What do All The Icons Mean?

Rails of Sheffield employs a number of icons for many of its products, to help you choose the right product for you - here's a breakdown of what they mean.


Bachmann and other manufacturers provide era information. This is provided merely as a guide for those people who may be new to the hobby and wish to purchase models from a similar period in time.

It should not dissuade anyone from purchasing and enjoying any item that they simply find attractive or interesting.

In reality, eras overlap and many items of rolling stock remained painted in the liveries from previous eras for the duration of the following era. Those wishing to obtain more detailed information on specific running periods should consult either their local stockist or contact one of the many model railway clubs in your area listed under events and clubs.


  • Era 1 BadgeEra 1. 1804-1875 Pioneering
    The earliest days of the railways when locomotives were experimental - often built by independent, inventive engineers. A noted engine from this period would be Stephenson's Rocket.
  • Era 2Era 2. 1875-1922 Pre-Grouping
    Before the emergence of the 'Big Four' or grouped period, there were over 200 small railway companies making up the British railway network. Era 2 consists of engines and rolling stock from this period e.g. Peckett W4.
  • Era 3Era 3. 1923-1947 Grouping
    The era of the Big Four - London Midland Scottish (LMR), Great Western Railway (GWR), London and North Eastern Railway (LNER) and SR (Southern Railway). Regarded by many as the Golden Age of steam, the Big Four were created by the Grouping Act of 1921 and lasted until the nationalisation of the railways and the foundation of British Railways (later to be British Rail) in 1948. 
  • Era 4Era 4. 1948 - 1956 British Railways Early Crest
    During the early period that followed the 2nd World War, following nationalisation, British Railways was still characterised by a fleet of steam locomotives.
  • Era 5Era 5. 1956-1968 British Railways Late Crest
    The period following the 1955 'Modernisation Plan' saw widespread changes across the railways - most notably the widespread replacement of steam by diesel locomotives - but also electrification of main lines, replacement of rolling stock and standardisation of signalling,
  • Era 6Era 6. 1957-1971 British Rail Blue Pre Tops
    The period of the Beeching Report, the network saw an enormous proportion of the network taken out of commission. More than 4,000 of 7,000 stations were closed. British Railways became British Rail, changed its livery network-wide to dark blue and adopted the introduced the ‘double arrow’ logo.
  • Era 7Era 7. 1971-1986  British Rail Pre Tops
    TOPS was the ‘Train Operating Processing System’ computer system adopted by British Rail. In this period trains were systematically renumbered.
  • Era 8Era 8. 1982-1997 British Rail Sectorisation
    This period saw British Rail divided into different sectors: InterCity; Network SouthEast; Regional Railways and so on. Each sector had its own livery within the broader British Rail branding.
  • Era 9Era 9. 1996-2008 Privatisation
    Between 1994 and 1997, British Rail was privatised. The track thereafter was managed by Railtrack the trains operated by a number of private companies.
  • Era 10Era 10. 2006-2017 Network Franchising 
    The effects of the privatisation continued. The network was divided up and 'franchised'. West Coast Main Line, East Midlands Rail, Stagecoach, Virgin and First have all run franchises within the railway system.
  • Era 11Era 11. 2014 onwards - Present Day
    Multiple franchise operators with multiple liveries coexist with some nationalised services across the network.
  • Era MultiMulti Era
    Can be used on a variety of layouts regardless of era.

DCC Fittings

Digital Command Control (DCC) is a standard for a system to operate model railways digitally. When equipped with DCC, locomotives on the same electrical section of track can be independently controlled.


  • DCC OnboardDCC On Board means the engine already has the DCC decoder installed and is programmed to the default settings.
  • DCC ReadyDCC Ready means that the engine is already setup to accept a DCC decoder but has none at present. To use the engine with a DCC layout, you will need to buy and fit a decoder, this means you get to pick which decoder you want to use.
  • DCC 4 Pin4 Pin DCC the engine accepts a 4 pin decoder.
  • DCC 6 Pin6 Pin DCC the engine accepts a 6 pin decoder.
  • DCC 8 Pin8 Pin DCC the engine accepts a 8 pin decoder.
  • DCC 8 PinNext18 Pin DCC the engine accepts a Next18 pin (NEM 662) decoder.
  • DCC 21 Pin21 Pin DCC the engine accepts a 21 pin decoder.
  • DCC SoundDCC Sound Fitted the engine has a sound decoder fitted.
  • DCC Sound ReadyDCC Sound Ready the engine has no sound decoder fitted but is ready to receive one.

Decorative and Details


  • WeatheringProduct features weathering for greater realism.
  • Wagon LoadProduct features simulated wagon load for greater realism
  • Interior LightingProduct features internal lighting.
  • Internal FiguresProduct features passenger figures
  • Directional LightingProduct fitted with directional light
  • Electrical LocomotiveLocomotive with electrical pickup in tender
  • Prototype PreservationPrototype Preservation there is a preserved prototype of this locomotive still in operation