#350 -- Tin Turtle -- Simplex-style WW1 Trench Loco (On30)


Easy-assembly kit with unlimited potential!  Commemorate the Centennial of The Great War with some military modeling ... or add a piece of "war surplus" equipment to your roster today!

The simple construction of this model makes it an ideal "first kit" to get started! 

And the kitbashing & detailing opportunities make it loads of fun for experience modelers, too.

Although steam locomotives were still QUITE prevalent at the start of WW1, the gas-mechanical Simplex locomotive had a distinct advantage for supplying the troops in the trenches -- it did NOT put out a tell-tale plume of smoke that would make a steam locomotive an easy target for enemy artillery or aircraft.

This great new kit includes full body assembly, side sills, pilots, roof, visors and muffler ... AND ... those "tricky" curved pieces that make up the hoods won't give you any trouble at all!  The main body is a ONE-PIECE casting to simplify assembly.


Doors are added separately, which will simplify things for those who want to kitbash an "open-cab" locomotive for light military or industrial use ... and, of course, the roof is added separately.  So, you could replace that with a turret harvested from a 1/48 or maybe even 1/72 scale armoured vehicle if you want to make your Tin Turtle really wild!

The Tin Turtle goes great with all of our 18' Hunkered-Down freight cars.  Be sure to check out the #18010 Composite Boxcar shown in Army livery and the #18020 Low-side Gondola.  Of course, a variety of our other kits will go well with the Tin Turtle used in industrial operation ...

Our #621 Tool Car or #624 Office Car could easily be converted to a "Payroll Car" with the addition of some bars over the windows ... add either of those to a train full of #18030 Side-door ore cars loaded with gold ore and you'll have good reason to add a well-defended little loco. 

For extra fun, and a little bit of tongue-in-cheek action, you could go crazy with all sorts of other detailing and kitbashing.  You could harvest guns from various 1/48 military models ... even add a turret from a 1/48 or maybe even a 1/72 armored vehicle ... and, of course, all sorts of interesting paint schemes are possible.  Unleash your imagination and have fun!


  • Requires mechanism from Athearn HO scale "EMD 40" critter (or older MDC version)
  • Could be built using a long-wheelbased Tenshodo Spud or Black Beetle power truck
  • Minimum radius:  easily operates on 12" radius, maybe even tighter!
  • Scale measurements:  11'4" long over pilots x 7' wide across side steps.
  • Couplers:  Re-use couplers from Athearn mechanism.
  • Kit requires assembly!  You'll need paint, glue (ACC or 5-minute epoxy) and basic modeling tools.

Click Thumbnails below for more photos!

  • Model: 350
  • Manufactured by: BVM

This product was added to our catalog on Monday 06 April, 2015.

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