Thomas the Tank Engine Wikia
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This article is about the rolling stock. You may be looking for the episode.


The brake van (also known as the guard's van, van, goods brake or caboose in US narrations) is an important part of every goods train.

A brake van is added to the back of a goods train and a guard rides in it. Each brake van is equipped with a strong brake to assist with slowing and stopping the train. From here, the guard can keep an eye on the train in case of problems, such as hot axle boxes, or trucks becoming uncoupled while running.

Types of brake vans in The Railway Series

Standard gauge

Narrow gauge

Named brake vans

Standard gauge

Narrow gauge

Company brake vans

Standard gauge

Types of brake vans in the Television Series

Standard gauge

Narrow gauge

Named brake vans

Standard gauge

Types of brake vans in All Engines Go

Named brake vans

Standard gauge

Miscellaneous

Types of brake vans

Standard gauge

Named brake vans

Standard gauge

Trivia

  • A few brake vans are on display; one at Drayton Manor along with a model of Toad, one at the British Museum, and a few at the Hara Model Railway Museum.
  • To date, only four brake vans have been named: Beatrice, Cora, Toad and Bradford. They, along with the Spiteful Brake Van, the Elderly Brake Van and the Old Guard's Van are so far the only known brake vans to have faces. A brake van was briefly seen with a face in the second series episode, A Close Shave. Another brake van with a face appeared in the Railway Series pop-up book, James the Red Engine and the Troublesome Trucks. Bruno, a new character in the reboot series, is also a brake van, though he is based on an American caboose rather than a British brake van.
  • Brake vans are sometimes added to passenger trains in the series despite most of these trains having brake coaches.
    • In Percy's Promise, a non sentient brake van was added to Percy’s passenger train (Annie and Clarabel) to have its floorboards cut up to avoid the implication the fireman was using a axe on a sentient coach as in the original story, Clarabel’s floor boards were cut up instead.
  • The brake vans seen from the first to the fifth series were made out of modified Tenmille gauge one kits. These kits are still distributed by Tenmille today.
  • In most of the merchandise ranges, the brake vans are inaccurately portrayed as American cabooses. The main exception is Bruno, who is actually based on one.
  • Despite the American railway term for brake vans being cabooses, the US dub only referred them as such in three episodes and one special, while the term "brake car" is used in All Engines Go.
  • Part of the Motor Road and Rail/TrackMaster toys were repainted from JNR 5000 series vans.

* RWS only | ** T&F only | --- Dropped

* RWS only | ** T&F only
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