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Take Five! Revolution offers articulated Arbel car carriers

Revolution Trains is offering the imposing 5-piece articulated WIA ‘Sefoorss’ car carriers as its next wagon in OO and N.

Photo: Foulger Rail used under Creative Commons

CAD work on the model is complete, and the order book is opening imminently, with our usual great value EarlyBird price available to encourage early orders.

OO WIA CAD image

The Prototype

60 five-unit sets were ordered by BR’s Railfreight Distribution sector ahead of the opening of the Channel Tunnel in 1994.

They were designed to offer complete protection and, being fully enclosed, meant that new cars could be shipped between the UK and continental Europe without needing to be waxed, saving time and money.

Brand new WIA units lined up at Tonbridge. Photo: Paul Wade.

Initially they were operated by Auto Care Europe, a partnership comprising RfD, SNCB and Cobelfret. Some outer wagons were adorned with the ACE logo and car maker markings too. On privatisation ownership passed to EWS and from around 2007 the DB Schenker (now DB) logo was added to the intermediate cars of some sets.

Photo: Mark Saunders
Photo: CA850 used under Creative Commons.

Though it is not immediately apparent from the outside, the wagons are double-decked and the entire roof canopy can be raised or lowered as one unit to aid loading and unloading.

In railfreight terms cars are light, but high volume, so the wagons are designed to maximise the use of space and completely fill the loading gauge, hence the angled contours of the roofs. Articulation is chosen as it both reduces costs, but cutting the number of bogies required, but also simplifies loading and unloading as cars can easily be driven the full length of the train.

Photo: Foulger Rail Photos-Creative Commons

The Model

The model features our usual refinements including separately fitted brake parts and articulation units designed to allow operation down to curves of radius 2. We’d like to thanks DB for their assistance and support in researching the model.

The OO CAD is complete and the N gauge CAD is under development.

The articulation units have been designed to allow the model to comfortably negotiate R2 curves, and for added realism the customer will have the option, for the tail end car, of replacing the tension-lock coupler with a cosmetic air pipe, in either the loose or stowed position, and a control box moulding that clips into the NEM pocket to recreate the look of the real thing.

We expect to open the order book soon, with options including original RfD blue, ACE blue and DB + DB Schenker branded units. Tooling is expected to start shortly with the models ready to ship in Q2-3 2025 depending on orders.

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Car carriers dazzle!

Revolution Trains has received decorated samples of its forthcoming IPA car carriers in N.

Produced with kind permission of operator STVA, we are offering flat, staked and covered twin sets in original and revised liveries covering their service from the early 1990s to the present day.

N-IPA-101A IPA flat twin in original livery
N-IPA-111A flat twin in revised livery
N-IPA-121A twin with stakes in original livery
N-IPA-131A twin with stakes in revised livery. (Model shown with Oxford Diecast Ford Transit vans available separately.)
N-IPA-141A covered twin in revised livery

As th image above shows these wagons can be loaded with appropriate models from Oxford Diecast or other manufacturers.

We are also offering the models in prototypical covered quad sets in both original and revised liveries.

N-IPA-251A covered quad set in original livery

The models are still available to order here in all versions.

Each type is available in two different numbers. As can be seen from this massively enlarged image virtually all the numbers and letters are legible.

The models feature our usual high levels of detail with NEM couplers, photo-etched footsteps, wire handrails, lots of separately fitted underframe details and a diecast deck to ensure the models are heavy enough to run well.

In what is becoming a tradition, Revolution will be attending the International N Gauge show at the Warwickshire Exhibition centre on September 14th and 15th and these samples will be on display.

On first inspection we are very happy with the look of these models, but of course we will check them carefully against the livery diagrams and photographs and notify the factory of any corrections.

These wagons can be seen running together in mixed formations, though the covered versions also operate on their own in block trains typically carrying high-value vehicles from car plants to ports.

66172 with a mixed rake featuring flats, flats with stakes and covered variants on a Dagenham-Mossend service. Photo Colin Brooks.
92010 on Garston-Dagenham train at Northampton. Photo: Trevor Plackett.
66118 on Halewood-Southampton train in 2012. Photo: Shaunnie0.

Immediately after the show we will be closing the order book for the HOA hoppers which are ready for production; we anticipate the car carriers will follow them around 6-8 weeks later in an effort to give our valued customers a little breathing space!