Southern Rail Blog - Uboats, Xplorer, Vlocity, tank cars, QR Things, etc

 
  Poath Junction Chief Commissioner

Location: In front of a computer most of the time.
Kit form NHFF's at $35ea rings a bell as does undecorated built packs at $170. However, were these six wagon packs? I thought they were only doing four packs at the time.
"gw0071"


NHFF's have been singles or 6 packs only. Snapshot of the Auscision page from 2007 is here: http://web.archive.org/web/20070829191445/http://www.auscisionmodels.com.au/NHFF%20Page%20.htm

I assume the kits came with decals, so based on the decal sheet prices we should add $11 to the undecorated 6 pack to even it out (still keeps the 6pack  $4 cheaper per wagon compared to the kits).

Putting all the bits of kits into a box is actually a very time consuming and labour intensive process. From the manufacturers perspective it's actually easier to build the model than box all the kit parts. Take a look at the exploded diagrams of the SDS or Southern Rail tankers, now imagine the logistics required to box the kit with those 100+ pieces.  It costs a lot to do because it isn't a quick or easy process.

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  a6et Minister for Railways

Kit form NHFF's at $35ea rings a bell as does undecorated built packs at $170. However, were these six wagon packs? I thought they were only doing four packs at the time. This does shift the goal posts for the kit vs assembled price argument somewhat I think that A6ET has a very valid point. In a niche, luxury market why would a manufacturer provide a 'budget' kit product which would only detract from sales for a 'full service' assembled one? I fear that a drop in quality level/control would merely be exchanged with a supposed temporary suppression of a price rise due to external influences... For fear of implicating Southern Rail alone perhaps a thread split is in order. The perception of the shift in the perceived definition of a railway modeller in relation to the inundation of RTR products is worthy of further debate. Just read p3 of Aug AMRM if you don't believe me!
"gw0071"


I get a bit concerned with the idea that those who want models now, as per the AMRM article says, along with the idea that those who only want RTR are not really modellers.  In years past one had to build models if they wanted OZ outline, & given a reason why so many are modeling US or British or other railways, being involved in a group that is roughly 50/50, & contain several Master Modellers which mean they have to do a lot of scratch building, let me say that all of these also primarilly use RTR items, including structures, loco's & R/S, yet the work they do with their hands is top class.

Having just turned 65, I have waited for so many promised models I doubt if I will see them before I kark it.  I also build all my own scenery, a heck of a lot of the structures & have built a lot of kits.  At the same time I have destroyed a lot during construction, & tossed others out, or where possible recycle the parts for other items, & when I look at it, getting new people into the hobby, as long lamented by many others & has been the subject of articles in the AMRM, there is much more a likelihood of getting them into the hobby with RTR models.

Dare I even raise the irk of some that even buying code 100 track with its unprototypical earlier times rail, is more likely to be their target for cost purposes, likewise they are not too interested in wheels, except that they are reliable on their trackwork. I also wonder how many of them still put their track down & take it up each time they want to run their new found joys, & that is how I started back in the mid 50's.

Modelling represents a whole host of variations & variables, & for me none are wrong for those who use any or all of them.  We had to learn to walk by learning to crawl, & that to me is one benefit of RTR its a start & learning process from there. Maybe what is needed is a decent exploded drawing that gives part numbers & where fit on the models as is often done on Loco's but rarelly if ever on R/S, looking at this is like showing a kit diagram in an RTR model, in order that new starters or those who are concerned about where, what goes, has some idea of it.
  VRfan Moderator

Location: In front of my computer :-p

Putting all the bits of kits into a box is actually a very time consuming and labour intensive process. From the manufacturers perspective it's actually easier to build the model than box all the kit parts. Take a look at the exploded diagrams of the SDS or Southern Rail tankers, now imagine the logistics required to box the kit with those 100+ pieces.  It costs a lot to do because it isn't a quick or easy process.
"Poath Junction"


I'm only thinking along the lines of a very basic shake the box "kit". ie: have the basic model assembled and then the purchaser simply adds the detail such as grab irons, etc... Surely it would be less time consuming to put these parts in a box rather than carefully locating and applying each handrail, etc.. into the right holes and then gluing them in place.

The point I was trying to make was that according to that Canadian Model Trains letter the big issue is with not all the factories having the skilled labour required to assemble these fine detail components.  If there was a shift to shake the box for certain models it would get around this problem.

Now I think a6et hit the nail on the head with this comment

One reason they charge extra for shake the box or detail not fitted is that they see it as not supporting their workers


Unless the Chinese change their business model (or we go elsewhere), it's not something that will happen

In what ways were the detail parts not fitted correctly?

From what I have found in all 7 models I have, the issue is not so much the fitting of them but more so the actual size of a couple of parts being wrong lengths which causes them to work against each other, & it also depends on which model you have. The ladders are a bit short which means being attached to side fram & walkway the two are pulled together causing an upwards force against the side frame. While the shunters step grab irons that are attached into the barrel are slightly too long which pushes the side frames down, thus two forces working in the opposite to each other.
"a6et"


I've seen photos of BP tankers with badly warped walkways. I'm sure if I was fitting them myself I could do a far better job. The point is that the chinese do not actually care about what they are doing. It's just a job to them. If I'm adding parts, I'm doing it because I actually have a passion for the hobby. This is a big difference.

If the holes don't quite lineup or the ladder is a fraction too short, somebody who takes a bit of extra time and care can easily correct for this without the assembly faults displayed on those models.

I think that A6ET has a very valid point. In a niche, luxury market why would a manufacturer provide a 'budget' kit product which would only detract from sales for a 'full service' assembled one?
"gw0071"


Who said anything about a "budget" kit alongside a RTR model. What I was suggesting was that some wagon projects would be suitable for factories to produce the model up to the almost completed stage and then the purchaser adds the fine parts which the factory seems to have issues with doing.

Sentiment is nice but the importers are not here to steer the hobby in any such direction. They produce a product to sell the product to get the best deal out of it. And given the apparent success of the Aussie RTR market, modelling tastes have changed and won't be going back any time soon.
"Albert"


This is to the detriment of the hobby. It's very rare now that I see a Victorian or NSW exhibition layout that I don't find completely and utterly boring. A typical scene at an exhibition is the latest plastic fantastic on every layout in the order in which they were pulled out of the box, plus a few of last year's releases along for the ride at the rear of the train. Anybody can pull something out of a box and run it. It takes zero skill and I have no interest in that. While there are exceptions, many of the layouts with RTR rolling stock also have unimaginative scenery, etc... as well.

Most of the layouts which I find interesting these days are from other states outside the big two or narrow gauge layouts based on aus, freelance or overseas prototype. Basically where there is less RTR available. I want to see someone attempt some modeling when I pay money at an exhibition.

Regarding shake the box, at least it would get people thinking of modeling. Commercial reality means it probably won't happen.
  a6et Minister for Railways




Putting all the bits of kits into a box is actually a very time consuming and labour intensive process. From the manufacturers perspective it's actually easier to build the model than box all the kit parts. Take a look at the exploded diagrams of the SDS or Southern Rail tankers, now imagine the logistics required to box the kit with those 100+ pieces.  It costs a lot to do because it isn't a quick or easy process.
"Poath Junction"


I'm only thinking along the lines of a very basic shake the box "kit". ie: have the basic model assembled and then the purchaser simply adds the detail such as grab irons, etc... Surely it would be less time consuming to put these parts in a box rather than carefully locating and applying each handrail, etc.. into the right holes and then gluing them in place.

The point I was trying to make was that according to that Canadian Model Trains letter the big issue is with not all the factories having the skilled labour required to assemble these fine detail components.  If there was a shift to shake the box for certain models it would get around this problem.

Now I think a6et hit the nail on the head with this comment


One reason they charge extra for shake the box or detail not fitted is that they see it as not supporting their workers


Unless the Chinese change their business model (or we go elsewhere), it's not something that will happen


In what ways were the detail parts not fitted correctly?

From what I have found in all 7 models I have, the issue is not so much the fitting of them but more so the actual size of a couple of parts being wrong lengths which causes them to work against each other, & it also depends on which model you have. The ladders are a bit short which means being attached to side fram & walkway the two are pulled together causing an upwards force against the side frame. While the shunters step grab irons that are attached into the barrel are slightly too long which pushes the side frames down, thus two forces working in the opposite to each other.
"a6et"


"VRfan"
I've seen photos of BP tankers with badly warped walkways. I'm sure if I was fitting them myself I could do a far better job. The point is that the chinese do not actually care about what they are doing. It's just a job to them. If I'm adding parts, I'm doing it because I actually have a passion for the hobby. This is a big difference.

If the holes don't quite lineup or the ladder is a fraction too short, somebody who takes a bit of extra time and care can easily correct for this without the assembly faults displayed on those models..


Valid points in some ways however, from my experience in China & knowing the people they do care about their work, & in many ways take more pride in it than many Australians do these days, I have met many of them on several visits there in recent years, & they remind me very much of the old time workers here who did have pride in their work.

Each person on the assembly line has a specific task, & when they see a problem they report it to their supervisor, & he is the one who more than likely say do you best & just fit them in place, or similar.  The primary problem has been in the lug holes not being big enough, the ladders being short, & the grab irons that mount into the barrels being too long, & while the modeller might pick those things up with a shake the box setup, given how fine the grab irons are, they are likely to loose them owing to the slightest hint of clumsiness thus a new modeller may well have problems assembling the fine detail, & risk losing the parts.

This is not just something found on the SDS RTC's but on other models as well. They get it right with the final production samples but, what happens with the production run?  A reason that SDS has taken the stand they did & move to another factory with the hope & expectation that they will be better, just like Southern has done.

Its easy to blame the worker, who is like the armies private who is the end of the head kicking chain.


I think that A6ET has a very valid point. In a niche, luxury market why would a manufacturer provide a 'budget' kit product which would only detract from sales for a 'full service' assembled one?
"gw0071"


[Who said anything about a "budget" kit alongside a RTR model. What I was suggesting was that some wagon projects would be suitable for factories to produce the model up to the almost completed stage and then the purchaser adds the fine parts which the factory seems to have issues with doing.
Sentiment is nice but the importers are not here to steer the hobby in any such direction. They produce a product to sell the product to get the best deal out of it. And given the apparent success of the Aussie RTR market, modelling tastes have changed and won't be going back any time soon.
"VRfan"


[/quote] This is to the detriment of the hobby. It's very rare now that I see a Victorian or NSW exhibition layout that I don't find completely and utterly boring. A typical scene at an exhibition is the latest plastic fantastic on every layout in the order in which they were pulled out of the box, plus a few of last year's releases along for the ride at the rear of the train. Anybody can pull something out of a box and run it. It takes zero skill and I have no interest in that. While there are exceptions, many of the layouts with RTR rolling stock also have unimaginative scenery, etc... as well..[/quote]

Most of the layouts which I find interesting these days are from other states outside the big two or narrow gauge layouts based on aus, freelance or overseas prototype. Basically where there is less RTR available. I want to see someone attempt some modeling when I pay money at an exhibition.

Regarding shake the box, at least it would get people thinking of modeling. Commercial reality means it probably won't happen.[/quote]

I agree with this aspect of everyone loving the RTR model which arrives in pristine condition, & even after the equivilent of a years in service operation the models remain the same. I see exh layouts that are around for years & the same pristine models are on show as they were in the layouts first showing around all the scenes for the past ??? years.  In all my time as an engineman, it generally only took one trip especially on a steam loco, or Alco to see the affects of road grime. I too get sick & tired of the parade ground spick & polished layouts on show.

The other side of the coin is that I have been put down for daring to weather my models in as service condition. I have quite a lot of models to weather, & once the current round of models I have on order arrive, I see at least a day in the paint shop for the models for weathering, yet I keep around 4% of the models in there new out of box condition, to represent overhauled models.
  GT46C-ACe Assistant Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
So from what I gather from all of this my lack of skills to scratchbuild and preference to buy RTR vs kits means I'm not a 'modeller'. Quite frankly that's a complete crock of fan projectile.

True everyone's entitled to an opinion but isn't this the same in concept as arguing about gay marriage? If me buying RTR and running that because I have no skills to scratchbuild and no real time to devote to kit building reduces your enjoyment of the hobby then I'm sorry what I do has an effect on you. Simply put, enjoy the hobby as you see fit and don't whinge about how others find enjoyment, this hobby of ours covers so many different skills and areas that bitching over RTR vs kits and defining who is and isn't a 'modeller' based on what they buy (now locomotives and wagons are the stars of the show but they'd be useless if there was no stage, how many people have ever seen a RTR layout?) is like arguing about gay marriage, it has no effect on you or your happiness.

Now, let's get back to talking about Southern Rail Models and what they're up to vs flogging this dead horse all over again...
  tranx Assistant Commissioner

Location: Somewhere in Southwest Sydney
So from what I gather from all of this my lack of skills to scratchbuild and preference to buy RTR vs kits means I'm not a 'modeller'. Quite frankly that's a complete crock of fan projectile.

True everyone's entitled to an opinion but isn't this the same in concept as arguing about gay marriage? If me buying RTR and running that because I have no skills to scratchbuild and no real time to devote to kit building reduces your enjoyment of the hobby then I'm sorry what I do has an effect on you. Simply put, enjoy the hobby as you see fit and don't whinge about how others find enjoyment, this hobby of ours covers so many different skills and areas that bitching over RTR vs kits and defining who is and isn't a 'modeller' based on what they buy (now locomotives and wagons are the stars of the show but they'd be useless if there was no stage, how many people have ever seen a RTR layout?) is like arguing about gay marriage, it has no effect on you or your happiness
"GT46C-ACe"


Does this mean that buyers of RTR are plonkers and not true modellers?
  Albert Chief Commissioner

It's not the RTR products that will destroy the hobby, it is the 'US v's THEM' mentality.

Rolling Eyes
  TheBlacksmith Chief Commissioner

Location: Ankh Morpork
It's not the RTR products that will destroy the hobby, it is the 'US v's THEM' mentality.

Rolling Eyes
"Albert"


Don't over-react, nothings going to 'destroy the hobby'.

Not even gay marriage 8)
  tranx Assistant Commissioner

Location: Somewhere in Southwest Sydney
It's not the RTR products that will destroy the hobby, it is the 'US v's THEM' mentality.

Rolling Eyes
"Albert"


Don't over-react, nothings going to 'destroy the hobby'.

Not even gay marriage 8)
"TheBlacksmith"


I didnt know that an oil tanker meant so much to people, maybe it looks like a phallic symbol?
  Albert Chief Commissioner



It's not the RTR products that will destroy the hobby, it is the 'US v's THEM' mentality.

Rolling Eyes
"Albert"


Don't over-react, nothings going to 'destroy the hobby'.
"TheBlacksmith"



Oh thank goodness for that! Laughing


  GT46C-ACe Assistant Commissioner

Location: Sydney, NSW
Shows where the mind of some goes from a simple analogy eh?....
  tranx Assistant Commissioner

Location: Somewhere in Southwest Sydney
I know we have gone off on a tangent, and we should stick to the subject matter of the Southern Rail blog, but I was advised once by a mate, who is a NSW railway modeller and photographer, that trains is better than sex.  Very HappyVery HappyVery HappyVery Happy

I am going to stop at this point before I bury myself in a hole and I cant get out.
  4461 Station Master

I shudder to think of what people may think of those that want to buy rtr QR loco's and rolling stock and run them on regular HO scale track  WinkWink

Sorry I couldn't help myself haha
  David Peters Dr Beeching

Location: "With Hey Boy".
I shudder to think of what people may think of those that want to buy rtr QR loco's and rolling stock and run them on regular HO scale track  WinkWink

Sorry I couldn't help myself haha
"4461"


Whatever floats your boat, if you could do it, then do it. It is no one else's problem but you the actual modeller any how. What the modeller down the street thinks is his problem, not yours as long as you get enjoyment out of your hobby that is all that matters. How you get it is not the problem though. Yes I am a scratchbuilder, kitbasher, kit constructor, plonker and what ever else you throw at me and I am damn proud of the fact.Mwa ha ha ha!
  Railwayfan Train Controller

Location: By a Railway
Southern Rail have some good and bad news. Bad news is a delay with the remaining u-boat shipment, anyone who planned on picking up their u-boats at Caulfield should read the full update. Good news is "SR will have a major announcement at the show & maybe two with a bit of luck." We know the Tulloch tank cars are going ahead so that means there must be two new items to start saving for. Wohoo Very Happy (Wohoo based on my delight of the u-boats I recently received. Mighty fine models)
"Poath Junction"


BTW, when are the tulloch block trains in FA livery supposed to be released?
  QR-INTERAIL Deputy Commissioner

Location: Where else, but Queensland
On the bright side,  the NDHF's & QR things aren't affected. Order form for NDHF's at http://www.southernrailmodels.com.au/files//order_forms/NSW_NDHF_OrderForm.pdf
"Poath Junction"

Has anyone got photos of the NDHF's with the high zebra stripes and low zebra stripes to see the difference between the two versions. A photo of the yellow scheme would be good too?
  brissim Chief Train Controller

BTW, when are the tulloch block trains in FA livery supposed to be released?
"Railwayfan"

My understandung is that they (plus the Ampol block train) are a while off. If memory serves me they will be some time after the initial release of the NSW tank cars. With the delays I think we'll be lucky to see them this year.

Tony
  Poath Junction Chief Commissioner

Location: In front of a computer most of the time.
Has anyone got photos of the NDHF's with the high zebra stripes and low zebra stripes to see the difference between the two versions. A photo of the yellow scheme would be good too?
"QR-INTERAIL"


Prototype pics of the 3 paint schemes are in the July 25th blog update.  http://www.southernrailmodels.com.au/article/25-july-ndhf-concrete-sleeper-wagons--u-boats--ntaf-etc
  QR-INTERAIL Deputy Commissioner

Location: Where else, but Queensland
Has anyone got photos of the NDHF's with the high zebra stripes and low zebra stripes to see the difference between the two versions. A photo of the yellow scheme would be good too?
"QR-INTERAIL"


Prototype pics of the 3 paint schemes are in the July 25th blog update.  http://www.southernrailmodels.com.au/article/25-july-ndhf-concrete-sleeper-wagons--u-boats--ntaf-etc
"Poath Junction"

Cheers, didn't see the new photos.

How many of the yellow wagons were in service? Can't seem to recall ever seeing any, just plenty of orange ones!
  andrewstrains Assistant Commissioner

Location: Townsville, Where else but QLD
QR-INTERAIL check you pics from when we were in Grafton a few years ago......... Smile there was yellow ones there
  Poath Junction Chief Commissioner

Location: In front of a computer most of the time.
update today: http://www.southernrailmodels.com.au/article/14th-august-2012-vak--vgk-update--newcastle-exhibition
QR samples, various news / status updates. And a promise of an update next Monday after the Newcastle exhibition, which I shall postulate means something new will be announced at that exhibition.
  fairfieldqld Locomotive Fireman

update today: http://www.southernrailmodels.com.au/article/14th-august-2012-vak--vgk-update--newcastle-exhibition
QR samples, various news / status updates. And a promise of an update next Monday after the Newcastle exhibition, which I shall postulate means something new will be announced at that exhibition.
"Poath Junction"


I have had the pre production samples here and have to say we are extremely happy how the first R-T-R QR Model has turned out.

The level of detail is superb particularly on the ends of the wagon with the appropriate piping / cylinders etc.  The wagon is suitably weighted so they will track nicely either full or empty with all of the interior detail of the hopper present.

Southern Rail will have the pre production samples on display at the Newcastle Show.

These wagons will be available from Southern Rail direct and can also be purchased directly through PGC and Black Diamond Models.

If you have any queries on the wagons please feel free to get in touch.

Regards

Phil Hadley
 
  NSWGR1855 Deputy Commissioner

update today: http://www.southernrailmodels.com.au/article/14th-august-2012-vak--vgk-update--newcastle-exhibition
QR samples, various news / status updates. And a promise of an update next Monday after the Newcastle exhibition, which I shall postulate means something new will be announced at that exhibition.
"Poath Junction"


I have had the pre production samples here and have to say we are extremely happy how the first R-T-R QR Model has turned out.

The level of detail is superb particularly on the ends of the wagon with the appropriate piping / cylinders etc.  The wagon is suitably weighted so they will track nicely either full or empty with all of the interior detail of the hopper present.

Southern Rail will have the pre production samples on display at the Newcastle Show.

These wagons will be available from Southern Rail direct and can also be purchased directly through PGC and Black Diamond Models.

If you have any queries on the wagons please feel free to get in touch.

Regards

Phil Hadley
 
"fairfieldqld"


I'm unimpressed with the steam roller width wheels. The small diameter wheels exaggerates the unnecessary wide wheels.

Terry Flynn

AMRA standards http://www.amra.asn.au/standards.htm

http://angelfire.com/clone/rail/index.html

H0 wagon weight and locomotive tractive effort estimates

DC control circuit diagrams

H0 scale track and wheel standards

Any scale track standard and wheel spread sheet
  brissim Chief Train Controller


And I see yet another update today with some samples of the NDHFs. SRM seem to have caught the same time-travelling bug that Auscision recently has - updated today 15 August but dated the 16th.

http://www.southernrailmodels.com.au/article/16th-august-ndhf-painted-samples


Tony

 

  fairfieldqld Locomotive Fireman

update today: http://www.southernrailmodels.com.au/article/14th-august-2012-vak--vgk-update--newcastle-exhibition
QR samples, various news / status updates. And a promise of an update next Monday after the Newcastle exhibition, which I shall postulate means something new will be announced at that exhibition.
"Poath Junction"


I have had the pre production samples here and have to say we are extremely happy how the first R-T-R QR Model has turned out.

The level of detail is superb particularly on the ends of the wagon with the appropriate piping / cylinders etc.  The wagon is suitably weighted so they will track nicely either full or empty with all of the interior detail of the hopper present.

Southern Rail will have the pre production samples on display at the Newcastle Show.

These wagons will be available from Southern Rail direct and can also be purchased directly through PGC and Black Diamond Models.

If you have any queries on the wagons please feel free to get in touch.

Regards

Phil Hadley
 
"fairfieldqld"


I'm unimpressed with the steam roller width wheels. The small diameter wheels exaggerates the unnecessary wide wheels.

Terry Flynn

AMRA standards http://www.amra.asn.au/standards.htm

http://angelfire.com/clone/rail/index.html

H0 wagon weight and locomotive tractive effort estimates

DC control circuit diagrams

H0 scale track and wheel standards

Any scale track standard and wheel spread sheet
"NSWGR1855"


Terry,

I am sure once you purchase your rake of QR Hoppers you will be impressed to see that this has been fixed to a width in line with the NMRA standard. One of the benefits of getting pre-production samples.

Regards

Phil

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