A ‘new’ Harzkamel beast for Die Keinnamebahn

Brawa BR 199

Ever since I saw this loco by Brawa in the modelling press several years I have wanted one. This H0e or H0m gauge model (wheelsets for both 9mm and 12mm versions are provided) of the massive BR 199 locomotive used in the Harz region of northern Germany. The massive shape gave it the nickname “Harzkamel”. My model came courtesy of the sales unit of the 009 Society selling a member’s collection.

The history of this locomotive was that increasing proneness to faults of the newly built locomotives of the BR 99.72 and the completely wornout state of the Mallet locomotives of the BR 99.59 gave rise to the decision in the 1980s to convert the narrow gauge lines in the Harz region to diesel engines.

To keep costs down, it was decided to equip standard gauge locomotives of the BR 110 (DR V100) with new bogies to 1m gauge . In 1988 and 1989, the two prototypes 199 863 and 199 871 were delivered, which proved themselves very successfully in operation. Freight traffic, which was in decline after reunification and reduced business travel prevented the originally planned conversion of 30 engines. Only ten were completed, which were all added to the stock of the newly founded HSB in 1992.

The loco model has a 21 pin DCC socket ready for you to fit a compatible DCC chip. Brawa used to sell an ESU Loksound 4.0 DCC sound decoder and speaker kit for this loco. I was very fortunate to find that Mount Tabor Models at Cromford, Derbyshire had a few of these obsolete kits still in stock. What was even better was that they would sell me one for £65, half the price of an ESU Loksound 4.0 from other suppliers! Needless to say I quickly drove the 15 miles to Cromford and met with the shop owner Ian who is a main importer for Brawa and other Continental model railway brands. The decoder came with a very basic sound set and my next task will be to get the correct sound file loaded, which is for the BR 110 (the same as the DR V100).