OO – Peckett W4 0-4-0ST

Contents:

  1. Comment
  2. Prototype Summary
  3. Model History
  4. Models Produced
  5. Design and Features
  6. Reviews
  7. Resources
  8. My Collection
  9. Buy and Sell


Comment – “Industrial Classes – A Winning Formula”

With many people concerned about not having enough space to model in OO, the production of detailed, well running very small industrial Loco’s could be a winning formula for Hornby. Not only do they lend them selves to real micro layouts, they find themselves in lots of interesting and pretty liveries too making them interesting to collectors and those who like to enjoy models in display cases.

I know many are available as kits, but today a high percentage of people simply do not have the skill or time to produce them to an equal standard, so something amazing straight from the box is simply going to excite lots of us, even if we had not give types like this much thought before !

I imagine construction time when compared to a larger tender locos has to be cheaper and storage / shipping must also cost less. I look forward to future liveries and hopefully more industrial models. 

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Prototype Summary:

The Peckett W Class was a classic, late Victorian, four-coupled, medium range, industrial saddletank that comprised six separate variations, from the W2 of 1884 to the W7 of 1938. Locomotives were built at the Atlas Engine Works in St. George, Bristol, Peckett & Sons Ltd having taken over the business established there by Fox, Walker & Company in 1880. 

Peckett steam locos, noted for their fine rivet work on the cabs and tanks and the generous use of brass and copperwork, continued to be built at Atlas Works until June 12, 1958. Describing their core market as “Colleries, Ironworks, Contractors Tinplate Works etc.” Peckett took pride in turning their locos out in a lined Works livery and utilised many standard components in their construction, however the nature of the locomotives’ end use meant there were a number of alterations carried out, particularly as reduced height versions for operating in smelting works and collieries. Peckett were eventually bought out by Reed Crane & Hoist Company during 1961, having produced 140 W4 locomotives between April 1885 and February 1906.

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Model History:

On 1st October 2015 Hornby released a video on its Facebook page showing off progress with its ex-LSWR coaches.  Immediately the various model forums blazed into action, not as you might expect with comments about the coaches, but focusing on a  mysterious 0-4-0 industrial type loco that eagle eyed viewers had briefly seen near the end of the video.

Peckett Teaser in Video for ex LSWR 48′ coaches – click to see FB post and complete video

Hornby do sometimes place hints and teasers in their videos – the ex-LSWR coaches first appeared in sample form behind the Adams Radial O2 – but in this case the debate as to what it might be was soon resolved. The following day Hornby announced its plans for an OO model of the industrial  Peckett W4 0-4-0ST – See the announcement.

Initially it was planned for the 2017 catalogue, but this was brought forward to late 2016 as it considered public demand for this type of steam loco to be high.

With a good supply of plans and historical data, 3 preserved versions (all static) to measure and examine, help from the Industrial Rail Society and the knowledge that the locomotive type was distributed across the UK for over 50 years, it’s choice as a model seems very logical to me.

Hornby report that although they had plans, looking at photos and the actual preserved loco’s it soon became apparent that several official and more local modifications had taken place. Eventually enough research was complete to understand the tooling changes required to represent particular locomotives at particular times.

I also suspect the variety of ‘pretty’ liveries the private owners applied also adds great appeal to a producer too. Most of the archive photos were black and white, or show the loco’s in a very grimy later life state, so Hornby asked members of the public with colour photos of to get in contact via a dedicated W4 forum page in order that they could develop a range of models in different liveries to be released over a number of years.

It was at Warley when a former employee of Pecketts approached the Hornby staff that real progress was able to be made. He provided a colour photo of a later Peckett R4 in Leaf Green, the default production colour loco’s were delivered in unless a customer requested different. Tonal conversion showed it compared exactly with black and white photos of W4’s and therefore the first colour was established. (Note in some literature Hornby referred to the base colour as grey)

The second livery, the attractive dark green of Manchester Ship Canal was established by studying their house colour diagrams and photos of other loco’s they operated – therefore although photos of a Peckett W4 in this livery are not reliable, a best guess was able to be produced.

The final loco in the initial Batch features a blue Huntley and Palmers livery, and again a process of house colours, photos of later stock and tonal analysis of photos produced a highly attractive best guess.

On 5th Feb 2016 Hornby announced the liveries for the first production batch, again keeping customers informed via the Engine Shed blog – See the announcement.

In May 2016 Hornby issued an update on their blog as they had received an Engineering sample. The update included photos, livery details and a video of the W4 operating smoothly on their test layout.  Here’s a link to the update

0-4-0 models can be incredibly tricky to run well because of lack of weight and electrical pickup, but I think the video’s and the delightful colour schemes satisfied those after a hard working industrial shunter as all models appear to have sold to pre-orders!

 

 

Models Produced to Date:

PhotoCat No.Notes
R.3427
No.563 'Dodo' - Lined Base/Leaf Green
Era 2, Era 3
2016
Loughor Colliery Co. Ltd
R.3428
No.11 - Lined Dark Green
Era 3
2016
Manchester Ship Canal
R.3429
No.832 - Lined Blue
Era 3
2016
Huntley & Palmers of Reading

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Model Design and Features:

Engineering and sample photos on the internet show that this looks to be a very fine model indeed with lots of added details. One aim is to make the chassis as heavy as possible and the boiler appears to be diecast metal which will certainly help on a model of this size.

Cab detailing looks excellent and there are tooling / detail variations between the different models.

DCC modellers will be pleased to know the model is DCC ready and will accept the 4pin chip – ref Hornby X9659 – that also fits the Hornby Sentinel model.

Further information to come on release of the model.

 

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Reviews:

Hornby Magazine – HM115 – January 2017 – On sale 8th December 2016 — ( Link to Video )

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My Collection:

I have R3427 DoDo on pre-order and look forward to receiving in the New year.

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Resources:

Links to further resources about the Peckett W4 will go here

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Buy and Sell:

Since the initial allocation sold out to pre-orders I suspect that a number will find their way onto re-sale sites at prices in excess of the RRP of £87.99 – Those who ordered at the £70.00 that was asked on some websites may end up purchasing real bargains !

 

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