Oxford Diecast 76TRF001 Thompson Refueller BP Aviation Service - 1:760000003633-000003636
Brand new tooling brings the Thompson Refueller into the Oxford 1:76 scale range, adding a very unusual support vehicle for a model airfield diorama right through from the 1930s to the 1990s. Decorated in a bright green, yellow and black BP colour scheme, the model features service hoses with silver taps, handles and spout for pumping fuel into the aircraft. Its three wheels are also painted bright yellow. The cabin interior is black with black seating and black steering wheel. Two small headlights are sited on each side of the wiped black radiator grille whilst on the centre back of the vehicle a single light has a brass Thompson logo above it and the BP shield beneath it.
The Thompson Aircraft Fueller, introduced successfully in 1935, was a small three-wheeled, airfield refueling vehicle, powered by a 10 hp Ford petrol engine. It had a three forward speed and one reverse speed gearbox and a chain-driven rear axle. The three wheeled, low slung design made it easier to get as close as possible to the aircraft to refuel. The left side tank held 500 gallons of petrol, while the right hand side tank held 50 gallons of oil. Each tank had its own pump driven by a power take off engaged by levers in the cockpit and each was fitted with an indicator gauge, hose and nozzle.
This unusual vehicle was first used for servicing light aircraft at civil aerodromes but was put to important use during World War II when several variants were adapted for military use. Following the conflict, many continued in use at civil aerodromes and airports in Britain well into the 1960s and 1970s, with a few still in use e.g. at North Weald and Leicester East into the 1990s. At least 20 examples are known to exist in museums and private ownership worldwide.