One of the projects I have ongoing at the moment is establishing my Intercity 125 fleet. With the real-life mark 3s having an electric train supply that is incompatible with normal locos, I don't need mine to be compatible with the rest of my models. I therefore hope to change the couplings one day, which will reduce the gap between coaches created by the annoying tension locks. Before that though, I needed to decide whether I could mix Hornby and Lima/Limby mark 3s without the rake looking inconsistent. When Hornby released their latest Railroad power cars, they also released the GWR train set at the same price, effectively giving be a free Hornby mark 3 (previously I had only two mark 3s, both Lima). The Hornby one has one big advantage over the Lima, NEM pockets! It does however also have the central door locking lights moudled on, and rides higher than the Lima mark 3s.
I happened to read something that made me decide to check the wheel diameters, and sure enough the Lima mark 3 wheels had a diameter (excluding flanges) of only 11.3mm while the Hornby one was 12.6mm. I took some Hornby wheels off another vehicle and put them under one of the Lima coaches to see if that would solve the ride height issue. It did, but then I realised that the Hornby coach and the modified Lima one were now both riding higher than the Lima and Hornby Railroad power cars. Also, the Hornby wheels have a longer axle than the Lima ones and wouldn't turn once I put them under the Lima coach. So, what I need is some smaller diameter wheels for the Hornby mark 3.
I have uploaded a series of pictures to the gallery showing the difference in ride heights (which I suspect is most-obvious if you look at the top of the gangways) with the tension locks removed from the Hornby coach to allow no gap between coaches. Unfortunately I cannot work out how to make an Album of them to associate with this blog post. The wheel diameters (excluding flanges) of the vehicles in the pictures were measured as follows:
- Hornby Railroad (Limby) dummy power car (W43002) - 11.48mm
- Lima mark 3 (Lima wheels) coach b - 11.3mm
- Lima mark 3 (Hornby wheels) coach c - 12.65mm
- Hornby mark 3 (Lima wheels) - 11.3mm (identified as D in photographs)
- Hornby mark 3 (Hornby factory-fitted wheels) - 12.6mm (identified as E in photographs)
D and E are the same coach, I only have the one Hornby mark 3 at the moment.
Edited by Rhydgaled