Peco O Gauge LNER Open Wagon Build

Whilst I’ve been enjoying making my OO gauge microlayout, and running OO gauge trains on my Dad’s garden railway, I’ve recently really had an itch to do a little bit of O gauge.

So for Christmas I asked my Dad to surprise me with an O gauge wagon kit, and he brought me Peco Parkside’s LNER/BR 12 tonne open wagon.

The body of the wagon, chassis, axle boxes and brake assembly are nicely detailed and moulded plastic with metal wheels and axles, sprung metal buffers and metal 3 link couplings; the hooks for which are also metal and sprung.

The body and chassis go together nicely. There was no evidence of warping in the plastic and I didn’t feel the need to use any filler on any of the joints.

I managed to find a dark grey aerosol similar to that shown on the box. I think one of my New Year’s Resolutions will be to get more confident with my airbrush. I know there are model companies that make LNER grey for use in an airbrush which would have been a better option than finding the best match in an aerosol. The airbrush is a really good tool for weathering models too.

The solebars and chassis framework of the wagon were then brush painted black and I added the axles and axle boxes. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the way the axle boxes go together allows for the model to have a working suspension!

Assembling the brakes did take a little bit of research. If I could be critical of one thing on this kit it’s that the instructions for making the brakes were somewhat hazy.

Thankfully there are a lot of photographs of real wagons available on the internet so I was able to figure out how to put it together pretty quickly.

The handbrake lever and ratchet was a fun thing to research and put together. Here’s a really good article explaining how the brakes on goods wagons worked:

The couplings are next. These are ‘3 link’ couplings which comprise of a 3 link chain which loops over a hook to connect two wagons together. On real railways these were common up until the 1970s.

The bars of these are sprung. I assume this is to allow the tension in the coupling to change as the train goes around a corner. My advice would be to paint the bar before putting the couplings together. It’s awkward to do afterwards.

The kit gives you a number of choices for lettering. Both LNER and BR ‘liveries’ are included and there is a big sheet of numbers, both pre-made and individual to number your wagon. These are waterslide transfers which are really high quality and easy to use. In the photo below you can see a bit of the clear film around the numbers. It’s not visible in person.

I brought a 10KG bag of coal really cheaply from B&Q. I crushed a couple of chunks into little bits to use as a load in this wagon. I stuck it with a 50/50 watered down mix of PVA glue.

For weathering I went over the body of the model with a black weathering powder to represent dust from the coal. It didn’t really show, which I guess explains why the LNER used dark grey, it hides the dirt haha!

I added some mid grey weathering powder and some dust around the chassis just to give it a bit of a dirty appearance.

All in all, building this wagon was a really nice introduction to O gauge. I might have to pick up a Dapol ready to run open wagon in the near future to see how they compare.

Thanks for reading! If you would like to stay up to date with all my blog posts please subscribe to the blog via email (from the box at the bottom of the page).

Follow me on the following social media platforms:


Twitter: @richardmsfmh
Instagram: @motorsport4mentalhealth

By Richard Francis

Leave a Reply