O gauge Diesel Loco’s of Merlin’s Lane

When starting to build  Merlin’s Lane, I only actually had two loco’s, this was a bit of a leap of faith! Over the next two years I have managed to buy four more, mostly by selling off OO gauge stock and one layout. It was always going to be DCC but not originally sound, however this soon changed to sound. I guess the decision was – more loco’s or fewer loco’s with sound, the sound won! I will pad out the layout with a few wagons, they are much more affordable.

Here we go again! Sadly they have not been weathered yet! My first show with Merlin’s is the Bury St Edmunds Show and I really wanted to finish them, but it is unlikely.

I decided to go for 1965-68 period so that I could have a mix of Coloured Loco’s. Green, Blue or even a Maroon one! In an ideal world I would like two more loco’s for Merlin’s, a 08 green shunter and a Green loco with Full Yellow Panels..

 

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O Gauge BR(W) Push-Pull Set

Now, I am not a Western Region Steam person. I do have a couple of O gauge Western region Diesels, but that’s about it. However when these arrived for a light weathering, I just thought, wow, they are lovely, really lovely. These are Lionheart Models and apparently purchased from Tower Models at discounted prices. Sadly now all gone, however they are due to reappear under Dapol ownership next year.

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LIMA Class 31 (Various) 1995-1998

Fourth and final part of the Lima Class 31 story – just three loco’s left from this era, I originally had over ten. These three are some of the last liveries the class wore.

The 31 was an underpowered plodder, but I have great memories of them on the GE section since 1958. I have seen a few since 2010, mainly Network Rail and DCR, I hope to get round to modelling them sometime – if I do I will add them here and change the heading date..

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LIMA Class 31 SECTOR (1989-94)

This is the third part of the Lima Class 31 and again moves on to sectorisation. unbelievably there were still a few unreburbished Loco’s around, but they would all be withdrawn very soon.

These seven Loco’s represent this period when many but not all, had headlights fitted. However by the end of this period all had cab to shore flat aerials fitted, the ‘skinheads’ had plates fitted to hold the aerials. I have sold many during this period.

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LIMA Class 31 Railfreight (1985-87)

This is part two of the Lima Class 31 loco post. These seven move on from the original Blue and are all refurbished. Refurbishment saw some body changes and all were reflected in the Lima model. It has to be said that some original, un-refurbished soldiered on during this time.

Another thing I did with my Lima 31’s was to internally blacken the windows as there was no cab interior and the motor could be seen through the engine room windows. Again it would have been nice to make the interiors, but this would have been very time consuming. At this time I also had far more for this era, selling many to help finance other projects.

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LIMA Class 31 Blue (1979-84)

I still believe that the Lima Class 31 is the best looking model of a 31. Even the old motors do not bother me too much, with careful cleaning and Ultrascale wheels the running can be good after running in. I also fit extra pick-ups to the trailing bogie. The only thing that suffers is the pulling power. I guess a new model Hornby chassis with a Lima body would be almost right. Of course all moulded handrails need to be removed and replaced with brass ones. All of the blue ones on this post also have added LED lights and are weathered.

I have to say that the plastic, fit yourself, cab handrails really need replacing with brass ones, sadly I had neither the time or inclination to do it.  The four loco’s below are what I have left of my Blue 31’s, many have been sold. I originally had most variances covered.

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