NGS QM Brake Van - fitting additional parts

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QM Brake Van – Fitting Additional Parts (thanks to Noel Leaver for this article)

The QM Brake van comes with a bag containing:

  • 2 dummy couplings that can be used to replace the dummy hook fitted
  • 4 curved pipes that fit in a single hole. These represent a vacuum pipe or       the second air pipe.
  • 2 pipes that fit in a double hole. These represent the air pipes.

Looking at the buffer beam, from left to right there is:

  • A double hole for air brake pipes
  • A single hole for the vacuum brake pipe
  • The dummy coupling hook (will pull out)
  • A single hole for the second air brake pipe

You should only fit the pipes and dummy couplings if you are not intending fitting a Rapido or other operational coupling, as they will interfere with it on curves. You might, for example, decide to remove the coupling on the rear of the van (it pulls out of the NEM socket).

All QM brakes were vacuum fitted, and retained the vacuum pipes to the end of their lives. So this pipe should be on all of them. Note the pipe supplied is not a very good representation, the real pipe went upwards to slightly above the buffer beam, then bent over and had the hose attached hanging down. The pipe was painted red. You might therefore prefer to make your own pipe out of wire.

Six of the 25 brakes were fitted with dual air brakes in 1961 for use on continental traffic to Dover. These have an extra pipe each side, inside the buffers.

At least one van was fitted with through air pipes in the 1980s, but most were vacuum braked only until withdrawal.

To be accurate you need to refer to photos, as there seems to be no pattern to the variations:

  • Which were air braked
  • Which had unplated or fully or partly plated sides when built (The NGS models are the unplated and partly plated versions)
  • When they had their sandboxes removed

The TOPs code when present indicates the brake type: YTV vacuum only; YTX vacuum and dual air brakes; YTW vacuum and through air pipe.