Hod Carrier

[Virtual MOC] Stadler Flirt UK - TfW Class 231

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Sorry for not posting anything up for a while. I needed a bit of a break after the hullabaloo of OcTRAINber. I thought I'd share what I'd been working on prior to OcTRAINber taking all my time. I had intended to build this but I'm unsure if that will now happen, so I'm sharing this as a virtual MOC.

The Stadler Flirt has been a feature of European railways for several years, but it's only recently that Stadler has been providing these trains to the UK. Obviously this meant that the design needed adapting to suit the UK rail network's requirements, but I think that the resulting train is a very handsome thing which is proving popular among those who use them.

The first versions to arrive in the UK were for Greater Anglia and came in two forms; a semi-articulated 12-car electric train (Class 745) for services between London and Norwich and Stansted Express, and a 3 or 4-car fully articulated bi-mode train (Class 755) for regional and local services. I had wanted to build a version of this train, but the livery used by Greater Anglia is quite complex and would be difficult to reproduce in LEGO.


745009 Stowmarket 13/05/22 - 1P51 1600 Norwich to London Liverpool Street by Ryan Hayward, on Flickr


755412 Turves 20/04/22 - 2E76 1156 Ipswich to Peterborough by Ryan Hayward, on Flickr

Luckily for me, a second batch of Flirt UK trains were under construction for Welsh operator Transport for Wales, and the livery that was being applied to their trains was a lot more LEGO-friendly. As with the first batch, these units for Wales would come in two different forms; a 4-car single-mode diesel-electric train (Class 231) and a 3 or 4-car tri-mode train (Class 756). At the point where I started work on the design, the single-mode Class 231 was the only version in existence, with deliveries and test-running only just having begun. As a result, this was the version that I based my model on.


231002. by curly42, on Flickr

And this is my version, rendered in UK-scale friendly 7-wide.


There were a few challenges to overcome with this design. The train has a very distinctive body profile as well as that cab shape. It took several attempts at both to get to a final design that would be both buildable and look right as well as be able to take lights in the cab front.


Power and control would have been distributed throughout the train. In common with the LMS Articulated Railcar, the Flirt would have train motors mounted on their sides together with weight bricks within the body in the windowless sections just behind each cab driving Technic bogies, as conventional use of these motors would be too big. There would have been a battery box hidden in the train toilet with a PFx Brick in the central "power pod". I had been busy researching magnetic connectors for the wiring runs between cars when I broke-off from working on the design of this model.


The sloping cab tapers towards the front of the train, which I've had a go at capturing. Roof-mounted equipment has also been modelled as accurately as possible.


The "power pod" containing 4 diesel motor-generator units. The detailing on the sides has necessitated a fair amount of "snotting", but it looks OK. Hopefully it would be strong enough when built.

As always, thoughts, comments and feedback are welcomed. I doubt that this train will ever get built, as I'm currently busy with a non-railway project, but who knows how I'll feel about it later.

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Superb work recreating the Stadler FLIRT design. The roof of the power car is interesting with the NPU of Speed Champion wheels.

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Looks very good! The shape of the body fits, not yet really happy I am with the front. But this is also very difficult to implement with Lego bricks.
I find the side windows are not perfect.

But that's complaining on a high level ;-)

1 hour ago, Hod Carrier said:

I needed a bit of a break after the hullabaloo of OcTRAINber. I thought I'd share what I'd been working on prior to OcTRAINber taking all my time.

I can understand, being an OcTRAINber is a full time job. Did you actually receive your prize?


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Wow, wonderful. Great job on the shape of the train. I like how you integrated the "old" hinge plates into the roof.

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Thank you, gentlemen. 

@Asper @Feuer Zug It’s a model using parts ancient and modern. :laugh:  These were the best techniques I could find to recreate the various vents on the roof.

@Ts__ I agree that the side window is the wrong size and shape, but that was the compromise that I had to make to ensure that the slope and taper of the cab could be made. There’s quite a lot of snotting and supporting structures going on inside that had to be accommodated. I spent a lot of time wondering if I could have done that detail better, but concluded that the only way I make it better was to make the rest of it worse, so I decided that I could live with it 

There have been a lot of compromises made, such as the inset headlights. The original design was closer to the real train, but it would not have been possible to include LEDs. What you see here is probably the most buildable version in the closest design I could make.

No news on the prize as yet.

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