Train of the Week

Train of the week is a new feature that were are starting in August 2018 and hope to feature every week subject to how manic it gets with new product launches. Of course it is subject to how succesful the concept is and on going sales from it but it is not just about that it is also about showing ideas and putting together locos, coaches and wagons from various manufacturers together into a realistic train. Most featured items are standard stock items and we can always recreate it again to customer's own specifications with either more or less items of rolling stock or even different liveries as required

As such even when completed and sold we will leave them on the list as inspiration for short, simple trains that you may want to tackle yourself or leave us to do for you subject to items still being available and a new "Train of the Week" should be added every Thursday and we intend changing the era and type of train to keep it fresh and different.

Rather than constantly increasing the size of this, we have now archived the Train of the Week features from 2018 which can be found through this link 2018 Train of the Week feature or for 2019 through this link 2019 Train of the Week feature

Cant believe we are now on to the third year of doing this feature!

2nd March 2020


With the arrival of the new Dapol Autotanks we could not ignore the classic Autotank and Autocoach pairing and has to be the first Train of the Week to feature the loco

So we are working our way through the brand new Dapol Autotanks with custom weathering and numbering for people and at the same time we have completed 3 of the basic models for stock. We have now completed a good number of customer's locos but are now waiting on more numberplates from Guilplates to complete the last batch.

Both the Autotank and Autocoach are produced by Dapol and we have lightly weathered them both just to take the edge off the plastic sheen to the pair. This is an iconic set for the western region that is small but equally at home on a small or large layout with no need for short cuts on the length of train!

Various liveries of both are available to cover the GWR and BR periods but stocks are running a little low either because Dapol are currently closed as we sell out from stock or have completely sold out either with us or with Dapol. Only a small number of the un-numbered ones were produced and these have been the first to sell out. A simple call can check what is currently available from stock. The basic analog ones are available now with the DCC fitted and sound fitted available later.

I have spoken to DCC supplies today and Dapol did not get the ones for sound fitting off to them before closing down so we expect these to take some time still after Dapol return to work.

Next week we will have again two more 14xx's but on shunting duties.

Dapol 14xx
Dapol 14xx various liveries
Dapol 14xx various liveries - weathered
Dapol Autocoach
Dapol Autocoach - various liveries clean finish
Weathered Autocoach
Dapol Autocoach - various liveries weathered

26th March 2020

Scottish Freight

Well, it has been a very busy day with the despatch of the brand new Tower Models Limited Edition Leith General Warehousing wagons but the workshop have worked hard to get the test sample set we received a couple of weeks ago weathered. We have also had the launch of the Dapol 48xx / 14xx / 58xx which had kept us occupied

Thought it would also be good to show the first picture in black and white given that the whole inspiration for the set of wagons was the above photograph.


We have actually used a kit built Class 17 Clayton to try to mirror the photograph. We were hoping to have the Heljan Class 17 test sample to photograph with the train but the only example that they had was the blue livery so we resorted to what we had.

We have produced a total of eight different numbers for the wagons and only a total of 25 of each wagon. We have used one of the Dapol BR grey brake vans to finish off the train.

The train looks very good and although not the length of the train in real photo looks very effective.

Here is a link to the wagons Leith General Warehouse wagons After all advance orders have been completed there is just six sets remaining out of the 25 sets produced. You are not restricted to buying the full set as we are selling the wagon individualy as well. The standard models are clean but the workshop can custom weather the wagon as required.

Things should calm down for a bit now. We have plenty of work to do and no doubt the new Dapol 14xx will appear in several of the upcoming Train oif the Week features.

We are going to do our best to keep this up as a weekly update during current events. We are still open for mail order sales during these difficult time but on reduced hours of 9.30 until 3pm.

Tower LGW
Leith General Warehouse wagon
Tower LGW
Leith General Warehouse wagon - custom weathered
Tower LGW Set
Leith General Warehouse wagons - full set of 8
Tower LGW set
Leith General Warehouse wagon - full set of 8 all custom weathered

12th March 2020

BR unfitted freight

Busy at present with the exhibition last weekend and preparations for the launch of the Dapol Autotanks next week but we did have time to complete a train for a customer last week which we thought was very nice and we would share.

This week we have completed a train of the Minerva Iron Minks and Gunpowder vans in BR livery, with a mix of degrees of weathering to the customer's specifications. The Great Western Iron Mink was a classic wagon and very successful with over 20000 entering service with a lifespan over over 25 years in service with the last of them being withdrawn from departmental service in the 1980's.

Keeping the Western region theme of the wagons we have paired them up with a Heljan BR 43xx in early BR black, again medium weathered.

Minerva actually produce ten different numbered BR grey vans but we have eleven in this rake with a single repeat which you are not likely to notice or remember when they are going round a layout. We just used a kit built brake van to complete the train, not sure of the origin and it was just whatever was around at the time.

Overall it looks very well as a classic unfitted van train with a western theme to it and it was something different for us to weather.

I have also got two further sets of the Minerva vans for the earlier and later GWR period to complete and will feature alongside the brand new Dapol 14xx's once we have had chance to complete some example of these with a light dusting to take the sheen of the plastic away from the model.

We do not normally sell the Minerva wagons but they are all still available directly from Minerva.

Here is a link to the available liveries of the Heljan 43xx 2-6-0 Mogul, it has been well received and some liveries are now sold out, the BR black has been especially popular! Heljan 43xx

.Next week we may or may not manage to update this depending on the launch of the Dapol 14xx and that the layout is currently down having been at Lincoln show the weekend before last.


Heljan 43xx Mogul
Various Liveries, clean finish
Heljan 43xx Mogul
Various Liveries, weathered
Heljan 43xx Mogul
Various Liveries, weathered with custom number

27th February 2020

Distillery Traffic

This week we finally recived the first production samples of the new Tower Model limited edition Leith General Warehousing wagons and seemed to good to miss the opportunity to photograph these.

There are eight different numbers of these being released to make up a good Scottish themed train.

The wagons were used to transport grain to the various distilleries for Whisky production could be found even in the North East at times.

We have shown it here with one of the Tower Brass J39's and the plan is to now weather this set through the workshop and show it again in a later Train of the week.

We were hoping these would of been out at Christmas and in fact the bodies were completed in time but it turns out that Dapol have run out of wheel sets. As soon as they get restocks of these then they are first to be completed.

These were an iconic block running train for any Scottish themed layout and could be seen in rakes of up to 18 or more at times but with eight it makes a good realistic size train. Although not technically correct as there are differences in the roof detail, straps and doors, there is no way Dapol would tool up for such a unique vehicle but these will give a very good representation and the numbers being produced are very small and more than half of them are pre-sold now. These wagons also had a very long lifespan lasting from WW1 through until the withdrawal of the very last one in 1971.

Here is a link to the forthcoming Tower Models Limited Edition Leith Wagons Dapol Leith Vans

Here is a link to the Tower Brass LNER / BR J39's Tower Brass J39 0-6-0

We will not be doing one of these next week with all of the preparations for Kettering show. We have the one for the following week ready to go which is probably the week before we receive the new Dapol 14xx's.

We will revisit these featuring a Class 17 Clayton once the have been weathered in about 3 weeks time.

Tower Models Limited Edition Wagons
8 Number variants available of Leith General Warehousing Vans
£42.50 each
Set of 8 Vans
Full set of 8 LGW Vans
Tower Brass BR J39
BR Late Crest J39, clean finish as used here.

20th February 2020


Back to basic this week with one of the classic trains of the steam era with a tank engine coupled up with an Autocoach.

The shown items are both from Dapol with a late BR 64xx Pannier Tank couplied up with an earlier Great Western Autocoach in shirtbutton livery. Now I would of gone for the BR version of this coach to go with this loco but these two items came in together and the customer had bought them together to represent a later loco along with a coach that long overdue a repaint.

Anyway, the customer in the end has traded them in and bought a matching pair instead so we have put these two secondhand pieces through the workshop and lightly weathered them both for sale either together or more likely separately.

The main reason though is a reminder that the long awaited Dapol Autotanks are due for release in the next few weeks and the Dapol Autocoaches are a perfect companion for these in a small complete train that is equally at home on either a small or large layout. Once the 14xx comes out it is bound to feature on several weeks of Train of the Week.

Here is a link to the forthcoming Dapol Autotanks Dapol 48xx/14xx/58xx

Here is a link to the Dapol (ex Lionheart) 64xx & 74xx's Dapol 64xx/74xx

Here is a link to the Dapol Autocoaches Dapol Autocoaches

Probably will not have time to do an issue of this next week with the imminent arrival of both the 14xx from Dapol and the blue version of the Class 03 from Heljan both due the end of the month and then having to start packing for Kettering show the first Saturday in March.

Secondhand Dapol 64xx
Secondhand BR lined green late crest 64xx, lightly weathered
Secondhand Dapol Autocoach
Secondhand Great Western shirtbutton Autocoach


13th February 2020

Civil Engineering Traffic

This week I wanted to feature another of the new locomotives from Heljan with the Class 33 but with 11 liveries it was a case of which livery to go for. In the end the descision was easy and we weathered up the last of the civil engineers stock we had from Heljan to make up a train.

The locomotive is a customers that is being weathered but has not yet reached that point so is shown here clean with 3 of the Heljan OAA's in Dutch livery and a fully repainted Dapol PIllbox brake van. As an idea of size the overall length of this train is approximately 128cm.

We had also given the workshop the very last of the Dutch Catfish that we had in stock and seemed a waste not to try them out at the same time as a separate train along the same lines. This set, with the OAA's parked up in the siding behind, is approximately 158cm in length.

There is a stock example of the Class 33 in the system being completed hopefully in time for Kettering show which is being completed as "Seagull" and of course we can complete any of the Class 33's with the customer's choice of name number and weathering through the workshop.

Then of course, we had to give it a try with a mix of them all together, which really pushed the limit on the size of train on our little layout at a length of approximately 236cms but would look good on a bigger layout. At the end of the day it is down to the available space but all three look "right".

Engineering traffic like this can be found all over the country carrying out essential maintenance and often seen in sidings when not in use.

Sadly much of the Heljan rolling stock is at the end of the line but we still have some stocks available. These are the last of the stock we had in Dutch livery though but it is all available for sale.

Here is a link to the new Heljan Class 33's Heljan Class 33

Here is a link to the remaining stocks of the Heljan Catfish Heljan Catfish

Here is a link to the remaining stocks of the Heljan OAAs Heljan OAAs

Next week will be a steam loco that also finished this week and then 2 more interesting ones to follow that we have been working on and have not touched on before; if they are finished in time.

Heljan Class 33
Various Liveries of Class 33
Finished Class 33
Custom numbered examples of the new Class 33
Weathered Class 33
Weathered and custom numbered examples of the new Class 33
Finished Class 33
Named and numbered examples of the new Class 33
Weathered Class 33
Weathered, name and numbered examples of the new Class 33
Heljan Catfish
Heljan Dutch Catfish custom weathered
Heljan OAAs
Heljan Dutch OAA custom weathered

6th February 2020

Ballast Train

With so many launches in the last six weeks it has been difficult to find the time to indulge this feature but this week we completed a train for a customer rather than doing one for stock.

The brand new Heljan Class 50 came out not so long ago and a customer asked us to complete one of the revised Network South East Livery to closely approximate the above picture. Luckily we also still had stocks of the Heljan Catfish that are also in the image.

The green liveried Catfish are all sold out but we still have black examples available along with a couple of the Dutch examples mixed in. Heljan also supply loads for these, both full and half load and we have shown them here with the full loads that we have lightly stained rather than leaving them the bare plastic.

We have also finished the train off with one of the Dapol SR Pillbox brakevans that we have repainted into Dutch livery that we have also featured although the train in the picture does not has a brake van.

The Heljan Class 50 is certainly a superb model and has soon very well with three liveries already sold out and stocks of the remaining liveries running low already. We have shown the train here with eight Catfish but from the original image you can see it is a lot longer but looks effective with just the eight and could be longer or shorter to suit the layout. Stocks of the catfish are also running low now and the Heljan Dogfish have all sold out.

Here is a link to the new Heljan Class 50's Heljan Class 50

Here is a link to the remaining stocks of the Heljan Catfish Heljan Catfish

Next week hopefully we will have either a steam loco and coach or Dutch set using the recently released Class 33 depending on how we work through the backlog of orders.

Heljan Class 50
Various Liveries of Class 50
Finished Class 50
Named and numbered examples of the new Class 50
Weathered Class 50
Weathered, name and numbered examples of the new Class 50
Heljan Catfish
Heljan Catfish - black
Heljan Catfish
Heljan Catfish custom weathered

16th January 2020

EWS Shunting

Sticking with last week theme of shunting we are moving forward in time frame with a later EWS train.

Just before Christmas Dapol released the later version of the ever popular Class 08 in various liveries. here we have taken the factory finished EWS version and given it a medium weather which just takes the sheen of the plastic of the standard factory finish

To match up with the livery we have used some of the Heljan VDA vans which are also in the EWS livery. These came out several years ago in various liveries and at the time the EWS livery was not that popular as there wasn't many locos in a matching livery. Now we have both the Heljan Class 37 in EWS and the Dapol 08

Together they look very well and it is a short but effective looking train that would not be out of place on any more modern layout at under 4 foot in length.

Here is a link to the new Dapol Later bodied Class 08's Dapol Class 08

Here is a link to the remaining stocks of the Heljan VDAs Heljan VAA / VDA and also the Heljan OAAs which are also very popular but coming to an end Heljan OAA's

Next week we will be busy with packing for Bristol show so we will not be doing a Train of the Week but hopefully will have a new one ready for the following week featuring the new Heljan Class 50's

Dapol 08's
Various Liveries of Dapol 08
Weathered Dapol 08's
Weathered examples of the new Dapol 08s
Heljan VDA
Heljan VDA - various liveries
Heljan VDA
Heljan VDA's custom weathered

9th January 2020


In November a customer contacted us is regard to some of the Dapol Air Ministry tankers is if we would be able to re-brand some as Regent for him. Utilising the Air Ministry version seemed the best bet and we liked the idea of it.

Even better than expected, last year took the last of the last four Heljan Class B tankers that were in Regent livery to be converted into Shell BP livery, which have yet to be completed but this did give us the badges off the Heljan wagons spare. The customer was after six but these four would do the job, especially having the badges instead of transfers and from the pictures the customer supplied appear to be the same size, or at least close enough.

Using the Air Ministry Livery of the Dapol tanker we managed to match the shade of grey on the tanks to remove the Air Ministry branding rather than the more aggressive approach to removing the lettering, especially when the number was bhind the handrails and ackward to get to. Then we re-numbered them, all on both the sides and ends of the tanks and weathered including oil stains from the fillers for an overall nice effect.

For the loco we have gone for one of the new Dapol Y1 / Y3 BR Sentinels that has also been weathered through the workshop to represent a light shunting engine assebling the train for mainline use.

Have to say the new Dapol Sentinel is a lovely little loco and sets off this short train very nicely.

Here is a link to the new Dapol Y1/Y3 Sentinels Dapol Y1 / Y3

Here is a link to the Dapol Air Ministry tankers Dapol Air Ministry Tankers and also the Tower Models limited edition sets of 6 tanker in either Esso or Shell BP liveries Tower Tanker Sets

I hope to get back on this for next week but am now tied up with the Heljan Class 03 launch which is expect in tomorrow.

Dapol Air Minstry Tankers
Dapol Air Ministry Class A or B tankers in a choice of liveries
Dapol weathered Air MInistry tankers
Dapol Air Ministry Class A or B tankers, custom weathered
Dapol Y1/3
Dapol Y1/3 in a choice of liveries
Dapol 48xx
Dapol Y1/3 in a choice of liveries, custom weathered