely new models of the Thompson LNER coaches are set for release in
‘faux teak’ livery – an imitation applied to steel bodies stock by the LNER to match older coaches constructed of teak. The effect was wooden panels of grained teak finish painted on the steel panelling of the coach, which was effective to a certain extent. Upon Nationalisation, many Thompson coaches were repainted in BR carmine and cream livery.

The composite brake coach No. 1146 (34-435) with blue curtains in the first-class compartments.

When new stock for the LNER was designed by Thompson, traditional teak construction techniques favoured by the LNER were abandoned in favour of a steel-clad coach design. Wooden-framed bodies were fitted with steel panelling and mounted on a strong steel underframe, which offered greater strength over timber-bodied stock and lower construction costs while using available materials in the austere postwar period. The coaches were gangwayed throughout and featured large windows and the iconic oval lavatory and corridor windows adjacent to the lavatory compartments. One feature of the Thompson coach is the absence of cross vestibules at the coach ends – passenger doors are located part way along the coach, allowing faster access to passenger compartments.

Thompson coaches were well built for the postwar era, yet few survived into preservation after withdrawal in the 1960s with examples to be found on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway (Third Corridor No. 1623); The Scottish Railway Preservation Society (TSO No. 13803); and Llangollen Railway (Lounge Buffet No. 1706 and Corridor Brake third No. 1866) to mention a few.

Bachmann offers five different gangwayed Thompson coaches in its 2018 catalogue finished in LNER faux teak. The range includes a third-class corridor coach (34-385); composite corridor coach (34-410); composite brake coach (34-435); third-class brake corridor coach (34-460) and first-class corridor coach (34-485).

For the full article, see the March edition of Modelling – available now!

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