All articles @
  Canadian National
  • Kitbashing a CN caboose
  • Europe
  • Gs of DSB with high brakeman's platform
  •   France
  •   Germany
  • "Pop" coaches
  • A brief history of German railways
  • A review of Fleischmann's Bavarian GtL 4/4
  • A review of Trix's Bavarian DXI
  • BR01 to 19
  • BR20 to 39
  • BR40 to 59
  • BR60 to 79
  • BR80 to 96
  • BR80
  • BR97
  • BR98
  • Blue F-train coaches
  • Classification of Deutsche Reichsbahn goods wagons (1920-1945)
  • E69 or 169
  • E93
  • Experimental, unique and unusual German locomotives
  • Five figures and three letters - a story of searching and doubt
  • G10 covered goods wagons
  • German steam locomotive numbering system
  • German track-side signs to print out
  • German-English dictionary of railway or technical terms - appendices
  • German-English dictionary of railway or technical terms - main
  • Grandpa is giving a lesson on lettering of early era III coaches
  • Lettering of German freight wagons
  • Modelling a Bavarian Branch Line - part 1
  • Modelling a Bavarian Branch Line - part 2
  • Modelling a Bavarian Branch Line - part 3
  • Modelling a Bavarian Branchline - part 4
  • Umbauwagen
  • What do the white squares and trapezoids mean on goods wagons?
  • What locomotives are appropriate for what rolling-stock?
  •   Latvia
  • Riga and the Latvian Railway Museum
  •   Modelling
  • Converting a FAMA / KISS / ROCO Tm 2/2 to 16.5mm gauge
  • Fleischmann Magic Train box van lengthening
  • Fleischmann Magic Train box van shortening
  • Internationale Modellbahn Ausstellung, Koeln Nov 2000
  • Kadee couplers for European HO rolling stock
  • Making a Fleischmann Magic Train STAINZ look less like STAINZ
  •   Norway
  • Norwegian train travel
  •   Sweden
  • A photo charter journey through Småland and Östergötland, Sweden
  •   UK
  • Gatwick Express
  • Out-n-About - Salfords, Surrey
  • Out-n-About - The Snowdon Mountain Railway, Wales
  • General
  • Railway Movies
  • Modelling
  • Fitting a Digitrax DZ121 into a Roco HO Scale DR BR41 and BR50
  •   General
  • My Maerklin Memories
  •   Layouts
  • Geoff Money's Altburgbahn
  • John Oxlade's Bavarian layout - 1st year's events
  • John Oxlade's Bavarian layout - 2nd year's events
  • John Oxlade's Bavarian layout - an operating session
  • John Oxlade's Bavarian layout - the track plan
  • Rogier Donker's Elliana & Heritage Railroad
  •   Scenery
  • Green Lumps against a Blue Sky
  • US
  • The Railroads of Southeast Florida
  •   Modelling
  • Building a Union Pacific SD60M from a Rail Power Products kit
  • Combin(ing) a Chivers Way Car with Boulder Valley Models combine sides
  •   Union Pacific
  • Union Pacific "Double Diesel" Locomotives
  • Union Pacific Century 855
  • Union Pacific DD35 and DD35A
  • Union Pacific SD60 and SD60M
  •   Western Pacific - Union Pacific
  • Out-n-About - The Feather River Canyon, California, USA
  • [an error occurred while processing this directive]


    (Converted coaches)

    Author: Martin Silz, Essen, Germany

    Prototype information:

    After WWII many coaches were damaged and/or not up to the latest style. Most coaches for suburban trains and semi fast riding trains (Eilzüge) were still compartment coaches, most of them of Prussian origin. The average age of the coaches was more then 30 years and the coaches were essentially worn out and should have been withdrawn. However, the Bundesbahn had no money to order new coaches at that time and decided to rebuild what they had. The Bundesbahn used the frames of the old coaches, which were inspected and brought to an equal length. To these frames a new body with new interior was fitted.

    The vast majority of the frames of the converted coaches were of Prussian origin, but there have been also ex Saxonain, Bavarian or Badenian coaches. All 'normal' converted coaches were green, only those intended for special services painted a different colour.

    There were 3-axle and 4-axle coaches (and six 2-axle coaches for prisoners). The 3-axle coaches were always coupled as pairs. By tensioning the springs of the couplers, the maximum velocity could be increased (from 65 or 80 km/h to 100 km/h).

    The pairs were:
    B3yg + B3ygWC at the outside of the pairs
    AB3yg + AB3yg1.class compartments in the middle of the pairs
    B3yg + AB3ygas above
    B3yg + BD3ygbaggage compartment at the outside
    AB3yg + BD3ygas above

    Of course there is no rule without exception: The D3yg was a single coach. This coach was special in another way, too. It had a cab for push-pull service. There are rumors that there was a combined 2nd class/baggage coach with a cab too, but it seems that this is the same vehicle.

    Technical data on 3-axle coaches:
    BC3yg- /54
    AB3yg(b)- /54
    AB3yg(eb) 756
    C3yg- /54
    B3yg(b)- /54
    B3yg(eb) 761
    CPw3yg- /54
    BD3yg(b)- /54
    BD3yg(eb) 766
    Pw3ygf- /54
    D3ygb- /54
    D3ygeb 997
    length over buffer:13300 mm13300 mm13300 mm13300 mm
    length of the body:13000 mm13000 mm13000 mm13000 mm
    width of the body:3090 mm3090 mm3090 mm3090 mm
    height over rails:4045 mm4045 mm4045 mm4045 mm
    distance between outer axles:7500 mm7500 mm7500 mm7500 mm
    average weight:18,3 t18,0 t17,7t16,8 t
    max. speed:100 km/h100 km/h100 km/h100 km/h
    # of compartments:321
    # of WC:111
    seats 1st class:24
    seats 2nd class:246224
    area for baggage:14,5 m^226 m^2
    loading weight:5 t7,5 t
    first year of (re-)building:195419541954
    last year of withdrawl:~ 1980~ 1980~ 1980
    # of coaches (re-)built:111947376831

    Special coaches:

    Eight coaches were rebuilt in 1961 for use with the electric railcar ET85. These coaches had no possibility to interchange between coupled coaches (EB85 01-08, B3y (no "g")). These coaches were of the same colour scheme as the ET85 (mainly red with light grey stripes).

    Eight B3yg coaches were rebuild in 1967 as WG3yge 835 wagons for the special train "Rollende Weinstrasse" ("rolling wine street"). Colours dark blue/beige. There were also two additional coaches, which were rebuild from a B4y-29a (Eilzugwagen Gruppe 30).

    Many coaches are still in use today as maintenance vehicles. Nowadays they are no longer required to be coupled as pairs, and can be seen as single coaches. Some of them are still in green livery, but most of them have been repainted in oceanblue (RAL 5020).

    Similar to the 3axle Umbauwagen there have been 4axle Umbauwagen. Many of the converted coaches got their old bogies (Prussian type or swan neck (=American) type). But there has been only one single AB4yg with swan-neck bogies and no AB4yg coach with Prussian bogies. All other AB4yg coaches had Minden-Deutz bogies. There have been all types of bogies under B4yg and BD4yg coaches. The last coaches were to be withdrawn in 1989, but thanks to German unification the last coach could be seen in public use in 1991.

    Technical data on 4-axle coaches:
    AByg 503
    Byg 515
    BDyg 533
    D3ygb- /54
    D3ygeb 997
    length over buffers:19460 mm19460 mm19460 mm
    length of the body:19160 mm19160 mm19160 mm
    width of the body:2990 mm2990 mm2990 mm
    height over rails:4054 mm4062 mm4062 mm
    axle spacing (bogie):2500 mm2500 mm (*)2500 mm (*)
    bogie centre spacing:12500 mm12500 mm12500 mm
    average weight:28,4 t28,6 t30,4 t16,8 t
    max. speed:120 km/h120 km/h120 km/h
    # of compartments:321
    # of WC:111
    seats 1st class:24
    seats 2nd class:366236
    area for baggage:17,5 m^226 m^2
    loading weight:6 t7,5 t
    first year of (re-)building:195819541955
    last year of withdrawl:199119911991
    # of coaches (re-)built:339666127
    (*) with Minden-Deutz bogies, Prussian bogies: 2500 mm, American (swan-neck) bogies: 2150 mm

    Some coaches were rebuild for use with EMUs ET25, ET 55, ET 65 (especially in the Stuttgart region). These coaches were painted according to the scheme of the connected EMU, i.e. red with light-grey stripes. One of these coaches was used later for testing of new bogies (up to 160 km/h !)

    Many coaches have been PREserved as museums' coaches all over Germany. Even some private railways bought some of those coaches for use on their tracks (e.g. Tegernsee-Bahn, Allgäu-Zollern-Bahn)

    The DR of the former GDR did something similar. In this case, they are called "Reko-Wagen" (reconstructed coaches).

    Model information:

    All major manufacturers produce (did produce) Umbauwagen:
    NFleischmann, Roco, Arnold (shortened 4-axle coaches)
    H0Märklin, Roco, Fleischmann, Trix (shortened 4-axle coaches)

    Short review of H0 models:

    All models are of nearly equal quality. All coaches are fixed with short couplings. Lengths and height are correct. Lettering is correct and (of course with exceptions) readable. But light and shadow are always linked closely together. Especially there are some problems with the 4-axle coaches:

    The buffers are too high.
    Fleischmann is the only manufactuerer which models their BDyg with four windows in the doors to baggage compartment. These four windows came in use in the 1980s. Before that there only have been two. So the Fleischmann coach can not be renumbered as epoch III wagon.
    The AByg has wrong bogies: The only AB4yg with American bogies looked a bit different.

    There has never been a AB4yg with Prussian bogies. You can fix Minden-Deutz bogies (e.g. from a Silverfish coach), even though these bogies are not of the type Minden-Deutz leicht (Is there any manufacturer, who produces this type?).
    The buffers are too short.

    There are (were) coaches with all types of bogies. So there is the same problem with the AB4yg coaches (see note on Märklin coaches above).

    Trix 4-axle Umbauwagen are only 1:100 scale and so not very useful for todays model trains.

    N-scale models:

    In N-scale Fleischmann and Roco are quiet equal. However, Arnold's coaches too short.

    For more details have a look at the tests in eisenbahn magazin (see below).

    Additional reading:

    eisenbahn magazin, Oct 1983, p 19, Allgäu-Zollern-Bahn, renumbering
    eisenbahn magazin, Dec 1986, p 31, history 3yg, incl WG3yge and CPw3ygef
    eisenbahn magazin, Dec 1986, p 88, test 3yge H0
    eisenbahn magazin, Jun 1987, p 80, test 4yg, H0
    eisenbahn magazin, Sep 1987, p 74, test 4yg, N
    eisenbahn magazin, Feb 1989, p 13, history 4yg

    eisenbahn kurier, Jul 1990, p 76, kitbashing of a H0 BPw3ygef
    eisenbahn kurier, Nov 1990, p 116, data connected to the (B)Pw3ygef
    eisenbahn kurier, Mar 1994, p 106, kitbashing of a H0 models

    Glasers Annalen, volume 79 (1955), p 1-13, Der Personenwagenumbau bei der Deutschen Bundesbahn by Dr.Ing. Oskar Schmidt

    Glasers Annalen, volume 83 (1959), p 115-119, Vierachsige Umbau-Personenwagen der Deutschen Bundesbahn by Helmut Schroeter

    ZEV Glasers Annalen, volume 106 (1982), p 369-371, Die drei- und vierachsige Umbauwagen der Deutschen Bundesbahn (Bauart yg) by Ulrich Froböß


    [ last updated 31st Dec 2003 ]