1/32 Accucraft PO 7 plank Coal Wagon

David Halfpenny

Western Thunderer
Whilst the RCH drawings show details for all types of wagon, so far as I can see most 1923-spec 7-plank P.O. wagons had independent sets of brakes either side. No dog clutch or reversing cams and no crosshaft.

Yes, Mike, which is what I've aimed for in merely reassembling the Accucraft parts.

Keith Phillips

Western Thunderer
I've now done this to one of my wagons.......


Must have too much time on my hands :).

Not a process I will be repeating as there was a lot of cutting of transfers, scraping them off and then painting in the gaps. Heavy weathering to blend it all together. It does show that you can convert any that crop up second hand and are not exactly what you are looking for.

All the best,



Western Thunderer
A wagon with a cross-shaft has one brake lever fitted directly to the shaft, while the other drives through a reverser.

this isn’t strictly true.

The cross shaft is connected to the short rocker levers that push the links and the shoes, but the two long levers are not directly connected to the shaft.

The reverser, as David notes, on one side, acts as a one-way drive, so the lever drives the shaft, but the shaft does not drive the lever.

The other lever has a concentric one-way drive, which does exactly the same thing. It’s effectively hidden where the lever joins the shaft, but it allows the shaft to be rotated by the reverser lever without the non-reverser lever moving.

if this were not the case, it would not be possible to apply the brakes from either side.

of course, if there is no cross shaft, the levers are attached directly to the short shafts and rockers. In this case, if there are brakes on both sides, the links between the rockers and the shoes will appear “crossed” when looking under the wagon.


David Halfpenny

Western Thunderer
That's a very useful clarification, Simon, thanks.
(So are we working up to telling poor Keith to fix his brakes next (naughty-face emoji) ? )​
That's a great transfer job, Keith.
And here's a similar one on the opposite side of the Slaters kit, weathered to a slightly less faded condition:​


By viewing this pair of photos together at different magnifications, each of us can assess the following proposition for ourselves:

"At what viewing distance does the difference in refinement between these commercial products no longer matter to me?"


Flying Squad
Without wishing to sound waspish, if you are attempting to actually model such a wagon with any degree of veracity then the Accucraft wagon fails at any distance, as the pictures above amply demonstrate.

It was a great disappointment after the Mark One coaches, and even the mineral wagon, which has multiple failings but is actually worth working on and will yield a good representation of its type.

I purchased a "Camerton" version of the PO wagon from Cliff Barker back in the day and have done various things to it, but its basic lumpen form has extinguished my enthusiasm for further bothering with it.

The curse of Gauge One rolls relentlessly forwards it seems, or are there any decent products coming out anywhere?



Western Thunderer
At what viewing distance does the difference in refinement between these commercial products no longer matter to me?

in my case "about two coach lengths away"

(and the same is true for my own efforts as for commercial offerings - and it seems to be true across scales too)

David Halfpenny

Western Thunderer
Without wishing to sound waspish,
As If ! :)
The curse of Gauge One rolls relentlessly forwards it seems, or are there any decent products coming out anywhere?

Well, Simon, you've contributed positively to Marc Dobson's New Wagon Kits thread

and Marc released 27 Gauge One designs this month - some sort of Record.

I bought his Midland shunter's truck, and pored over those few prototype photos I could find.
No, it isn't quite as comprehensive as (say) a Phipps or a Slaters kit, yet the price was great, and it's a near-finished wagon that leaves very little for the Detailing fanatic to do. (At any rate, a lot less work than your brave upgrade of the Northern Finescale brake van.) I haven't spotted any nut or bolts missing, anyway. My issues (others' mileage may vary) are below the solebar - an area Marc doesn't often stray into, and which he will no doubt master as time goes by, and a source of complementary running gear sprouts to join him.​

There's one bit of slack we do need to cut Marc for our own sakes:
I found the actual model to be noticeably better than the photo on his website.​

So I suspect that the photo was of a smaller scale version, and simply included as a 'place-holder' to show what wagon you get.
While that's fair enough - I doubt Marc can afford to photograph a full set of completed 1:32 kits until he's got some revenue from the range - any Friendly Wasp, looking to the website to see the quality, could be unnecessarily disappointed.

To paraphrase another forum member,
"Buy what they make, then lean on them to make better: otherwise they'll think there's no market, and stop making anything."

which, to give Your Stripeyness due credit, you have indeed done yourself :)