Railway Modeller and Bullhead Rail


As my regular readers will know, I am a little obsessed with the new Bullhead Rail from Peco. The next issue of Railway Modeller starts a series of articles on how to use the rail.

My other articles are Peco on the right track and Peco Code 75 Bullhead Expands


img_6053The May 2018 edition can be purchased from your usual newsagent or here

Posted in Bullhead, Code 75, Peco | 1 Comment

Peco Code 75 Bullhead Expands

I have spoken before about Peco’s new British code 75 OO track-Peco on the right track. I am really excited about it for a new GWR/BR(W) branch line. They introduced the flexible track first and now large radius points are available. But they are too large for my needs. I would prefer medium points.

The points all use a type of frog that is new to the UK market-Unifrog. They are supposed to offer the best of insulfrog and electrofrog. There is a very good explanation of Unifrog in the Railway Modeller November 2017.

Announced in March 2018 Railway Modeller, Peco is to soon introduce the crossing, single slip, and double slip, which is a bit of a surprise. The text also mentions medium radius points (hurah) later this year.

I had better get my design buttoned down.

(If the Peco web site was better organised, I would link to the landing page for Peco Code 75 Bullhead products, which Peco would change as more products were added).

RM Mar2018X

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London Underground Display

London Transport Display Tube

I have mentioned before that the London Transport Museum Shop released a model (commissioned from Bachmann) of it’s new S Stock underground train. Over the summer they released a display case for it. It consists of a free-standing perspex tube that holds a 4 car train (not a full 8 car train). This is a very good idea but they are asking £150 for it which seems very steep. If it had been available at a better price at the same time when I ordered my original model, I may have bought one, but not unless the price drops significantly. You can find it here.

BTW They have released a differently numbered 4 car set and some single coaches to make up full 7 and 8 car sets found here. There is also lighting and sound unit available. This is self powered and lights 4 coaches but also makes a door sound if the unit is stationary for a few seconds.

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WycRail 2017 4th November

Please try to visit my club’s annual exhibition-WycRail17 on Saturday 4th November. A short drive from junction 4 of the M40. Click here for more information.

WycRail 2017

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LNER Dynamometer Car

LNER Dynamometer 1938

The world of model railways has taken some odd turns in recent years. The startup costs for a new model are huge so manufacturer’s have to make sure they will sell enough models at the right price to get their investment back. But now we also have model shops commissioning new models and therefore taking the risk.

So who would think it was a good idea to model a unique 4 vehicle train that never saw revenue service-the APT-E. And what happened? It sold out!

And now we have Rails of Sheffield commissioning Rapido Trains to make a one off coach, admittedly with a unique history. It is promised to be of a very high quality. At a time when a good quality RTR coach is £50, Rails will be asking £125 each. Yikes.

The coach is part of Rails new high quality Exclusive range. One of the models represents the coach that recorded the record breaking run of the Mallard locomotive in 1938. Another model is the coach at the birth of British Railways and as used during the 1948 Locomotive Exchanges.

There have been several high quality releases that garnered very high praise from reviews. We will have to wait to see how good it actually is and if it is worth the money. But the answer to the last question is up to you.

Further Reading
Posted in LNER, Rails of Sheffield, Rapido | 2 Comments

Nothing Much

The trouble with having a blog post that highlights an event, is that when that event has happened, your blog looks stupid. So here is a picture from a recent holiday in Scotland so I am not directing you to WycRail that has been and gone (Note to self, have replacement article ready to publish next year).


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WycRail 2016 5th November

Please try to visit my club’s annual exhibition-WycRail16 on Saturday 5th November. A short drive from junction 4 of the M40. Click here for more information.


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1015 Western Champion

(c) Philip D Hawkins http://www.philipdhawkins.co.ukI love Westerns and have a small layout based on an MPD in the Bristol area in the early 70’s so I have been collecting together a loco stable for it. I have a few weathered Westerns, but I wanted a really bad one-the sort that has been subjected to the care and attention of Laira’s washing plant a few too many times.

So I bought a blue Dapol Western and sent it to Michael Doyle with some folding who then applied his considerable skills to ruin it-in the best possible way.

This is what the brand new plain blue Dapol Western looks like.

(C) Michael P Doyle

And Michael went to work.

(C) Michael P Doyle

And here is a picture in revenue work on his layout.

(C) Michael P Doyle

I found Michael P Doyle on Facebook and he can be reached here.

The prototype picture was taken by Philip D Hawkins and reproduced by kind permission.

Posted in Dapol, Uncategorized, Weathered | 2 Comments

Peco on the right track

This is fantastic news. For those that don’t know, Peco’s biggest markets for their OO/HO track is outside the UK, so it is more HO than OO, and we have put up with that. At last they are producing OO track. The points will remain the same though. Perhaps if it successful, they will produce matching medium radius points in the future?

The Model Railways of Oly Turner and Chris Matthews

God I should work for papers with headlines like that, but that aside Peco’s new announcement contains what a lot of us have been waiting to see for a while.

Track to the standard of the models.


I need Bullhead so depending on the release date I will use this and review it on top shed.


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Posted in Bullhead, Code 75, Peco | 5 Comments

London Underground

Models from London’s Underground have been rare in the past and have been limited to repaints of models already produced such as GWR Panniers and BR Class 20’s.

In the past the underground has built a set of stock for each line. If a model manufacturer is going to produce an underground train which one do they choose? The underground is undergoing a revolution at the moment, with the S-Stock from Bombardier being rolled out to many lines, one by one, in 7 or 8 car formations.

This is a better prospect for a manufacturer as a model covers more of the underground network so Bachmann have produced a model of the S-Stock train. But not quite. In recent years model shops started commissioning manufacturers to produce already released models in extra liveries. They then started to commission the manufacturers to produce new models, often with a period of exclusivity so they had a head start on the general trade. This was extended to museums such as the NRM doing the same. And so the S-Stock train was commissioned by the LT Museum.

(c) Model Rail Magazine, Mike Harris: https://www.facebook.com/modelrail

The Bachmann LT Museum S Stock Set

It was made available in a four car set with further intermediary coaches available to make up full 6 or 7 car sets. And for the first 100 to place an order in advance there was the chance of being invited to travel on a special underground excursion. So I ordered one. And I was lucky to get a ticket for the trip.

The actual trip was to take place on my birthday, Saturday 26th September, but when the day arrived I was too ill to go!

Since launch Train Tech have introduced a lighting and sound unit that uses some intelligence to provide an added dimension without the need of DCC. It provides interior lighting, and door opening/closing sounds. If the train is stationery for four minutes the lights turn off. They turn on as soon as the train moves. The door sounds occur when the train stops and starts, and for an added bonus there is a spark effect from underneath at random times.

There are a few underground model railways on the exhibition circuit such as Addison Park which won best in show at this year’s WycRail but they mainly concern themselves with above ground. I hope with the introduction of this useful stock we will see some layouts underground perhaps using clear tubes to represent the tunnels.

Posted in Bachmmann, Underground, WycRail | 5 Comments