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2 minutes ago, murphaph said:

For an 800 Class I'd buy it just to put on display to be honest! 

It's good to get Fran's realistic feedback about the short to medium term viability of Irish steam etc.

I'm still genuinely optimistic that the market itself will grow over the coming years and attract further returnees like myself. 

hence why 800 class is the only non RPSI loco that could be considered as they are in a class of there own. (As unlikely as it is, maybe she will steam again). We have 2 beutiful new deisals locos either just released or about too to suffice for the time being!

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3 minutes ago, murphaph said:

For an 800 Class I'd buy it just to put on display to be honest! 

It's good to get Fran's realistic feedback about the short to medium term viability of Irish steam etc.

I'm still genuinely optimistic that the market itself will grow over the coming years and attract further returnees like myself. 

 

 

Thanks for that @murphaph. I'm glad you see it as me not being negative. I just want to add some realistic balance to the debate and give you all another point of view. I dont want to dash dreams at the end of the day, but it's just giving out another aspect of the debate. 

I also agree about the market growing. It certainly has since we started IRM, and we will continue to push hard to grow it further. Steam could well be a component of that!

Cheers,

Fran

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Looking at what IRM has said and others have said steam may be a difficult one for sales .

However if a steam loco was done it needs to be a well known seen one as said before no 4 gives options for the UK version so may help that one push ahead. Personally i would love to see 461 or 85 .

In relation to numbers I am not sure how it works out with economics for irm but im certain people would pay extra for a proper built Irish loco the OO works U classes and J15 classes showed that .

I purchased 2 J15 locos at 295 pounds sterling each so would not  have a qualm about paying the same for a proper rtr IRM loco and I am certain theres others would do similar . can a more limited run be done for a slightly higher price than current diesel locos

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Hey Fran, I do not think anybody see's you as being negative, you are the guys who take a commercial risk, which with the best of market research is a bit of a wet finger in the wind process. And if the products do not sell then Irish Railway Models departs the market place. So please keep bringing out high quality models which shake up the market place and improve the status of our hobby. I for one would buy steam but would buy anything which fitted into that grey/green era, my chosen field.

  Meanwhile out with the saw and lets hack(make!) an Irish steam loco from something!

    :trains:      Mike

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Even though I prefer modern image, as in today, I would definitely buy several versions of an Irish steam loco if released.

I reckon that to make it fiancially viable, as others have said, a variety of liveries would need to be available, including a preserved livery.

Have any of the preserved locos had different liveries while in preservation? If so, and if represented by the model, you'd appeal to those modelling different modern era decades, as well as those modelling steam era.

From a sales point of view, with the A almost upon us, and several more bullets threatened by the IRM lads, maybe, in general, people couldn't afford to invest in steam for a while.

If there were two or three different laminates available in say, a years time (I'm sure this was discussed at length by @jhb171achill in a thread on the scarcity of coaching stock), each in a couple of liveries, to compliment steam, the A's and more modern era layouts, that would probably bolster sales of a steam loco in two years time.

A loco without rolling stock or rolling stock without a loco will probably suffer from slightly depressed sales.

Laminates would present an ideal bridge between the A and a steam loco, if the runs were big enough.

Either way, it's an amazing step to take.

I'll pick up several of the GWR Manors just to support the lads, and hope to one day see an Irish steam loco.

For now, my Irish steam collection is quite limited.

😆

 

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2021-02-02 12.27.07.jpg

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13 hours ago, Warbonnet said:

Would everyone buy an Irish steam locomotive though? The hobby seems to have focused on diesels and I was told by a couple of traders that the Bachmann moguls were a tough sell when they came out... 

In furtherance to this, I actually remember the black ones being available in Marks into the mid 2000s (and I think they came out 2000?). They must have been there a good 3/4 years before selling out.

That said, I'd love a J15 or K2, but with there only being 2 of the latter I appreciate that mightn't be a runner... 😉

Anyway, my layout-to-be will be set in a corner of the multiverse were a Woolwich was saved and runs with preserved coaching stock.

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1 minute ago, DJ Dangerous said:

Even though I prefer modern image, as in today, I would definitely buy several versions of an Irish steam loco if released.

I reckon that to make it fiancially viable, as others have said, a variety of liveries would need to be available, including a preserved livery.

Have any of the preserved locos had different liveries while in preservation? If so, and if represented by the model, you'd appeal to those modelling different modern era decades, as well as those modelling steam era.

From a sales point of view, with the A almost upon us, and several more bullets threatened by the IRM lads, maybe, in general, people couldn't afford to invest in steam for a while.

If there were two or three different laminates available in say, a years time (I'm sure this was discussed at length by @jhb171achill in a thread on the scarcity of coaching stock), each in a couple of liveries, to compliment steam, the A's and more modern era layouts, that would probably bolster sales of a steam loco in two years time.

A loco without rolling stock or rolling stock without a loco will probably suffer from slightly depressed sales.

Laminates would present an ideal bridge between the A and a steam loco, if the runs were big enough.

Either way, it's an amazing step to take.

I'll pick up several of the GWR Manors just to support the lads, and hope to one day see an Irish steam loco.

For now, my Irish steam collection is quite limited.

😆

 

2021-02-02 12.26.47.jpg

2021-02-02 12.27.07.jpg

I think the C class and the Aec railcars will need to be released to cement the justification the coaching stock of that era. (And aec railcars offer GNR stuff which would be apericiated as limited edition🙃) then a steam loco could feasibly be produced....i think I'm not an expert.....and what i just said would take years of long term development and its a business at the end of the day and demand is the only way to supply especially in our market

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22 minutes ago, Mike 84C said:

Hey Fran, I do not think anybody see's you as being negative, you are the guys who take a commercial risk, which with the best of market research is a bit of a wet finger in the wind process. And if the products do not sell then Irish Railway Models departs the market place. So please keep bringing out high quality models which shake up the market place and improve the status of our hobby. I for one would buy steam but would buy anything which fitted into that grey/green era, my chosen field.

  Meanwhile out with the saw and lets hack(make!) an Irish steam loco from something!

    :trains:      Mike

Indeed.

And they have to consider what happens if they bleed us all dry and we starve to death.

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7 minutes ago, Westcorkrailway said:

I think the C class and the Aec railcars will need to be released to cement the justification the coaching stock of that era. (And aec railcars offer GNR stuff which would be apericiated as limited edition🙃) then a steam loco could feasibly be produced....i think I'm not an expert.....and what i just said would take years of long term development and its a business at the end of the day and demand is the only way to supply especially in our market

The Laminates covered steam and diesel eras, right up until the nineties, so would probably be sufficient as a bridge without the prior need for more locos and railcars...

And would probably pave the way for the C being an even quicker seller when it comes out...

In 2025!

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4 hours ago, Warbonnet said:

Hi everyone,

Well it seems my question sparked some debate!

@murphaphas we found with our work on the Accurascale manor, easy conversion to finescale standards on RTR steam is next to impossible, due to valve gear, pistons and the placing of splashers. So, unless it's a simple O-6-0 without splashers, conversion to 21mm would be next to impossible. Kits will serve better there. 

Sorry that you are disappointed but I gave a reason beside my question. The last mass produced steam locomotive (Bachmann/Murphy Woolwich mogul) was reported to be a slow seller by a couple of retailers I talked to. It was a good model, offered serval liveries too. 

Correct JB, variety of liveries and/or icon status certainly helps. The J15 with OO Works did sell out, but their minimum production run number is a fraction of what ours is, so cannot really be compared I'm afraid. 

You could see it as that way, or is it segmenting an already tiny market to a point that it would not be viable? We all like our steam, and would love to make a steam locomotive, but we would need the whole market (namely diesel modellers) to buy it too, and more than one at that, for it to be viable.

That's not to say we are ruling out steam, we absolutely are not. But, just thought I would throw some commercial points of view out there and gauge what the real interest is. If the interest is there then of course we will make it, but it is a gamble for anyone!

Thanks,

Fran 

RTR rolling stock is an issue for anyone looking towards earlier periods, RTR laminates, Park Royals etc. One only has to look towards the interest here at hattons genesis stock to see that even semi prototypical rolling stock for steam has demand. Things that overlap with the early years of the A's are ideal, would make the likes of the silver and green liveried A's even more attractive. That is not to detract from the many excellent brass kits for coaches and indeed overlays, but RTR simply opens up an era for far more modellers. 

Mogul was somewhat before my time, but my two cents would be it was just a clean repaint of the N class. By the time the liveries were given the Woolwiches they had a different look from their british brothers across the sea. Lack of the inchicore smokebox and smokebox doors, wheels etc which were all fitted by the 30s meant that it didn't have the "irish" look, you could probably buy a regular mogul for less and convert. From a manufacturing point of view it was practical surely, had the design, just repaint it but it's not an original purpose built Irish locomotive, I think that makes a big difference. 

J15, smaller numbers yes, batch built so price was steep, nonetheless they, the U and UGs are all gone. Thing about the 00 works J15 is it was one of the roundtop boiler locos, aka one of the rarer ones, especially by the late 50s/early 60s but nonetheless sold out. I understand the production run is obviously entirely different, but I think the fact all three recently released irish steamers have sold out in spite of the steep cost is nonetheless, at the very least a good sign of a healthy hunger for irish steam.

If you want to go with something the majority of your market will buy it'll probably have to be something famous and preserved. Now speaking with massive, massive bias I'd say the 800s would be a good bet. Probably the most famous locomotives in Ireland, preserved , eye catching liveries, not a whole lot of variation between them and the possibility of attracting a few foreign buyers too. However, that said, Maeabh hasn't been in steam since the 60s, there were only 3 locomotives of the class built which means there are simpler fewer to buy. I do think it's one of the best for an RTR steam loco regardless, would feel like the obvious start for irish steam.

However I'd also be looking towards RPSI locomotives, V and S class both have preserved examples, there are multiple locomotives, the beautiful sky blue livery.  461 is another, totally unique although the drawbacks would be only two built, one preserved. She is a movie star though 😛

J15s are an obvious one, two preserved, staple of irish steam with multiple variations to go for. They'd have been my go to for RTR recommendation if they hadn't already been done, but a few weathered ones with belpaire fireboxes and the larger smokeboxes would be perfect for any layout from late 40s through to early 60s.  What does a typhoon class submarine and a J15 have in common...

To summarise, overlap. late 50s/early 60s market is there with the A's and 121s. Add rolling stock and I think steam would be the natural progression after that. Personally I'd be looking towards the 800s or J15s if something like laminates or park royals get brought out, which is itself speculation but "creeping back in time" so you always have an overlap would open up the road for steam, while keeping the risk down. 

I'm sure many would be in favour of the more obscure locomotives, along with a 21 mm gauge RTR steam loco but ultimately it does have to be a viable venture.

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4 hours ago, Warbonnet said:

I dont think so JB, we can count on one hand the amount of people who have 21mm'ed our existing output. We would have to order 1000 units like that. A 21mm modeller would have to buy the loco, possibly throw the innards away and use an etched chassis kit like they do in the UK. And even then the splasher issue comes into play (some locos avoid this, but are there many without splashers?)

Fair enough - makes sense!

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2 hours ago, Barl said:

Maybe IRM could reintroduce the smoke effects on steam models like they used to have years ago! 

Ye have me drooling uncontrollably now......... wouldn't be without precedent though (the smoke OR the drooling!). This time last year I was in the midst of sorting out the Fry models for the Malahide Museum (20 mins walk from where I'm sitting now), and your comment prompts me to recall that Cyril Fry invented the idea of dropping a drip of oil into the chimney of a model loco, with smoke drifting out as a result. he sold the idea to Hornby and got a decent little sum for it, and the rest is history......

 

2 hours ago, Westcorkrailway said:

Commercially it makes sense to do some of the diesels first seeing as diesel men dominate the irish market. It is a business at the end of the day and evidently there are people against the idea as per lack of rolling stock and not fitting layouts. (Shame because i think an A class will be arriving at ballinhassig soon which only happened twice ever!) 

Very true indeed - but it makes me think of one final point - even NOW there is virtually nothing available to authentically run behind "A" class locos in silver or green or 121s in grey! When these were bumbling about the network in those liveries, there was nothing at all in black'n'tan, and almost all trains had at least some older wooden coaches including six-wheelers. Without exception, ALL passenger trains in those times needed a tin van for a passenger train, unless it was to be run run without either heat or light.

Yet, these are commercially successful.

The moral of THIS story may well be that once people have these on their layouts, a commercially viable market for tin vans, laminates and Park Royals will manifest itself. Let's hope so.

We do, of course, in the meantime, have the Silverfox models to fill the gaps with, some of which are available in green.

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6 hours ago, Warbonnet said:

Sorry that you are disappointed but I gave a reason beside my question. The last mass produced steam locomotive (Bachmann/Murphy Woolwich mogul) was reported to be a slow seller by a couple of retailers I talked to. It was a good model, offered serval liveries too. 

Hi Fran, I expressed disappointment because your question implied that a steam locomotive is not even on the horizon.  From the point of committing to produce one to delivery realistically  takes three years and it's clear that are further out than that.

I think the market has changed radically from what it was 20 years and comparing the sales of the Murphy/Bachmann Mogul back then with the current almost immediate sell out of anything Irish is not fair. (incidentally I have four of these locos). And they had the disadvantage that suitable rolling stock for them to pull didn't exist 

If the interest is in modeling Irish railways, and all that is on offer is diesels then diesels will sell, but it shouldn't be assumed the focus is that narrow. There was crossover period  when Diesels and Steam occupied the rails together. We have diesels in liveries that have no suitable RTR rolling stock for them to pull that fit in the crossover period.  To my mind there is a very big gap. As has been noted on this forum the most interesting period for Irish railways is probably late '50's to early '70's. 

Would you consider producing a train set (steam loco and appropriate coaches) that might broaden the appeal for a loco and the rolling stock? Remember Bachmann did exactly that with the Mogul on the US market. 

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A train set - steam locomotive + wooden bogie + laminate + 6-wheel third + tin van, now there’s a thought! 

I do realise, before the IRM guys are imbibing their smelling salts, that we’ve a very long way to go before such a thing is commercially viable, but who can say never?

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9 minutes ago, jhb171achill said:

A train set - steam locomotive + wooden bogie + laminate + 6-wheel third + tin van, now there’s a thought! 

I do realise, before the IRM guys are imbibing their smelling salts, that we’ve a very long way to go before such a thing is commercially viable, but who can say never?

i actually bought 2 of those sets in from the us  may not be perfect but at least is was more realistic than the hornby steam sets we had before and it could be the way to get the kids into modelling think of the rpsi main market children who will grow up loving steam trains and some might even want one to run on a layout

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Ids say what we should be getting modeled in the next 15 years is green stuff whether that be flying snail from the 60s or Iranroid eireann stuff from 2006-now. We already have the murphy models grey 121 and the A class on the way. The intercity 201 and the 2800 DMU from chris dier are from the current era. Both can be expanded upon

The C class and the laminates had long working lives and have a lot of era's under there belt which is an advantage to them being produced. (I would wait for a post laminate world to then experiment with steam)

As for the new stuff as previously suggested the full mark 4 set for the intercity 201 would be gorgeous and new enough for whippersnappers like myself to get them. ICR as a train set getting younger modelers (while a steam loco train set would be....godly!, train sets are for people starting out hence ICR's suit nicely)

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I think the Baccy one was a slow seller as it was a predominately UK modelling railway Scene in Ireland when it came out plus I think the N was not really something the Joe Soapers would click with.

Heck I did not even look at any Irish stuff until I saw the MIR 141 kit. A lot of folk not going to shows would of never heard that you can make the Rolling stock. Before the Web you would only hear of shows after they happend plus Dublin was a trek back then up the ol road

I'd Reckon there would be an fairly hefty uptake of say, J15 or 461  say in splendid green, The box , A Boiler shaped drum it comes in, The Mk2 RPSI and cravens are out there already for it to pull. Even is the UK there is some fairly obscure low runs coming out these days.

I thought the OO works  J15 was  a tad too high price for what it was,  A wee Bit Clunky but it sold out which was great but mostly I had hoped the IRM lads would get the slide rule out on that loco for a later release.,

I expect over the water lads would perk up toowith the possibility of Irish steam locos to buy given the shift to pre grouping locos like the Stirling Single etc there is always the clamour that something that bit different.

I'll draw the line at the Orange Diesels and possibly and orange 2600 but after that its too modern for me as my rose tinted glasses go out for focus then.

If it ain't gonna happen then I am the richer for it adn wont lose any sleep but I expect some more mobile sheds yet to come. We will C.

 

 

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18 hours ago, Warbonnet said:

Would everyone buy an Irish steam locomotive though? The hobby seems to have focused on diesels and I was told by a couple of traders that the Bachmann moguls were a tough sell when they came out... 

I'll be up front, Irish steam (or any steam for that matter) is something I'm just not interested in so I would'nt be buying one. I try to support IRM, and to a lesser extent Accurascail, as much as possible. But I can't see myslef buying something I won't run. There is far too much other good products to spend my hard=earned on.

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16 hours ago, Westcorkrailway said:

hornby-class-101-holden-tank-engine_360_aabfcfeef284811ce35e628c3c681151.jpg.efe51949420635e7087bf8b11970e926.jpg

Anyone remember this little thing. Good toy but not a good model, keep in mind this is on the list of 4-ish current RTR Irish steam models ever...even today it looks bizzare

 

My very first Train set -1 year saving up after which we went the whole way up to Dublin after Christmas ( on the train!) to purchase in British Home Stores back in 1970 something.................memories!

I'm another of the returnees to the hobby after decades away so am playing catch up - my preferred era would the 1950 to 1980 - the age of the snail and the roundel. So really its end of the steam era and the early to mid -peak diesel era - from the J15 to the 071 class ................so lots and lots of variety in there.

I understand that Im still in a distinct but growing minority in this era - its a real real pity we don't have a serious heritage railway line down here in the Free State for the RPSI and other preservation societies to show off their locos to entertain kids and dads in their droves and then sell them replica toy train sets of same in the gift shop on the way out...............

The IRM guys have a fairly good idea what is going to sell and what isn't .............and also ,more importantly, what is going to return their investment back into cash to fund further adventures in a timely fashion....lessons from the Plough I'm sure have been learned. I think the issue with doing an Irish Steam loco is how long they are prepared to wait to get their investment back...............regardless of the model - it will be longer than for a Diesel and some of the modern rolling stock.....I'd love to be proved wrong - but thats the way I see it for the moment.....as it is Accurascale makes IRM possible........

I have purchased a couple of the 00 Works J15s  and  I've over half a dozen of the A's of most of the early liveries on order so you can take it that I'd be in the market for multiples of any possible J15 run - particularly the later era variations with the high tenders etc etc.....( Im not a rivet counter but I know what I like!) ........and I'd pay similar or more to the 00 works prices for what I would expect to be a superior model......no disrespect to 00 works implied

The 800 Class would be a luxury for me.....my interest is more on the quieter lines and mixed goods and country stations.............I'd still get one or two to support the cause and throw up in the display case..............ditto any of the other steam locos 

At this moment in time - I know the guys have a good idea of their customer base and what buttons to push - they know that I'd sell the wife and dog to a Moldovian Circus Troupe, rent the house to the Cosa Nostra and move in permanently underneath my layout if that's what it took to raise the finance for a complete CIE Steam loco collection from 1959...........actually 8 141s - 4 in B&T and 4 in Supertrain - would do it really!

We're all a little bit mad I think.................

 

My two cents

BTW - the Manor Class looks fantastic.......God's Wonderful Railway was always my favourite of the UK Big Four.............I might yet be tempted!

 

 

 

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 As soon as I started reading this, the first thing that came to mind was the almost impossible conversion from 16.5 to 21mm gauge. Diesels are fairly easy, but as others have said, with steam outline there is too much stuff to change.

 However, given the rapid growth of 7mm scale ready to run, is there a market for an Irish prototype in 36.75mm gauge? Probably only a handful of us working in this scale at the moment, but when you look at how well things like Terriers, 08s, 14XX, Jinties and several industrial locos have been selling, it seems clear there is a market based on those who have always fancied moving to a larger scale. Note too, these are all small locos, so you can build an interesting layout in not much more space than needed for an 00 one. Costs are very reasonable too -  less than £200 in some cases, which is significantly less than a 00 J15.

 While I wouldn't necessarily advocate using British outline wagons, they are certainly easy to regauge - simply requiring wheels to be moved out to 34mm back to back. Track? Nothing too challenging, especially when Marcway will do custom made points for not much more than Peco. Yes, that is still expensive, but at least you can get away with needing only a few on a small layout.

  My votes would be for a J26, a G class Deutz and  a C class diesel. You could build a very nice layout around any of all of these and have a lot of fun operating them too.

 Warning - 7mm scale can be very addictive, but is it any wonder?

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5 hours ago, David Holman said:

 As soon as I started reading this, the first thing that came to mind was the almost impossible conversion from 16.5 to 21mm gauge. Diesels are fairly easy, but as others have said, with steam outline there is too much stuff to change.

 However, given the rapid growth of 7mm scale ready to run, is there a market for an Irish prototype in 36.75mm gauge? Probably only a handful of us working in this scale at the moment, but when you look at how well things like Terriers, 08s, 14XX, Jinties and several industrial locos have been selling, it seems clear there is a market based on those who have always fancied moving to a larger scale. Note too, these are all small locos, so you can build an interesting layout in not much more space than needed for an 00 one. Costs are very reasonable too -  less than £200 in some cases, which is significantly less than a 00 J15.

 While I wouldn't necessarily advocate using British outline wagons, they are certainly easy to regauge - simply requiring wheels to be moved out to 34mm back to back. Track? Nothing too challenging, especially when Marcway will do custom made points for not much more than Peco. Yes, that is still expensive, but at least you can get away with needing only a few on a small layout.

  My votes would be for a J26, a G class Deutz and  a C class diesel. You could build a very nice layout around any of all of these and have a lot of fun operating them too.

 Warning - 7mm scale can be very addictive, but is it any wonder?

As you say, a small layout for “0” is very adequate. I was literally just sitting doodling a potential small layout based on Fintona - all that would be needed is one steam locomotive and half a dozen trucks. Add a small turntable and a small railbus replaces the horse....

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On 3/2/2021 at 2:14 AM, David Holman said:

[snip]  However, given the rapid growth of 7mm scale ready to run, is there a market for an Irish prototype in 36.75mm gauge? Probably only a handful of us working in this scale at the moment, but when you look at how well things like Terriers, 08s, 14XX, Jinties and several industrial locos have been selling, it seems clear there is a market based on those who have always fancied moving to a larger scale. Note too, these are all small locos, so you can build an interesting layout in not much more space than needed for an 00 one. Costs are very reasonable too -  less than £200 in some cases, which is significantly less than a 00 J15.

My votes would be for a J26, a G class Deutz and  a C class diesel. You could build a very nice layout around any of all of these and have a lot of fun operating them too.

 Warning - 7mm scale can be very addictive, but is it any wonder?

I'd definitely buy two 7mm J26 models in 36.75 gauge.   

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On 3/2/2021 at 9:05 AM, Edo said:

 

M

On 3/2/2021 at 9:14 PM, David Holman said:

 

 Warning - 7mm scale can be very addictive, but is it any wonder?

BTW - the Manor Class looks fantastic.......God's Wonderful Railway was always my favourite of the UK Big Four.............I might yet be tempted!

 

 

 

Whatever about 7mm Gauge 1/ Large Scale Live steam is extremely addictive and expensive🤣

My first thoughts were that the boys had teamed up with  https://www.accucraftestore.com/g1-aster-5mt when I first heard the phrase Accurascale Steam.

Strangely enough Accucraft/Aster haven't any GWR locos in their current catalogue although Accucraft UK have announced a live steam GWR Mogul and a Cavan & Leitrim 4-4-0T as their first Irish loco.

 

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16 minutes ago, Mayner said:

Whatever about 7mm Gauge 1/ Large Scale Live steam is extremely addictive and expensive🤣

My first thoughts were that the boys had teamed up with  https://www.accucraftestore.com/g1-aster-5mt when I first heard the phrase Accurascale Steam.

Strangely enough Accucraft/Aster haven't any GWR locos in their current catalogue although Accucraft UK have announced a live steam GWR Mogul and a Cavan & Leitrim 4-4-0T as their first Irish loco.

 

 

How about a live-diesel 141 or 071? I'd much rather either of those!

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11 hours ago, DJ Dangerous said:

 

How about a live-diesel 141 or 071? I'd much rather either of those!

It has been done as miniature engineering projects but they don't sound anything like full sized diesel locos

 

 

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Something to do with physics of sound, coupled with Doppler effect, I understand. My brother models live steam in 16mm scale and it needs enhanced with a kind of echo chamber over the blast pipe  to sound like anything convincing enough. Mind you, the 5” gauge GT3 may give a small clue what the real thing may have sounded like...and the Leader...

.

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On 2/2/2021 at 2:07 PM, GSR 800 said:

Mogul was somewhat before my time, but my two cents would be it was just a clean repaint of the N class.

Apologies for late attendance to this thread and for repeating anything that has already been stated in respect of the subject.

I still recall receiving a Bachman 'Mogul' in 2000, seeing the photograph on the front of the box and thinking, "Wow! The first ever proper 'Irish' model locomotive." I then opened it, examined the model and immediately realized "It's just a Southern 'N' class painted in CIE livery." I felt very disappointed given the cost. The smoke box door was the immediate giveaway. That said, it was a well intended gift and while currently modelling the UTA/NIR 1960's scene around Lisburn, I have always intended to run this locomotive with the poetic licence that it was the first RPSI engine. My model of No. 171 as built by Ivor Hughes is so pristine in finish that it can only be regarded as being in the RPSI role. I have an 'OO' works 'U' class that again is in pristine GNR livery and looks too good to daub in black as it would have been in the 1960's. Running alongside these excellent professionally produced models, all my 'hacked' and badly painted efforts look like shite.  

Where I am going with this? Okay, so obtain 'look alike' 1960's stock, I have for years struggled to adapt 'donors' of British Railways outline locomotives, hack them, repaint them, etc. and yet they are still not wholly accurate. While this hacking process was something I was prepared to spend the time on 20 years ago (it was even sometimes fun), things have changed now I have run through the aged 65 barrier. I personally feel time is no longer on my side, so buying something accurate 'out of the box' becomes more desirable as I get older. The mortgage is paid off so I now have more disposable income than I had 20 years ago. Facing a bill of £300 to £350 for a genuine Irish model is no longer the issue it would have been 20 years ago. Evenings spent hacking Airfix LMS carriages into something 'Irish Looking' are gone now. With the slight loss of digital dexterity that comes with age, I now turn to Silverfox who can provide much better models than I could have ever produced in the first place. 

What I am trying to say is that as the age demographic of our illustrious circle increases, I think so will the market for 'off the shelf' proper models. If for example a RTR 'WT' was produced next week, I could offset the cost of one by selling the pair of Hornby 2-6-4T 'Fowlers' I have sitting on the ramps awaiting 'surgery'. Please IRM, think of me and others as 'charity cases' (I can arrange a plug on Comic Relief) and do a 'WT' first........... Oh, just realized, high bunk or low bunk, now that would be the question? Na, forget the idea. Keep doing what you what you do best!

P.S. It's okay, I have ordered an 'A'. 

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1 hour ago, Lambeg man said:

...............20 years ago, things have changed now......... I personally feel time is no longer on my side, so buying something accurate 'out of the box' becomes more desirable as I get older. ................. With the slight loss of digital dexterity that comes with age, I now turn to Silverfox who can provide much better models than I could have ever produced in the first place. 

 

I am ABSOLUTELY with you there, Lambeg Man! And I am one with an "underlying condition".............

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