Platform Tractor Unit

The majority of key locations and hubs on the rail network, feature platform tractor units. These humble workhorses are used for tasks such as providing a water supply, moving luggage, waste, cleaning, catering equipment and much more. The real Gatwick Airport used to have a platform tractor unit, the main purpose being the movement of rail air luggage, some photos of which can be found on websites such as Flickr.

Some ready made platform tractor units have recently been released by Bachmann under catalogue number 44-539, but it was really Hornby that manufactured something similar many decades ago, in fact it appears to still be included in the current range with station buildings such as the Booking Hall Kit.

I managed to pick up a couple of platform tractor units in an odds and ends box at the local model shop for a couple of quid and began the task of upgrading them to a more detailed standard. Could I refurbish an old model and bring it up to standard instead of paying five times as much for a ready made version?


Some of the trailer components were broken so these were stuck back together using an impact adhesive.


The models appear to be unpainted in a green plastic colour so the models were given a coat of primer. After the primer was dry, the model was brought up to date with a coat of yellow paint.


A container was constructed for one of the trailer modules, this was made from scratch using off cuts of styrene sheet.


The container is complete and awaiting a coat of primer.


The container load was given a coat of grey primer and then afterwards, sprayed with a coat of metallic silver.


The nearly finished model with a yellow tractor and trailer unit with a metallic silver container, all that is required to finish the model is the application of some weathering and some logos.




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