Posted tagged ‘Opinion’

Dishing the dirt

October 10, 2014

I have a confession to make. Usually when I am weathering my locos and stock I go for a “generic” look. While you get over that shock, I should perhaps explain that I don’t go for the “general grot” often used by the RTR manufactures (but which is now seemingly being consigned to history). I will, of course, get a collection of photos of what ever type of vehicle it is that I’m working on. So, my class 50 is in the deplorable filthy oily state that was typical of them in their early years on the Western Region. I have removed the “D” from the number as is correct for 402, and the front jumper cables are in their dark grey (now thought to be unpainted casting) state. But I cannot say that 402 was ever in the oily state that I have modelled it, but I hope that it is typical of its type, and so it may have looked like that at one point.

There is a fine line, I suppose, between “right” and “wrong”. Take my two tone green class 47 for example. (more…)


…the cupboard was bare…

September 7, 2014

Times, they are a changing! In recent years we’ve been used to plenty of models to buy. There was seemingly an endless supply of whatever we wanted. OK, not quite everything, but the shelves in the shops were feeling the strain. And it wasn’t just locos, coaches and wagons aplenty, oh no, there were new ranges of “ready to plant” buildings, and road vehicles in big enough quantities to model the M25 with ease. These were definitely the good times, although little did we know it at the time.

Stocked to the roof

Stock, stacked right to the roof


On the up

May 3, 2014

This may come as startling news, but  I have it on good authority that the end of the world as we know it  is nigh! It must be true, I read it on a model railway forum.

Earlier this week Bachmann took the brave move of advising the model press (and RMWeb forum) of the economic realities of producing toy trains, and thus broke the news that, on average, the prices of new product would be 20% higher than of now. They have yet to release details on a model by model basis, but it is suggested that something like a simple wagon may rise by more than the average because a locomotive is already an item of higher value and therefore carrying its share of the costs.

And predictably this news has led to those “in the know” announcing the end of the world as we know it. (more…)

Oh no, not a bus on the bridge!

March 22, 2014

It seems to have become an unacceptable cliché to some people to have a bus on a bridge on a model railway. I’m not sure why this should be so, but for some people it is a far worse offence than using OO gauge track, and that in itself is a sin which will preclude you from entering the model railway “elite”.

Bus under a bridge

A bus going under a bridge, that must be OK

My first exhibition layout had a low relief bus depot along the rear of one baseboard, so it was perfectly reasonable to model a couple of bus stops on the road bridge, and have a bus or two at the stop, supposedly waiting during a crew change. The buses were  correct to period, correctly liveried for the area and had the route blind details and registrations changed as appropriate. A more recent layout has a suitable bridge, and the intention is to provide a suitable bus upon it, mainly to hide the “corner in the sky”. I’ve yet to complete the required bus kit (it’s a white metal one where the parts don’t fit together too well), but again it will be correct to period and area, and indeed rather a “signature” type which, for the Omnibologist, will specifically plant the layout in time and location.

But am I wrong to use the bus like this? It seems that it is acceptable (more…)

Winds of change

November 24, 2013

With the Warley model railway show on this weekend attracting much froth and interest in most model railway quarters it seems a good time to have a look at the model railway world as it appears to me, sitting here in 1970’s Westonmouth. 

I detect the hint of a ‘wind of change’ within the model railway world. Barely a breeze yet, more a narrowing of isobars on the weather forecast chart, but I think the signs are there. The whole industry is struggling with not only the recession, but also with limited production capacity in China. Yet we have seen an amazingly diverse range of new models enter the shops in recent years. OK, I know there are still some big gaps, GWR ‘company era’ coaching stock perhaps, and existing models are infrequently produced and so hard to find, Bachmann Turbos as examples, but the weird and wonderful range of items now available is mind-boggling.

Sure people still moan, but perhaps they are too close to it all. I’d suggest the are missing the whole picture. (more…)

We’ve never had it so good

November 23, 2013

With the Warley model railway show on this weekend attracting much froth and interest in most model railway quarters it seems a good time to have a look at the model railway world as it appears to me, sitting here in 1970’s Westonmouth. 

Some of us are old enough to remember the time when ready-to-run ranges were extremely limited. Sure, the Airfix 14xx auto-tank and 61xx Prairie were much welcomed, along with the auto-trailer (which is actually generic rather than a particular diagram) and B-set but there was little else. Then Mainline joined the scene and added a few more locos and some Collett coaches, but many wagons were still generic, the same moulding painted up in GW, LMS, NE, SR or private owner livery.

Then, Lima really got serious and flooded the market with diesel models, generally very finely tooled, even if some of the shapes were a bit, shall we say, impressionistic. But it was the ready availability of these diesels, along with a growing interest in the then current scene which saw me put my steam models in store (they’re still there) and switch to diesel modelling. (more…)

More than just toy trains

July 23, 2013

Ah, thought that’d get you looking! ‘Toy trains’ indeed.

I have a friend how is an art teacher at a special needs school, and she recently posted this thought provoking list on her facebook page.

Art is...

This list is indeed true (more…)