News from January 2023

Our News

Work progressed on the recently acquired T21 87 diesel during January. One small challenge was the ‘arch’ in the A-end buffer beam which prevented couplings from being used. This has now been widened (one of the compromises one has to sometimes make with working models), but it is still an arch; just wider. The bigger challenge was the buffers. Heljan provides unpainted brass buffers with the model, which protrude too much and are not sprung. Not being sprung is not a problem, as long as the user does not intend to use the factory fitted chain-link coupling! But protruding too much prevents the use of close couplings. The buffers were hollow and had been mounted (with glue) over studs, so we followed a simple procedure, yet precise, to replace them.

  1. Thankfully Heljan used weak glue and with pliers we were able to pull the buffers off.
  2. Using a fine drill, we drilled through the studs’ centrelines and through the buffer beams.
  3. Going through the buffer beams meant that we had reference points, so we could next remove the studs.
  4. We then widened the drilled holes to fit the new Bachmann buffers; loose fitted them and then took them out, so that we could refit the buffer beams to the loco without the buffers; thus revealing the need to drill a little way into the chassis also.
  5. Being on the edge of a sub-frame (not the actual chassis itself), we instead used a file to make clearances for the backs of the buffers.
  6. Then the buffers were lightly glued into place, and the beams back onto the loco. Job Done!

The Bachmann product, incidentally, is article number 36-032, a pack of eight round sprung buffers, intended for the British 00-gauge market, but perfectly fitting – mentioned just in case any of our readers are looking for ways of rebuilding their Heljan T21 locos!

We also worked on our T45 328. During January, we fitted the bogie sides and bolsters to the model, greatly improving its appearance. We were able to discard some plexiglass pieces because they had been supplied with the model for use with the then-recommended drive-chassis from a provider in Helsingborg; but we used the more modern chassis from SV&LV, where the bogies were suitably designed for these pieces to be redundant. We had two of each type of bolster, and as with the Rc-locos, it is quite random which way round they are fitted. The one good picture that we have of the real T45 328 shews both bolsters ‘pointing’ inwards on the one side visible in the photo, so that is how we have mounted ours. Then we noticed that these are actually mentioned in the instructions and two were wrong, so they were exchanged (the bolsters should point outwards on the other side)! The next challenge with this model was fitting the etched brass components, ploughs onto the bogies, steps, and then the handrails. In all cases, we had to improvise because there was no clearly marked fitting place for any! The ploughs needed to be quite forward from the bogies, so these are mounted onto the couplings (with spacers). The handrails seemed totally wrong when all available photos were studied, so with 0,5mm brass rod we manufactured our own! Although far from perfect, we are pleased with the results, and in the process, we mounted the extra low level steps. Job Done! However, we would also like to fit more weight under the body because the loco seems too light…! More about the T45 below!

As expected our HNoll delivery arrived early January, comprising two A7R and two B7R carriages. These models are far superior in quality to the Roco versions, although the differences are subtle at a quick glance. The fact that the Roco models are only ±£20 cheaper, and come in unprotective brittle plastic tubs (instead of protective boxes), suggests that they are somewhat overpriced!

Finally, recent correspondence suggested that the Uad/Uadp iron ore wagons had their first two digits changed at some point from 20 to 41. We tried this change with the three that have incorrect ‘control digits’ (given that none of them shew the first four digits on the wagons), and thus the ‘control digit’ was accepted as correct. Job Done!

Manufacturer News

Trix is to release a 2-rail version of the new Märklin Rc5. In the orange livery, but 1990 condition (with the “flying falukorv (sausage)” logo), it will be Rc5 1364 and sold as article number 25281. However, early photos suggest that the chassis is too dark and the roof is completely the wrong colour!

HNoll’s next carriages will probably be the B4 and various derivatives (BF4 & BF7), and these are expected at the end of the year, or early 2024. We are interested in acquiring two, for the regular InterCity trains; and maybe a third for one of the sleeper trains! (The carriages were first given the identity B4 by SJ, but this was later changed to the more correct BF4 where F stands for cargo space.)

Märklin is advertising a pack of three wagons type Tbis571, article 47303. These SJ wagons are two-axle sliding roof / sliding wall vans, and are in a reddish-brown basic paint scheme with grey sliding doors and sliding rooves. The version has convex sliding doors and are without brakeman’s platforms. The models look as they did around 1985. On the models the rooves do actually slide open, but not the doors. We are unaware of a Trix 2-rail version, but DC wheelsets per car is article E700580.

Other News

More about the loco type T45.
ASEA (Allmänna Svenska Elektriska Aktiebolaget), which for a long time was Sweden’s largest manufacturer of electric locomotives, also tried its hand at building diesel locomotives in the early 1970s. The idea was to challenge Nohab in Trollhättan, which until then had dominated the Swedish diesel locomotive market.
A bogie locomotive was constructed where, among other things, the bogies and parts of the electrical equipment were the same as in the Rc locomotives, thus offering a standardisation of spare sparts. Otherwise, the locomotive was a collaboration: the diesel engine was of the SEMT-Pielstick system and was manufactured by Hedemora Verkstäder, while Norwegian Thune was responsible for the mechanical parts and the locomotive bodies. In terms of appearance, the locomotives were quite similar to the T43 and T44 locomotives, and they became the T45. Up to three locomotives could be multiple-worked.
In 1969, SJ signed a contract with ASEA to rent the five locomotives that were manufactured. They were delivered in 1971-1972 in an orange/white livery similar to the Rc locos, but with ASEA branding, and no SJ logo. The locomotives were placed in Borlänge and pulled both freight trains and passenger trains on the then still unelectrified line to Mora.
In 1976, SJ returned the T45 locomotives to ASEA. Operational reliability had not been so good, mainly due to problems with the diesel engines and SJ did not really want another diesel locomotive type. ASEA tried to sell them abroad but there was no interest. Only one locomotive (324) was sold to the mining company A/S Sydvaranger in Kirkenes in Norway. The remaining locomotives became shunting locomotives in various Swedish industries, including at the ironworks in Avesta and Hofors. The investment was therefore not a success and ASEA did not build any more diesel locomotives.
Today, there are no T45s left in traffic and all locomotives except one have been scrapped. T45 327 is preserved at the Gefle-Dala Railway Museum Association in Falun [].

About 328:
Manufactured by ASEA, Västerås, Sweden in 1972. Manufacturing number 1702.
Leased 1972-76 by SJ from ASEA. Based at Borlänge 1972-75.
328 was sold in 1978 as a shunting locomotive to SKF Steel in Hofors, where it was given the ownership number 8631. In Hofors, the locomotive was useful on the industrial track from the mill to the station, which runs at a very steep incline (approx. 15‰). The locomotive was supplied (by SKF) with handrails around the platforms, automatic couplings, lighting and TV cameras over the ends. In 1992, SJ took over the shunting at the mill and the locomotive ended up with SJ in Gävle. When SJ took over the locomotive, it received a small refurbishment and was test driven for some speculators. However, the locomotive had some remaining faults, and was worn, and in addition, an odd locomotive construction does not warrant any sale. The locomotive was then disposed of to the Railway Museum in Gävle, but in autumn 1994 it was sold to SP Tågservice in Östersund. In Östersund, the locomotive was revised and in May 1995 it was put back into operation, now leased to Banverket for macadam (ballast) train service. During that summer, the locomotive suffered a serious failure of the diesel engine due to overloading; the diesel engine was removed from the locomotive and sent back to Hedemora. However, it was judged to be so costly to repair the locomotive that it was instead scrapped. The bogies were sent to SSAB in Domnarvet, which used them under its locomotive, 327. (327 had been sold in 1995 to SSAB in Donmarvet, where it was overhauled for approximately SEK 1 million and received, among other things, the bogies from 328.)
(Information from mostly and

If you’re looking for an excuse to celebrate something this year, consider the following. 2023 is the 100th anniversary of the electrification of the Malmbanan; 70th anniversary of the introduction of loco types Dm and Ma, and the YCo6 railbus; and 30th anniversary of the formation of the Scandinavian Railways Society, whose 100th edition of their journal will be published during the year.

Behind the Scenes

Mini-Series around the FLMJ; B: The Journal, FLMJ-Nytt

KRBJ-Nytt, which eventually became FLMJ-Nytt, was a general news journal. It enabled us in our pre-IT days to keep everybody up to date with the Railway’s development and other activities, and also carried special features such as book and video reviews, and anything else that we thought our readers might appreciate (and this even included one year with a cartoon strip)! The frequency changed over its course, finally settling on five editions annually (produced week numbers 5, 15, 25, 35, 45, so there was virtually no risk of losing copies in the Christmas post)! As the Publisher program was automatically updated, so did our curiosity and development, and the last few editions were very neatly presented. In addition to UK proliferation, copies were sent to readers around the world, including USA, UAE, Australia and the Nordic countries. Today, members of the Scandinavian Railways Society benefit from their journal, “Skandiapilen”, which is now edited by Adrian, and has a much more dynamic presence than anything produced before, both for the SRS and for us. It represents an idea of what FLMJ-Nytt could have looked like if it continued in print, today!

Naturally, our readers had an interest in the KRBJ/FLMJ, so everything was related to that interest. With the closure of the FLMJ in 2018, it seemed pointless continuing whilst there was no actual railway to report from, and most (if not all) of our readers are online. Therefore, the decision has been taken to not restart it once a new railway does get going; but we’re not completely forgetting our publishing heritage, as we’ll discuss later in the year!

Next month: the ‘internal’ newsletter for the committed ‘members and friends’ of the Railway!