I'm considering Kadees for my BR buckeye units, but i they will spoil the appearance of the 2BIL units, that's why i fitted screw couplings, as seen on the real thing. The only way i can couple the units more closely Ken, is by using shorter or adjustable screw couplings, depending on sharpness of curves, so one has to make some compromises. If i fit Kadees to BR gangway units, the "buckeye" will have to be slightly proud of the gangway, since the latter is solid. Hornby's centre coupling is very neat, with it's bar and centre buffer. I'm starting to agree with others, that the collector beam is a bit on the heavy and deep side, but not a great issue. Looking at 2BIL pics, some seem to have acquired the heavy duty SM buffers, does anyone know how many were converted or did any have them from new? I shall add air pipes to hang down by the screw couplings.
Yes, the person running Hamley's train department is a Hornby employee, Hamley's were also the first place to get the Thompson O1s last December, i was shown one from their stockroom, but they couldn't sell them, since they hadn't received the price code for their computer tills. Life is so complicated. BK
The 2 BIL's were built in four batches. The first batch were built in 1935 (2001-2010)
A further three batches of 2 BIL's were built. The second batch were built in 1936 (2011-2048), the third in 1937 (2049-2116), and a final batch in 1938(2117-2152)
These last three 2 BIL batches had detail differences to the first batch, including a larger Guards/Luggage area (more space for Hornby's motor bogie), one third class 8 seat compartment replaced with a 4-seat coupe, and a different type of electro-pneumate control gear.
The last batch of 2 BIL units numbered 2117-2152 differed to the first three batches of 2 BIL units in having the large Spencer Moulton self contained buffers instead of the original oblong shank buffers originaly fitted to the other units.
I don't know if any of the early built 2 BIL's had their original buffers converted to the Spencer Moulton type, I would imagine that someone on this thread should be able to tell you.
I like your idea of screw coupling your 2 BIL's together. That is how I couple my 4 COR to my 4 BUF, and when I get one of my Hornby 2 BIL's I was going to screw couple it to my model of a 6 PAN. I don't know if 2 BIL's and 6 PAN's could or did work together , but I have seen a photo of a 4 BUF coupled to a 5 BEL ( both staffed by Pullman ?)