Monday, January 12, 2015
My first model railway locomotive
A couple of days ago, I was sorting through the boxes that contain my Triang collection and I found this engine - the most important and precious one I own.
Nearly 4 decades ago, at Christmas, I was presented with my first train set.
It wasn't a "proper" train set. At least not in the sense that there was a box with all the bits in. I received a Triang 3F, 4 Graham Farish wagons and a Hornby brake van. In addition, there was track and a H&M controller.
The loco had been repainted by my Dad into a dull maroon with yellow dome. He'd thought I'd prefer this to a boaring black engine, and at the time he was probably right. The loco circled for many miles on various layouts passing through mixes of balsa wood and Lego landscape.
When I joined the model railway club at 14, I decided to detail my engine since that seemed to be what everyone else did at the time. The maroon paint was covered with matt black, some cocktail stick based brake stand appeared in the tender and a smattering of real coal covered Triang's efforts. Some waterslide transfers replaced the original number and crests, a bit wonky but at least I had a go.
Eventually the insulating bushes on the wheels gave up and the model became static and vanished in to a box.
At one point I had visions of treating it to a set of Romfords, wire handrails and perhaps even a better motor. With the Backmann 3F now available, thoughts turn to restoring the maroon livery that I first saw the model in. For the moment, it can sit in the display cabinet, a testament to the start of my hobby.