68XX 'Grange' and 47XX 2-8-0 Tender Engine
We are delighted to report that the 'Granges' and 47XX models have arrived safely in the UK and are now being checked and prepared for delivery. They all look terrific, whether they are GWR plain green or BR lined green, plain or lined black. The shock to me in the inspection in Incheon in December was how good the black engines look. Up to now I have always preferred green engines, now I don’t know!
The 'Grange' is so dainty, especially with the Churchward 3,500 gallon tender and even better with the Collett 3,500 unit. There is an interesting choice of chimneys ('Hall' and ID tall, or 'Grange' shorter) and diverse shapes of oil pipe covers, an exercise that will extend to the 'Halls' and 'Modified Halls' that are now in production. The 47XX contrasts with the 68XX as it is a real brute of an engine – huge boiler and firebox, extended smokebox, plus the extra set of driving wheels. A sort of mixed traffic 'King', and to my view once seen is difficult to forget. To the best of my memory (unlike the 'Grange') I never saw a 47XX on the various steam train journeys I made as a small boy.
The plan is to distribute a number of the models at the Bristol Show in late January. If you intend to come to the Bristol Show and you want to collect your engine please contact us to let us know as transport space is limited.
Overseas customers will have their models despatched after the Bristol show.
Colin and I are still working very hard to get the all the engines numbered and configured as the majority of the engines were not available with the requested number-plates at the time of production completion. We generously offered you all a late choice of numbers and also changing numbers, which was a popular option that many customers took up. So in these cases it has meant a huge amount of finishing work here the UK. GWR engines with numbers on the buffer beams are particularly time consuming to complete.
Despite the 100+ miles logistics we expect to get a large number of engines ready in time for Bristol Show. We are doing our best to complete this work and we are asking you to be patient. For those of you who are unable to go to the Bristol show, or where we still need more time to complete the work, we will organise drop-offs at regional points around the UK to get the models hand delivered. We will also try to combine these drop offs together with deliveries of 'Granges', 47XXs and other models so as to be as efficient as possible.
We hope to have on the stand a GWR Green 8750 in early BRITISH RAILWAYS configuration. This is a very attractive livery and is well worth considering if you would like something different.
For overseas customers we are planning to start deliveries after the Bristol Show in February.
Standard Class 5
The first brass prototype (Walshaert’s valve gear version of the BR5) minus some detail finishing around the cab has been reviewed by our technical team led by Bob Meanley. We feel the sample is reasonable first attempt which captures most of the important features of the locomotive. The sample will be on display at the Bristol Show which will allow you to take a first look and input any comments.
Class 52 Western Diesel Hydraulic
The painted sample was returned to the builders who need it for reference during the production phase so it will not be with us at the Bristol Show. The builders are still making the corrections to the front and roof ends and are busy making most of the component parts so that production of the finished models can commence as soon as all the modifications have been approved.
Thank you all for your support of Masterpiece Models and we wish you all a Prosperous New Year during 2019.
17 January 2019