It's time to pack the editorial bucket and spade for a few days enjoying the delights of the Isle of Man. Don't worry though, there will still be MREmag to entertain you.
Thanks to Pat, Brian and Trevor, I have several articles set up and read to run until my return. A freshly purchased laptop and hotel WiFi should allow me to put together the letters page too. I've tested this at home but obviously not on the road so while I've done what I can, there are no guarantees. If you have something for the letters page that really must go in, get it to me before I fly out on Tuesday.
I'll also put together my editorials while I'm there, so if you are lucky there will be holiday snaps to enjoy with railway interest. Or if it doesn't work then I'll shut up for a week. Which might be a blessed relief.
I read much criticism in Wednesdays issue.
Can I just say that Bachmann have done us proud in recent years, particularly with regard to smaller types.
The 3F tender engine is very useful, and I acquired the LYR 2-4-2 because it was such a nice loco. These were quite reasonably priced really. I also found a 'Southern' C1' and got a J11 at an offer price. They all run really well.
I am looking forward to an E4 0-6-2T (although I would have had more use for the GER E4!) ( A note for the future, a Holden E4 was the last 2-4-0 to run in the UK and is preserved. Its kind of cute in its way and I hope that, after the hiatus, one might emerge to keep company with my J15s.
Is the lack of new types also a symptom of the China difficulties and the 20% price hike?
Thanks Bachmann, its still a great catalogue of types (and just remember how appreciative East Anglian modellers are).
Lydney (in exile)
Further to my original post Dave Pointer's suggestion that Bachmann may have 'messed up' anouncing their forthcoming programme is interesting, as the postponement of the announcement till July probably increased our expectations. If they had been upfront and announced at that time that 2014 would be a year of consolidation expectations would not have been raised to the same extent, and whilst not necessarily popular would have gained customer credibility for honesty, rather than the 'misleading' marketing ploy used.
Alan Willesden remarks about the programme having two weathered 'Halls' in different liveries. Personally I would not waste money purchasing a weathered loco. Why don't Bachmann and Hornby follow Dapol's example - they issue 'weathered' variants of the same wagon and charge a premium.
Instead of producing a 'bespoke weathered' locomotives why not offer a wider range of models by increase the number of Pristine locos in an order by say 20% - and in Bachmann's case have the model number with a 'P' suffix - 80% Pristine; 'W' suffix - 15% Weathered; 'HW' suffix - 5% Heavily Weathered.
As well as offering a wider range of models it should reduce unit cost - and based on previous sales the percentages of each model could adjusted accordingly.
While Bachmann has, quite sensibly, not over-promised, it’s a small surprise that a Mk1 BSO, frequently asked for, isn't included in the new range. That was one item that wouldn’t have been a surprise, had it been announced. A surprise, non-surprise perhaps? Just a thought...
With the announcement of Bachmann producing a Class 90, especially Cat 32-610 in the 1990's Inter-City livery, I can just imagine all the WCML modellers of that time period and class 90 fans/collectors struggling to find Hornby Mk3 DVT's in the same Inter-City livery and MK3 loco hauled coaches to go with them in order to replicate Class 90 hauled MK3 sets with MK3 DVT's.
I wonder if Hornby will jump on that opportunity when they are finally released? Oh wait, its usually 2 to 3 years before we see them actually produced, maybe Bachmann might announce they are going to introduce MK3s for 00 by then.
I'm not likely to buy most of Bachmann's recently-announced releases, either because they don't fit my location or my period; but the most interesting of their forthcoming models is the much-unnoticed 14-ton anchor-mounted tank wagon. These look like an ideal prototype to me, a modern steam-age wagon of a type found all over the network, including in "penny numbers" for delivering fuel oil for all kinds of remote locations. Moreover, they are one of the relatively few designs of tank wagon to run on ten-foot wheelbase RCH underframes, so they should avoid one of the major problems of the genre by not being the right length. Both Esso and Shell-BP had installations at Avonmouth, so I can see a number of these useful wagons coming into stock in due course.
On a topic related to my day job, the "Sodor" in the title of the Bishop of Sodor and Man was not a single island - as Wilbert Awdry made it - but a number of them. I believe the term derives from Norse, meaning "southerly" and referred to islands around the coast of Scotland, including Man. The kings of Norway ruled these, and much of highland Scotland, at one time, eventually being defeated in battle by the Scots - not far from Kyle of Lochalsh - during the mid-thirteenth century. The present bishop visited the Talyllyn Railway during the Awdry centenary celebrations a couple of years ago, was given a footplate trip and apparently showed more than a passing interest in railways.
In reply to Rod Allcock on the matter of gauge I would remark that there has always been a 'problem' for 009. It is, of course, that 009 gauge represents a scale gauge of two feet three inches. This means, if you stick exactly to true gauge, you build Tal-y-Llyn, Corris and not much else.
The Peco, and future Heljan L&B locos and stock, as well as Bachmanns WD offering, will be running on broader gauge than the prototypes. No good looking to the WLLR, because they run on two foot six tracks, and would be slightly narrow gauge at 009..
So, its all about compromise (as, ultimately, is all railway modelling).
If I really were to go 'overboard' and build myself a Southwold engine, the distance between the wheels would, to 009 scale, be 3mm too narrow. That's 1.5mm each side of the frames. I suggest not very noticeable.
Its worse than that, of course, much worse. Bachmann, Hornby, etc all build and offer extensive 00 gauge models. These would be expected to run on rails a scale 4 foot 8.5 inches apart. In fact 00 equates to around four feet three inches and my P2, when it arrives, will be a narrow gauge Gresley Mikado.
That's about 5 inches too narrow. P4 is about 18.83mm width, compared with 00 at 16.5mm. 00 wheels are therefore about 2.3 mm too narrow. That's about 1.15mm each side - which is not much different, I would suggest to the 1.5mm that would result from running 3 foot gauge prototypes on 009 scale 2 foot 3 gauge track.
There needs to be a narrow gauge compromise and scale 2 foot 3 inches (009) is it, and rightly so.
I never cease to be delighted when I see narrow gauge layouts in magazines such as MREmag. Here, it is common to see a Ffestiniog England, or Fairlie, lined up beside ex Corris 'Edward Thomas' with perhaps a Glyn Valley loco in the background.
These layouts can be small, curves tight and imagination can run delightfully riot in their construction.
I believe that there is a whole new world of creativity opening up, an affordable and pleasurable one. Let us not be bound by 'modelling correctness' when such opportunity calls.
After all a Southwold engine (3 foot) would be dwarfed by a WHR Garrett at any gauge.
What a shame it is that we shall never see a flood of mail from those who welcome the new Bachmann narrow gauge offerings as a way to get into the hobby outside of the well-served major players preserved railway two-step.
New hobbyists are often the audience for these new products here in the USA. Model Railroader has featured many articles over the years from retiring people who’ve wanted to start a small pike. I’m guessing the draw for Talyllyn and Welshpool stock has been factored into the decision on what to make available. Building the range around a theme (WWI) is a great idea too.
Of course, there’s no denying the attraction of being able to see a prototype running so you can model it properly, but Bachmann must have done their sums on the market before they put mouse to table.
If the results are anywhere near as good as the captivating Shay they put out about ten years ago the loco should be a cracker.
As if to appease all the moaners, disappointed, grumblers and 'Nothing for me' folk Dave Jones announces a raft of locals to gladden the heart. Well done Dave perfect timing.
Well having applaud what I thought was a common sense situation in respect of Bachmann's anniversary announcement, especially in view of the glut of models still to come, I see the whole situation has gone barmy yet again.
No disrespect to Mr David Jones, of whom I have never met, but we have yet to actually see a model from his new company DJModels so cannot even comment on the standard, albeit good or bad. Now we have yet another host of new models announced by Mr Jones for release in 2016 or beyond or whenever (perhaps as Buzz Lightyear says "To Infinity ...and Beyond") . At least he did make the sensible comment of no more announcements for two years to try and get these models in the shops.
Its all gone crazy so I will just cease to make any comment; it all seems pointless....
Last week's announcement by DJModels of an R-T-R OO gauge Raven T2/Q6 0-8-0, is most welcomed by North East Region supporters, and hopefully will also provide an early heavy freight locomotive in many liveries to come. The T2/Q6 operated continuously over fifty years in service with NER/LNER/BR (Early)/BR (Late) eras, not to mention No 63395 preserved by the North Eastern Locomotive Preservation Group (NELPG), currently operating on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway (NYMR).
Freight accounted for 60 per cent of traffic for the North Eastern Railway in the 1900s, and so they introduced the eight-coupled designs, which could haul two and a half times the load of an 0-6-0 locomotive, with their greater power and adhesion. The 120-strong T2 Class entered service in 1913, and was allocated to mineral freight duties that included Tyne Dock to Pelaw Colliery (1 in 47 gradient), and the more famous run to Consett Iron & Steel Works, before the arrival of the likes of Raven's T3/Q7; Thompson's O1; and BR Standard 9F, many of which it outlasted by cessation of duties in September 1967.
Peter Herring's book "50 Famous British Locomotives", highlights the North Eastern 0-8-0 designs thus "Slowly but steadily ascending from the coast to the high hills, a thousand tons of iron ore in tow, and with full regulator and rocketing exhaust, such a scene summed up the North Eastern Railway's 0-8-0s. Strong and dependable, they were at one time our most powerful heavy haulers, They went on to be among the last pre-grouping locomotives to serve Britain's railways".
David Jones has identified one of the quintessential North Eastern locomotives for production, BUT others can also benefit that model the GE & GN Joint Railway to March & Peterborough; Great Central Cheshire lines via Woodhead to Manchester, Liverpool & Northwich; North Eastern lines to Carlisle; North British lines to Edinburgh; together with other sightings at Colwick, Lincoln, and Woodford (Yeadon's Register of LNER Locomotives Volume 23).
I wish David Jones much success with this locomotive, and also his Hudswell Clarke 0-6-0ST, which will fit in quite nicely with my North Eastern industrial scene.
Congratulations to DJModels on the first year of trading! On 23 July, Dave Jones announced a range of new models which will set many pulses racing….this is how they fared in The Wishlist Poll 2013. In 00 were:
This was the top-voted diesel loco; it missed being in the Top 50 by just four votes.
Class 71 (with option for Class 74):
The Class 71 was the top-voted electric loco with 249 votes – placing it in overall ninth position. The Class 74 was the second most voted for electric – coming in at position 30.
Yet another high poller! This came in at position 33. It was the third most popular loco in the LNER steam category coming behind the now-announced K1 and J15 but beating the Claud by a few votes.
Industrial Hudswell Clarke 0-6-0ST:
The 2014 Wishlist Poll will have an Industrial category – and this type was to be listed. To quote from Dave’s press release: “I think that, chosen correctly, the small industrials etc are an ideal way for the modeller to make small layouts, as they are full of character and are an untapped market”.
Dave will produce the Class 59, Q6 and 0-6-0ST in N as well. However, the really big one for modellers of that gauge is:
This was the top-voted GWR steam loco, coming in at overall position six. (Note for Dave: this type was the eighth most wanted GWR loco in 00.)
In 00, this brings the total of items announced from The Top 50 since the last Poll to an amazing figure of 13. Please note, though, that The Poll Team makes no claim that models are made specifically because of The Poll results – but there seems to be more than anecdotal evidence to suggest that all the makers are really listening to you.
All the best to Dave Jones and DJModels for the future.
Brian Macdermott (on behalf of The Poll Team)
Some of the latest-released Bachmann Mk1s (e.g. the weathered works train pack 39-001, comprising a BSK and a CK) have revised roofs with a ‘smooth’ profile - i.e. without the over-prominent roof ribs.
They are a long-asked for improvement and follow the smooth roofs on specialist Mk1s (e.g. TPOs).
It’s interesting that no mention is reported to have made of this at the recent Barwell gathering.
Will Bachmann introduce this to all its existing Mk1 range?
Also, I wonder if Bachmann would consider making the roofs available as spares for those who wan;t to retro-fit their early models?
In reply to Nigel Green's letter, 1E Promotionals produced 91 wagons covering mainly the South Midlands and East Anglia which were limited edition models produced for them by Dapol.
Commissions came to a gradual end when the person behind the operation became an employee of a leading model railway company. The 1E in the name confirms it was based in the Bletchley area of Milton Keynes. All those produced are long sold out and I understand that the website will be updated to reflect this in due course.
Organised by Exmoor Coast Railway Modellers
This will be held on Saturday 2nd August at The Minehead Eye, Mart Road, Minehead, Somerset, TA24:5BJ.
Opening times are: 10.00am to 4.30pm.
Admission: Adults: £3.50 // Children: £1.50 // Family: £8.00
There will be 14 high quality layouts in most of the popular scales/gauges, plus demonstrations and wide trade support. The bright, modern venue is fully disabled friendly and hot/cold food and drinks will be available all day. Parking is available right outside (Pay & Display) plus
free parking in surrounding streets.
The venue is adjacent to the West Somerset Railway station on the seafront, so the real thing can be seen and heard from the venue. If the wind is in the right direction, you can smell them too!
This is a very friendly and all are welcome.
If you happen to be in Melbourne, Australia this week,
Sunshine MRC is having its annual show August 2 and 3 at the Braybrook Secondary College Gymnasium, Burke St Braybrook.
Hours are 9:30 t0 5pm on Saturday and 9:30 till 4 Sunday.
16 layouts and the usual trade stands. Included are Eddington, Toolern Junction, Melton MRC's DCC layout, Pendletown and a number of others.
Drop by and say hello!
Join in the discussion - send an e-mail to:
In the case of e-mails published in MREmag, individual responses from the editor are not usually sent unless there is an issue to be raised or answered. Our thanks to all those who contributed their thoughts, questions and answers which develop the topics covered above. A special thanks to Pat Hammond, Brian Macdermott, and Trevor Gibbs for their regular features.
If you have suggestions for the model manufacturers to consider, or if there is anything else you would like to discuss within the British railway modelling and collecting subject base of this magazine, please send me an e-mail, giving your ‘first’ name and surname (no pseudonym please) to email@example.com Please read the Notes for Contributors and keep your postings to a reasonable limit, as well as being positive, polite and definitely not libellous.
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Event information is reported as supplied and taken in good faith. If you are planning to travel a long distance, you are advised to check the website or contact the organiser to make sure everything is going ahead.
Remember! The manufacturers are our friends - not our enemies. They read this magazine and so, when you comment on their products, you are talking directly to them. Choose your words carefully as you would with a friend.
The following Graham Farish models have left the factory in China and are on their way to the UK:
370-2014 Bachmann N Scale Anniversary Set with Jubilee Class in BRb lined green as No.45552 Silver Jubilee, 12A shed plate, 6-pin & Class 47 in BR blue livery with Union Jack as No.47164 in wooden presentation box, era 4 & 7 - rrp £239.95.
371-085 Class 25/1 in BRc green as No.D5188, 6-pin, from new tooling, era 5 - rrp £99.95.
371-086 Class 25/1 in weathered BRc green as No.D5222, 6-pin, from new tooling, era 5 - rrp £109.95.
371-087 Class 25/2 in BRe blue livery No. 25245, 6-pin, from new tooling, era 7 - rrp £99.95.
371-088 Class 25/2 in weathered BRe blue as No.25231, 6-pin, from new tooling, era 7 - rrp £109.95.
372-480 ‘Jubilee’ Class in LMS crimson lake as No.5664 Nelson, 19B shed plate, era 3 - rrp £129.95.
372-481 ‘Jubilee’ Class in weathered BRc lined green as No.45572 Eire, 69A shed plate, era 5 - rrp £139.95.
373-506B HEA hopper wagon in Coal Sector dark grey as No.361584, era 8 - rrp £10.50.
373-509 HSA hopper wagon in weathered BR Bauxite livery as No.360036, era 6/7 - rrp £11.50.
373-510 RNA nuclear flask barrier wagon Railfreight red & black livery as No.360254, era 9 - rrp £10.50.
373-775A TTA tank wagon BP green livery as No.53779, era 8 - rrp £12.50.
The following Bachmann Branchline models have left the factory in China and are on their way to the UK:
30-080 ‘Western Wanderer’ train set, comprising 57xx 0-6-0T in GWR (shirt button) as No.8700, 8-pin + GWR shunter’s truck in GWR grey No.94985 + GWR ‘Toad’ in GWR grey No.114908 (Westbury) + controller/transformer + circle of track, era 3 - rrp £99.95.
30-105 ‘The Midland Marvel’ train set, comprising ex-Midland 3F 0-6-0 in LMS livery as No.3522, 21-pin + 7-plank wagon ‘Stewarts & Lloyds’ No.6316 + 7-plank wagon ‘William Wood & Sons, Huddersfield’ No.1007 + ex-Midland brake van in LMS grey livery No.430 + controller/transformer + oval of track, era 3 - rrp £124.95.
30-170 ‘The Thames Clyde Express’ train set, comprising Midland Railway ‘Compound’ 4-4-0 No.1000 in MR livery, 21-pin + 57ft LMS 1st/3rd composite coach No.3645 + 57ft LMS 1st/3rd composite coach No.3681 + 57ft LMS brake 3rd No.5291 + controller/transformer + oval of track, era 3 - rrp £174.95.
25-2014 Bachmann 00 scale 25th Anniversary set with ‘Jubilee’ Class in BRb lined green No.45552 Silver Jubilee, 12A shed plate, 21-pin, etched metal nameplates and numbers + Class 47 in BR blue livery with Union Jack No.47164, 21-pin, both in a wooden presentation box, eras 4 & 7 - rrp £249.95.
31-430 ex-Midland Class 1F 0-6-0T No.1725 in LMS black, closed cab, 4A shed plate, 6-pin, from new tooling, era 3 - rrp £87.50.
31-431 ex-Midland Class 1F 0-6-0T No.41661 in BRb black, open cab, 20D shed plate, 6-pin, from new tooling, era 4 - rrp £87.50.
31-432 ex-Midland Class 1F 0-6-0T No.41708 in BRc black, open cab, 41E shed plate, 6-pin, era 5 - rrp £87.50.
33-902 bogie well wagon in BR departmental black livery No.DB 901021, era 5 - rrp TBA.
37-275F 27 ton steel tippler wagon in BR grey with IRON ORE branding No.B382833, era 5/6 - rrp £11.95.
37-279 27 ton steel tippler MSV wagon in BR bauxite livery No.B386309, era 7/8 - rrp £11.95.
37-280 27 ton steel tippler wagon in ‘Lancashire Steel Manufacturing’ livery, era 5/6 - rrp £11.95.
38-063A 45T GLW MEA open box wagon in BR Railfreight livery with coal sector branding No.391035, era 8 - rrp £14-95.
38-064 45T GLW MEA open box wagon in weathered EWS livery as No.391082, era 9 - rrp £15.95.
38-401A SR ‘Pill Box’ brake van in weathered BR grey as No.S55982, era 4/5 - rrp £23.95.
38-402A SR ‘Pill Box’ brake van in BR bauxite livery as No.S55581, era 4/5 - rrp £23.95.
39-001 BR Mk1 SK/CK coach (twin pack) works test train in weathered BR blue & grey as Nos. ADB977060 + ADB977057, era 7/8 - rrp £74.95.
39-052G BR Mk1 SO in BR crimson/cream as No.W3885, era 4 - rrp £32.95.
39-058 BR Mk1 SO in Network SouthEast livery as No.4945, era 8 - rrp £32.95.
39-125D BR Mk1 CK in BR blue & grey as No.16226, era 6/7 - rrp £34.95.
39-226E BR Mk1 BCK in weathered BR maroon as No.M21195, era 5 - rrp £34.95.
39-229C BR Mk1 BCK in BR(WR) chocolate/cream as No.W21020, era 5 - rrp £32.95.
39-363 BR Mk2A TSO in Network SouthEast livery as No.5293, era 6 - rrp £39.95.
39-775 LMS 50ft Inspection saloon in LMS lined crimson lake as No.45036, from new tooling, era 3 - rrp £59.95.
39-776 LMS 50ft Inspection saloon in BR maroon as No.M45020M, from new tooling, era 4/5 - rrp £59.95.
39-777 LMS 50ft Inspection saloon in BR blue/grey as No.ADM 45028, from new tooling, era 6/7 - rrp £59.95.
Here is another source of Free roofing that you might want to consider. I purchased some time ago some white metal cattle wagons that had the Venetian Blind slat provided for the roof. The only problem was that when I tried to fit the roof they where 2/3mm short.
After some thought and while I was throwing some plastic soft drink bottles in the bin, it occurred to me that these were curved and whilst not the exact curve would be able to be fitted and held with glue.
They have been in place now for a few years without any sign of bowing.
The publishers of Model Rail work on a four week cycle and so produce 13 issues per year. This extra issue is called the Summer one and this time arrives with a 32 page A5 supplement on British locomotives that served overseas during two world wars. This is a well thought-out booklet, with heaps of information and is a really useful reference work. It is one of those cases when it is worth buying the magazine if only to get the supplement.
Appropriately, in view of Bachmann’s 009 announcement, Richard Foster’s editorial is in support of modelling the less glamourous locomotives and particularly narrow gauge. Later in the magazine there is a reality article called ‘Tracks to the Trenches’, followed by another about British locomotives that served on the Western Front. Finally there is an 8-page article on the history of the ROD 2-8-0 locomotives.
As can be seen, the magazine takes as its theme the First World War and opens with a double page spread featuring LNER Class D11 Marne. This is a subject that the publisher has commissioned Bachmann to produce exclusively for them, as a 500 piece limited edition.
As usual the ‘News’ pages have pictures of forthcoming models and these include Dapol’s 7mm scale ‘Terrier’, 2mm scale ‘Grange’ and 4mm scale Class 73, with lists of the versions to be made. There is also a picture of the Kernow/DJModels LSWR Class O2 and recent releases from Bachmann which include the 1F 0-6-0T, LMS district engineers’ saloon and the N gauge Class 25/2 - all from new tooling. Also featured are Kernow’s two triple packs of clay wagons.
In the review section, Model of the Month is Heljan’s Class 26 in 4mm scale and later in the magazine there is a reality article on the Class 26. Other reviews include the Bachmann/Invictor blue MLV and NSE translator vans, a 3D printed Furness footbridge and Bachmann/Kernow weedkiller train Mk1 coaches.
Three layouts are visited this month and these are a 00 Cambrian Coast layout by Frank Collins, with inspirational trackside landscaping, Andrew Ullyott’s characterful EM gauge ‘Weston-Super-Mare’ (based on the Weston Clevedon & Portishead Railway) and 009 gauge ‘Holbeach Estates Railway’ as modelled by Stephen Sullivan. The Masterplan in this issue features an airfield and sensibly sticks to N gauge!
There is practical advice on making a street scene, creating realistic roads, improved cab-front lights on a Class 47, replicating pictorial vinyls on model diesel locomotives, modelling a green lane, building a First World War petrol rail tractor, modelling an army surplus ROD 2-8-0, how to make a mould and there is an article by Allan Downes on constructing Tudor style buildings.
For those who love a bit of nostalgia Robert Forsyth looks back at models available to us in 1964.
The magazine contains 164 pages (not including the supplement) and is priced £3.75.
The 164 pages include:
Layouts visited (4) - 29
Practical advice - 26
Reality articles (4) - 20
News & reviews - 8
Shows - 2
Nostalgia - 2
Readers’ letters & layouts - 1
In all 240 locomotives were built by Johnson for the Midland Railway, to an 1874 design, between 1878 and 1899. A large number were rebuilt from 1919 onwards, with Belpaire fireboxes. Early ones had an open cab which was later enclosed. The last was withdrawn in 1966 and No.41708 has been preserved at Barrow Hill Roundhouse.
This is a completely new model, not released until now. It has a 6-pin DCC decoder socket fitted and Bachmann are makeing both open and closed cab types. Recently released from the Kader factory in China are No.1725 in LMS black with a closed cab (31-430), No.41661 in BR black with early insignia and an open cab, as preserved (31-431) and No.41708 in BR black with late insignia and also with an open cab (31-432).
The last of these is our review model and is very finely detailed and printed. The cab interior is exquisit - a point that is particularly important on an open cab model. The bag-o-bits, that comes with the model, contains steam heat pipes and dummy couplings for the buffer beams and a fireman’s shovel. It has a 20D shed plate and, as this is an open cab example, there is a green strip representing a rolled-up cab roof extension tarpaulin to be fitted. I must also congratulate Bachmann on the standard of the instruction sheet. Although this standard of information was a longtime coming, it now meets the need, with instructions on body removal, lubrication, chip fitting and and clearly explains where the additional parts go.
The model has a lot of appeal and the open cab version, in particular, should sell well.