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In-Box Review
Saddle Tank
British Railways (London Midland Region) 0-4-0 Saddle Tank locomotive (“Pug”)
  • pugboxtop_edited

by: Frederick Boucher [ JPTRR ]

Originally published on:
RailRoad Modeling

Sixth of Rosebud Kitmaster's 1959 releases was their Saddle Tank, engineered to the United Kingdom’s standard OO (4 mm, or 1/76) scale. This model of the British Railways (London Midland Region) 0-4-0 Saddle Tank locomotive was a popular model. It is widely referred to as the “Pug.” 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 Pug was, in its day, an outstanding model, as were all the Kitmasters.

British Railways (London Midland Region) 0-4-0 Saddle Tank locomotive (“Pug”)

For a brief history, I present Kitmaster’s text on the instruction sheet to the right.

the kit

Kitmaster engineered the Pug with 40 heavy black plastic parts. The molding is sharp, with few ejection and mold marks visible. I see no flash.

The model is built to roll with simple rods and valve gear. An aftermarket motorizing kit was produced for this engine.

With generous cab openings, the vacuous cab begs for more interior detail than the backhead offers. The cab and boiler handholds are molded on. No clear parts are provided for the windows (if there were any on the prototype) nor the headlamps. Nor did Kitmaster mold the vacuum brake hoses.

Test fitting promises a nice tight model.

The decals consist of the engine numbers and BR emblem. A single paint scheme is provided.


The assembled model is only some 4 inches long. It makes a fine static model.

Fortunately, this is one of the kits Airfix reworked and reissued. Airfix enhanced the model with lamps, brake gear, a whistle, vacuum brake hoses and enhanced valve gear. Dapol acquired the molds and the model is available from them today.

This model would make a great centerpiece in a WW1 or WW2 diorama. Happily, these kits are fairly inexpensive to obtain.

Click here for additional images for this review.

Highs: Simple, available model of a common British locomotive. Good fit.
Lows: Lack of interior and exterior detail, single livery choice. Molded on handrails. Uncommon scale for most railroad modelers outside of England.
Verdict: For a model four decades old, this kit holds up well. The hand railings will take a little effort to remove if you choose to. Few mold marks will need to be removed or filled. This kit can build into a good-looking model with great display potential.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: 1:76
  Mfg. ID: No. 6
  Suggested Retail: varies
  Related Link: Dapol Saddle Tank
  PUBLISHED: Nov 06, 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.


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  • Kitmaster Saddle Tank
    Chassis, boiler and superstructure
  • Kitmaster Saddle Tank
    Rods, valve gear, buffers, brake pedestal, draft gear
  • Kitmaster Saddle Tank
  • Kitmaster Saddle Tank
    Loco history
  • Kitmaster Saddle Tank
    BR Emblems