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Bachmann Trains is a model railway company that has made Thomas & Friends models in HO scale since 2002 and G scale since 2009, with models in N scale set to be released in 2020. The range's models are made from special toolings to resemble the characters as depicted in the television series. Nearly all of the locomotives have a special moving-eyes-mechanism that allows the eyes to look back and forth across the tracks while the locomotives are in motion.

The HO models are not available outside of North America, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand, as Hornby holds the OO/HO Thomas license overseas, although the Bachmann models are compatible with the Hornby models by having identical coupling systems. After Hornby had discontinued their Thomas & Friends range in 2018, Bachmann secured the rights to distribute their HO scale products in the UK and Ireland with further availability stated to expand in 2020.

HO Scale

Engines

Model Original Release Year Item Number Notes
Thomas 2002 Reissued in 2014 and 2018; a Sound-Chipped Thomas was released in 2014, a Celebration Thomas was released in 2015 and a special edition LBSC 70 Thomas was released in 2020
James 2002 Reissued in 2017; a Busy Bee James was released in 2020
Percy 2002
Henry 2005
Gordon 2005
Toby 2006 Reissued in 2019
Spencer 2006
Emily 2007
Edward 2008
Mavis 2008
Salty 2009 Discontinued
Bill and Ben 2010 Both released separately
Donald and Douglas 2011 Both released separately
Diesel 2011 A Grumpy Diesel was released in 2018
Duck 2013
'Arry and Bert 2014 Both released separately: Discontinued
Oliver 2017
Rosie 2017 Reissued in 2019 with red livery
Paxton 2018
Daisy 2020

Rolling Stock

Model Original Release Year Item Number Notes
Annie and Clarabel 2002 Both released separately
Troublesome Trucks 2002 Six models were made; Troublesome Truck #1 and Troublesome Truck #2 were released in 2002, Troublesome Truck #3 released in 2010, Troublesome Truck #4 in 2014, Troublesome Truck #5 in 2016 and Troublesome Truck #6 in 2020
Red Express Coaches 2005 Both were released separately, Discontinued 
Brake Van 2005 Later re-used for The Spiteful Brake Van
Scruffey 2005
Blue Open Wagon 2005 Discontinued
Cargo Car 2005
Milk Tanker 2005
Tar Tanker 2005 Discontinued 
Fuel Tanker 2005
Fred Pelhay 2005 Cancelled before release
Rickety 2005 Cancelled before release
Gordon's Express Coaches 2006 Both released separately; reissued in 2019
Emily's Coaches 2006 Both released separately
Oil Tanker 2006
Red Open Wagon 2006
Cattle Wagon 2007 Later re-used for Troublesome Truck #3
6-Ton Wagon 2007 Later re-used for Troublesome Truck #4
Salt Wagon 2007 Later re-used for Troublesome Truck #5 and the Sodor Salt Wagon
RF Container Wagon 2007 Discontinued
Well Wagon 2007 Discontinued 
Coal Wagon with Load 2007
Cream Tanker 2007
Raspberry Syrup Tanker 2007
Henrietta 2008
Spencer's Coach 2008
Mail Coach 2008 A green version was released in 2015
Flatbed with Paint Drums 2009 Later re-used for Sodor Logging Company Flat Wagon with Logs
Ventilated Van 2009
Ice Cream Van 2012 Discontinued 
Red Coaches 2015 Both released sold separately
Toad 2016
Sodor Salt Wagon 2016
GWR Cattle Wagon 2016
Live Lobster Refrigerator van
Ventilated Van - Great Western 2016
Ventilated Van - Sodor Fruit & Vegetable Co. 2016
The Spiteful Brake Van 2016
Water Tanker 2016
Sodor Diesel Co. Tanker 2016
McColl's Cattle Wagon 2016 Cancelled before release
Mining Wagon with Load - Blue 2019
Sodor Coal Co. Wagon with Load 2019
Sodor Scrap Co. Wagon 2019
Sodor Logging Company Flat Wagon with Logs 2019
1 Plank Wagon with Brendam Cargo and Freight crate 2020
1 Plank Wagon with Brendam Bay Shipping Co. crate 2020
1 Plank Wagon with Sodor Steamworks crate 2020

Narrow Gauge

The narrow-gauge line is still in HO scale but runs on N gauge track. This is commonly known as "HOe" or "HOn30".

Engines

Model Original Release Year Item Number Notes
Skarloey 2015
Rheneas 2017
Rusty 2019
Peter Sam 2020

Rolling Stock

Model Original Release Year Item Number Notes
Open Wagon 2015
Blue Box Van 2015
Red Box Van 2015
Slate Wagon with Load 2017
Slate Wagon with Load #101 2017
Slate Wagon with Load #164 2017
Red Carriage 2019
Blue Carriage 2019
Blue Brake Van 2020
Red Brake Van 2020

N Scale

Engines

2020

  • Thomas (coming soon)
  • Percy (coming soon)
  • James (coming soon)

Rolling Stock

2020

  • Annie (coming soon)
  • Clarabel (coming soon)
  • Troublesome Truck #1 (coming soon)
  • Troublesome Truck #2 (coming soon)
  • Oil Tanker (coming soon)
  • Fuel Tanker (coming soon)
  • Water Tanker (coming soon)

Sets

2020

  • Thomas with Annie and Clarabel (coming soon)

Non-Rail Characters

2002

2008

2009

2010

2014

Sodor Scenery

Model Original Release Year Item Number Notes
Signal Gantry 2007

Included in a two-pack

Discontinued

Water Tower 2007 Discontinued
Coal Hopper 2007 Discontinued: Rereleased in 2020 in a set
Pedestrian Bridge 2007 Discontinued
Sodor Junction Station 2007 Discontinued
Switch Tower 2009
Tidmouth Sheds 2010 Discontinued
Tidmouth Sheds Expansion Pack 2010
Sodor Lighthouse 2010
Knapford Station Building Kit 2011 Discontinued
Motorised Windmill 2011
Round Water Tower 2016
Square Water Tower 2016

Resin Scenery

2014

2015

HO Scale Sets

Model Original Release Year Item Number Notes
Thomas with Annie and Clarabel Set 2002 Includes Thomas, Annie, Clarabel and a Circle of EZ Track
Percy the Small Engine Set 2002 Includes Percy, Troublesome Truck #1, Troublesome Truck #2 and a Circle of EZ Track
James the Red Engine Freight Set 2005 Includes James, Blue Open Wagon, Fuel Tanker, Brake Van and a Circle of EZ Track; was intended on being released in 2002, but was pushed back
Gordon's Express Set 2006 Includes Gordon, his Express Coaches and an Oval of EZ Track
Emily's Passenger Set 2007 Includes Emily, her Coaches and an Oval of EZ Track
Deluxe Thomas and Friends Special Set 2008 Includes Thomas, Annie, Clarabel, Bertie, Harold, Sir Topham Hatt and an Oval of EZ Track
Thomas' Fun with Freight Set 2008 Includes Thomas, S.C. Ruffey, Red Open Wagon, Cream Tanker, Cattle Van, Conductor and an Oval of EZ Track
Thomas' Holiday Special Set 2008 Includes Thomas with Removable Santa Hat and Removable Snowplough, Coach with Christmas Decorations, Truck with Christmas Tree, Candy Cane Tanker and an Oval of EZ Track
Salty's Dockside Delivery Set 2010 Includes Salty, 6-Ton Wagon, Raspberry Syrup Tanker, Salt Wagon, Exclusive Guard and an Oval of EZ Track
Thomas' Christmas Express Set 2013 Includes Thomas with Removable Santa Hat and Removable Snowplough, Truck with Christmas Tree, Flat Wagon with Load, Red and Green Christmas Van and an Oval of EZ Track
Whistle & Chuff Thomas! 2015 Includes Sound-Chipped Thomas, Troublesome Truck #1, Troublesome Truck #2 and a Circle of EZ Track
Thomas' Christmas Delivery 2019 Includes Thomas with Removable Santa Hat and Removable Snowplough, Flat Wagon with Presents, Christmas Brake Van and an Oval of EZ Track

HO Scale Parts

  • Hook-and-Loop Couplers
  • Track Play-Tape (Rail, Road and Sound-Fitted Variations)

G Scale

Engines

Model Original Release Year Item Number Notes
Thomas 2009 A DCC Sound Thomas was released in 2016
Percy 2009 A DCC Sound Percy was released in 2016
James 2010
Emily 2012
Toby 2013
Winston 2017
Diesel 2020 Previously Cancelled; Reannounced in 2020 Catalog

Rolling Stock

Model Original Release Year Item Number Notes
Annie and Clarabel 2009 Both released separately
Troublesome Truck #1 2009
Troublesome Truck #2 2009
Emily's Coaches 2011 Both were released separately
Tidmouth Milk Tanker 2011
Sodor Fuel Tanker 2011
Oil Tanker 2011
Tar Tanker 2011
Coal Wagon with Load 2011
Cargo Car 2011
S.C. Ruffey 2012
Brake Van 2012
Raspberry Syrup Tanker 2014
Blue Open Wagon 2014
Cream Tanker 2014
Red Open Wagon 2014
Ice Cream Wagon 2016
GWR Box Van 2016
Explosives Box Van 2016
Sodor Fruit & Vegetable Co. Box Van 2016
The Spiteful Brake Van 2018
Toffee Tanker 2019
Water Tanker 2019
Chocolate Syrup Tanker 2019

Accessories

2012

  • Thomas' Snowplough (discontinued)

2017

  • DCC Sound Module

G Scale Sets

2009

  • Thomas with Annie and Clarabel Set (includes: Thomas, Annie, Clarabel, an Oval of Track and DVD Instructions; discontinued)
  • Percy and the Troublesome Trucks Set (includes: Percy, Troublesome Truck #1, Troublesome Truck #2, an Oval of Track and DVD Instructions; discountinued)

2012

  • Thomas' Christmas Delivery Set (includes: Thomas with Santa Hat and Snowplough, Red Open Wagon with Presents, Decorated Coach, an Oval of Track and DVD Instructions; discontinued)

Trivia

  • The 2002 Product Catalogue oddly showed a Lionel O scale Thomas on the front cover.
  • The first HO scale products released in 2002 (Thomas, Percy, James, Annie, Clarabel, Troublesome Trucks, Bertie, Harold and Cranky) were based on promotional artwork in circulation at the time.
  • The HO scale oil, cream and raspberry syrup tankers and the mail coach were all initially released as they appeared in the model series but were reissued with their CGI series insignia in 2011.
  • Thomas, Percy and James' HO models do not have front couplers, unlike all the other HO scale locomotives.
  • Thomas, Percy, James, Gordon, Henry and Toby's HO models have grey coupling hooks. Henry and Gordon additionally also have grey brake pipes and lamp irons. Curiously, however, the sound-equipped Thomas has black coupling hooks. In late 2018, the normal Thomas had his coupling hooks painted black.
  • On Emily's HO model and G scale model, her water filler cap is green instead of black.
  • Later releases of Thomas' HO model feature two holes behind his front buffer beam so that his snowplough can be fitted. Also in 2014, the chassis block and wiring contacts on Thomas' HO scale model were redesigned.
  • Henry's tender is noticeably shorter in height than in the television series.
  • Gordon's cab is noticeably taller in height than in the television series.
  • On James' original HO model, the wheels and axleboxes are painted grey and his smokebox saddle is painted red when they should all be black. The handrails are also white when they should be silver. The large scale model is devoid of these errors; however, the wheels are unpainted.
  • In an official forum post, a Bachmann representative revealed plans to update James to look more like his television show counterpart in 2015. However, once update artwork was sent to the factory, it was too late to change the production line at the time. James' updated model was released in late 2017, with black tender axle boxes, underframes, drawbar and dummy coupling hooks, as well as silver handrails. The dome, whistle and lining were also painted in a brass colour as opposed to the gold colour of the original model. However, the smokebox saddle remains red, the wheels became unpainted and it still has no front coupler. It is likely the James model was updated in response to feedback from customers.
  • On Percy's HO model:
    • The coal bunker is painted grey instead of black and is oversized.
    • The cab steps are mounted on the side of the running board instead of under it. Strangely, his prototype model did not have this problem.
    • Percy is the only HO locomotive not to have a rear dummy coupling hook.
    • He is slightly taller than his television series counterpart due to the way the cylinders are fitted.
  • In 2019, the brown colour on Toby's HO scale model was darkened.
  • On Duck's HO model:
    • The buffer housings are black instead of red.
    • The prototype model had a black footplate similar to Duck's CGI model and the top of his safety valve was also painted black, but they were changed to grey and green respectively on the production model.
  • Donald and Douglas' HO models lack cab side handrails that support the roof.
  • The large scale GWR box van and Sodor Fruit and Vegetable Co. van are depicted as single-vent vans like the ice cream wagon. The HO versions are instead depicted as double-vent vans.
  • Oliver, Rosie and Paxton are the only HO locomotives to be based purely on their CGI renders. All other models, including those with CGI faces, borrow elements from the television series models.
  • Oliver's model lacks the tank front handrails.
  • Diesel, 'Arry, Bert, Oliver, Rosie and Paxton are so far the only engines in the HO scale range to have CGI-styled faces.
  • Diesel's model was used as the basis for 'Arry, Bert and Paxton, possibly due to all of them being BR Class 08 shunters.
  • Paxton is the first CGI character to be introduced into the Bachmann range for HO Scale.
    • Winston is the first CGI character to be introduced into the Bachmann range for Large Scale.
  • Currently, Thomas, James, Diesel and Rosie are the only HO scale engines with more than one variant.
  • On Annie and Clarabel's HO models:
    • The underframes are painted grey instead of black.
    • There are no dummy coupling hooks.
    • The roofs are attached and have plastic frames and rectangles attached underneath them to resemble windows, unlike the Large Scale models that have unattached roofs. Emily's coaches and the Christmas coaches have similar features.
    • Clarabel is missing her guard's compartment.
  • The coaches in the Thomas' Christmas Delivery and Thomas' Christmas Special sets are Emily's coaches repainted.
  • S.C. Ruffey's HO and large scale models both had a face that was not used in the television series on-screen.
  • Terence's HO model has a removable snowplough.
  • Winston is currently the only character to date to be made in Large Scale but not HO scale.
    • In addition, he is also the first character that was first made in Large Scale, unlike the other characters who were all first made in HO scale and then made again into large scale.
  • The human figures were originally marketed as HO scale, but have been relabelled large scale since the introduction of said range due to being too large.
  • The Sodor scenery accessories are recycled models from Bachmann's Plasticville line.
  • The HO models of Thomas, Annie, Clarabel and Emily's coaches made a cameo appearance in the 2015 film Ant-Man.
    • In close-up shots, the large scale Thomas is used (albeit with the face altered to resemble the HO one for consistency).
  • Percy's large scale prototype had a green coal bunker.
  • Most wagons throughout the Bachmann range are reused moulds of wagons made in the Bachmann Branch Line and Mainline Model Railways ranges, albeit with the detail reduced. The Narrow Gauge rolling stock also seems to be based on Peco 009 gauge rolling stock, but without brake pipes.
  • The blue narrow gauge van has the letters "SR" painted on the side which stand for "Skarloey Railway" while the red van does not. Interestingly enough, the large scale Brake Van similarly has the letters "NW" for "North Western".
  • The narrow gauge van's roofs were most likely originally painted grey but were later changed to white as evidenced by the fact that the underside of the roofs is painted grey and visibly painted white on top afterwards. This change is also likely since the roofs are slightly darker than the Peco models' roofs as a result of being repainted.
  • Bachmann models were used as references for the Percy, James, Gordon and Emily replicas at Thomas Land US.
  • Skarloey is the first locomotive model in the range to not have moving eyes and the first HO scale tank engine with an open cab.
  • The Thomas Deluxe Whistle and Chuff set is similar to the Percy and the Troublesome Trucks set.
  • The Trackside Station resembles the fourth series Glennock station building, but without the canopy.
  • 'Arry's HO model has more stubble than Bert, instead of the other way around.
  • Thomas and James' G Scale models are featured in the I Love Toy Trains DVD "Ticket to Ride", in which they are operated by Dave Simkowski.
  • Unlike the red version of the mail coach, the green version does not have its CGI mail emblems nor 'Sodor Mail' written in white. In fact, the green mail coach seems to be a "freelance" model as there was never a green mail coach in the television series.
  • Spencer's prototype had differently shaped eyebrows and did not have his whistle, buffers, coupling hook or lamp irons.
  • Packaged Bachmann models of Skarloey and Rheneas are on display at the Narrow Gauge Railway Museum in Tywyn.
  • In the Large Scale range, all the locomotives have their CGI faces. However, Annie, Clarabel and the two Troublesome Trucks retain their model series faces.
  • The G scale models are larger than the Gauge 1 Model Series models.
  • Thomas and Percy's HO models were recycled as different models with the same moulds in the Bachmann Junior range. Thomas' model was repainted into engines such as 2005, Billy and Stuart. Percy's model was repainted into GWR locomotives and Greg.
  • Contrary to popular belief and what is often stated, the range is OO scale; this is due to the amount of stock reused from OO toolings. The HO label is only included for the fact they are predominantly sold in HO standard countries. Likewise, the narrow gauge range is in the OO9 gauge.
  • Gordon's express coaches were the first Bachmann Thomas products to be reintroduced following their discontinuation. In addition, these coaches were given a yellow stripe to match their CGI counterparts.
  • The Red Rosie's window and cylinder lining are silver instead of light grey. She also lacks her rivets.
  • A HO Scale model of Thomas, along with faceless versions of Annie and Clarabel, was used in "High Noon-ish", the third episode of the fourth season of the American detective comedy-drama series Psych.
  • Rusty's model is half the size of his Model Series counterpart; this was probably done to make him in scale with his basis Midlander, which also makes his scale match both the Railway Series illustrations and his CGI render.
  • The PDF version of Toby's blueprints incorrectly labelled him as "Toby the Big Express Engine".[1] This was intended for Gordon's blueprints.
  • The UK releases of the HO scale engines contain several differences to the standard US models:
    • The lamp irons and coupling hooks on all the engines are thicker to comply with UK safety standards (the minimum age was lowered from 8+ to 3+).
    • Thomas' coupling hook on his standard model is painted black.
    • Thomas' eyebrows have been enlarged.
  • When the N scale Thomas and Percy models were revealed at --------, their faces had been switched around.
  • Oddly enough, the upcoming LBSC Thomas model has bigger eyebrow whilst the standard Thomas has smaller ones making it inacurate.
  • Busy Bee James has a painted smokebox saddle unlike standard James.

External links

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