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Hi all,

 

I have just purchased a class 117 DMU kit in N scale or my Cornish mainline layout and was wondering if I could pass it off as a class 118. Looking at photos, there doesn't seem to be any differences between the 2.....or is there!!???

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

 

Best regards,

 

Jeremy

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Hi Jeremy,

 

The only external major difference between a 117 and a 118 was the shape of the headcode box. 117 had a flat top. 118 had a curved top which followed the arc of the roof. In N gauge a small amount of filler and some fine wet & dry should solve that.

The curious thing about 118's was the variety of buffers they had. Round, oval and cropped were all used. The bt telecom livery in N gauge would be a challenge!!!

 

Vin

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Hi Jeremy,

 

The only external major difference between a 117 and a 118 was the shape of the headcode box. 117 had a flat top. 118 had a curved top which followed the arc of the roof. In N gauge a small amount of filler and some fine wet & dry should solve that.

The curious thing about 118's was the variety of buffers they had. Round, oval and cropped were all used. The bt telecom livery in N gauge would be a challenge!!!

 

Vin

 

 

The headcode boxes are different.

 

Geoff Endacott

 

 

Thank you both for your help. I'd be quite keen for a BT Telecom one but I think I'll stick with blue/grey and adjust the headcode box to represent a 118.

 

Best regards,

 

Jeremy

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117s did not have the two lights below the cab windows when first built. Both 117 and 118s did not have gangway connectors when new these were fitted in late 60s.

 

Edit. Niether of these facts are any use to someone modelling blue or later periods.

Edited by Clive Mortimore
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Hi,

I have a Lima DMU, if these facts are true what Class of DMU is it? it has the rounded head code box as mentioned. But on the card box label it say's it's a 117.
From what I know the Class 118 was more common in Cornwall as well. I think I read somewhere that the units were built by different companies for BR but externally they were similar.
Would just changing the number also make a difference?

 

252300_512359412146266_1563851038_n.jpg

Cheers, Reece

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The Lima one is a Pressed Steel class 117. The headcode boxes are distinctly flattened on top, unless you or someone else has modified it.

The 118s were made by the Birmingham Railway Carriage & Wagon company (BRCW) and their headcode boxes were shaped to match the roof curvature.

 

There are plenty of pictures on line but here are a couple of links to get you on your way:

 

class 117 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/54/Rail-class-117-51402-amoswolfe.jpg

 

 

class 118 http://www.flickr.com/photos/philstephenrichards/6406410133/

Edited by SRman
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From the average observer's point of view the differences between classes 117 and 118 have been dealt with; the curve of the roof extends to the outer edge of the head code box on a 118 while the 117 has a flatter top head code box.  Both have destination blinds fitted inside the central window at the top edge.  Class 115 used out of Marylebone was very similar to the class 118 in external appearance and appeared alongside those and class 117 at Banbury and occasionally at High Wycombe until closure of the route to Bourne End.

 

The similar class 116 has no head code box at roof level but instead has a small destination indicator here surmounted by a third marker light - the two low level ones were also present and IIRC these units were built with low-level 2-character headcode boxes which were later plated over.

 

Use in Cornwall varied over the years but from early days until at least the blue-grey era class 118 was far more common than class 117.  Those took over the duties in the far south-west when their sisters were retired.

 

For example in 1984 the Ian Allan "Combine" (not exactly the definitive word on the subject but often a useful guide) shows all bar two units of class 118 allocated to Plymouth Division but not a single class 117.  Class 116 was almost exclusively allocated to Cardiff Division for Valley Lines work and the 117s were split roughly 60:40 between London and Bristol Divisions.  Some of us associate the bubble cars of class 121 and 122 with the Cornish branches (and associated main line duties) and they certainly spent some of their lives there.  But in 1984 only a single vehicle (W55025 as "unit" P125) was allocated to Plymouth Division with just one at Bristol (W55026 and usually found on the Severn Beach line), two at Cardiff and the rest all allocated to London Division.

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Class 115 units were made up of four cars and the Motor Brake Seconds had smaller van sections than the 116/7/8 types. There were a good many other units with the Derby style front ends, and various treatments for marker lights and headcodes. Only the 117 and 118 shared much the same side window and seating arrangements, although the 116s were close in appearance to the casual observer.

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Another 117/118 fact.

 

The 117's we built without asbestos (except for a small amount sandwiched in the floor that most preservationists would rather not admit existed, while in true BRC&W 118 had plenty and as part of the removal history (not very well carried out) the roof vents were removed and the remaining holes we covered with a bit of sheet metal riveted in place.

 

The above is why we have 117's all over the place and 118's are a rare bread!

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The 117's we built without asbestos .....

 

The above is why we have 117's all over the place and 118's are a rare bread!

 

And that is no doubt one of the main reasons the class lasted so long (along with the 101s) compared with many contemporaries and went on to serve all "regions" (sectors of course in latter days) bar the Eastern.

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Another 117/118 fact.

 

The 117's we built without asbestos (except for a small amount sandwiched in the floor that most preservationists would rather not admit existed, while in true BRC&W 118 had plenty and as part of the removal history (not very well carried out) the roof vents were removed and the remaining holes we covered with a bit of sheet metal riveted in place.

 

The above is why we have 117's all over the place and 118's are a rare bread!

 

There were also far more Class 117 vehicles to begin with than Class 118...

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Hi,

 

I have a Lima DMU, if these facts are true what Class of DMU is it? it has the rounded head code box as mentioned. But on the card box label it say's it's a 117.

From what I know the Class 118 was more common in Cornwall as well. I think I read somewhere that the units were built by different companies for BR but externally they were similar.

Would just changing the number also make a difference?

 

 

Cheers, Reece

 

I've always thought that the Lima DMU model looks more like a 118 than a 117, but as Geoff notes the headcode box is very undersize for either type.  With the caveat that the Lima model is very dated and needs a fair bit of work to look respectable, yes, a renumbering gives you something as close to a 118 as it is to a 117.

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I've always thought that the Lima DMU model looks more like a 118 than a 117, but as Geoff notes the headcode box is very undersize for either type.  With the caveat that the Lima model is very dated and needs a fair bit of work to look respectable, yes, a renumbering gives you something as close to a 118 as it is to a 117.

I agree, I used to spend hours detailing all my Lima DMUs and go through endless amounts of craftsman detailing kits.

I done this 121 recently with all you can think of added. The full works! (list is a little long to describe fully) Good fun :)

 

1392426_569200399795500_298383838_n.jpg

 

1392097_569200346462172_1832919002_n.jpg

 

My other 117/118 thing gets around abit and appears on a few different layouts, it too has a list of modifications. Including working corridor connections and replacement exhaust pipes.

 

1069871_535630493152491_349251653_n.jpg

 

I also have a blue grey version which I will hopefully get around to finishing one day. I also have a Class 101 (which needs starting), a single 117 car which I'm hoping to convert into something interesting and 2 other 121 units which require detailing. There's also a Bachmann 108 in the collection but this only really needs some passengers.

 

Cheers, Reece

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I've seen some good work done on Lima DMUs (not least Jim Smith-Wright's ones used on New Street) though haven't bothered myself due to the amount of work needed versus the running quality.

 

The "Suburban" DMU which has the class 118-type head code box also does not have the destination indicator fitted which was a feature of those and the117s and which is adequately represented (though with spelling mistakes!) on Hornby's reworking of the similar bubble cars.

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I agree, I used to spend hours detailing all my Lima DMUs and go through endless amounts of craftsman detailing kits.

I done this 121 recently with all you can think of added. The full works! (list is a little long to describe fully) Good fun :)

 

1392426_569200399795500_298383838_n.jpg

 

1392097_569200346462172_1832919002_n.jpg

 

My other 117/118 thing gets around abit and appears on a few different layouts, it too has a list of modifications. Including working corridor connections and replacement exhaust pipes.

 

1069871_535630493152491_349251653_n.jpg

 

I also have a blue grey version which I will hopefully get around to finishing one day. I also have a Class 101 (which needs starting), a single 117 car which I'm hoping to convert into something interesting and 2 other 121 units which require detailing. There's also a Bachmann 108 in the collection but this only really needs some passengers.

 

Cheers, Reece

Nice Bogcarts there Reece 

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And that is no doubt one of the main reasons the class lasted so long (along with the 101s) compared with many contemporaries and went on to serve all "regions" (sectors of course in latter days) bar the Eastern.

I sure I remember there being a two car class 117 at Barking for working the Goblin in NSE days.

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I sure I remember there being a two car class 117 at Barking for working the Goblin in NSE days.

 

Quite correct.  In NSE days the BR regions had gone but were they still in existence the Gospel Oak - Barking route would have been considered LMR with the regional boundary at Woodgrange Park Junction.

 

So yes class 117 has served ER territory but it's a tenuous connection!

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've seen some good work done on Lima DMUs (not least Jim Smith-Wright's ones used on New Street) though haven't bothered myself due to the amount of work needed versus the running quality.

 

 

 

Thats why I brought a very cheap Limby 121 and did a chassis swap before I started.  Now runs very nicely :)

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  • 4 weeks later...

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