Model train TO-490 from OLD Piko kit (ex BR56)

by / 07-26-2016 model trains, RC Models No Comments
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Kit manufacturer: OLD Piko

Gallery section: Active

Type: Trains

Model scale: 1:87

This work is one of my most controversial ones regarding execution. On pro forums dedicated to railway themes there is no consensus how a train with traces of use should look. That is, each one is an artist himself.

For long I thought and couldn’t decide, whether to show people this locomotive or not.

A couple of weeks ago my colleague in modalism payed me a visit, he is a professional engine driver (that’s his main work). We were talking about the locomotives, about preparing for a new exhibition. I took my TO-490 from the shelf, tucked in a smoky liquid and let it go on a slow speed at the test range. My friend watched in silence as the TO-490 was cutting circled for about five minutes, then it ran out of the smoke, and I stopped the engine. Sergei spoke briefly: “Wow! This is the first model of a steam locomotive that looks like a real locomotive should look!”. In general, it has affected my decision to show model train TO-490 here.

model train TO-490
model train TO 490 foto 1
model train TO-490
model train TO 490 foto 2

Overview of the historical part of “TO” train series

Trains with axial formula 1-4-0 (series 56) were being built in Germany as a continuation of the series 55 with the formula 0-4-0. For the first time this series appeared on the railways of Prussia and Alsace-Lorraine in the beginning of the twentieth century. 56th series is an upgrade of the series 55, and the most significant external difference is the running axle, which allowed to reduce the axial load, and also to improve the passage of curves and arrows of small radius.

Series 56 in the USSR

This series appeared in the USSR as a result of the accession of Western Ukraine and Western Belarus in 1939 to the USSR. These were mainly Romanian locomotives of the series 140, completely similar to the German series 56. They were obtained as the spoils of war during WWII. About 60 locomotives were received as reparations. In total, according to various estimates, about 400 locomotives of the series 56 got in the USSR.
In 1952, according to the order of the Ministry of Railways of the USSR of August 23, official series “TO” has been assigned to the locomotives.

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model train TO 490 foto 3

Brief train model description and what has been done

Lighting is performed by LEDs. Soviet-style head lights have been installed. Coupling is represented by CA-3. I changed the tender of the train model, increased the sides and slightly modified the upper part. The works were done according to the photos, which were found in different sources. Also I installed a smoke generator, brake hoses. I changed the mechanism of coupling, installed NEM pits. Labels in Soviet style have been applied, and vazering/aging has been done,

Pleasant viewing to everyone.


…Usually after publishing the models, I consider the photos very meticulously, and surely to find minor flaws.

Later I refine them and update the photos in the description.

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model train TO 490 OLD Piko kit foto 7
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