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Author Topic: State of British N Gauge  (Read 2265 times)

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Offline D9020 Nimbus

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State of British N Gauge
« on: January 08, 2019, 04:33:21 PM »
This post was partly inspired by the recent Farish cancellations. I thought I'd look at coverage of models in the steam and diesel eras.

BR diesels: all the main loco classes have been modelled to modern standards (or a model is very close) with the exception of the class 25/3. Also all of the diesel hydraulics apart from the two types of NBL Warship have been done. There are many DMUs still untouched.

BR standard steam: the 9F, Britannia, 5MT, 4MT 2-6-0 and the 4MT and 3MT tanks have been done. However the 4MT 4-6-0 has not, nor have the Clans nor the smaller classes yet to be made in OO either. The 4MT 4-6-0 seems a big omission.

GWR locos have been well covered—of the main classes only the 56xx, Mogul and King are missing, but are planned. A new "large Prairie" would be welcome though, as would a better running "small Prairie".

LMS locos are reasonably well covered—of the "big" locos only the "Princess" is missing. The 8F is on its way. However the only 2-6-4T is the Fairburn one—a Fowler version would be nice.

LNER coverage is patchy. All of the main Pacifics apart from the A2/3 have been done, but the V2 hasn't been done to modern standards. There at a B17 and there have been two B1s. But there have been no LNER-design tank engines other than the old Farish J94. It seems unlikely that the DJM J94 or Q6 will ever be seen. Union Mills have done several models, particularly NER and GER, but not as yet a J15.

SR coverage is patchier still. Only the original Merchant Navy, the "N", "Q1", "C", "Terrier" and M7 have been made by the major manufacturers, although Union Mills have done the "T9" and some ex-LSW 0-6-0s.

Offline martyn

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2019, 05:13:34 PM »
This partly links in to another topic on the Forum;

https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=40937.msg547149#msg547149

'Are we over the golden age of N gauge?'

My main interest and knowledge is in ex LNER/GE section, so a couple of thoughts, some of which are in the aforementioned thread; I'm ignoring kits for the purpose of this post.

BR Steam;

'Clans' (and 71000) had relatively limited areas of operation.


LNER steam;

Part of the problem here is that even into nationalisation, the LNER pre-grouping locos tended to stay in their originating areas, so for a manufacturer, there is dificulty in providing a system wide loco. LNER standard designs tended to be ordered in small numbers for specific needs, rather than multiplied widely to replace older designs; the LNER couldn't afford to. However, I do agree about tank engines. But what would be the choice?
V1/V3 had noticeable detail differences.
 Thompson L1 was a very late entrant, and again had noticeable detail variation. Neither of these classes would normally be considered an average branch engine.
The now delayed J72-tended to be retained in ex NER area, though there was a more widespread BR built order; but rapidly withdrawn or re-allocated as diesel shunters were built.
N2-did get to other areas, Scotland and ex GE section, but not NER area.
N7-which I'd like-wasn't as widespread even as the N2-mainly the ex GER, with some GNR, and southern GCR. Round top or Belpaire boiler?
J67+69-actually, widespread, mainly after being replaced by N7s in the London area; allocated from Perth to London, Lowestoft to Wrexham, but again, NOT the ex NER area. Then which version? There were differences not only in side tanks but also boiler details between the two classes; even Stratford had a hard time keeping up with the variations! Then there were chimney and dome differences......And even more variation with Scottish area loco modifications-or lack of.
J39-produced-but all RTR are the 4200 gallon tender version. Possible 3500 gal tender? But this would be limiting for tender drives.
J38-basically Scottish.
K3-widespread throughout the LNER main lines, and I would have thought a good candidate, particularly as an OO model exists; but once again, lots of variations amongst a 'standard' class.
Some of the ex NER 060s could be considered, as at times, they did get away from the NER area; but frequently, they went back there.
The other frequent request-J15 and E4; small locos by any standard, so motorising the loco or a tender drive would be difficult. A GOOD GER 3000 gall tender drive could give B17 'Sandringhams', J17-J20; B12 (three versions); D14-D16 'Clauds', but these had many variations. At least the B17, B12, and Clauds got around the Southern area of the LNER a bit, and two versions of the B12 to Scotland.
J94-post war only; also tended to be allocated to specific areas, not generally (eg none on the ex GE section).

That's probably more than enough for now.

BR DMUs-agreed that many missing. I would have liked the Cravens and Derby lightweight two car, especially as Bachmann did them in OO, but it seems it is not to be.

BR diesels-mainly the first generation Bo Bos missing, but again, these tended to be localised allocations. I would have thought there was a case for the ex LMS 'Twins', but I'll let others stake the claim; likewise the Bullied diesels.

I'll let those with better knowledge than me comment on the other Grouping Company locos, but I would have though that there must be at least a couple of LMS passenger tanks with widespread allocation and appeal.

Martyn




« Last Edit: January 08, 2019, 05:37:25 PM by martyn, Reason: extra info »

Offline MacRat

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2019, 05:44:01 PM »
Tongue in check, I find it remarkable, that the analysis in OP starts with BR era and than goes backwards in time, seemingly cutting out anything post-BR ;)

Offline NeMo

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2019, 06:06:07 PM »
But in fairness, how many types of locomotive do you need? A 66, a second 66, then maybe another 66, oh, and another 66 is some other godawful garish livery that looks like something a 5-year-old came up with. Once you've got them, the important classes, you could mix things up with a 66, then a 66, and another 66 if you've got some spending money left over. Some people doing different layouts would also need a 66, unless they were doing a lot of maintenance trains, in which case they'd need a 66.

Cheers, NeMo

Edit: forgot they'd need a 66.

Tongue in check, I find it remarkable, that the analysis in OP starts with BR era and than goes backwards in time, seemingly cutting out anything post-BR ;)

Offline davidinyork

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2019, 06:22:40 PM »
This post was partly inspired by the recent Farish cancellations.

What are those then? Not seen any mention of cancellations so I must have missed it.

Online jacowin80

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2019, 06:25:36 PM »
To be fair no mater what era you model i'm sure that there will always be something that you want that isn't manufactured.  It all comes down to the amount that the model will sell, if it is felt something will not sell well it just simply won't be made.  Even if there are a vocal few that feel it would sell.  In a short amount of time how many models have Revolution tested the waters with then felt that the product wasn't viable.  I'm pretty sure that it has always been like this.  For me N gives me the most value for money and I know that I just simply couldn't have an OO layout, yes there is much more choice of models but with a bit of scratch building and kits I can get what I want from N without the train set look that you get with the cheaper OO gauge models.

Online ntpntpntp

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2019, 06:31:56 PM »
This post was partly inspired by the recent Farish cancellations.

What are those then? Not seen any mention of cancellations so I must have missed it.

Presume a reference to this thread:
https://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=44056.0
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Offline RailGooner

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2019, 07:24:06 PM »
But in fairness, how many types of locomotive do you need? A 66, a second 66, then maybe another 66, oh, and another 66 is some other godawful garish livery that looks like something a 5-year-old came up with. Once you've got them, the important classes, you could mix things up with a 66, then a 66, and another 66 if you've got some spending money left over. Some people doing different layouts would also need a 66, unless they were doing a lot of maintenance trains, in which case they'd need a 66.

Cheers, NeMo

Edit: forgot they'd need a 66.

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Offline Newportnobby

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2019, 09:32:18 PM »
All I'll say is if the EM1/2s were released in N I'd have to build another layout which won't get finished, and if someone turned on the taps for other WR/LMR/ER DMUs then my wallet would commit hari-kiri :worried:
As it is I have 9 items of motive power on pre-order or waiting for them to appear on websites so I can pre-order, 2 wagons (same status) and one set of coaches. This is the most I've had interest in for about 5 years.

Offline PLD

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2019, 10:02:07 PM »
What the O/Ps list shows is how far we have come in the 15 or so years since Dapol's entry to the scale and Farish was rescued by Kader, and how much more is available now than was then... Despite the set-backs of delays and cancellations of a few specific products we now have more available than even the most optimistic would have imagined back then. We've got used to a constant stream of new models so we're disappointed when that rate slows a little...

With regard to the commented gaps in the BR Standards, perhaps given their provenance it is no coincidence that we are missing the Class 2s but have the LMS progenitors, whereas for class 4s we do have the BR standard 2-6-0 but are missing the LMS Ivatt version...
Are they considered 'too similar' to generate sufficient additional sales??

I would agree that the LNER is the poorest served of the big 4, but also agree with Martyn's summing up of the reasons for that. The LMS and GW standardisation programs make them so much easier to cover.

Online exmouthcraig

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2019, 10:35:10 PM »
Obviously people get annoyed when the cancelled loco or stock being developed is the 'One they want' And they there's the people that view any cancellation as two fingers to N gauge Modellers.

I'm after the long awaited Dapol WC class and they've been a very long time coming BUT like many point out,

Do we want a model to run and admire? Or a temperamental piece of tat that couldn't pull the skin off the proverbial rice pudding. Models hit snags, anyone can scan a loco and promise every detail in the world but if the motor doesn't fit and then doesn't even work what do we want?

I would like to think the scale back on these models is to allow them to catch up with current planned and delayed projects, get them out on the shelves and turn some much needed cash.

Who knows, just because theirs no great publicity shots what they get upto everyday. Jaguar don't announce every single concept their working on for the simple fact many fail so much they would be pulled apart for showing us things that can never be built.

Wouldn't it be great for GF or Dapol to showcase the pre-production items at Warley 2019 and 100% guarantee that as of Feb / March 2020 you could buy each one off the shelf like a 2020 product catalogue should do??

I'm impressed with the stock we have been able to acquire over the last 10 years, yes theres plenty missing I WANT but that's the case for everyone.

Let's be glad with the current manufacturers we have, the current and guaranteed products coming and enjoy N gauge for Our Great Hobby!!

Offline Dr Al

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #11 on: January 09, 2019, 12:02:01 AM »
V1/V3 had noticeable detail differences.
Thompson L1 was a very late entrant, 
N2-did get to other areas, Scotland and ex GE section, but not NER area.

Why do we always have to consider only RTR? @Atso offers 3D print kits of all of the above, and all are good quality and realistic builds. Also, Langley offers the N2 as a whitemetal kit aswell.

N7-which I'd like

Langley offer the N7 as a whitemetal kit.

J39-produced-but all RTR are the 4200 gallon tender version. Possible 3500 gal tender? But this would be limiting for tender drives.

Farish offer the J39 already, with different tender types. Union Mills also have a J39.

J38-basically Scottish.

Union Mills also offer a J38.

K3-widespread throughout the LNER main lines, and I would have thought a good candidate, particularly as an OO model exists; but once again, lots of variations amongst a 'standard' class.

@Atso offers 3D print kit of this one....

B12 (three versions);D16 'Clauds',

UM do these also....

...what this shows is that you severely restrict yourself if only looking at the mainstream RTR manufacturers. If willing to actually builds, a lot more opens up. I'm sure this is the same for other regions aswell.

Cheers,
Alan
Quote from: Roy L S
If Dr Al is online he may be able to provide a more comprehensive answer.

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Online emjaybee

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #12 on: January 09, 2019, 12:14:24 AM »


...what this shows is that you severely restrict yourself if only looking at the mainstream RTR manufacturers. If willing to actually builds, a lot more opens up. I'm sure this is the same for other regions aswell.

Cheers,
Alan

I take issue with this statement (only a little bit, mind).

It's not a case of whether you are willing to build, but if you can build. There aren't that many people who can produce a finished kit loco that comes up to the latest standards of detail and finish of a RTR loco. I used to class myself as a reasonably good modeller, but I can't match the likes of a Farish Jubilee or the like. I'd love to be able to, but I can't. So anything which doesn't come up to those standards looks frankly quite naff when stood next to one. I'd imagine that a Patriot kit made by myself pulling a rake of Farish 'Blue Riband' coaches would look bloody awful!

Many of us don't have the skill or dexterity to manage it, but we do have a desire for a nice range of locos, so it would be great to see more variety from all the manufacturers.

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Offline Dr Al

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2019, 12:26:49 AM »
It's not a case of whether you are willing to build, but if you can build. There aren't that many people who can produce a finished kit loco that comes up to the latest standards of detail and finish of a RTR loco.

Nobody said build to that standard - you can build to any standard you so desire, or that your current skills allow. Moreover, there's a lack of consistency there anyway - UM locos do not match Farish RTR, but I've heard relatively little criticism there.... (mostly being my own when I detail them!).

I'm sorry, but so many folk just say they can't do it - maybe in some cases that is genuinely true, but I think a lot of folk are capable of more. And remember, it take time to build the skills. How do you build those very skills? Err....by building stuff!

So why not try? Options for starting can range anywhere from the most basic Peco wagon kit, to some of the basic whitemetal shells out there (Langley 4MT 4-6-0 is perfect - body has 9 parts only, tender has 2(!) and sits on a completely unmodified RTR chassis) or basic 3D prints that go straight on an unmodified RTR chassis. You've relatively little to loose and a lot of satisfaction to be gained, whether that be from the build, the completion or knowing your model is really yours and there's not another like it, anywhere.

Maybe my opinions are increasingly swayed by threads like that of Tony Wright on RMweb, but something built by someone (to whatever standard) is somewhat more interesting that a dull RTR only world....

Cheers,
Alan
« Last Edit: January 09, 2019, 12:39:30 AM by Dr Al »
Quote from: Roy L S
If Dr Al is online he may be able to provide a more comprehensive answer.

“We have also arranged things so that almost no one understands science and technology. This is a prescription for disaster. We might get away with it for a while, but sooner or later this combustible mixture of ignorance and power is going to blow up in our faces.”Dr. Carl Sagan

Online Intercity

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Re: State of British N Gauge
« Reply #14 on: January 09, 2019, 12:55:08 AM »
Personally I’d like to see the AL1 to AL5 electrics done (81-85), however I might need a time warped class 66 to pull them  :-\

I think the OHLE locomotives and MUs are seriously under represented and are something our younger modelers can associate with.

Are modelers asking for non-OHLE stuff because it’s easier to model, or are companies selling what they think the current market associates with, if the latter how do we bring young blood into the hobby if they can’t associate with the available market (not many young uns will have experienced a steamer at full speed either from a platform or on board the train)
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