The home of Hornby, Bachmann and Heljan user reviews
Hornby Class 06
Tom Davidson
Hornby Class 06 Collectors Club Special Edition, Blue Pullman livery, made in China.
Although the bodyshell is fairly basic, it captures the look of this small diesel-mechanical shunter. I hear rumours that it’s slightly too wide, but having not seen the real thing in the flesh, this isn’t noticeable to my eyes. The paintjob, whilst not prototypical, is very crisp and clear, and the attractive colours make it ideal for a younger modeller.
In keeping with the price of the loco, there’s very little in the way of separately-fitted detail – again making it suitable for the younger modeller. Big chunky couplings make coupling and uncoupling easy, even if they look less than accurate. A couple of wire handrails and glazed windows, along with the horn on the front, mean that with a bit of weathering it looks the part.
The China-made models of the Hornby 0-4-0 chassis seem to perform slightly better than the Margate equivalents, particularly in terms of slow-speed running. Pickup also seems improved through the chemically-blackened wheels, aided by the installation of more weight (as explained below). It has an astronomically high top speed, but does a reasonable job of a shunting loco with the use of a feedback controller.
I would definitely recommend adding as much weight as you can to the loco (Modelzone and other shops supply sticky lead weights for balancing helicopter models). This improves both the slow speed running and the pickup of power from the tracks. You could also try lightly greasing the axles and gear with some Woodland Scenics ‘White Grease’.
A favourite of mine despite the limitations of the mechanism and robust bodyshell. Hopefully this is in line for a retool soon!
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