Red lights! – Adding dummy rear marker lights to a lima/Hornby Mk3 Sleeper.

Mk3 Sleeper Lights

Whilst pottering around with a couple of Hornby/ex Lima Mk3 sleeper coaches for use with my surrogate HST DVT test train, I noticed that the Mk3 sleeper fleet were fitted from new with ‘continental’ style red marker lights either side of the end doors. I thought at first it was a pre-channel tunnel traffic dream but on research found out it was mainly to do with shunting manoeuvres and piloting moves. With being sleeper coaches these moves were made mainly in the dark. I understand some of the later build and batches of Mk3 including the royal train coaches carried the lights fitted as standard. Once again, referral to a photograph of the prototype is essential.

I know the Lima/Hornby MK3’s suffer from other body inaccuracies; the main one being the incorrect roof. as the sleeper roof should only have one toilet filler cap, with two being on the Lima roof (one at each end). I know some years ago there was a resin replacement roof end (I cannot remember the manufacturer) it was difficult to line up the roof ribs and as a consequence I don’t believe it is produced anymore. Removal of the plastic filler/vent unit without damaging the surrounding roof rib area is not without it’s risks so I decided to accept the error. Perhaps a newer Mk3 Sleeper range is due in RTR rather than manufacturers keep producing the same and copying each other?!

No dismantling of the coach is required so it is literally an hour, afternoon or evening’s work!
The parts needed are 4 x Peco track pins (or similar). In my experience they are no use as track pins as they are too flimsy but do make excellent door handles, knobs and other small similar detail fittings!

Paint the track pin heads a matt red colour and leave to dry before a second coat is applied. Being matt the drying time is short so ideal for this task.

I placed mine on a roll of a short pad of blue tak for ease of painting them all in one go.

A 0.4 drill in hand pin drill is used to drill the pilot hole in the ends, either side of the corridor end door. The pilot hole needs to be 18mm from the base of the coach end which is in line with the 2nd bracket up on the coach end, repeat on the other side, checking and rechecking the measurement as nothing looks worse than wonky lights!

This pilot hole should be drilled right through into the coach. Once all four holes are complete the next stage is to drill a 1.1mm (1.2mm if you have used a larger pin head) countersink hole. This should just be deep enough to allow the pin head to drop in flush to the coach end. The real ones have a slightly recessed plate around them but again I deemed it too much surgery and butchery to get it to look right.

A liitle dab of matt black paint in the drilled countersunk hole may be needed (your choice). It is then a case of pushing in the painted head track pin into the hole with a little dab of superglue on the end pushing the pin right home into the recess.

Job Done!

If I were to do another I may be tempted to try and paint a silver edge around the light lense to portray the lens case. Also I have been thinking about illumination. I do have a couple of scrap Flieschmann coaches with red plastic light lenses so who knows…!

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One thought on “Red lights! – Adding dummy rear marker lights to a lima/Hornby Mk3 Sleeper.

  1. Quick modification there Mark and does make a difference. The roof ends you mention were Hurst Models way back, they also did cast ends for these coaches. These crop up on ebay from time to time but were a little rough compared to current detail parts.

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