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Built Review
Diesel Electric Shunter
British Railways 350 hp Diesel Electric Shunting Locomotive
  • Kitmaster Box Art

by: Frederick Boucher [ JPTRR ]

Originally published on:
RailRoad Modeling

Second of Rosebud Kitmaster's 1959 releases was their boxy 350 hp Diesel Electric Shunter (or yard switch engine), engineered to the United Kingdomís standard OO (1/76) scale. Short-lived, but critically acclaimed, Rosebud Kitmaster kits of predominately British and European prototypes were, and still are, esteemed by countless model railroaders. The Kitmaster Diesel Electric Shunter was, in its day, an impressive model, as were all the Kitmasters.

The reviewer apologizes for this unconventional review of a model partially assembled. Assembly commenced prior to the reviewer's invitation to participation in this site activity, and no unassembled parts photographs have been made available. When these images are found, the reviewer shall update this review.
Diesel Electric Shunter

Production started in 1953 and when it finished in 1962, the class had become the most numerous of all British classes, numbering 996 in total. These locomotives were essential to switching and building trains. The class went through several redesignations, most often known simply as the Class 08.

Vital statistics:

Configuration 0-6-0 (UIC classification C)
Wheel diameter 3 ft 6 in (1.067 m)
Wheelbase 11 ft 6 in (3.51 m)
Length 29 ft 3 in (8.92 m)
Weight 50.4 t to 51.8 t
Engine 350 hp (261 kW)
Tractive effort Maximum: 35,000 lbf (160 kN)

the kit

Kitmaster engineered the shunter with over 30 heavy black plastic parts and 8 clear parts. The molding is mainly sharp, and ejection and mold marks are not noticeable once the model is built. There are a few sink holes, unfortunately on the rod pins. These can be filled easily. Small amounts of thin flash is present.

This model of the British Railways DEJ4 BR Class 08 was quite impressive. Great attention was paid to the detail. Rivet and some hinge detail is present. The chassis, frame and suspension is well represented. However, to model the headlights, you will have to hollow them out and simulate the lenses.

The model is built to roll. Many modelers have powered it, the large superstructure giving ample room to place a small electric motor.

The backhead is all the detail in the cab, but this level of detail is standard in todayís model railroad diesel cabs.

I received mine secondhand and assembled. Fit is not up to todayís standards, and some gap filling products will be required. The previous owner discarded the British draft gear and airbrake hoses, mounting Kadee couplers.

The decals were only the engine number and the BR emblem. Only a single black BR paint scheme is represented. Later 08's are quite colorful.


This little engine takes me way down memory lane; it was my first Kitmaster, my first model train, one of my first-ever models, and bought from Billís Pharmacy (remember when pharmacies sold models?!) Objectively, it makes an impressive static model and can be made into a runner fairly easily. Unfortunately, this is one of Kitmasterís lost kits, Airfix having scrapped the molds. They can be found if one looks hard enough.
Highs: Good detail. Can be motorized.
Lows: Molded on detail. Some sinkholes.
Verdict: A good model of an ubiquitous modern English switch engine--er, shunter.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:76
  Mfg. ID: No.2
  Suggested Retail: Varies
  Related Link: Diesel Electric No.2
  PUBLISHED: Oct 31, 2008
  NATIONALITY: United Kingdom

About Frederick Boucher (JPTRR)

I'm a professional pilot with a degree in art. My first model was an AMT semi dump truck. Then Monogram's Lunar Lander right after the lunar landing. Next, Revell's 1/32 Bf-109G...cried havoc and released the dogs of modeling! My interests--if built before 1900, or after 1955, then I proba...

Copyright ©2021 text by Frederick Boucher [ JPTRR ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of ModelGeek. All rights reserved.


These babies were driving around here in Holland aswell, in either a dark green livery, or a more modern grey/ yellow one. I wonder if anyone ever made decals for those ? They ran as series 600 here
NOV 04, 2008 - 07:50 AM

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  • Kitmaster Shunter
  • Kitmaster No. 2 Diesel Electric Shunter
  • Kitmaster No. 2 Diesel Electric Shunter
  • Kitmaster No. 2 Diesel Electric Shunter