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<< Profile 11 >> OCA General Goods Open Wagons
Build Details: 1981-1982 Shildon
Numbering: 112000-112399
Bogies / Suspension:
Dimensions: LOB 11490mm, wheelbase 6320mm
Published Drawings: An Illustrated History of BR Wagons Volume1 (OPC 1985)
Areas of operation: Nationwide
Main liveries: Red. See text for variations.
Summary: The OCA was arguably the final development of the traditional, general-purpose open wagon although the decline in general merchandise traffic resulted in the type never being fully employed. Most of the OCAs were soon transferred to departmental use, while others were rebuilt as timber carriers. The latter have now mostly been replaced by bogie types, with the unmodified wagons remaining on infrastructure duties.

History: NB: This is a brief profile. It will eventually be upgraded to the standard of later profiles, with more detailed information.

The fleet of 400 OCA wagons arrived a couple of years after the OBAs, but looked much more modern due to their all-steel bodywork. Designed as a general purpose open goods wagon, the OCAs had three drop doors on each side, with removable stanchions in between. Turnover bolsters in the floor made the type suitable for a variety of loads.

Delivered in bright red livery with the Railfreight logo in white, the type could often be seen in Speedlink consists, reaching many parts of the country. The decline in general freight traffic hit the type however, and in 1984 about 150 were transferred to departmental use as type ZDA 'Bass'. The numbers were prefixed with a DC (or ADC) and many received the grey and yellow fleet colours. A more drastic change was the rebuilding of many as OTA timber wagons.

The remaining OCAs were evidently still under utilised and further conversions took place, both to OTAs and to ZDAs. Many of the original ZDAs were later rebuilt as ZCA 'Seahorses', with low-sided steel bodies suitable for ballast and spoil loads. These initally carried the grey and yellow colours.

Sectorisation and privatisation affected the fleet liveries. Many of the remaining OCAs were repainted in the new Railfreight livery of dark grey with yellow ends. Under EWS's policy of resource pooling, most of the unmodified ZDAs were recoded back to OCAs, many still retaining their original livery. It is not known if any OCAs received Loadhaul, Mainline or EWS livery.



Links: Photos of OCA wagons and variants on Paul Bartlett's website

Photos of OCA wagons on Martyn Read's website

Photos of OCA wagons on Andy Jupe's website

Updates: 15/03/2013: Photo links (finally) updated.
17/04/08: Picture of rusty OCAs added.
For more pictures see the Links section at the bottom

OCA 112300 in as-built condition. Dewsbury, 26th February 1989.
Paul Bartlett

OCA 112144 in civil engineers livery. Westbury, 30th October 2006.
Martyn Read

Three OCAs in typically worn condition, Lewisham, 17th April 2008
Thomas Young

ZCA Seahorse DC112042. Hoo Junction, 1st October 1989.
Paul Bartlett

Page added: 01/10/2007 Spotted an error? Got some additional info?
Please e-mail me at tom (at)
Last edited: 17/04/2008