|This article is about the hopper. You may be looking for the bull, the Story Library book or the episode.|
Thomas & Friends
When Bill and Ben first brought Hector to the yard, he was being troublesome and kept banging into the twins. Hector, at first, was aggressive. He roared angrily at the engines to "KEEP AWAY!", giving Thomas a fright and scaring Rosie away. Thomas, having enough of the truck's behaviour and determined to shunt him, accidentally pushed him off the tracks, after which Hector revealed he was intimidating so he would not have to carry coal, being scared of doing so. After being helped back onto the tracks, Thomas showed him it was actually quite fun.
Later on, Hector helped James get through a snowstorm from the Shunting Yards to Great Waterton after James ignored his previous advice and some of the trucks got stuck in a snowdrift.
Hector used to be mean and aggressive to hide his fear of being filled with coal. Thanks to Thomas, he learned that there was no need to be scared and is now friendly and helpful to the engines.
Hector is based on an ICI Hopper Wagon. These wagons were used to haul limestone traffic from the quarries at Tunstead, near Buxton in the Derbyshire Peak District, to the ICI processing works at Northwich, and were an early example of "block trains" in Britain. 152 of these wagons were built in three batches over a 17 year period, and they were in service until 1997. Six examples of this type of wagon are preserved, one by the National Railway Museum.
Hector is painted black with "HECTOR" painted on both sides in cream, and white wheel rims.
- Hideyuki Kanaya (Japan)
- According to a press release, Hector was originally going to be called "Hopper."
- In the twelfth series, Hector gains a Hispanic accent in the US narration.
- Hector was the only truck to have an eye mechanism.
- Despite Hector being referred to as a "Heavily Engineered Coal Truck on Rails" in merchandising, this acronym was never referenced in any of his appearances.
- Hector was the last rolling stock character introduced in the model series and the last one overall until the Slip Coaches in the eighteenth series.
- Unlike his basis, his handrails were removed to accommodate a face.
- Wooden Railway (discontinued)
- Take Along (discontinued)
- Take-n-Play (reintroduced 2014)
- Collectible Railway
- TrackMaster (discontinued)
- Capsule Plarail (Japan and Australia only)
- My Thomas Story Library (discontinued)