Of the twelve vans built in 1885/6, one van had been broken up by 1922 and the remainder by 1933. Ten were to lot 143 of 1885 and 2 to lot 163 of 1886, both lots being to drawing 648. Oil lighting and later gas lighting was supplied to each of the four compartments. It is possible that torpedo vents were fitted either side of the gas lamp, but this cannot be confirmed. Each compartment was used for a particular destination or group of destinations.
It is known that instructions were given in 1904 for handbrakes to be fitted to non-passenger coaching stock. Presumably the D420 vans were included, but no photographic evidence has come to light. A handbrake has been provided based on that fitted to other MR NPCS vehicles. This would have required the removal of part of the steps to give access to the lever. The probable date of fitting is not known.