Product Highlight: OO Scale Class 30 and 31s

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Product Highlight: OO Scale Class 30 and 31s

It’s been a couple of weeks since our Spring 2024 British Railway Announcements, where the first new models to be revealed were the Class 30 and Class 31 diesel locomotives in OO Scale for the Bachmann Branchline range. These models were first shown in a special video production with Hornby Magazine, and now is a perfect time to have a look in more detail at the individual locomotives that make up this new fleet.

These locomotives feature the high levels of detail and functionality that you would expect from a Bachmann Branchline model, and what we see here is the result of many years of painstaking research and development. The new tooling has allowed for a comprehensive range of models that depicts multiple variations of the class throughout their working lives. The models feature several die cast components, including the chassis block, bogie towers and gearboxes, as well as the usual array of separately applied metal detail parts such as grab handles, windscreen wipers, etched grilles and sprung buffers. The locomotives also all share the following features:

35-805A - Class 31/1 31293 BR Blue Side View
35-821A - Class 31/1 Refurbished 31149 BR Railfreight (Red Stripe) Side View
35-823 - Class 31-1 Refurbished 31319 BR Railfreight Petroleum Sector Side View
  • Five pole, twin shaft motor with two flywheels providing drive to both bogies
  • All axle drive with separate metal bearings fitted to each axle and electrical pickup from all outer wheels on each bogie
  • Detachable coupling pockets to NEM362 standards fitted to each bogie
  • Diecast metal chassis block, bogie towers and metal gearboxes, with gearing arranged for prototypical running speeds and haulage capabilities
  • Directional lighting, including illuminated headcode panels and high intensity headlights where applicable, switchable on/off at either end on DCC or Analogue control
  • Cab and engine room lighting when used on DCC
  • Two quality speakers employed for optimum sound reproduction, fitted to every model as standard
  • Each model supplied with a full set of decorated, model-specific bufferbeam pipework and accessory parts including three-piece, body-mounted snow ploughs and etched Nameplates and Plaques where applicable
Lighting Functions:

Multiple Headlight positions with authentic ribbed glass patterns (where fitted).

Original or plated headcode boxes.

Single or twin red tail lights.

Engine room lights (when used on DCC)

Independent cab lights at each end (when used on DCC).

All models are also available as SOUND FITTED versions, which have a Zimo MS450P22 DCC Sound Decoder that has been programmed using an exclusive sound project that contains over 25 sound and lighting functions.

For the ultimate experience, there are also SOUND FITTED DELUXE versions, which feature all of the above along with a motorised radiator fan, authentic tinted windscreen glazing and the new DCC controlled Auto-Release Coupling System.

The SOUND FITTED and SOUND FITTED DELUXE models may also be used on most Analogue (DC) layouts, where they will play normal load running sounds and any other automatic or randomised sounds, along with fan sounds. The fan will also operate on SOUND FITTED DELUXE models when power is applied.

Auto-Release Couplings

Operation of the Auto-Release Coupling is simple. With the train stationery, press the relevant function button and the process will automatically cycle with appropriate sound effects. The locomotive will ease back to slacken the coupling, the coupling hook will rise, and in doing so will lift a paddle that disconnects the opposing coupling hook. With both hooks clear, the locomotive then eases forward to separate itself from the train.

The Class 30 and 31 locomotives were built between 1957 and 1962. The locomotives were originally known as Brush Type 2s and over 260 were built. They were originally built with Mirrlees engines which were replaced a few years later with English Electric 12SVT engines. The locomotives have seen several other modifications over the years, which have helped contribute to their long working lives.

Class 30 BR Green

35-801 - Class 30 D5564 BR Green (Late Crest)

Our first pair of models consists of Class 30s that carry BR’s green livery. Depicting locomotives in their original condition, these models feature Mirrlees exhaust ports whilst the Mirrlees engine is modelled inside the locomotive and these details can be seen through the bodyside windows. Many other details from the locomotives’ original configuration include the gangway doors, fan grilles, open boiler port, water filler hatch and battery boxes.

D55647J55 and 9K8835-80135-801SF35-801SFX
D56171_52 and _G4835-801A35-801ASF35-801ASFX



Class 31/1 BR Blue

Our next pair of models are Class 31/1s in BR Blue. Like the rest of our Class 31s, these locomotives are fitted with English Electric engines, as evidenced by the exhaust ports on the roof and the engine block detail visible through the bodyside windows. They have also had the gangway doors, boiler port, water filler hatch and bodyside steps plated over whilst the headcode has been replaced with dominoes.

35-805 - Class 31/1 31123 BR Blue



Class 31/1 Refurbished BR Railfreight (Red Stripe)

35-821 - Class 31/1 Refurbished 31180 BR Railfreight (Red Stripe)

The third pair of models are refurbished Class 31/1s, decorated in the  Red Stripe livery of BR Railfreight. These locomotives have had their body refurbished, with the buffer beam cowling having been removed and the headcode panel plated over and fitted with marker lights.

31180 35-82135-821SF35-821SFX
31149 35-821A35-821ASF35-821ASFX



Class 31/1 Refurbished BR Railfreight Petroleum Sector

The next pair of models are also refurbished Class 31/1s, this time in the livery of BR Railfreight’s Petroleum Sector. The fan grilles on these models have been modified, with the roof featuring ‘top hats’ around the grilles and National Radio Network (NRN) pods. The cab ends are now equipped with high intensity headlights.

35-823A - Class 31/1 Refurbished 31304 BR Railfreight Petroleum Sector



Class 31/4 Refurbished BR Blue

35-825 - Class 31-4 Refurbished 31435 BR Blue

Our penultimate model is a refurbished Class 31/4 in BR Blue. This model has the original main fan grilles and is not fitted with the ‘top hat’ roof fan grilles, high intensity headlights or NRN pods, but has been equipped with Electric Train Heating (ETH) equipment.

31435 35-82535-825SF35-825SFX



Class 31/4 Refurbished Mainline Freight

Our final model is another refurbished Class 31/4, in the livery of  Mainline Freight. This locomotive once again has the NRN radio pods, roof fan grille with ‘Top Hat’, ETH equipment and high intensity headlights, but still features the original mail fan grilles with horizontal fins.

35-830 - Class 31/4 Refurbished 31407 Mainline Freight



These locomotives are currently expected to arrive towards the middle of the year, so head to the Bachmann Europe website where you can find more information. Once you’ve selected your models, get in touch with your nearest retailer to order yours! 

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