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Bachmann 2EPB

Bachmann 31-376 5770 in early green

In any great quantity the "early" green version became available about a week later. This is of unit 5770 and as befits it earlier timeframe it has a whistle above the driver's cab window rather than twin-tone horns, large numeral headcodes and double white blank rear headcode (so a red oil lamp on the rear is required). Note it does not have the additional conduit on the cab front of early EPB-type units, but pictorial evidence suggests this conduit, where fitted, was removed fairly soon after introduction. This model carries headcode 3 on its left blind, usefully for its period denoting Purley - Caterham shuttles and Elmers End - Sanderstead.

The final regular production version became available in late July, the BR blue & grey version, with Network SouthEast Kent Link branding and featuring high intensity headlights and red "com" warning stripes. This version has a double white blank headcode at one end and double red blank at the other.

Further limited edition versions have been 31-375Z the "early" blue version (with small yellow warning panel) from Modelzone and in September 2011 Bachmann released a Network SouthEast special edition version, of unit 6225 displaying headcode 80 (Cannon Street - Dartford via Greenwich), available only to members of the Bachmann Collectors' Club.This was produced to celebrate the Silver Anniversary of Network SouthEast.

Bachmann 31-377 in BR blue & grey
Bachmann Collectors' Club special edition 6225 in NSE livery

The following comments should be considered in the perspective of an extremely good mass produced ready to run model, but the common gripes from modellers so far are:

  • That the headcodes cannot be readily changed
  • A double white blank has been chosen instead of a number on the blue and blue & grey versions
  • That the conduit on the roof has been moulded on and not separately applied (Although to have done so would have significantly increased production costs and made the model prone to damage. I am not a fan of moulded on fine detail but from a normal viewing distance I personally think the representation of the conduit is entirely convincing.)
  • That the luggage racks, the part of the interior that is most visible from the outside, have not been represented.
  • Finally, whilst not exclusive to this model Bachmann (and to be fair, Hornby) have yet to address the white glue around the windows issue and white glue is noticeable around a number of windows on models, which only serves to emphasise the prismatic effect of the flush glazing.

However, in the grand scheme of life these are relatively minor points.

All good things come to he who waits, so they say. This model appears to be as good as the wait has been long. Congratulations Bachmann !


Text and photographs (unless otherwise credited) by Colin Duff, Modelling Secretary.

5759 custom weathered, copyright photograph by Rick Squirrell
SEG member Rick Squirrell has contributed this picture of 5759 custom weathered by Lord & Butler. He comments it is creditable, but being rendered largely in grey lacks the pervading characteristic brown film resulting from the iron brake blocks that those knowing the Southern well would expect.
Bachmann 31-375Z unit  5739 in early blue condition