Here's a quick glimpse of my NCB Austerity tank just before it receives it's first coat of primer. The various RT Models detailing components have transformed the Hornby model into something more purposeful and better suited to the surrounds of my colliery layout. The big Alan Gibson industrial buffers also help. I'm looking forward to seeing how it looks under a coat of paint, although the masking of the bufferbeams and footsteps for the 'wasp' warning stripes should be fun. I'll be demonstrating how to do it in Model Rail magazine soon.

Having treated the bodyshell to such a rigorous detail enhancement, the chassis is now looking a bit crude in comparison, so I'm giving serious thought to either doing some drastic DIY detailing to the sanders, brake gear and frames, or maybe biting the bullet and going for a complete new etched brass chassis and finer wheels. RT Models does a very nice chassis kit, designed primarily to fit the Hornby body, so it's a viable proposition. I just need to count my pennies first - I've already ordered a very nice OO9 metal loco kit from the same source, so I might have to save up first!


  1. Hello George, it's good to see the old Hornby Austerity getting a run out.

    I used some RT models bits on mine, in terms of the chassis, I think the purists say a lot is wrong, including the wheels, I don't mind those so much under a heavy coating of dirt.

    However what I tried to do on my latest is sand down the chassis 'steps' Hornby have on theirs (behind the buffer beams) to something more of the angled shape of the prototype, it helps its silhouette. And it gets rid of that coupling hanger sat under the buffer beams.

    I was in a rush to get that one done, we've had a couple of Hornby Austerity just give up the ghost, so this is three models lashed together to make one good one!! We added that wire from the cab down the side of the boiler, although we've still no idea what it really is! However its so heavily weathered now its seems mad to have put all that work in!!!

    If our layout gets another show thats a bit of a distance of, I want to do an old AIrfix body on that RT models chassis. You don't get the saddle seam nor the extra 'box' under the tank where the motor is housed.

    Happy modelling


  2. Hi Oly,
    Thanks for the comment. 'Wizard' looks good! The extra work on the chassis has made a big difference.I haven't seen an ex-Airfix J94 for yonks, but I've heard a few people say that it was a superior moulding.

    1. Thanks George. I think the story goes with the Airfix one that Dapol lost the moudling in that fire they had a few years back? They appear on eBay every so often and not for much money. It's just having the patience to find one! Found this a few months back through Google:



  3. Hi George,
    Like Oly I've re-profiled the cast chassis block on my (Dapol) Austerity, seen here:
    I think that its well worth the effort, Austerities had a very distinctive chassis profile. My loco still needs lots of work to finish it...

    Yours looks great, and show Roberts (RT Models) detail parts to good effect.

    The Airfix kit was re-released by Dapol for a while, but I believe that a factory fire damaged the moulds beyond repair. Which is a real shame as it was a nice kit. I have 2, one Airfix and one Dapol. If you're prepared to wait, and if you're lucky, they can be had for under £20 on Ebay. Mine are destined to sit on RT Models chassis.


  4. Thanks for the comment, Paul. I'll keep my eyes peeled for an Airfix/Dapol model. I almost bought one from Birkenhead about 10 years ago, and have regretted it ever since! Your WD austerity is looking good...


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