The creation of a Loco Model Reviews Page. has proven to be very popular and as a result, and so there will be two more reviews completed by the end of the week to bolster this page to make it a more comprehensive resource for locoyard followers.
So without further ado, here we have part one of a tale of two cities!. We start with a review of Hornby’s 00 scale rendition of Stanier’s streamlined Duchess class; 6235 City of Birmingham.
Class: Stanier Duchess/Coronation Class 4-6-2
Use: Express Passenger
Region: London Midland and Scottish
Era: 1937 – 1949
6229 Duchess of Hamilton – National Railway Museum York
Non Streamlined Condition:
(4)6233 Duchess of Sutherland (never had streamline casing) – Working mainline condition owned by The Princess Royal Class Locomotive Trust, based at Midland Railway Butterley
(4)6235 City of Birmingham (previously streamlined) – ThinkTank, Birmingham
Motor: 5 pole Loco-drive
DCC options: none on early versions, 8 pin dcc ready and sound on non-streamlined versions
No picked-out cab details (below) or opening cab roof. The motion/connecting rods are good, blackened representations. As you’d expect it has handrails and lamp irons and the riveting looks good; not that I’ve counted them though!
The shape is excellent and the powerful poise of the prototype is captured well. More recent versions look better than the version illustrated as they have a fixed rear truck, however all versions suffer from a “skateboard” front bogey (below).
The tender is streamlined and it really looks the part (below).
An excellent finish, the red and gold is stunning; whilst the blue with white stripes are also very impressive.
Pick-ups aren’t perfect despite being on every wheel, but it is smooth, quiet and reliable on the whole.
The prototype is big and very powerful, whilst the model is adequate without being exceptional. It slips a little with 5-6 carriages around Locoyard’s tight 2nd radius circuit. Unfortunately this means that there is a power gap between the 8P rated prototype and the model.
Cab detailing is not as good as more modern models. If you’re not confident at using a soldering iron and are a DCC user, you must be sure that you purchase a DCC ready/fitted version, as early models (such as the one illustrated) were not DCC Ready.
Can be picked up quite cheaply for a large model secondhand as it has been around for a while. It isn’t fully up to date however, and you can pay a lot for a new version. Try not to spend more than £80 if you can help it as there are better models around for £100+.
Overall Locoyardometer Score: 4.1
A good model that’s slightly out-dated, but worth having all the same. An improved front bogey and a little more power would make all the difference!
Detailometer 4, Outlineometer 4.5, Finishometer 5, Motorometer 4, Powerometer 2.5, Specometer 4.5, Valueometer 4, Locoyardometer 4.1