Steve Johnson Modelmaker
TOPS Class Electric Locomotives
Electric and Electro-Diesel locomotives that survived until TOPS classification are found in this section.
Classes in the 70 series are dc electrics whereas the 80 series onwards are ac electric. The oddity being the Class 22. This was a short lived classification applied by BR to the SNCF BB22200 locomotives during their brief working of Channel Tunnel trains.
Electric locomotive models used to be quite thin on the ground at one time with just the Trix Class 76, Tri-ang Class 77, Hornby Dublo (later Tri-ang Hornby) Class 81 and a Trix Class 81. I think the problem had always been the overhead catenary.
We didn't have any commercially available prototypical British type of overhead line equipment (OHLE) until early 2017 when Peco introduced their single posts, to be followed by modular portal gantries in 2018. Until then, we have had to rely of continental versions that are 'near enough' from Sommerfeldt and Viessmann, or build our own. N Gauge Brass do produce some etched kits of the ac portal type gantry in 4mm.
The other problem is that each generation of OHLE is slightly different to the last. Add to this, that along some sections of line, no two posts seem to be the same!
The problem is not so bad for Southern Region 3rd rail types, with two of them being Electro-Diesels anyway! Peco and others, have long produced suitable 3rd rails and insulators.
Many more electric locomotives have been produced recently, with perhaps the Bachmann Class 85 probably being the best so far.