British Railway Modelling (BRM)


- Words & photograph­y: Andy York

For any modeller of the last decade, container trains are a virtual necessity. Revolution Trains has produced more variety to the field with its low-riding ‘Ecofret' for N gauge, following on from its successful OO gauge model.

It may be a silly little thing, but Revolution's acrylic product cases impress me. The pips on the base, which sit in recesses in the top of another box, ensure they stack tidily; now we've got box talk out of the way, a look at the model.

The models are available as pairs in green for Freightlin­er or triple packs in GBRf blue and DB red replicatin­g the form taken in real life. Supplied as the spine wagons only, suitable containers are available from Revolution Trains in 40ft

Tex brown and Hyundai red liveries, plus Bertschi and Eurotainer 20ft examples. The low height deck of the ‘Ecofret' is designed to accommodat­e a single hi-cube 40ft container within the UK loading gauge. As the majority of containers shipped into the country are 40ft, the ‘Ecofret' makes more effective use of space than the frequent gaps left in trains with wagons that accommodat­e a 40ft and 20ft container on the 60ft deck. Principall­y seen within trains from south and east coast ports to the Midlands, the North and Scotland, there's certainly a home for these on most contempora­ry layouts.

There's an immediate finesse apparent to the model with plastic detail attached to the die-cast spine chassis of the wagon. Each wagon is packed separately with the standard Rapido coupling for the end of each set and a rigid-bar coupling between each wagon, which is simple to clip into an adjacent wagon.

Containers can be placed directly onto the deck and would be held in place by the end blocks, but for modellers who wish to run the wagons unloaded, there is an accessory pack with spigots to place into the holes on the top surface of the wagon; I hope you have good microsurge­ry skills.

The wagons only weigh 9g each, but on the track they're very stable in motion (whether hauled or propelled), nicely freerunnin­g and an impressive sight with a rake snaking around a layout's pointwork. I'm sure models will be popular in adding variety to container workings added to the manufactur­er's previous KFAs, and wagons from Farish and Dapol.

Revolution Trains has now supplied the pre-ordered models to its customers, but stocks are available from Revolution stockists, which can be found on its website.

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