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Author Topic: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics  (Read 17901 times)

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Online exmouthcraig

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #150 on: September 22, 2019, 08:14:02 AM »
What stops someone else producing one of these?? Is the model railway world the same as the original railway world? I'll build a station here to stop you, you wont get a linked up railway line for 5 years but it stops my enemy getting here first. So dapol just take the attitude "I'll claim to be making one of these to stop anyone else being able too".

Presumably they are pretty skint which is why O gauge got pushed and everything else got dumped. Even if we do see another EP in 12months were not going to be holding it in our hands until 2022 unless they find more flaws with their plans and then just scrap the idea AGAIN.

If you cant make it, let's face it they've had enough time just give up and let someone else step in.

I hear SONIC are very good at steam locomotives!!!!!

Offline leachsprite4

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #151 on: September 22, 2019, 09:01:14 AM »
The answer is the n gauge market is to small and that dapol give or take the odd break have been developing this since at least 2012, but it was before the school class was announced.

Therefore there has been plenty of opportunity but no takers. Dapol say this will be the big step forward for them similar to the 68 diesel.

This said there appears to have been no progress since 2018, and now they are working on a new m7 chassis, it hardly feels this is priority No1 landmark loco.

Graham

Online exmouthcraig

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #152 on: September 22, 2019, 09:13:56 AM »
But they can't keep hold of doing nothing forever. We have to be told on virtually EVERY topic "oh the N gauge market is shrinking" and it's the same old tales of woe.

The simple fact is Dapol dont have the money to solve the issues they "discovered". Theres plenty said about their quality control, maybe I've been lucky and not struggled with any yet. But they've spent 5 years selling undecorated examples of wagons to presumably keep a few quid rolling in, they announce unnumbered stock now to "allow a full rake to be run" but presumably to save themselves a tenner on costs, although I bet that saving wont show on retail price. Now the class 50 has been released presumably the plan now is to get some decent money in the pot to develop a model that's now 7years out of date. But because the profit wont be as great as predicted they plan to "redevelop a chassis" which needs to be done BUT they already have the bodies available to screw on and flog for 110 a pop.
So we wont see ANYTHING to do with the new WC/BoB simply because they wont make the money off all of their plans to keep recycling the same models.
Dapols future in N might look bleak but they need to stop spinning the same old tale of a shrinking market. We've heard it a million times before when someone fails to deliver. Have the manufacturers ever thought that the N gauge market might be shrinking because they never give us what they tell us so we give up???

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #153 on: September 22, 2019, 09:43:20 AM »
Sadly, as Graham said, the N gauge market is a small market and it's unusual for two or more manufacturers to go 'head to head' on models (two spring to mind - the class 59 and the class 92).
The choices of class 66 are there in the marketplace. Personally I wish it had been Farish who had won out on the 9F as I think we'd have had a much better model.
The practice of announcing something and doing nowt is oft reflected in real life where supermarkets buy up a tract of land on the pretext they'll put a supermarket on it and it stands empty for years just so no one else can gain that foothold.
My only ray of optimism is that, if the UK N gauge market is that small, how come we have new manufacturers such as RevolutioN, Sonic, Accurascale, Hattons etc entering with models and Kato dipping their toe in the UK range?

Online exmouthcraig

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #154 on: September 22, 2019, 09:55:25 AM »
Exactly Mick, if the market was so small, which let's face it were only told by someone who hasn't done what they told us was going to get done!!

Why have Hattons sacrificed so much to become a manufacturer??

Did we get to talk to Ben and Mike at the weekend telling us they were bringing no items to the the N gauge world because the market is so small?? They announced 5 new items that weekend!!!

Did Sam at Sonic tell us that their 56xx tie up with revolutioN wasnt any good and they were pulling out of the N gauge market?? NO!! Becuase it's clearly a fantastic model between 2 fantastic manufacturers.

No!!! And why is that???

Because it's a good excuse to blame when they cant be bothered to do anything or cant get bankrolled to do it. But instead of admitting that they live in denial and blame the market.

With all the developments with manufacturers coming to the market I'd like to see a figure from 2000 of people modeling N gauge in the UK and what that figure stands at today.

If it is within 5% of the same figure the shrinking market is just  :censored: that they can hide behind.

Offline Bob G

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #155 on: September 22, 2019, 11:18:24 AM »
...they already have the bodies available to screw on and flog for 110...

Do we know that the bodies are in existence? I've not heard that one.

Bob

Online exmouthcraig

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #156 on: September 22, 2019, 11:28:26 AM »
From previous run. It's only the chassis that's being redeveloped. The bodies wont change from the run 10years ago. So even if none are produced all the tooling still exists so costs for re-releasing them as DCC ready are very small.

Typically my 3 are sat on the bench waiting for me to be brave enough to get the soldering iron too them!!!

Offline leachsprite4

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #157 on: September 22, 2019, 11:42:52 AM »
Sorry Craig but I believe you are wrong about the bodies the relaunch said it will be a diecast body for the model and at no point was an EP seen for the original version.

There was once reference to testing motors bit no mention of the body at all.

Online exmouthcraig

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #158 on: September 22, 2019, 12:06:01 PM »
Well that makes it worse. Theres time and money to develop a complete new locomotive but no time or money to resolve the issues with their supposed flag ship model.

The end of the day until anything hits the shelves it's a waste of time believing anything.

2012? Release of new state of the art model Bulleid pacific
2013? Pre order all of the models for 99
2016? Yeah we hit problems we will resolve it for 2018
2018: knock it on the head
2019: Cant get this right so will delay for another year

The argument for not launching any diesels is because they HAVE TO BE AS GOOD AS THE 68, the reason behind the delays in the WC/BOB, IT HAS TO BE AS GOOD AS THE 68 HAS BEEN FOR DIESELS, still not there with it so we will develop a complete brand new chassis and body for a DCC M7.

WHy not work on the issues with your 7 year old planned model. The problems will only resolve themselves when you cancel the project altogether

Offline Snowwolflair

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #159 on: September 22, 2019, 12:14:58 PM »
We could be over thinking this.

Could it simply be that they just don't want to be in the market with a Spam Can while the Farish Merchant Navy is a current model.

Online Ben A

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #160 on: September 22, 2019, 12:36:13 PM »

Hello all,

I sympathise with the frustration of those waiting for a BoB locomotive.  I went for a trip on the Nene Valley Railway a year or so ago, and haulage was 92 Squadron, which I remember thinking a very fine looking locomotive.

But it's important to bear in mind that the numbers that work for Revolution are very different to those that work for mainstream manufacturers.

Because we "pre-test" models through crowdfunding, we can de-risk the financial commitment and because we are not needing to factor in large retailer (or Revolution) margins we can make significantly smaller production runs work.

So, for example, for the Pendolino the final production run was 1200.  We needed 1000, so that was a triumph, but for a major manufacturer needing sales of 3000 or so this would've been a disaster.

The caveat is, of course, that we can only produce models when our fellow modellers are prepared to step forward and pay upfront.

Sonic is a little different as he is a new manufacturer seeking to break into the British market, and his presence is still evolving.

Cheers

Ben A,



Offline honk843

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #161 on: September 22, 2019, 01:25:28 PM »
No doubt like many others, I have a retailing friend who I spoke to about the cancellation of Dapol N gauge models a few years back. He said that he could not argue with Dapol's decision as he had only a few orders for BofB ( and none for the other models) which would have to refund but he could not get enough of the O gauge models, which were, at that time, flying off the shelf.

His account may be biased in favour of larger gauge stuff and I think we must appreciate being spoilt over the period from 2004 for ten years or so when Graham Farish re-released virtually the whole of the existing GF range with improved chassises and Graham F and Dapol trying to outdo one another (two completely new B1 models in a couple of weeks was never going to work to the manufacturers financial advantage).

However I was more surprised by Bachman's attitude at TINGS 2018 when we were given this bit about the size of the N gauge market. If 20% of their sales are GF and 50% Branch-lines I think I would personally look to try to expand the area with the least competition, or at least that we should see 40% of the OO models developed to N. However I get the feeling it may simply be a reflection of the amount of stock they have in their warehouse awaiting wholesale purchase. My major beef however is the delay between the release of the OO and N gauge models. It is not that they are testing the waters with the OO model because they announce the N gauge one before the OO one is available.
Dapol certainly raised the bar when they entered the N gauge market, lets hope that we can look towards the same when Sonic, Revolution etc. come on stream.

Offline Les1952

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #162 on: September 23, 2019, 12:04:27 AM »
Like all companies Dapol's primary concern is staying in business.  They also have been putting a lot of money into expanding and upgrading their factory to do a lot more in house.  Their new moulding machine came with a seven-figure price tag.  They are investing in a CAD apprentice with the aim of getting CAD done at Chirk rather than subcontracting it to China.   Will they do their own tooling in the UK?  A tooling machine is well North of 10 million to buy and would need to be running 24/7 to justify its outlay.  Presently one of the O-gauge models is "will start production as soon as the tools are received from China" 

The N-gauge production is described as being "like a pipe".  Once one is done and emerges from the pipe the next one goes into the pipe.  The Class 50 is on sale so the BoB has gone into the production pipe.   Also starting the journey is a retool of the M7 with a brand new chassis.  Other early locos will follow but ONE AT A TIME.

We have seen what happens when a manufacturer starts more projects than it can raise money for.   

Les

Offline Bingley Hall

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #163 on: September 23, 2019, 04:28:38 AM »
Well that makes it worse. Theres time and money to develop a complete new locomotive but no time or money to resolve the issues with their supposed flag ship model.

The end of the day until anything hits the shelves it's a waste of time believing anything.

2012? Release of new state of the art model Bulleid pacific
2013? Pre order all of the models for 99
2016? Yeah we hit problems we will resolve it for 2018
2018: knock it on the head
2019: Cant get this right so will delay for another year

The argument for not launching any diesels is because they HAVE TO BE AS GOOD AS THE 68, the reason behind the delays in the WC/BOB, IT HAS TO BE AS GOOD AS THE 68 HAS BEEN FOR DIESELS, still not there with it so we will develop a complete brand new chassis and body for a DCC M7.

WHy not work on the issues with your 7 year old planned model. The problems will only resolve themselves when you cancel the project altogether

I think everyone has got the message by now  >:(


Online Chris Morris

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Re: Battle of Britain/West Country pacifics
« Reply #164 on: September 23, 2019, 08:52:12 AM »
I reckon Dapol are doing a good job. As a business they quite rightly switched resources to where the best return on investment was available. In Dapol's case this was a concentration of development resources on O gauge. you can't knock them for wanting to continue to be a going concern. It is quite probable that the O gauge bubble is starting to slow down (judging bu some of the discounts being offered) and so Dapol have moved their concentration to developing new models in all scales. The one loco at a time in the pipeline approach seems quite reasonable for N gauge in view of the volumes. You have to keep all costs in trim if you are going to keep your head above water and not run out of cash.

There has been a steady stream of new N gauge locos from Dapol over the last few years and I hope this will continue. I think they are keeping quieter about how things are progressing current projects and their future plans in order to prevent further criticism about delays. They do have to be careful that there are "new kids on the block"
probably have a much lighter cost base; this could make getting that return on invest on future models more difficult. The one project at a time in the pipeline approach could well be a means of keeping the development costs down in order to remain competitive with the new guys. All the indications are that Dapol is a well run, stable company who are in it for the long term.

I have been told by those who know these things that Bachmann are very keen to improve N gauge sales although I'm not sure how successful they have been. They had a good presence at TINGS this year. The big question is - just what can we all do to get more folks into N gauge? Perhaps there needs to be some thought put into defining the advantages of N and then pushing those advantages hard at exhibitions. Maybe a leaflet that could be given out by all N gauge layouts? At the risk of being controversial I wonder if the NGS concentrates too much on providing services to members and not enough on evangelising the virtues of N to those who have not yet realised how great it is? Maybe there needs to be a different umbrella group for trying to expand N gauge. Just throwing out thoughts, these are not suggestions and certainly not criticising those who give up so much of their free time for the NGS and the good of our hobby. 

 

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