Tuesday, 4 March 2008

BREAKING NEWS! Dapol announces ‘OO’ Class 22

One of the last remaining gaps in the ‘OO’ BR diesel fleet is to be filled, surprisingly, by Dapol. The Welsh company has announced that the North British Type 2 B-B diesel-hydraulic will be its first all-new ‘OO’ locomotive model for many years, featuring a top-quality specification (see below).

From the outset, the models will feature all three front end variants (disc headcode with doors, original split headcode boxes, later style split headcode boxes), alternative bodyside grilles and three liveries – BR plain green, BR green with small yellow warning panel and BR blue.

Production will be limited to around 300 of each number, but in Dapol’s usual style, a ‘plethora’ of running numbers will be offered.

Price is still to be confirmed as Dapol is keenly aware that the rising cost of materials in China may well force up the final price during development.

Dapol expects to display the first pre-production models at DEMU’s ‘Showcase’ event in June.

Dapol ‘OO’ NBL Type 2 specification

N Low-friction mechanism with pin-point bearings
N 5-pole skew-wound cam motor
N Two brass flywheels
N 21-pin DCC decoder interface
N Prepared for DCC sound, with space for speaker in fuel tank
N Spoked RP25 profile wheels
N Illuminated cab and directional LED lights
N Interchangeable headcode digits
N Etched stainless windscreen wipers
N Etched fan grille with fan detail below
N Additional bufferbeam detail
N Separately-fitted steel handrails

Saturday, 1 December 2007


Voting for the Model Of The Year 2007 is now open!
Click here to go to the voting form!

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

COMING SOON: Model of the Year 2007

On December 1, the polls will open for 2007’s Model of the Year awards. After the success of the awards in 2006, Model Rail magazine and www.MREmag.com have been joined by online railway modelling forum RMweb to further widen the pool of modellers voting in this unique scheme. It is hoped this expansion will greatly increase the number of voters and make the results even more representative of UK modelling opinion.
As promised, more categories have been added to the voting form and another bumper crop of ready-to-run models has made selecting the shortlists an even more difficult decision than last year. Categories will cover the best British outline RTR locomotives and rolling stock in ‘N’, ‘OO’ and ‘O’, plus a chance to vote for your manufacturer of the year in each scale. The 2007 awards cover models released between December 1 2006 and November 30 2007. In each category a panel of Model Rail staff and contributors have shortlisted the best new models launched in the past year. You’ll be able to vote online at www.model-rail.com or via RMWeb and MREmag.com from December 1 2007 to January 10 2008. A postal voting option will also available. The full results will be published in February 2008 issue of Model Rail magazine, due out on January 31 and on participating websites from the same day. (Ben Jones)

Friday, 9 November 2007

IT’S HERE! Hornby Class 56s arrive

These pictures show the first two examples of Hornby’s all-new Class 56, which have just arrived in the Model Rail office for review. First impressions are extremely favourable – particularly with regard to the attention to detail evident between the Romanian-built BR blue 56013 and Doncaster-built Railfreight ‘red stripe’ 56049.

Highlights include;

N Batch specific details on Romanian and Doncaster-built locomotives, such as round or oval buffers, different cabside window, bufferbeam and headlight arrangements

N All-wheel drive and pick-up

N Two powered roof fans

N Directional LED lighting

N Opening cab doors

N Very fine, separately-fitted details and optional extra detailing parts

N Fine etched metal roof and bodyside grilles

N ‘DCC Ready’ and ‘DCC Fitted’ options

A full review of both models will be published in Christmas issue of Model Rail magazine, on sale from December 1 at the Warley National Model Railway Exhibition, being held at the NEC in Birmingham.

Monday, 5 November 2007

FIRST PICTURE: ModelZone’s Bachmann ‘Jubilee’

Modelzone’s next ‘OO’ gauge Limited Edition release, produced by Bachmann, is BR green ‘Jubilee’ 4-6-0 No. 45637 Windward Islands, due out in December or January, Price is £104.99 and the model will be available at all ModelZone stores and by mail order from 0208 688 6519.

BREAKING NEWS: Ixion joins British ‘N’ market

The rapidly growing British ‘N’ Gauge market has received another boost with news of another manufacturer entering the fray. Ixion – a company formed by three railway modelling enthusiasts in Australia and the UK – has unveiled plans to release up to four new models of British-outline locomotives over the next two years.The models will be constructed to 1:148 scale British ‘N’ gauge, and will be of “main line British locos” though so far the exact identity of any of the planned models has not been revealed. Those behind Ixion are noted Australian modellers Phil Badger and Lindsay O’Reilly, and British enthusiast Chris Klein.Mr Klein told Model Rail: “To produce a new model in the way we’re planning to, you need three things: capital, ideas and, frankly, a lot of guts.”He added: “The money for this has been raised by the three of us in our own ways, and we have no connection with any of the established manufacturers. We’ve also got some radical ideas for new features that we don’t think have been tried before in ‘N’ gauge models.”Ixion says it will reveal technical specifications (but not the identity) of the first model at Warley and the models will be “at least on a par” with US or Japanese products manufactured by companies such as Kato.The prototype chosen as Ixion’s first model is a closely guarded secret. Enthusiasts have been told not to read anything into the company’s name (Ixion is the name of a preserved Class 46 diesel) nor into the fact that two of the three men behind the new firm are Australian – the models are said to be of “British prototypes that were not exported.”The company says it will only reveal exact details once CAD drawings have been signed off – probably in January – and is aiming to have the first model on sale at next September’s ‘N’ Gauge Show at Leamington.The planned price is expected to be “in the same area” as existing mass market models, but Ixion will not give an exact figure.Over the longer term, Chris Klein said, “with sufficient sales, we plan to release a new British ‘N’ gauge locomotive model roughly every six months for the first two to three years. “We also have some interesting and radical ideas for other model railway related items, not locomotives, though again such developments are dependent on modellers supporting our programme of releases.” Discover more at: http://ixionmodels.com/

Friday, 26 October 2007

Bachmann unveils prototype Deltic for NRM

Bachmann has unveiled the first ‘OO’ gauge ready-to-run model of the legendary English Electric prototype Deltic. The model (catalogue number 32-535) has been developed exclusively for sale through the National Railway Museum in York and will go on sale in December.
An initial run of 500 Special Limited Edition commemorative sets will be offered by the NRM shop, followed by a standard run of 2,500 models in January. It is hoped the colourful locomotive will be the first of a series of limited edition models based on well-known engines from the national collection.
The 3,300hp prototype Deltic was the most powerful diesel locomotive in the world when completed in 1955. Its success in trials on the London Midland and Eastern Regions led to an order for 22 production Deltic (later Class 55) locomotives, which helped to eliminate steam on East Coast Main Line express passenger work and ushered in the era of 100mph travel.
Graham Hubbard, Managing Director of Bachmann Europe Plc said: “This project proved challenging. The works drawings no longer existed so we had to use laser-scanning equipment for the first time. A special gantry also had to be erected at Shildon to enable the scanner to pass over the whole length of the locomotive but the results proved well worth it.”
Each sale will support the NRM in its vital work in preserving Britain’s railway heritage, and providing public access to the national collections.
Andrew Scott, Director of the NRM said: “The prototype Deltic locomotive has always been a popular exhibit in our museums and through our joint project with Bachmann, we are now able to provide for the first time a top quality model of this unique and very striking locomotive. We are delighted with the end product and thank Bachmann Europe for bringing it to fruition. We’re very much looking forward to seeing new limited edition models in the years to come.”