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Hunslet Update from Ben Ando and Bob Symmons

It’s now mid-February and Members will be aware there were significant quality control issues with the wheels on the forthcoming Hunslet locomotives; so much so that the factory decided to reject the entire initial batch and source a new production after speaking with the designers. This new production has brass wheels, rather than diecast, which gives us the required tolerances and the addition of more weight in the chassis. The production of these wheelsets was completed before Chinese New Year when all the factories in China close down for two weeks, and work resumed immediately afterwards.

So once the production of the Hunslets is complete we will have another hurdle to negotiate. We are aware of long shipping backlogs for containerised freight to the UK – this is a combination of reduced working due to Covid and delays caused by increased paperwork post-Brexit (although our consignment is not coming from the EU, widely-documented difficulties with other freight is having a knock-on effect at seaports such as Felixstowe) and even though our intention still remains to air freight the shipments to the UK, these difficulties above are causing a knock-on effect.

Consequently, at this time, we are unable to give a firm date for the arrival of the models, though we will, of course, update members as soon as possible. 


The AGM was due to be held on 18th July at Hermitage in Berkshire together with a Convention. Due to the requirement of social distancing, and that many members and exhibitors are over 70, it would be impossible to have a Convention. Although less so for an AGM where members could sit apart from each other, the committee also decided to cancel the venue for the AGM and are currently deciding how the AGM should be held. Keep an eye on the news on this website

N Gauge Website

The N Gauge Website is undergoing maintenance over the next few weeks. This involves changing the web address away from “newweb” which was always meant to be a temporary expedient. A major update on the software that runs the website will also take place although this may not be obvious to the user. Some links may not work properly during this period. As ever, we are reliant on volunteers for this work who only have limited time available.  We apologise for any inconvenience and hope you will understand the need for maintenance of the site.

Philip Griffin, Chairman

NGS approves Ferry van CAD- two versions to be offered.

The N Gauge Society’s next RTR model – the popular BR Ferryvan – has reached another milestone with the final approval of the CAD drawings.  The model is now ready to go to tooling, and this will proceed once the Treasurer gives authorisation.

Additional detailing – including the truss cross braces and vacuum pipe – has been added to the underside.
Keen-eyed members will also spot that there are variations in the ends; the first batch of wagons built-in 1962 had narrow uprights at each end, but the second and third batches (built from 1964) had reinforcements added from the upper horizontal rib to the buffer beam.  The earlier wagons were subsequently given the same modification and photographic evidence suggests the entire fleet had been modified by 1970.
These are visually quite obvious, so the NGS model is being tooled to ensure both can be depicted.  Final livery selections are yet to be made, but potential options include the original version with “British Railways Ferry Van” lettering, subsequent “Through to the Continent with British Railways” branding and other versions with the BR double arrow and in departmental use.