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Dunluce Castle

London toy fair (hornby)

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My first model train was a clockwork 0-4-0 tin plate set on a circle of track. Hornby-Dublo freight below was my first 00 gauge model train set.

DSC_6856.jpg

 

My favourite of all time was the BR/exGWR "Cardiff Castle" set

original.jpg

 

I stopped buying Hornby gear about 20 years ago and switched to Bachmann, BUT I do have a nostalgic and very fond affinity for Hornby and hope they turn the business around.

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Knocking the Bachmann Irish Railway Set.

 

Well it was that very 'Set' that rekindled my interest in railway modelling. I purchased a set on eBay around ten or eleven years ago. It met my needs. Running my wee railway reminded me of the CIE stand at the RDS. It reminded me of the hours spent watching model trains in Brown Thomas prior to Christmas. It reminded me of the days I spent at Liffey Junction, Sydney Parade and the RDS sidings at Lansdowne Road. Most of all it provided me with a Ready to Run Railway with a locomotive and coaches that represented my memories of the very early days of CIE.

 

Thank you Bachmann for that. Thank you for being responsible for my continuing support and interest in modelling.

 

I have two sizeable railways, Old Blarney and the railway in my home. I have a sizeable collection of stock from; Paddy Murphy, Provincial Wagons, kits from SSM, locomotives built for me by Colm Flanagan, rolling stock from Raymond Kayne for my three Enterprise Sets, and others too, thank you Ray. I supported MIR and other cottage industries both here in the UK and my native Ireland.

 

Had it not been for that purchase, I may never have come back to Railway Modelling.

 

That first Model Railway Set, no matter how small, or incorrect to ours, may be the spark that kindles the fire to this hobby!

 

May I politely suggest, that we, the exhibitors, modellers and commentators, should be cautious of the way we comment on items that are of little interest to us now that we have progressed. Progressed to a standard that we are happy with and want to improve upon.

 

Please do not, repeat, do not, belittle those who have lesser skills than you. Encourage those that show an interest in further progression.

 

I often feel we, the custodians of our hobby, are not particularly welcoming to those with lesser knowledge of our hobby. Too often, I have witnessed an unknowledgeable but enthusiastic individual being snubbed by the person he or she addressed at an Exhibition.

 

Be proud of your knowledge, but also remember, there is always another person with greater knowledge than you, and with superior manners too!

 

DJW.

 

Hear, hear, well said Sir! Always encourage, promote and respect our great hobby by your words and actions. We are a minority sport which needs careful nurturing lest it die away...

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It's a shame, My first set was a Hornby 'industrial' the little tank would whizz around the track like a mad yoke... Hornby has still some good stuff, their 'super detail stuff isn't bad, but they still have tooling from the airfix era, and some of their buildings are hideous. They will probably be bought up, at some stage....

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I had a clockwork Hornby tinplate set in the early 70's but it was the classic Hornby Irish freight with the 0-4-0 bought in Dunnes Stores in 1981 for the princely sum of £20 that started it all off properly for me.

 

Many the happy hour spent pouring over the catalogues (the only way to see the product range pre internet kiddies).

Roll onto 2006 and MIR's kits got me right back deep into the hobby.

 

The biggest issue I see is that computer games are a behemoth that traditional boys' toys just cannot compete with, and more's the pity. Continual high end stimulation as versus the almost zen like pleasure and commitment required to make kits and use your imagination rather than relying on 1080pixel HD rendering.

Edited by Weshty

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We used to move almost every year - so, I never had any trains as a kid.

 

The first railway thing I bought for myself was a Murphy 141, when I went to get stuff for a BR layout that I had been roped into building. I didn't even know such niche objects existed...

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I think Old Blarney's comments above are absolutely spot on. All have different levels of skills, different interests - some based on absolute accuracy and some based on what to all intents and purposes is a fantasy - a piece of art we create or admire ourselves.

 

I've always felt that the overall tenor here is supportive to all. We can all exchange views here in a fun and informal, but informative way. There is much very valuable information here, but entertainment as well. Long may it continue.

 

At exhibitions, though, I've seen what Old Blarney mentions.

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I think Old Blarney's comments above are absolutely spot on. All have different levels of skills, different interests - some based on absolute accuracy and some based on what to all intents and purposes is a fantasy - a piece of art we create or admire ourselves.

 

I've always felt that the overall tenor here is supportive to all. We can all exchange views here in a fun and informal, but informative way. There is much very valuable information here, but entertainment as well. Long may it continue.

 

At exhibitions, though, I've seen what Old Blarney mentions.

 

JHB171achill and Old Blarney IMHO are spot on. My first train set was a 3car blue pullman set which I still have and works, it too came from Santa when I was eight, at the age of 16 my interest in Irish railways grew and I butchered and ruined some items in my attempt to make something Irish, then if you wanted Irish Railways you had to make them yourself. Thanks to the manufacturing of RTR items and kits, making it a bit easier now. TDR

Edited by The Derry Road

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The biggest issue I see is that computer games are a behemoth that traditional boys' toys just cannot compete with, and more's the pity. Continual high end stimulation as versus the almost zen like pleasure and commitment required to make kits and use your imagination rather than relying on 1080pixel HD rendering.

 

Curiously, those fantasy paint and assemble yourself Warhammer things are quite popular. Rather ugly brutes but I suppose they are your modern day equivalent of lead soldiers. I see the stores have areas where kids can come in and do their own work on tables provided, quite a good idea.

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Curiously, those fantasy paint and assemble yourself Warhammer things are quite popular. Rather ugly brutes but I suppose they are your modern day equivalent of lead soldiers. I see the stores have areas where kids can come in and do their own work on tables provided, quite a good idea.

 

There's a shop like that near me, very hard to find, in a yard down a back-alley, but it's been there for twenty two years now and ticks along nicely (I presume).

 

https://www.facebook.com/Too-Fat-Goblinz-173030496092045/?hc_location=ufi

 

He deals in comics, as well, which seems to attract a group that has a big overlap with the wargamers.

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JHB171achill and Old Blarney IMHO are spot on. My first train set was a 3car blue pullman set which I still have and works, it too came from Santa when I was eight, at the age of 16 my interest in Irish railways grew and I butchered and ruined some items in my attempt to make something Irish, then if you wanted Irish Railways you had to make them yourself. Thanks to the manufacturing of RTR items and kits, making it a bit easier now. TDR

 

Hear hear.

 

The only constant is change.

 

PS: Youngsters today are getting extra experiences from LCD panels in all shapes and sizes, but loosing out in tactile interchange, dexterity and imagination skills triggered by physically playing with wooden blocks, meccano, lego, toy soldiers, airfix, drawing, painting, etc. Perhaps not better not worse just different.

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Hear hear.

 

The only constant is change.

 

PS: Youngsters today are getting extra experiences from LCD panels in all shapes and sizes, but loosing out in tactile interchange, dexterity and imagination skills triggered by physically playing with wooden blocks, meccano, lego, toy soldiers, airfix, drawing, painting, etc. Perhaps not better not worse just different.

 

Ah now Noel, lego is the most popular it's ever been, and while I would agree that kids spend too much time infront of the telly and not enough running around outside I do think the media hype a lot of it up. I had both computer consoles (ah the SNES, them were the days) and train sets growing up. they were all played with and all still in my possession and work as well as a trusty football. I have young cousins between 6 and 13 and while they all play playstations and wii's all the boys play with hornby trainsets and they all have a shedload of lego. On top of that none of their interests are down to my influence.

 

Plenty of kids still play with traditional toys, you only have to look in the like of toymaster for that. Train sets were the buzz toy of one generation and while the next generation moved onto something else they are still a part of most toy boxes today and plenty of lego bricks are the scourge of a parents foot across the land.

 

I think one of Hornby's many problems (and I feel it's many) is the current prices. A new hornby class 60 is 220 notes in Marks without DCC sound. I really want one in the subsector livery but I just cant justify paying that amount at the moment as I have other financial priorities. If it was a niche model like the Murphy's stuff I could probably talk myself round, but not at the volume Hornby produce. I was buying them for €110 with three wagons thrown in not that long ago.

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Times change - going in a car, or, even more so, a train, used to be a 'special' thing, now it's nothing, if not actually a chore.

 

Fiddling with things in general used to be necessary, if you wanted them to work - now, I know people that don't even know how to open the bonnet on their car.

 

If we had been offered the option of a train set or a helicopter that you could learn to fly in a couple of minutes...?

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Personally , compared to mid seventies, when I first started serious railway modelling, I think the hobby is in rude health. There's a plethora of niche manufacturers doing great work , one only has to look at the range available to Irish modellers to be astounded, we have two strong Finescale societies, multiple magazines, including specialist ones, parts suppliers, and all accessible via the Internet. Who'd have thought 30 yeas ago , I'd be ordering bits from Australa !

 

The hobby doesn't need hornby any more that's the reality, small specialist companies are doing beautiful work ( like the class 25) at not much more then higher end hornby.

 

As for kids, model train sets were always expensive, and esoteric, at my primary school , no other kid in the parish had one for example. ( my first was an hornby Hymek )

 

If one looks at the hobby , we have progressed more and more into an adult , more Finescale orientated hobby, with prices to boot. I don't see that as a drawback , merely a change of market dynamics.

 

To suggest that " modern image "( I hate that term) isn't attracting interest. Is to ignore the current buoyant uk railway scene. Loads of freight with big thundering diesels etc , multiple liveries , new freight rolling stock etc. Railway modelling moves with the epochs of the ages of the modeller , I see far less pre-grouping modelling now then in the pages of the " Constructor" in the early-mid seventies.

I agree, that followers of Irish railways are left with virtually nothing to model these days. I don't see rail car dominated layouts generating much inspiration.

 

Hornby may or may not survive and I wish them well, but they are not central to the hobby anymore. ( which is part of their problem I think )

 

Railway modelling has gone through peaks and valleys before and will into the future. I don't worry about its survival

Edited by Junctionmad

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To suggest that " modern image "( I hate that term) isn't attracting interest. Is to ignore the current buoyant uk railway scene. Loads of freight with big thundering diesels etc , multiple liveries , new freight rolling stock etc. Railway modelling moves with the epochs of the ages of the modeller , I see far less pre-grouping modelling now then in the pages of the " Constructor" in the early-mid seventies.

I agree, that followers of Irish railways are left with virtually nothing to model these days. I don't see rail car dominated layouts generating much inspiration.

 

 

Maybe a case of people modelling what they remember nostalgically, all those who modelled pre Grouping in the 70s are by and large no longer with us and the Big Four era is slipping out of living memory.

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JM, I wonder how many on this forum now, never had a toy train set at some stage growing up?

 

I suspect few. Yes current hobbyists have it good, therefore the hobby is doing ok right now, but if half decent toy train sets disappear from the market, and fewer youngsters get that first exposure to model trains hurtling around their bedroom floor the long term future for the hobby may not be as bright - the supply of hobbyists diminishes, market constricts, prices rise, market constricts further, etc. Todays modellers are little boys who grew up, but less kids now = less grown up modellers in the future. It does seem to be sunset industry but the sun probably won't ever fully set, leaving a small thriving hobby of specialists and higher prices.

 

30 years ago most major high streets in the UK had a really good model train shop or toy shop that had a decent Hornby railways section, but most seem to have closed. It's not so long ago Dublin had many more than just one decent model railway shop. I remember three that had fabulous layouts in store!

 

We are lucky here in Ireland that the hobby got a major lifeline from Murphy Models and the supporting cast of small symbiant suppliers that supply Irish RTR stock, kits and accessories. I do hope Hornby return to profitability and have fond memories of the introduction they gave me to this hobby when they had different shareholders and were called Hornby-Dublo.

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JM, I wonder how many on this forum now, never had a toy train set at some stage growing up?

 

As stated above, I didn't - in fact, I was well gone 50 when I got my first 'real' railway model - I had had a Lone Star die-cast set (or parts thereof), but that barely counts, I think. Few of the other military kids had one either, for the same logistical reasons.

 

Living in England for most of the '60s, I don't actually remember more than one of the civilian kids having one - and his father was a solicitor. It was seen as a "posh kids" toy, I think, certainly in my circles.

 

And houses were that bloody cold that, for six months of the year, you only really had the one habitable room.

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The 2016 Handbook is poor sale and did not sell well but Hornby is decide to bringing back catalogue next year (2017).

 

This image is A5 2016 catalogue, May be free or about £3.00

 

DSCF3212.jpg

 

I note the R1199 The Platinum Digital train set with TTS Sound (F.scot and Mallard). Nothing on Hornby website, Rails, Hattons site.

 

 

DSCF3213.jpg

Edited by steventrain

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I don't actually remember more than one of the civilian kids having one - and his father was a solicitor. It was seen as a "posh kids" toy, I think, certainly in my circles.

 

And houses were that bloody cold that, for six months of the year, you only really had the one habitable room.

 

Too true. Even in the 70's, how many of us had a Scalextric, or anything beyond the smaller Hornby/Lima layouts. They were not cheap.

 

And cold...there was a reason everyone watched the telly together, and it wasn't familial bonding alone...

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I note the R1199 The Platinum Digital train set with TTS Sound (F.scot and Mallard). Nothing on Hornby website, Rails, Hattons site.

 

 

DSCF3213.jpg

Is there any price indication in the catalogue of the new train sets? I'm sure it would cost a LOT. Thanks for the pics, interesting indeed.

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....And cold...there was a reason everyone watched the telly together, and it wasn't familial bonding alone...

 

My parents took me across to Mullingar in 1988 to meet the family of one of their tenants. My memory is of being told why the excellence of Ireland's education system was so closely linked to emigration, and also noticing that the family used one end of a dishcloth to dry dishes, and the other end to wipe their hands with. I can't remember accepting a cup of tea.... :eek:

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Too true. Even in the 70's, how many of us had a Scalextric, or anything beyond the smaller Hornby/Lima layouts. They were not cheap.

 

And cold...there was a reason everyone watched the telly together, and it wasn't familial bonding alone...

 

Cold Brrr.......... we lived in a classical Dublin 1930s 3 bed semi, my grandmother loved the fresh air with all the windows wide open even on a winters day, kept warm by the kitchen fire, paraffin and later Super-Ser bottle gas heaters in the living room and hall, only installed central heating when we had two wages in the house when I started working in the late 70s.

 

Although a grandfather had was a GSR driver the railways were seen as a thing of the past and CIE a dirty word in our family, with my parents never using rail after experiences of cold, dirty trains breaking down on journeys to family funerals and weddings in the West.

 

Maybe my interest in model railways was a form of rebellion and something my parents hoped I would grow out of when after months of negotiations I selected my first proper train set a Triang-Hornby "South African Goods" at the age of 12 or 13. It took an other year of saving up to buy a second hand Trix E2 locomotive and a Triang CKD coach, a point and some extra track.

 

As a kid what inspired me to model railways was the trains in the Triang-Hornby and Trix catalogues and later in model railway magazines as railways had little or no relevance in many parts of Dublin and were very much out of sight out of mind.

 

I suppose the lesson is that a small percentage of children will go against the norm and develop an interest in model trains, or become a dweeb or geek, than take up athletics or team sport.

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My own early layout experiences mirror Mayners, with a Tri-ang* oval of coarse looking "super 4" track, a battery powered controller, an outline 0.4.0T "Polly", an open wagon, closed van and brake van. That was it. I was fascinated!

 

However, with jhb171senior a railway employee, thankfully railways weren't quite as dirty a word in household conversation!

 

13th and 14th birthdays saw the arrival of two BR Mk 1s and class 31 diesel. I bought another second hand from my school friend's older brother for ten shillings. A lot of money (50p). But a new one was £3 - out of the question.

 

 

(* Now there's a once very common name now long gone. Will the Hornby name go the same way or survive as an online virtual train app?)

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I think my first set was a little hornby clockwork 0-4-0 with 2 plastic wagons. Loved it. The set which had me hooked for life came from santa and is pictured below. It must have been mid to late 1980's. I'm almost certain they were 80pounds in the local toymaster, which must have been expensive. I had a few lima/mehano sets as they were always more affordable than hornby.

attachment.jpg

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[ATTACH=CONFIG]22812[/ATTACH]

 

 

Wow, that photo brings back some memories. My Gran had the exact same heater in the back section of her pharmacy. There was a lovely smell off burning paraffin...haven't thought of that in years.

 

And yes, £80 in the mid 80's is an easy €240 today.

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Too right. and if you got a Raleigh Chopper be happy in the knowledge that you'd buy a moped cheaper today (€650)

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Think they're banned now. No wonder the old folk years ago were all bronchitis with those things and open fires and bad chimneys.

 

Of course smoking 40 untipped Woodbine a day probably didn't help.....

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Of course smoking 40 untipped Woodbine a day probably didn't help.....

 

Gauloises / Gitanes were more lethal.

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Wow, that photo brings back some memories. My Gran had the exact same heater in the back section of her pharmacy. There was a lovely smell off burning paraffin...haven't thought of that in years.

In the winter of '63, that was virtually all we had - we had to really ration the coal, in case no more ever arrived before the summer. No electricity and the water supply was frozen. The only water supply for weeks was melted snow - I can still taste the paraffin in it now.

 

We had an electric cooker as well, or rather, we didn't - so all the cooking was done on the Aladdin, too

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You youngsters.

 

I was in the hallway of our home, The Hill, Palmerstown, when WWII ended. I still had the cork in the barrel of my gum. I was waiting to shoot that man Hitler. Cold, try the winter of 1947! I remember the frost patterns inside the windows and scraping the frost off the window so I could look outside. I remember travelling on the 6,7 or 8 Tram to my Grandparents home on Sydney Parade. Golly, I was mightily upset when the trams ceased running. I remember "Six Wheel Coaches" as standard on the Coast Line, the Drumms without their batteries, 850, the introduction of the Bolton and our Capetown Buses. Oh, at the back of my mind, I remember seeing abandoned tramcars, their trolley-poles in the air at Donnybrook Depot.

 

Now, I cannot remember what I did yesterday, let alone whether, or not, I completed my works expenses this afternoon! Ah! I have just remembered their is a Model Railway Exhibition in Glasgow, looking forward to our invasion of Scotland, and our opportunity to meet one-and other over a few pints.

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You youngsters.

 

I was in the hallway of our home, The Hill, Palmerstown, when WWII ended. I still had the cork in the barrel of my gum. I was waiting to shoot that man Hitler. Cold, try the winter of 1947! I remember the frost patterns inside the windows and scraping the frost off the window so I could look outside. I remember travelling on the 6,7 or 8 Tram to my Grandparents home on Sydney Parade. Golly, I was mightily upset when the trams ceased running. I remember "Six Wheel Coaches" as standard on the Coast Line, the Drumms without their batteries, 850, the introduction of the Bolton and our Capetown Buses. Oh, at the back of my mind, I remember seeing abandoned tramcars, their trolley-poles in the air at Donnybrook Depot.

 

Now, I cannot remember what I did yesterday, let alone whether, or not, I completed my works expenses this afternoon! Ah! I have just remembered their is a Model Railway Exhibition in Glasgow, looking forward to our invasion of Scotland, and our opportunity to meet one-and other over a few pints.

 

Quite possibly the only worthy post, to a thread I can't believe is still "alive". Is anyone doing any modelling, and not the figure type. I've met a few of ye....

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Quite possibly the only worthy post, to a thread I can't believe is still "alive". Is anyone doing any modelling, and not the figure type. I've met a few of ye....

 

We are not amused, and for the record I am awaiting a kit of a little 0-6-0, as for the rest of em..

To keep you on your feet, I'm going to make sure you do ALL the buildings for layout no.2, which will come about in a few years...

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