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  • [an error occurred while processing this directive]
    Fleischmann Magic Train box van lengthening

    (Adding a second brake-platform)

    Author: John Oxlade, Salfords, Surrey, UK

    The logical conversion after Removing the brake platform from a Fleischmann Magic Train box van. There is an Austrian prototype for this vehicle (without windows). One of these now runs on the Öchsle.


    By stretching the chassis approx 13mm this van will have quite a long wheelbase. This conversion may not be a wise choice if you have sharp curves on your layout.


    If you have already completed the previous conversion "Removing the brake platform from a Fleischmann Magic Train box van" then you have a few spare parts left over. This conversion is a logical way to use these up and have another individual model not in the standard Magic Train range.

    This conversion is more complex than the previous one, though the stage of adding windows in the sides is purely optional. If you feel adventurous enough to try a new skill, then add the windows. If not, the stretched van is fine as it is.

    Materials you will need:

    • 1x Fleischmann Magic Train box van (2450 or similar)


    • Leftovers from previous kitbash


    • 1x brake platform (Fleischmann spare part #122501)
    • Plasticard for new roof
    • Plastic strip for chassis extension
    Tools you will need:
    • Steel rule, 150mm or 300mm long
    • Razor saw and mitre box (make sure the mitre box is wide enough to take the model - minimum 50mm)
    • Rail cutters (Xuron or similar - see references below)
    • Modelling knife with plain and chisel blades
    • Flat files - large and small (called "needle" files)
    • Liquid polystyrene glue and small paint brush (size 0 or 00)
    • Powdered graphite (used to lubricate door locks)
    • 1mm diameter drill and pin-vice or mini electrical-drill

    Difficulty rating: Suitable for beginners (version without windows), suitable for those with minimal experience (version with windows).

    Dieser Artikel ist im August 2003 in deutscher Übersetzung bei erschienen. Die Veröffentlichung des Artikels geschieht hier mit freundlicher Genehmigung von


    The first step is to break the model down in to its constituent parts. As the model is mostly clipped together this is straightforward. You will also need the spare steps, chassis and roof sections from the previous kitbash.

    The chassis and roof need to be lengthened to accommodate the second brake platform. Carve off the roof ribs with a chisel-blade in a modelling knife. File the end of the existing roof and the spare section so that they fit snugly together then glue and leave them to dry. Once dry (overnight), sand the roof smooth with 600 grit wet-n-dry paper.

    The 2 ends of the wagon body are not quite the same.

    Trim the 2 vertical end-braces flush with the bottom of the floor.

    Square-up the ends of the bodywork on this end and widen the opening on the other end to accept the end of the chassis - the gap on the body is narrower on one end than the other.

    Remove the lugs on the underside of the body which held the floor in place.
    OPTIONAL: The following stages (with a yellow background) are entirely optional and should not be attempted by a first time "kitbasher".
    Using a small drill (approx. 1mm but size is not too critical) drill a series of holes where the vents on each side of the wagon are. The holes should be inside the vertical braces and above one of the joins in the wooden sides. There is also a natural frame at the top.

    Do not attempt to drill the holes up to the bracing you will not be able to make a neat job. Make the holes INSIDE then open the hole OUTWARD with a modelling knife and a small file.

    This takes quite a lot of time and patience.

    This is what you are trying to achieve. Once the hole is opened up to this stage, it is time to add a frame.

    Add a frame made from 4 pieces of Strip styrene (Evergreen 0.5 x 2mm or similar). This fits on top of the side boards and on the inside of the wagon framing. See photo at top of article.


    The Magic Train chassis has truss-rods and a brake reservoir, along with a "tank" of some description. The tank and truss-rods get in the way of the next stage, so remove them. Carefully use a modelling knife to remove the truss-rods, being careful not to dig in to the sides of the frame. The only difficult bit here is where the truss-rod runs alongside the brake cylinder. Just take you time and it will be fine.

    The "tank" is a little more difficult. Using a pair of rail-nippers nibble away at the tank until is is almost level with the floor. Then use the chisel-blade in the modelling knife to smooth off any remaining plastic so that it is flush.


    Firstly remove the metal weight and place to one side - slice the plastic "rivets" off with the modelling knife and lift it off the chassis.

    Now place the chassis in the mitre-box and cut through the chassis right next to the brake cylinder.

    Refit the brake platforms on both end sections of the chassis. Dry-fit them in place on the body and you should find that the section cut out from the other chassis fits neatly in the gap.


    In this underside view of the finished vehicle you can see how the 2 sections of the frame and the "filler piece" fit together.

    Once you are happy that all is OK, replace the metal weight in the gap in the chassis (secure with some glue like Yoo-Hoo), refit the chassis on the body and run a small amount of liquid polystyrene glue with a small brush along the join between body and chassis. It only takes a very small amount of glue to hold the body in place. The glue shows as "shiny" marks in the picture.

    Be careful not to get glue in the coupler mechanism. To be safe, drop some powdered graphite in to the coupler mechanism and keep moving it for a few minutes.

    Add the handrails you carved off of the original kitbash on to the corners which didn't have them.

    That is about it. If you have been careful you could use the wagon as it is, or you can repaint it before putting it on your layout.

    It took approx. 2 hours to do this conversion (without painting), a good introduction to "level 2" kitbashing.

    before after

    1. Xuron in the USA manufacture a range of cutters. One of these is intended for cutting rail and has a pair of hardened steel jaws that cut very closely on one side.
    2. Addie-Modell - good supply of parts for modelling in 0e including Fleischmann Magic Train spare parts.

    [ last updated 9th August 2003 ]