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Hornby Release their OO Gauge Tornado Steam Locomotive Models

07 July 2011

  Hornby OO Gauge Tornado Steam Locomotive  
  ‘Basic’ Railroad Tornado and limited edition model side-by-side. The extra decoration on the Limited Edition is clearly seen, though both model’s’ cabs are unglazed.  

We examine the much-anticipated Hornby range of Tornado OO gauge models and rediscover the golden age of steam...

Hornby first announced their own ‘new-build’ model of Tornado in their 2011 new release programme. Invisaged as part of their Railroad range, the model has been produced as Tornado actually is, not a version of a standard A1 – thus it has the correct slightly-lowered boiler fittings and whistle on the fireman’s side.

Watch the video:
Tornado's R3070 and R3-059 running on the Little Bytham layout.

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The model is available in three options. Firstly there's the R3060 in the standard Railroad range. Then we have the R3070 which is a limited edition of 1,200 (with certificate). Both of these are presented in BR apple green with stovepipe chimney. Finally there's the ‘Tornado Express’ train pack which includes three basic Mk.1 coaches (R3059). This loco is in BR green - the current livery of the prototype following recent overhaul.

Hornby Tornado Limited Edition (R3070)

Hornby Tornado Limited Edition (R3070)

The basic Railroad model has simplified lining and there’s no washout plug in the cab base on any of these locomotives (although R3070  has it ‘printed’ in place). The two apple green locos have stovepipe chimneys and the BR green version a lipped chimney – quite correct. The special edition loco has scale nameplates to be fixed on by the purchaser. 

Very accurate in all dimensions, a nice touch is the provision of round, roller bearing axlebox keeps and the provision of battery boxes beneath both cabsides. There are moulded-on representations of the various smokebox pipe runs. The tender is spot-on accurate, with the further-forward coal division plate and anti-slip chevrons around the tank filler. There is no chime whistle behind the off-side smoke deflector, buffers are not sprung and though holes are provided in the bottom of the cylinders, there are no cylinder drain cocks supplied. Once again this is probably part of keeping the locomotive’s cost down to fit in with the range.

Hornby OO Gauge Tornado Steam Locomotive Special Edition   Hornby OO Gauge Tornado Steam Locomotive R3070
The ‘Tornado Express’  train pack with three basic Mk.1 coaches (R3059)   As can be seen on the BR Brunswick green version, this model, being a brand new tooling, is streets ahead of the rest of the Railroad range. (R3070)


Performance is fantastic, partly thanks to a large flywheel, giving silky smooth running. All three locos cheerfully handled scale-length (heavy) trains on the Little Bytham layout with not a trace of slip. All wheels are true-round and run easily through ‘scale’ and proprietary OO gauge track.

The models represent fantastic value for money and though aimed at the ‘bottom’ end of the market, these models make exceptional starting points for super-detailing.    

Railroad Tornado (R3060) £76.99
Limited edition Tornado (R3070) £92.99
Tornado Express train pack (R3059) £163.99

The full version of this article, including more detailed photographs, can be found in the August 2011 edition of British Railway Modelling magazine.

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