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  • Writer's pictureBen Jones

O Gauge Class 27 Artwork Approved!

Announced last autumn at the same time as our retooled O gauge Class 26s, our new O gauge Class 27s are making excellent progress. Following a thorough review of the first samples, several modifications are being made to the tooling to improve what was already an impressive model. Headcode boxes, bufferbeams, cab front details and snowploughs are all receiving attention to make them more accurate or (in the case of the 'ploughs), easier to fit.

We've also now completed the artwork for the decoration of the models, reproduced here for you to study and enjoy. Thanks to Brian Daniels, Martyn Sanders and Class 27 expert Andrew Donnelly for their invaluable assistance with these models!

No fewer than eight versions are in preparation, covering BR green and BR blue variants from the 1960s to late-1980s. Variations within the production include two types of bogie footsteps (with original extended top step or parallel sided), locomotives with or without steam heat boilers and their associated roof grilles and water tanks, two designs of windscreen wipers and vacuum or dual braked variants.

As part of the evolution of our O gauge models, we're stepping up the quality of decoration across these new models, with lots of additional fine printed and painted details on the ends, bogies and underframe.

A wealth of fine detail includes superb cab interiors, carefully designed bogies and underframe parts, etched grilles, wire handrails and a removable engine room window on each side as per the prototype. Standard features include plug-and-play DCC capability using the ESU LokSound XL pin decoder, provision for a smoke unit, separately switchable cab, tail and engine room lights in DC and DCC modes, illuminated headcode panels and a heavy duty all-wheel drive chassis with twin 5-pole motors and flywheels.

In response to expected demand, we're producing a mix of unnumbered and fully decorated locos, plus two factory weathered editions.

#2770 BR green with small yellow panels unnumbered

#2771 BR green 5370 with full yellow ends WEATHERED*

#2772 BR green with cream waistband & full yellow ends unnumbered

#2773 BR Rail Blue with full yellow ends unnumbered (1970s)*

#2774 BR Rail Blue with full yellow ends unnumbered (1980s)

#2775 BR two-tone green D5382 with small yellow panels

#2776 BR Blue D5389 with small yellow panels

#2777 BR Rail Blue 27032 with Inverness Stag logos WEATHERED

HELJAN UK stockists report strong advance orders for all versions of this impressive new model, especially the BR Blue variants. Reserve yours now to avoid disappointment!

These classic BRCW Type 2s will be the ideal companions for our new Mk2/Mk2a coaches, due for release in 2022, and the latest batch of BR blue/grey Mk1 coaches which are expected to start arriving at HELJAN stockists in the UK this week. To whet your appetite in the meantime, here's a short video clip of Class 27s in action in their final years of BR service.

At current rate of progress we expect the Class 27s to be available in mid-2022, but look out for further updates as development progresses. Modified and improved engineering samples are expected to arrive for review shortly.

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