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Saxon HHw wagon

By Bruce (H&DLR).
Saxon railways built 62 bogie bolster wagons designated HHw (H = bolster wagon, HH = bogie bolster wagon, w = load 15t or less). 54 were built in the first series between 1922 and 1926, with a further 8 in two batches between 1929 and 1930. Unsurprisingly, there are detail differences between series (see the page on "vierachsige Rungenwagen" under http://www.saechsische-schmalspurfahrzeuge.de/wagen/Gueterwg/guwagen1.htm for more details). Overall dimensions and look are not far removed from the LGB bogie flat wagon, supplied in pairs in either US or Deutsche Reichsbahn liveries. LGB's DR version, however, represents a metre gauge prototype rather than a Saxon 750mm vehicle. But it's not so far off that a conversion cannot be attempted. This isn't a scale model... but I hope you'll agree it's a passable representation. This started out as a minor re-decalling job...
The LGB model scales out within a few millimetres of the original. The original had a flat loading area with 6 pairs of stanchions and a central, removable bolster. The LGB wagon has a brake platform at one end, and slots for up to 7 pairs of stanchions... so the first step is to remove the brake platform and re-allocate the stanchions, three to each end of the wagon. As I'd previously removed the DR lettering and number, I decided simply to re-instate it. And that was as far as I intended to go...
I ordered some replacement decals from Michael Troeger in Germany. It turned out that he'd been asked a similar question by another customer, and had prepared transfers for a complete re-livery into Saxon lettering. So for the same price as a couple of bespoke transfers which would only have re-instated lettering I'd removed, I received a complete set of transfers that would enable the wagon to be properly lettered. Already this project was growing...
I'd previously painted the yellow stanchions that come with these models satin black, but they're made of a rather spongy plastic that doesn't take paint very well. As I removed them from the wagon, most of the black paint peeled off. Some new black plastic stanchions were ordered from Modell Land in Germany. On the Saxon HHw wagons, chains were provided and, from the few surviving photos, these seem to have been kept attached to the stanchions. Short lengths of chain were super-glued to the top of the new stanchions, and then covered in a small dab of plastic filler to hide the glue join. The tip (only!) was then painted satin black.
The remainder of the LGB tampo printed lettering was removed with fine grade wire wool, and the central holders for stanchions were removed, since the Saxon HHw wagon doesn't have provision for stanchions in the middle of the wagon. While I was in cutting mode, I removed a few raised mouldings from the loading deck, and made a label holder out of the step at the left hand end. The solebars were then painted with gloss varnish to allow the transfers to stick properly.
The transfers were then applied and allowed to dry before being given a coat of satin varnish.
Some HHw wagons had Heberlein cable brakes, some vacuum brakes. Vacuum braked vehicles, so far as I can tell, had a handbrake wheel, so a couple of hand wheels from the spares box were painted red, and attached to the side.
This link takes you to the page of the preserved wagon at Oberrittersgrün in Saxony: http://www.schmalspurmuseum.de/museumsbahnhof/exponate/drehschemelwagenhh/index.php
Stanchions with chains were slotted into the uprights. Ready for service.
You'll recall at the beginning of this page that I described these as bolster wagons. The bolster was removable and indeed was often removed. Recently the H&DLR had the opportunity to acquire a spare bolster... and so one has now been fitted in the centre of the wagon. The US-style turnbuckle bolt heads have also been removed while we were about it.