There are many different types of vans (also sometimes referred to as box vans) on Sodor, which are used to carry various kinds of goods. In the US, they are known as boxcars. Brake vans are other types of vans that are used for carrying the guard.
- 1 Single Ventilated Vans
- 2 Utility Vans
- 3 LBSC Railway 8-ton Vans
- 4 Salt Vans
- 5 Lynton and Barnstaple Railway Vans
- 6 LNWR Non-Ventilated Vans
- 7 GWR Ventilated Vans
- 8 Banana Vans
- 9 The Milk Van
- 10 Fireworks Vans
- 11 Ice Cream Vans
Single Ventilated Vans
The Single Ventilated Vans serve as Sodor's main type of van. Percy once had to deliver these vans of sugar, but on his way to the chocolate factory, he slipped on an oily track and crashed into the factory's wall. Arthur once had to take some vans of fruit, but he sped down Gordon's Hill a bit too fast, causing the vans to be destroyed and the fruit and veggies to fly everywhere. Since the eighth season, BR Vent Vans have been known to carry other things, like fireworks equipment. Thomas once had to take some vans filled with ice cream.
These Vans are painted in many colours, like white, grey, brown, orange, etc. Since the CGI Series, all the vans were painted cream, until the twentieth season, where the vans were given new liveries.
These vans are based of LMS 12 Ton Covered Steel Vans and LNER 12 Ton Covered Vans.
- Since the eighth season, all the vans were faceless. They regained faces in the twentieth season, however the faces were raised and the front vent was removed.
Utility Vans are types of vans used to transport goods across the island. They have been seen in many liveries such as olive green, white, brown, grey and red being the most common. Some have four axles while others have eight. "The Flying Kipper" is primarily made up of utility vans. Though they are usually faceless, a utility van with a face was once briefly seen in the third season episode Oliver Owns Up, although the face was crooked. The Mail Train also consists of utility vans, that specialise in carrying mail.
The utility vans are based on the General Utility Vans, previously known as "CCT" (covered carriage trucks). These types of vans were designed for carrying parcel goods. The mail coaches also share the same basis.
- The utility vans are commonly used for goods trains, however in the first season episode, Thomas and Gordon, the vans were used as part of Henry's passenger train as luggage vans.
- In the CGI Series, the amount of vents on the front and back of the utility vans were reduced.
LBSC Railway 8-ton Vans
LBSC Railway 8-ton Vans were frequently used from the second to sixth seasons.
These vans were mostly painted brown.
These Vans are based of the LBSC Railway 8-ton Vans.
- Twitter user 'ThomasTankMerch' owns an original face mask that was used on one of these vans.
Salt Vans (also known as fish vans or ice vans), are used to carry fish, and are often used in fish trains. They are also a frequent sight on the Norramby Branch Line.
The salt vans first appeared in the second season, and were used frequently until the twelfth season. However, they later returned in the special, Journey Beyond Sodor, where they were part of the goods train to Britlington Goods Yard on the Mainland.
Salt vans have been painted white, brown, grey and green.
They are based on Saxa Salt Vans.
- In the CGI Series, the Salt vans received different panel-work in-comparison to the Model Series.
Lynton and Barnstaple Railway Vans
The Lynton and Barnstaple Railway Vans were used in the Classic Series.
One of these pushed Duck into a Barber Shop. These vans were later used as part of Flying Kipper, as extra vans were required after a boat returned with a greater load of fish than usual. Duck accidentally rammed into the rear van when a faulty tail-lamp fell off on Gordon's Hill.
These vans were all painted brown. In later seasons, there was white graffiti on them. From the forth to fifth seasons they are rust color. They are painted white.
These vans are based of Lynton and Barnstaple Railway Box Vans. In real life, the vans are narrow gauge, but have been resized to standard gauge in the Television Series
LNWR Non-Ventilated Vans
The LNWR Non-Ventilated Vans first appeared in the first season and continued to appear until the sixth season.
Percy once crushed one of these vans loaded with fruit in the third season episode, Percy, James and the Fruitful Day.
These vans were mostly colored grey and had "N.E." (North Eastern Railway) painted light yellow on either sides.
These vans are based of LNWR Non-Ventilated Vans.
- Kari Tamminen (Finland: Toad Stands By, singing voice only)
GWR Ventilated Vans
The GWR Ventilated Vans made appearances throughout the Classic Series.
These vans were painted brown.
These vans are based of GWR Ventilated Vans.
- Some vans have faces covering the front vents, while others have faces below the vents.
In the Railway Series many Banana Vans appeared. One of these includes U.L.P., who laughed at Oliver after he returned from the works.
These vans were painted all sorts of colors, such as brown, grey or pink.
These vans were based of LMS Banana Vans.
The Milk Van
The Milk Van is an old-fashioned van used for transporting milk from Ffarquhar down to the dairy at Elsbridge.
Every morning the van is coupled to Thomas' first train, the farmers send the milk to the stations, and Thomas delivers the milk to the Dairy. When Daisy was preparing for her first train, she refused to pull the van once it was coupled to her, saying "it is bad for her swerves.", and blew a fuse on purpose. Percy and Toby had to take the van in Thomas' absence and Daisy's refusal. However, now that Daisy has learnt sense, she sometimes takes the milk instead of Thomas.
The milk van is based on the Great Western Railway's four-wheel slatted side milk van.
The milk van is painted chocolate brown with a light grey roof, and with "NW" in yellow paint on both sides. The letters "NW" was later repainted on both sides in white paint. In the My Thomas Story Library books, the milk van was painted dark blue with white lettering reading "MILK" on both sides.
- In the Railway Series, the milk van is a four-wheeled wagon, while the original model belonging to Reverend W. Awdry was a six-wheeled wagon and based on a cattle wagon.
- In the television series, the milk van was replaced with a milk tanker, though it was still referred as a van.
These vans are used to carry fireworks when needed. They are Single Ventilated Vans with added fireworks signs.
Ice Cream Vans
These vans are used to carry ice cream when needed. They are Single Ventilated Vans with added ice cream signs.