A British domestic train from Kato? 800 series available from May 2021

Started by woodbury22uk, February 09, 2019, 10:39:55 AM

Previous topic - Next topic

0 Members and 2 Guests are viewing this topic.

Bealman

Regardless, it IS exciting news. Being a closet 009 fan, I think the FR news is particularly so.

Back in the nineties, I was always rabbiting on about how great it would be if Kato brought out a Blue Pullman!!

A Kato Eurostar has hurtled along the Castle Eden branch, by the way.
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

gc4946

A Festiniog Fairlie (don't know which version was to be produced) was once considered by Roco about a decade ago but dropped because of the steep price tag (about £200)
"I believe in positive, timely solutions, not vague, future promises"

Invicta Alec

Genuine question guys. One I don't know the answer to.

Question: Why all the great debate about Kato's N gauge class 800 in regards to exactly what scale it will be produced at?

I just Googled the dimensions of the prototype and worked out that a coach in 1:148 will be 175.6mm long, making it a gnat's over 2mm longer than a model made to 1:150 scale. It'll also be 0.2mm wider. Not a great concern surely?
(I can appreciate that a 1:160 scale model would be perceptibly smaller than a 1:148).

Alec.
You can't beat a nice drop of Southern.




.

railsquid

Hah, actually I must confess not knowing much about either prototype and have been blithely assuming the Class 800 is a variant of this with modifications for the UK:

http://www.katomodels.com/product/n/885kei_sonic

but while it looks similar, it is far from identical, so I'd guess they'd need new tooling anyway, which would make 1:148 a possibiilty.

But that's as much as I know.

The Japanese equivalent of TINGS is coming up in August (well actually it's scale-agnostic, but N gauge dominates of course), I'll see if I can wrangle any information from the Kato stand.

Bealman

If I'd known that, I'd have timed my trip last year for August!

No I wouldn't, it was dictated by bargain basement airfares  :D

I must admit I'm finding this discussion interesting, sorta like an N gauge soap opera - can't wait to see the outcome!  ;D
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

railsquid

I must admit I never anticipated the N scale world would have so much drama and emotion ;)

The event I mean is more of a sales event, in general you tend not to get so many exhibition layouts in the way you do in the UK, alas, and the ones you do see get quite familiar after a while.


jthjth

Someone I know who is in direct contact with Mr Kato by email. Mr Kato confirmed last night that the class 800 will be to 1:148 scale.

Regards

Julian Thornhill

njee20

Quote from: Invicta Alec on July 27, 2019, 11:30:35 PM
Question: Why all the great debate about Kato's N gauge class 800 in regards to exactly what scale it will be produced at?

I just Googled the dimensions of the prototype and worked out that a coach in 1:148 will be 175.6mm long, making it a gnat's over 2mm longer than a model made to 1:150 scale. It'll also be 0.2mm wider. Not a great concern surely?
(I can appreciate that a 1:160 scale model would be perceptibly smaller than a 1:148).

You're right it's subtle, and I suspect many people wouldn't notice (if they weren't told) it was 1:150, but it's nearly an inch different over a 9-car train, and I think you'd be surprised at how perceptible small differences can sometimes be. Aside from that, it's 'wrong', and some people will be put off by that fact alone. Still, sounds like it might be moot, which is good.

Graham

Great news, from my reading of this thread it would appear we will have to be patient, just like we were for the Pendos and look how that turned out. I see a lot of Kato stock at our local club and it always runs faultlessly. Just wish it was easy to DCC the Eurostars, so I could run them at the club.

njee20

Its not that bad using the Digitrax drop-in decoders. The worst part is getting the body to fit afterwards.

I'd assume that like the Lemke TGVs they'll make these with decoder (and maybe even speaker) sockets, again a case of knowing the market, where DCC proliferates. 

Bingley Hall

#70
Thanks for the laughs people, but the days of the British Empire finished long ago.

Telling Kato how to run their business - absolute gold :P

njee20

I don't see anyone doing that? Kato have a history of releasing models with no real DCC compatibility (even current ones like the RhB Allegra), which would seem to be a mistake for the UK market. Merely hypothesising that it would make sense for them to cater for the market they intend to enter, rather than a presumed "we'll do what we always do" on scale and specification, which arguably they'd do have a bit of a habit of.

It makes for interesting discussion, and I'm excited to watch this unfold, even though I'm not actually that interested in the model!

Bingley Hall


Ben A

#73
Hello all,

Having had a chance to reflect, this looks to be a huge opportunity for the British N Gauge market.

Kato is arguably the world's premier N gauge model railway manufacturer, and that they have identified the British market as one for development seems, to me, to be a big vote of confidence.

I know from discussions we have had that Mr Kato is very impressed with how  British modellers have embraced the idea of collective action to get the models they want.  I suspect he feels such commitment shows a market he wants to get into.

Whatever else may be involved, I think British N gauge enthusiasts - and retailers with links to Kato like Osborns and Gaugemaster - deserve credit for showing Kato that our market offers worthwhile opportunity.

Having said that, Kato are also about "iconic" trains and have a huge customer base of loyal Kato fans in Japan.  Mr Kato said they sold far more Eurostars in their domestic market than they ever sold in Europe! 

Remember too that the Class 800 is a Hitachi product; the japanese are rightly proud of their engineering prowess and many will wish to collect this model for that reason.  It seems telling to me that the image selected for the launch shows the 800 in its Hitachi manufacturer livery.

The 009 products are very interesting - I suspect Kato's reasoning is that they can use their knowledge of N gauge mechanisms to take a share of the more dominant 4mm market in the UK.

What is also intriguing - as has been mentioned previously - is the branding.  Unlike the Eurostar this isn't just a model in a standard Kato box.  They are also launching their "British Railways" brand, and it seems to me this is a clear signal of intent to produce more, and I hope they will build their range as they have for the Glacier Express products.

I am looking forward to hearing what Mr Kato has to say at TINGS.  These are very exciting days!

Cheers

Ben A.



Bealman

#74
Well stated. There is no doubt that the Kato model I acquired in Japan last year is the smoothest, sweetest-running loco I own, regardless of scale.

Certainly, the 009 announcement is exciting. I could be almost talked back there!

Just kidding  ;)

The change in packaging for British prototypes is also encouraging.

Good luck with your negotiations with Mr Kato!
Vision over visibility. Bono, U2.

Please Support Us!
April Goal: £100.00
Due Date: Apr 30
Total Receipts: £24.56
Below Goal: £75.44
Site Currency: GBP
25% 
April Donations