Travellers-Fare with Hornby's Mk.1 Restaurant-Buffet car
Rail Express|March 2021
Hornby expands its range of retooled ‘OO’ gauge Mk.1 coaches with a brand new tooling for the Diagram 24 Restaurant-Buffet car (RB) and the Diagram 33 refurbished version (RBR). It models the vehicles in both original form, finished in BR maroon and Southern Region green, together with the RBR refurbished coaches. They remained in frontline service well into the 1990s, including Cross-Country workings.
From the box

FURTHER progress on Hornby’s new range of Mk.1 coaches was made with the release of a once-common catering car: the Diagram 24 Restaurant–Buffet built by Pressed Steel and BRCW in four lots in the early 1960s and its refurbished version, the RBR. Two models are reviewed, including the BR blue model (R4973) together with the form that the RBR stock ran for InterCity (R4974).

Upon unboxing the models, the first impression is of a model with the correct profile of a Mk.1 coach and, equally important, the modelling of window frames which would have been applied to this type of coach from new. Also apparent are prominent roof ribs, a feature in which model designers struggle to understand are not that significant on Mk.1 stock roofs, the panels being welded edge to edge leaving a barely discernable line usually only highlighted by grime. In all, the Hornby model looks the part and value for money on first impressions.

Body shell

Roof and side profiles are nicely modelled in the coach with fine window frames adding to the authentic appearance of the model. Tooling is crisp, including the moulded commode handles and door hinges. Long hand rails adjacent to the emergency doors are also fine moulded detail, picked out with black printing rather than applied as separate details.

The prominent roof ribs have already been touched upon. Otherwise, the detail is well executed with ridge dome ventilators of more or less the correct size and separately applied kitchen extractor fan cowls, which results in them having the right amount of undercut.

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