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SSM B101 Sulzer - a personal review

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Flying Scotsman 4472
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Regarding the new release of the SSM B101 Sulzer and my feelings on the kit. So here are some photos to show you guys what I think about it.

 

 

 

Here you can see the grills on the side. The mouldings are very bad compared to the likes of a Silver fox kit

 

125.jpg

 

 

 

 

Cab roof profile is all wrong and windows are badly moulded

 

127.jpg

 

 

 

 

Right hand side of the roof is higher than the left

 

128.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rain strip is crooked and is different on all 4 sides of cabs

 

131.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Roof detail is crooked and very badly shaped there is also a sever lack of detail on the moulding and some panels are not square and are narrower on one end

 

136.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In the black is an old Q Kits B101 Sulzer at over 20 years old just to show you the difference in the roofs.I've also highlighted the exhaust on the Q kits which is not on the SSM kit

 

141.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New rain strips fitted but as you can see the grills are really starting to show how bad the moulding is. There is still a lot more work to do on getting the cab and roof profile right.

 

154.jpg

135.jpg

130.jpg

124.jpg

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Edited by Anthony
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That said Anthony - your last photo actually looks quite well :):P

 

Over 2 days spent on the kit to get it to that stage Stephen and still a lot more hours to spend on it but you can really see in that photo how bad the side of the moulding really is. If the kit was a 30euro model I wouldn't have a problem with it as you get what you pay for but I just can't justify the high price tag on this kit as the quality just ain't there to back up the high price.

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Over 2 days spent on the kit to get it to that stage Stephen and still a lot more hours to spend on it but you can really see in that photo how bad the side of the moulding really is. If the kit was a 30euro model I wouldn't have a problem with it as you get what you pay for but I just can't justify the high price tag on this kit as the quality just ain't there to back up the high price.

 

Some results mind you, she's starting to look like a Sulzer. Are you going to do anything about those side grills? I think they let it down.

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Lads,

 

The bottom line is that it's not 100%, but in fairness to SSM, they have tried to provide a kit that was not available and unlikely to be made available by anyone else again. It has its bad points yes and I have spoken to Des at length about the shortcomings. I am sure Des is reading these comments and will duly reply. Anyway attached are two photos of the Louvre Grills after priming. Some are OK and some are not, but if they are dirty and weathered maybe they won't be as bad. On the real thing I'm sure some of them would have got damaged over time. I am not taking any sides here, just trying to get on with what I've got and make the best of it. Anthony, I would be interested to see if there is any alternative grills available, or suitable material to place behind an opening.

 

grills 1.png

Grills 2.png

 

 

Ger.

Grills 2.png

Edited by ger711
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Lads,

 

The bottom line is that it's not 100%, but in fairness to SSM, they have tried to provide a kit that was not available and unlikely to be made available by anyone else again. It has its bad points yes and I have spoken to Des at length about the shortcomings. I am sure Des is reading these comments and will duly reply. Anyway attached are two photos of the Louvre Grills after priming. Some are OK and some are not, but if they are dirty and weathered maybe they won't be as bad. On the real thing I'm sure some of them would have got damaged over time. I am not taking any sides here, just trying to get on with what I've got and make the best of it. Anthony, I would be interested to see if there is any alternative grills available, or suitable material to place behind an opening.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]5612[/ATTACH]

[ATTACH=CONFIG]5614[/ATTACH]

 

 

Ger.

 

I wonder could they be etched out with a sharp blade to give them more depth?

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Can you do better????? Did you actually buy a kit??? I would have thought that expressing your opinions to Des might be a more appropriate route, rather than slating the kit on a public forum. Who knows it might have been a bad batch.

 

 

I have 5 of them sitting on the workbench Seamus and they are all the same. Any other members that I've spoke to have said their's are the same also. As for slating the kit we are discussing the kit which we are entitled to do as with any model after all this is a model train forum is it not. Are you saying if something is bad we are not allowed to talk about it and sweep it under the carpet and as a group we are only allowed to talk about the good things. If this was a Bachmann/Hornby model etc etc there would be nothing said about as you say slating it but because its a local supplier you seem to think nothing should be said about the bad quality of the model.

Edited by Anthony
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I have 5 of them sitting on the workbench Seamus and they are all the same. Any other members that I've spoke to have said their's are the same also. As for slating the kit we are discussing the kit which we are entitled to do as with any model after all this is a model train forum is it not. Are you saying if something is bad we are not allowed to talk about it and sweep it under the carpet and as a group we are only allowed to talk about the good things. If this was a Bachmann/Hornby model etc etc there would be nothing said about as you say slating it but because its a local supplier you seem to think nothing should be said about the bad quality of the model.

 

 

Anything but Anthony-I have always defended any members right to their opinion, but respectfully I think your comments across two threads borders on libelous. You are quite prepared to accept your fee (which you are entitled to do) for building these models, which according to your posts you obviously think are rubbish. If they are so bad, why build them??? Would you not be better to tell your customers about the short comings and give them the opportunity to take the matter up with SSM? At least then Des would have the opportunity to resolve the matter with his customers, rather than one man's opinion being foisted on all and sundry on a public forum. As I have already asked-"Can you do better"???

Personally I have spoken to Des (who as anyone who has met him will attest to) is a very approachable guy, about the short comings of this model, and without speaking for him, I believe he took these comments on-board. I feel that your comments were not constructive criticism, but rather a an ill thought out reaction. As I said can you do better?? If you can I for one would certainally support your efforts, as I do Des's or any other local supplier/manufacturer.

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Seamus I have made all my customers aware of the short comings regarding the kit and they have all instructed me to continue with the builds. As I've stated this is a discussion on the model and its faults and nothing else. Sorry if you have taken it up the wrong way.

 

Anthony, I haven't taken it "up" any way,I just thought your comments over two threads were over the top. Certainally no offence taken my me.

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Guest hidden-agenda

I also have the kit and like others i have looked at pictures and the plans and the same faults are staring at me as every one else who has one and after paying 100 euro for this kit i did expect some thing better. Most faults can be put right but the side vents i have no cure that come,s to mind except to replace each one individually.The brass chassis i intend to try and get to work as i notice most are opting to use the Hornby as i love a challenge this should provide proof any thing can work if you spend time thinking about it. I dont know what the end result will be when i finish but this will be probably the only kit i will get until i have it done and dusted to my liking.

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First things first, I'm a customer of SSM, but not of this particular kit - I have been very pleased with the items that I have received from SSM.

 

I count Anthony as a friend.

 

Those things being noted....

 

I cannot disagree with anything that Anthony has said about this Sulzer kit in this thread.

 

Here are my observations and annotations from the photos provided in this thread.

 

Grilles

 

sidegrille2.jpg

 

This should not have got out to a customer, if it is a QC problem, it should have stopped at the supplier, not at the customer -you cannot make an ex works engine from this start point, short of cutting out the grille panels and making your own.

 

 

The Ends

 

fullfront1rev.jpg

 

From the verticals and the cross lines, you can see the roof is differing in height left to right, also it is of differing profiles between 1 and 2. There's a 'bulge from the top of the edge of the right hand window that extends down the bodyside. Do the windows' spacing look correct between the left hand edge and the right hand edge of the bodyshell? Ditto the lights.

 

 

The Roof

 

complete1rev.jpg

 

The roof detailing does not align with the sides, but is diagonal across. Really the only way to save the roof, both profile and detail, would be to sand it down and start again with your own detailing. Check out Anthony's pics in the first post in this thread for more evidence of this. Imagine having a white line alone the top of the bodyshell edge similar to a black and tan livery, your eye wanders from the catwalks to the white line and back again - difficult to miss the issue now isn't it.

 

The above issues, to me, are inconsistent with a 100eur kit. These issues need rectifying. We should not lower our expectations because we model the Irish scene, neither should we be expected to. The days of the Hornby Hymek should be behind us.

 

-Rob

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Well said Rob-Clear and to the point! Its a pity that Anthonys comments in regard to this model on enniscorthymans workbench have been deleted since morning and indeed the title of this particular thread changed. That said I'm sure SSM will take all constructive criticisms on board as indeed should any manufacturer, supplier, retailer or service provider.

 

Seamus

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Guest hidden-agenda

Well put Robert and rest assured if it was Anthony who was the supplier he would be black and blue from being jumped on.

It will be interesting to see if the supplier make,s a response to the constructive criticism made in relation to the body.

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I know it would be a lot of work but could the grilles be replaced using the sides of plastic CD cases. I have used them before to represent the vents on a Mk1 GSV van and they look quite good. Hope ye find a solution in some form :)

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I know it would be a lot of work but could the grilles be replaced using the sides of plastic CD cases. I have used them before to represent the vents on a Mk1 GSV van and they look quite good. Hope ye find a solution in some form :)

 

What an ingenious idea, width wise they look very close. It would mean cutting out the 10 vents and replacing them with the CD ribbed sections, one to think about!

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As an altogether different solution to this issue longer-term, I was wondering aloud to myself earlier on...

 

Would it be better/possible to supply the resin body with NO roof detail, but have that detail then built up with various wrappings and layers of etched brass material, in a sort of halfway house to an etched brass kit? Give the purchaser a map of the roof and accurate measurements as to which bit goes where.

 

Why do I suggest that?

 

We generally look down on our railways, so any roof faults tend to be more than obvious - so as a matter of priority, the roof needs looking at first, the rest is less pressing rather than unimportant. If an etched remedial action was to be undertaken, sanding the roof would need to be done, and I would suggest a roof profile (a jig if you will) could be made available to enable the left->right profile to be addressed through accurate sanding.

 

The grilles would be tricky to make an etching for because the grilles on the real loco appear to have been fitted from behind the body panel, rather than bolted to the front - though from the suggestion a few posts up, would you believe I've just been through my entire CD and CD-ROM collection? There's quite a variation in the finesse of some of those potential grilles there! :D

 

The lights, I suspect could be rescued by a little careful razor sawing from below, and then be repositioned.

 

The front windows, could be remedied, possibly by filing, filling, and sawing - but I suspect that that would almost certainly be beyond my capabilities.

 

I make these suggestions to both the supplier re: the roof, and the owners re: everything else, to enable the kits in circulation to be brought up to expectation.

 

I say again, that I have been happy with SSM gear in the past, and, if he's still speaking to me(!) I will be again in the future, all things being well.

 

-Rob

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I've just finished doing one grill and it looks so much better. The one I did was the next grill on the right to yours Ger and found the resin quite brittle, the top of the window pillar cracked but can be repaired with superglue. It just made the filling more difficult. Well done Barl for your suggestion.

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I'm just wondering did Anthony contact ssm about the problem when he first got the Model as someone who works for himself and deals with suppliers all he had to do was say sorry I am returning the models as they are not up to standard and tell his clients that there is an issue with quality control.Its funny all of a sudden everyone is finding faults pity it was not dealt with in house.I for one did not like the post there was no need for it and all Des seems to do is his best.Des keep up the good work and the rest of ye remember its nothing that can't be fixed

unlike my school friend that is being buried tomorrow 52

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Was I wrong in raising my findings?

 

I'd say not. Bringing it out into the public domain has brought more minds to bear upon the problem, and for solutions to be presented - like Barl's CD case louvres idea (simple but effective!) - Ger went away and followed the idea, and posted a pic to show convincing it looked.

 

Hopefully further remedies will present in the future.

 

-Rob

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I rarely post on the site but I'm an avivd reader (which is probably what 80% of the membership are on this forum after all).

The carry-on in-relation to this thread has encouraged me to comment however.

 

I have ordered a few bits and pieces from Des over the years and always found him to be a straight up nice guy who is very open to feed back. In fairness, he got up off his arse and took a risk, like all entrepreneurs.

 

Ok there are problems with the kit but these are all fixable - its not life or death lads...... I have to agree with Train model on this, thought the tone of the original post was over the top, as they say in football terms - 'very much studs up' in tone. Yes - of course raise the issue but for god sake keep it in perspective.

 

Jasus, we really need Dave Bracken to come in here on this one and take ye all down to earth with a bang with a good one aul fashioned one liner.

I'm hoping that you just don't realise it but your coming across like a pack of aul ones - wingin and cryin. Where's the administrators on this forum to bring a bit a cop on to the discussion.....

 

Cheers

GM071

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