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This expansion tells a part of the story of the more than 24,000 21T hoppers built by British Railways to several different diagrams over the 10 years from 1949. These wagons were a continuation of a former LNER design, with some of the earliest examples featuring the long brake lever and single-sided brakes of late LNER examples and also riveted bodywork. The various diagrams featured 2 styles of side ribs, but all had 5 ribs per side. By 1952, examples of Diagram 1/146 started to appear with welded bodies, the shorter BR style brake lever and Morton brakegear, with a single brake shoe to each wheel. This could be considered to be the standard design, with nearly 17,000 constructed.

This expansion features the final wagons built for British Railways to dia. 1/146 which can be considered the ‘standard’ although by this stage they were being fitted with vacuum brakes as built. The wagons are supplied in clean and weathered versions which are further enhanced by loaded and empty versions of each with suitably modified physics to match the load state.


Background

The vehicles built to Diagram 1/146 formed the bulk of British Railways 21t Hopper fleet. The vast majority of them were constructed with only a lever operated hand brake, but the Modernisation Plan of 1955 called for stock to be fitted with Automatic Vacuum Brakes. This process was slightly hampered with hopper wagons, as there was no space under the chassis suitable for mounting of the vacuum cylinder or the vacuum pipe. The solution was to mount the vacuum cylinder on one of the end platforms and required a re-design of the end supports to the hopper. Subsequently the vacuum pipe was fitted along the top of the chassis, running through the gaps available in the side bracing. Due to the large number of vehicles under construction by several builders, the fitment of vacuum brake equipment was carried out somewhat piecemeal, with some vehicles not receiving all the equipment when new to traffic.

The vehicles featured in this pack belong to the three final lots built to Diagram 1/146. Lot 3158 from Birmingham Railway Carriage and Wagon, Lot 3159 from Gloucester Railway Carriage and Wagon and Lot 3160 from Hurst Nelson Ltd. of Motherwell. Nearly all were built in 1958, with construction of the last vehicles of Lot 3158 running into January 1959. When built, the hoppers all had the full compliment of vacuum brake equipment installed and were fitted with roller bearing axle-boxes.

Coded as HOP21 VB when new, these vehicles were painted in the standard Bauxite scheme for fitted stock. A new style lettering appeared in 1964, with the vehicle code, load weight, tare weight and vehicle number all grouped together in a box displayed on the left hand end of the body. A decade later, TOPS coded these vehicles as HTV.


Features

We always like to find ways of doing things a little differently and to incorporate new features to improve the use and enjoyment of our expansions.

Sometimes we will look at enabling new features to make models operate more like the prototype and in other cases to more closely reflect other influences in the real world.

This pack is no exception and we have and features a number of 'standard' Fastline Simulation features along with some newly developed ideas which include.

  • Two variations of freight brown livery
  • Clean and weathered versions
  • Loaded and empty variants with suitable physics
  • Four different type of data panel/lettering - randomly assigned but can be overridden
  • Loaded versions have five different load profiles randomly assigned
  • Animated handbrake lever
  • Dynamic builders plates
  • Intelligent taillamps

The pack includes a user manual with further details about the rolling stock and the customising of some of the features when using the wagons in scenarios.

Click here to view the dia. 1/146 HTV 21T Coal Hoppers Manual


Scenarios

As these expansions are being released via Steam Marketplace it is usual to not included bundled scenarios as we have in the past with our self-published expansions. However, as this product is workshop compatible we have commissioned two scenarios featuring the rolling stock included in the pack and these will be uploaded to Steam Workshop in the near future.

In the meantime you may want to search Steam Workshop to see if any scenarios have been shared by other people: Click here for Steam Workshop scenarios

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