Carriage prices are nuts!

Discuss model railway topics and news that do not fit into other sections.
User avatar
Posts: 374
Joined: Tue Apr 20, 2010 7:11 pm
Location: England

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby kiwitram » Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:37 pm

flying scotsman123 wrote:
dubdee1000 wrote:That was a really good post Alex. You got both sides nailed down

Hear hear!

Another poor humble uni student here, I decided to pack in rtr modelling a couple of years ago and haven't looked back since! It helps that my favourite era is late-pregrouping where there's not much rtr anyway which prodded me in the right direction.

My coaches for example come in at around £15 each.


They don't quite stand up to the £50 modern offerings but because I can't run any of those anyway it doesn't matter. There are some brass kits available but they end up being more expensive than rtr coaches by the time you've got all the bits.


Again wagons, nothing available rtr, and I could buy some very expensive kits (which still only have a limited range) but the only bits that cost any real money here are the wheelsets (£1 per wagon) and buffers (£2.40 per wagon).

Locos are a bit more complicated, depends on what you're starting from and where you're trying to get to!

But that's been my solution, I now spend virtually no money on rolling stock in boxes, and much more satisfying running something you've made than taken out of the box. Both of the above examples are only the second such builds of each type I'd ever tried, give it a go and you might surprise yourself, if you start off with just a wagon body you can try out for pennies without even splashing out for buffers and wheels each time until you're happy.

I suppose I'm 'lucky' in what I model (SECR/LBSC through to 1930 Southern Railway) and so theoretically I have a lot of scope for stock which I can include, RTR or otherwise. But, several of my locomotives will be coming from kits and 'bashes', such as two GBL C classes and eventually a Golden Arrow 01.

Kit-building and stock adaptation is, I think, more fun than box-opening (but I shan't open that can of worms) and it's more affordable once you've built up a good stock of parts. And anything is adaptable- I'm using old guitar strings to form goal post and pin type couplings, as I abhor conventional tension-lock types. I definitely enjoy tarting up older models- I've got a fictitious six axle Pullman on the go, a repainted and new-chassis GraFar 00 gauge brake. It's reasonably easy, cheap and it's enjoyable! Best of all, I think I paid £12 on Hattons for it.

Those coaches look fantastic by the way, are they Ratio? IIRC there are some of their Midland examples which allegedly pass well for LBSC 48' stock.

All this has got me wanting to go to a show now...

User avatar
flying scotsman123
Posts: 2054
Joined: Thu Jan 12, 2012 5:29 pm
Location: err, down there round the corner... not that one!!!

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby flying scotsman123 » Tue Jan 09, 2018 10:51 pm

kiwitram wrote:
Those coaches look fantastic by the way, are they Ratio? IIRC there are some of their Midland examples which allegedly pass well for LBSC 48' stock.

I shall take that as a very big compliment! :) No, they're scratchbuilt, you can read more about them here (the page linked to and the one after).

As you say, a stock of parts helps, but that does take time, and a bit of luck. I'm quite proud that I've constructed virtually an entire tender locomotive from scratch from spare bits and pieces, only a couple of bits will be on the shopping list to finish off. Things I had lying around were a bit of brass tube, some alan gibson wheels that I got free with something else a few years ago (which determined what I ended up making, browsing through some drawings trying to find something with the right size wheels to make use of them!), a tri-ang tender chassis and an 0-4-0 chassis block and motor. Combine with plasticard and brass wire and you're almost there.

I'll very much look forward to seeing some more of your bashing; whether getting something out of a box is as exciting is debatable, but from a forum point of view, someone else's bashing is certainly more interesting than them opening another box!
"listen carefully, i shall say this only once"


Posts: 354
Joined: Tue Nov 10, 2015 1:32 pm
Location: Deepest, Darkest Northants.

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby RailwayRobbo » Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:09 pm

If I see anything expensive (Bachmann Autocoach/Inspection coach@ £50+) I wait till Christmas/birthday and ask my 4 daughters to buy it for me between them. That's the only way I can justify spending that amount of money on one piece of rolling stock. I keep thinking I'll up date my maroon and custard rake but I look at my Mainline coaches and think why! It would cost in the region of £100 just for 3 coaches. Prices are getting silly and sometimes I wonder where it will end.

Mike Parkes
Posts: 582
Joined: Sat Sep 01, 2007 8:25 pm

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby Mike Parkes » Fri Jan 12, 2018 6:18 pm

Older models comprised of just 23 parts

Sides x 2
Chassis with both ends
Interior (and not always provided)
Buffers x 4
Bogies x 2
Wheelsets x 4
Rivets to hold bogies in place x 2
Couplings x 2
Rivets to hold couplings in place x 2
Bolts to hold the lot together x 2

More recent models are riddled with detail parts, although their has been a step back from this on some very recent models with some parts on now moulded on as part of the main component (door handles for example)

User avatar
Posts: 776
Joined: Fri Aug 13, 2010 6:10 pm
Location: Isle of Ballybongle

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby GeraldH » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:20 am

Well I guess that I'm rather unusual in that my recent coach purchases have generally cost £2-3 each, but then the BNR uses enhanced Triang 9" coaches. I probably get more fun out of turning these into BNR coaches, than I do from picking up a brand new super detailed coach for £40. Of course that's not a solution for most people, who are modelling a particular period or location, but you can still have some fun on a relatively low budget :) .

With the rise in postal charges, collectors fairs are becoming attractive again and you can often pickup decent second hand stuff at good prices, especially if you look under the tables and/or haggle a bit. I agree with an earlier poster that Mainline had the right balance between detailing and robustness, it's just a shame that their loco mechanisms were not up to scratch. For me some of the modern stuff is too detailed/fragile and partly as a consequence too expensive. I've had to remove detail from some items I've bought, as it has interfered with operation, e.g. pipes from the ends of Heljan diesels, as well as brake rodding and sandpipes from steam locos which foul my uncoupling ramps. It's a tad unfortunate that someone's been paid to put these items on, increasing the cost and I then have to spend my time removing it :( .

I do wonder whether there might be a few casualties among model railway suppliers at some point in the next few years, surely the level of detail and price cannot go on rising without demand dropping off? At the same time, there's a big issue with the age profile of current modellers...
Gerald H - BNR Correspondent :)

My layout: ... hp?t=28854

User avatar
Posts: 3347
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2016 3:43 pm
Location: Somewhere in Wales, UK.

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby Mountain » Sat Jan 13, 2018 1:52 pm

The way I see our hobby today, is that we are sitting on a "Railway modelling bubble" which is getting more and more fragile by the day. It has been supply and demand where the current generation of pensionable age can afford the hobby (Today the majority of modellers fit into this category) but how long will pensions hold out for?
The working class generations... We are on the tail end of full time positions where the majority are working part time and not by choice, so modelling funds are next to zero.
The younger generations are encourages and taught how to live in debt and how to manage debts unlike older generations who were taught how to save.
It is likely to be a very challenging future for our hobby which will mean major decisions and major change to keep the manufacturers "Alive".
High prices are what I see as a temporary fix which may patch up the seams in some places, but when one seam is patched another appears elsewhere.

While this may seem a bit doom and gloom, at the same time there are huge opportunities as there are large gaps in our hobby to head for mass market value for money model railways.
Trying to take over the world... HAHAHAHA!

User avatar
Posts: 3406
Joined: Wed Nov 14, 2012 4:39 pm
Location: Essex

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby alex3410 » Sat Jan 13, 2018 6:02 pm

GeraldH wrote: I've had to remove detail from some items I've bought, as it has interfered with operation, e.g. pipes from the ends of Heljan diesels

You are not the only one, it looks amazing but kept getting in the way and causing loco and/or coaches to derail :roll:

Posts: 878
Joined: Mon Jul 02, 2012 7:22 pm
Location: Telford ,Shropshire

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby mjb1961 » Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:46 pm

Dapol do staniers at @ £17/18 ,,,kits even cheaper ,,on eBay you can pick up new from hornby trainsets teaks or Pullmans at @ £50 for three ,,,even cheaper second hand ,,,,all are ready to run at a cost that everyone should be able to afford ,,,,but there is a compromise,,,detail !

User avatar
Posts: 3162
Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2011 7:05 am
Location: Eaglesham, south of Glasgow

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby luckymucklebackit » Sat Jan 13, 2018 8:09 pm

The dapol "CKD" kits are great value for money, I have bought a few.

For the youngsters out there "CKD" was a Triang Hornby brand for "Completely Knocked Down" a very similar concept to the Dapol product!

This Signature Left Intentionally Blank, but since I have written this and I intended to do it, this Signature is intentionally not blank. Paradox or What?
My layout - Gateside and Northbridge

User avatar
Posts: 10944
Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2010 12:06 pm
Location: Bottom end of N. Warks line

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby Bufferstop » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:21 pm

Ah CKD or Beat the Chancellor. If you've grown up in the world post VAT, you'll have missed the joys of avoiding purchase tax. Different things paid different rates all decided by the Chancellor of the Exchequer. For instance loudspeakers for domestic use were clobbered at the luxury goods rate but those for commercial use were exempt. Speakers for a Hi-Fi system with treble and bass units in the same box snook through on the zero rating because someone decided that commercial systems contained multiple drive units whereas domestic ones only had one. When you bought a train set in those days it never contained a power unit, maybe the speed controller but never the transformer. A transformer was charged at the household electrical goods rate (around 20% I think) but the rest of it was either exempt or fairly lowly rated as it was classed as an educational toy.If they had packed the transformer in the set the whole lot would have paid the high rate. It became such a tangled mess in the end that everyone accepted VAT without much complaint.
Growing old, can't avoid it. Growing up, forget it!
My Layout, My Workbench Blog and My Opinions

User avatar
Posts: 2631
Joined: Mon Mar 22, 2010 12:58 am
Location: Staffordshire

Re: Carriage prices are nuts!

Postby D605Eagle » Sun Jan 14, 2018 1:26 am

luckymucklebackit wrote:The dapol "CKD" kits are great value for money, I have bought a few.

For the youngsters out there "CKD" was a Triang Hornby brand for "Completely Knocked Down" a very similar concept to the Dapol product!


My only beef with those is they aren't painted in places and you can buy ready to run for only about £1.50 more. However I think they are a great introduction to kit building as they are very straight forwards to build.

Return to “General Model Railway Discussion / News”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests