Saturday, December 03, 2011
As regular readers will have spotted, I don't buy many ready to run model locomotives. Occasionally though, one comes along that even I can't resist and so a couple of days ago, I blew my latest cheque from Google (Those adverts on the right. Click on them and the money is invested in toy trains. Eventually - they aren't making me rich !) on a new 3F from my ever reliable local model shop Classic Train and Motor Bus in Leamington Spa.
Before I handed over the plastic, Mark ran the loco up and down the test track to make sure it was all right (try that over t'internet) and suitably satisfied I lodged it in my bag and wandered home.
First impressions are good. The body and chassis look really fine. The shape appears to my eye to be about right. Inside the cab there is a wooden floor and most amazing of all, a working fall plate !
Of course, there are a few things that will need to be fixed. The coal for a start. Have you ever seen such plasticy looking stuff ? The rest of the model is a lovely satin shine, ripe for a bit of weathering but an excellent start. The fake dead dinosaurs in the water cart, well at the very least will need covering with real ones.
My other gripe is the loco-tender gap. Yes there is a clever springy bar joining the two but it's default position is too far away. I reckon that this can be adjusted with a screwdriver but even them I'm not sure how close I can bring the two. The fall plate is supposed to bridge the gap, not provide a take-off ramp for the fireman !
You might wonder quite what attracted me to the model. It's not like I have any layouts to use it on after all. The thing is that my very first model engine was a Triang 3F and so there has always been a soft spot in my heart for the class. Somewhere my loco sits with weathered black paint and home make vac pipes. With this latest model I can restore it back to Triang-ness and sit the two together.
Of course, there is the little matter of the Gibson (I think) kit I have stashed away as well. Maybe 3 3F's ?