Fitting DCC Sound to a Heljan Class 52

This modelling project describes the upgrading of the Bachmann class 37 loco from a representation of a 1970's prototype to a 1980's prototype. The project involves modification of the buffers and bodywork cowlings around the buffers.
This project was completed prior to Bachmann's announcement of their class 37 in the same form.


The Bachmann body as supplied

As supplied, the Bachmann model represents a class 37 in late 1970's form, complete with double spot headcodes (used when headcode use ceased, but prior to headcode panels being panelled over) and cowlings around the buffers. Around 1982, all class 37's were modified and had the cowlings removed from around the buffers. This article covers that modification to the Bachmann model.

Starting the modifications

The first step is to remove the Bachmann buffers and cut away the cowling around the buffer shanks:

Note that the cutting on the front of the nose is higher than the lower edges of the body sides which you can see hanging down on the above picture.

Chassis Modifications

The chassis on the Bachmann model has no buffer beam attached and therefore, one needs to be fabricated. Here, this has been done with strips of plastic card:

Holes were then drilled into the new buffer beam and replacement Hornby class 50 sprung buffers were fitted.
The whole buffer beam was then repainted in Humbrol 33 Matt Black.
If the cutting is done carefully on the body, this modification can be done without any painting of the body being necessary as was the case on this model.

The Finished Product

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Graham Plowman

Locomotive supplied by:
Bachmann Logo

Class 50 buffers kindly provided by Simon Kohler of:
Hornby Models Logo

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