Remodelled 'Northern Belle' & DRS Class 47s revealed

Having commissioned major changes to the ViTrains Class 47, RAIL EXCLUSIVE is pleased to reveal a special collaboration with Direct Rail Services and Orient Express-Northern Belle that is to see the production of a series of highly detailed and authentic limited edition models in these attractive liveries.

AS A DIRECT RESULT of the continuing success of our 'OO' gauge Class 47 models, which proved immensely popular throughout last year, we have been inundated with special requests for further items. In response to this, and official enquiries, we have great pleasure in announcing the production of no less than four new locomotives in conjunction with, and full endorsement and official licencing of, Direct Rail Services and Orient Express-Northern Belle.

Luxury train twin pack

Scheduled for late summer release, we will be producing a very exclusive 'limited edition' twin pack of ViTrains Class 47 locomotives decorated and detailed to represent No. 47790 Galloway Princess and 47832 Solway Princess - the two Pullman-liveried machines that are dedicated to haulage of VSOE's prestigious 'Northern Belle' luxury train. With special packaging and numbered certificate, this pack will include premium extras such as a full suite of photo-etched number and nameplates plus Pullman crests. The production run is being offered on a limited-time basis before going on sale (if any remain) more widely via Direct Rail Services and VSOE as a commemorative gift item.

Celebrity back-up power

Joining this will be similarly limited individual editions of No. 47853 Rail Express and No. 47813 Solent in full DRS 'compass' livery which have seen use as 'Northern Belle' back-up locomotives, employed when the dedicated duo have been undergoing maintenance. These machines have, of course, seen extensive use on other duties across DRS's extensive portfolio of services that include freight, passenger, civil engineers and nuclear flask transportation.

New tooling and detailing

The fully DCC-compatible models will be significantly upgraded by the use of new tooling for the bodyside and roof. This will allow the side footsteps to be removed and the old Serck radiator slats to be replaced by a new etched stainless steel grille similar to that fitted to the Class 57s. These life-extension modifications, and the now standardized flush-fronted cabs and LED tail lights, will all be authentically recreated unlike a previously offered 'toy' from Hornby which used a base model first released in 1974! Permission for Hornby to produce any further DRS/Northern Belle locos has now been withdrawn due to licence avoidance issues, including any product already announced but undelivered. As a result, this RAIL EXCLUSIVE-ViTrains twin pack will remain the one and only option for modellers wishing to obtain both locomotives with correct running numbers and details.

Factory-fitted sound option

Once again, the factory installation of our highly regarded, custom-designed ZIMO sound set up or standard DCC is offered for a very competitive additional charge. Both of the decoders that will be employed are technologically-advanced and equipped with the fantastic 'stay alive' circuitry. We have specified the fitting of large energy storage capacitors, at no extra cost, which provides uninterrupted sound and prevents poor performance on dirty trackwork or over dead frog pointwork.

No more than 550 models to be made

Factory capacity is hard to find, so quantities are limited. No more than 550 each of these items can be produced and these liveries will never be repeated. As an accurate representation of the Northern Belle's current traction, it is expected these models will become highly sought after collectors' items attracting interest from Orient Express aficionados worldwide. Details of the Northern Belle locomotives can be found here, whilst the DRS model info is here

Features and pricing

  • Upgraded bodyshell tooling with redesigned cooler group and side steps removed
  • Finely etched bright stainless steel radiator grille covering new radiator banks
  • Factory-fitted painted metal handrails throughout to save you time and trouble
  • Flush-fronted cabs with correct marker light designs and LED tail lights surrounds
  • Full suite of photo-etched stainless steel name and numberplates plus Pullman crests
  • Correct livery styles using actual paint references researched and drawn in the UK
  • Fully DCC compatible with NEM652 8-pin decoder socket on printed circuit board
  • Numbered and signed certificate of authenticity plus special RE presentation box
  • Opportunity to keep same certificate on all four locos if purchased simultaneously
  • V2000/1 - 'Northern Belle' Class 47 twin pack priced at £230 plus postage and packing
  • V2002/3 - DRS Class 47s 47813 & 47853 priced at £99 each plus postage and packing
  • Factory-fitted ZIMO DCC sound option (using RE sounds on MX645), £100 per loco
  • Factory-fitted ZIMO DCC chipped option (using MX631 decoder), £30 per loco
  • All DCC options have FREE activated 'stay alive' system with energy storage capacitor
  • Interest-free payment plan available if you want to pay in installments - ring for details
  • Guaranteed no payment will be taken until models are in the UK and ready for despatch
  • UK tracked P&P: 1 locomotve £4.95, 2 locomotives £7.95, 3+ locomotives £10 capped.

Previous customers will receive a direct communication by e-mail or letter before April 11th. Please call if you don't receive this, to allow us to update your contact details. Don't leave it long if you want to secure these desirable models. They are available for pre-order today. Call us now on 01780 470086 use our on-line shop. For more details, download our PDF flyer here or visit the Class 47 section of the website

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