Revolution Trains have announced they are to produce the IHA ‘Sfhimmns’ canvas covered steel coil carriers as its next wagon model in N Gauge.
Revolution state that complete and the models are in tooling, however the 00 version of the model is slightly more advanced than the N gauge version.
The stubby design, with its characteristic platform at one end above the buffers to allow staff to cross safely from one side of a train to the other, is a familiar sight on steel trains and often intermixed with other designs such as the Thrall-built BRA/BYA ‘Nissen hut’ design.
There are around 250 of the type in use for transporting high-grade steel on a variety of flows. These include domestic steel from South Wales to destinations in the midlands, north and south-east of England and via the Channel tunnel to customers in France, Belgium and Holland. These wagons are also used to feed imported steel from ports on the east coast and Thames estuary to steel terminals inland.
The first batch of 48 wagons were built by Fauvet Girel in 1991, registered in France and given the UIC code Sfhimms; the ‘f’ in the code signifying their suitability in the smaller Brtitish loading gauge. Further batches were built in 1993 and 1998. There are very minor variations between batches and these are accounted for in the Revolution tooling.
Now owned by wagon leasing company Ermewa, the wagons have red bogies, underframes and ends and grey canvas covers. Some have yellow discs painted in the covers signifying they are reserved for domestic traffic only. Recently, as the canvas covers came due for renewal, wagon owners Ermewa began adding its branding more prominently.
A further batch of similarly-coded wagons was built in 2008-9 by Astra Rail (now Greenbrier) in Romania and finished in GE (now Touax) blue livery, however these are to a different design and are not the subject of this model.
The majority of the flows on the diagram are now operated by DB, however the Margam-Dee Marsh and Grain-Llanwern contracts are now in the hands of GBRf. The Trostre-Tilbury trains and those carrying imported steel from Boston use Colas traction, often Class 56.
The models are expected to be available during summer 2024. For more information visit the Revolution Trains website