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RTR North Eastern Railway Locomotives - A discussion.

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As an NER fanatic I'd certainly be interested in anything available - as long as available in NER condition. I was disappointed with the Hornby Q6 as it's not available in NER livery or condition , it's only with the new tool Bachmann J72 something is appearing in NER condition. Can't be many railways that have had their infrastructure produced in ready-made condition so prevalently (the excellent Hornby NER station buildings range in OO and N) compared to the locomotive and rolling stock side

 

People are constantly dashing my hopes by failing to put "ex-" before a pre-Grouping company's name when announcing a model announcements or, indeed, describing a layout!

 

There are plenty of posts celebrating the fact that, say, the LSWR modeller or the GER modeller has done well out of RTR in recent years.  No, they haven't.  The ex-LSWR and ex-GER modeller may have done, but that's not quite the same thing, is it?

 

There is a relative lack of coverage for the NER, but I mean the NER, not the purely ex-NE, which is, I fear, how the call for NE models may be largely interpreted!

 

But, such is life and you cannot blame the market for what the market, apparently wants. 

 

So, I say, just keep batting on and modelling what you want to model, post it here, get it in a magazine, like the great RTR based LB&SCR in this month's RM, and keep letting the manufacturers know what you really want. 

 

They'll get it eventually!

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Would it be prototypical to use a J72 in a dock environment?

 

It wouldn't have floated...

 

EDIT: Sorry, please excuse my facetiousness. Wasn't it for dockside use that T.W. designed the Class H and K 0-4-0Ts? Likewise the Hull & Barnsley bought in some Kitson 0-4-0WTs for use around Hull docks. This suggests that 0-6-0Ts were too long for the dockside curves.

Edited by Compound2632
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I knew that ES1 was preserved, but have never seen reference to a model of it in the NRM collection.

...

 

I'm failing to find the photo I took many years back - but, from memory, it was tin plate and it had to make do with 4 wheels rather than two bogies. It still looked cute.

 

Paul

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It wouldn't have floated...

 

EDIT: Sorry, please excuse my facetiousness. Wasn't it for dockside use that T.W. designed the Class H and K 0-4-0Ts? Likewise the Hull & Barnsley bought in some Kitson 0-4-0WTs for use around Hull docks. This suggests that 0-6-0Ts were too long for the dockside curves.

It was by no means unknown for 0-6-0 locomotives to be used in docks. The MSC always used this wheel arrangement until it bought Sentinels in the mid 1960s and the NLR engines are well known.

The question is a valid one

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J71, J72 and J77 were all used at NER ports, particularly those with coal drops (staithes)

 

Les

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It wouldn't have floated...

 

 

 

As the NBR discovered when one of their locomotives fell into Kirkaldy harbour.

Now there is an idea for the cake box challenge.

Bernard

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I think that it all depends very much on the layout of the railway. Aberdeen had a fairly extensive railway system around its docks. The Great North of Scotland Railway and the Caledonian Railway both had 0-6-0Ts shedded in Aberdeen, and after the Grouping and into British Railways days there were J72s. None of them were allowed anywhere near the docks. Instead there were four Manning Wardle 0-4-2 tanks [LNER Z4 and Z5] and a collection of 0-4-0ST puggies operated by the gas works.

 

There were two reasons; first the very tight curves at the ends of the docks, and secondly there was considered to be a weight issue - in fact the Z4s were initially deemed to heavy, hence ordering two slightly lighter ones, although latterly both were used indiscriminately by British Railways. 

 

Its also worth bearing in mind that they were running on the streets so visibility and usually a flag man required - although I have a copy of a photie showing one very pragmatically riding on the step of a wee Barclay rather than pacing in front of it.

 

Where 0-6-0Ts could be seen in a docks environment was where the infrastructure was in place to accommodate them, with long slow curves and solid foundations, such as specially designed coal staithes, yet although they obviously have a maritime interface I'd hesitate to describe them as dockside.

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As the NBR discovered when one of their locomotives fell into Kirkaldy harbour.

Now there is an idea for the cake box challenge.

Bernard

 

An M&GN loco dived off the tracks into the river near Norwich. It was recovered and repaired, and was thereafter known as " The Wensum Dipper".

 

Paul

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An M&GN loco dived off the tracks into the river near Norwich. It was recovered and repaired, and was thereafter known as " The Wensum Dipper".

 

Paul

 

Just looked up the details.

It was a J88 68341 in 1954. In this case it did not survive.

Bernard

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So, I say, just keep batting on and modelling what you want to model, post it here, get it in a magazine, like the great RTR based LB&SCR in this month's RM, and keep letting the manufacturers know what you really want. 

 

They'll get it eventually!

 

Some of us have been saying this for some time, and the facts have shows that trends identified years ago continue to be the same. Even when there were engines being started for the Hornby move to GE and Bachmann's move to GC it was obvious that NER was being overlooked, as they chose areas further south, which was odd, given the sheer size of the North East Region was massive compared to these two and would offer a better and wider area to exploit for future releases.

 

Taking information from the previous 4 years of wish list polls as a sample - the trends of what was seen previously continue, in so much that the NER is a popular area that shows up in polls as requesting engines, thus meaning demand is there. To show this I have gone back over the Eastern Region results from the last wishlist polls from 2013 to 2016. To collaborate results a simple test was used. The first 10 engines of each area of the LNE were listed and their votes totalled up, the same test was also given to LNE group standard designs as a comparison.

 

The first result is displayed in the graph below:

 

post-7347-0-37848200-1516889493.png

 

What is immediately noticeable is the way in which the North East Region area polls strongly. This is compared to the other area that does well as a pre-grouping area, being the Great Eastern. The other two, being GN and GC poll significantly lower, despite some engines being made for these areas, the results would show that follow up models for these areas don't always increase demand in others to follow. While I can understand Bachmann's apparent logic in choosing an area between the East and Midlands to run, so you'd get cross reference across regions, I still think this sub range has not really pushed a scene overall. In fact, for some years GN, GC and NBR did not get 10 engines onto the poll at all, with votes for these engines being significantly below engines of similar age and role from the NER and GE areas. It also explains their positions on the graph but reinforces the idea that demand for these engines is a lot less. The release of the Atlantic, Stirling Single and J50 for the GN area was a big demand fulfilled and the drop after these are done is obvious.

 

Hornby's GE releases seem to be more successful. When they have had a number of releases that satisfied an area that was popular over time and looks to have a stronger demand. Obviously, some engines were released in the GE area and these have seen the numbers dip. While some engines have moved up in popularity as others are announced, not all of those that follow then match the popularity that the previous ones had. Some of this is to be expected, the first ones are bound to be highly desired and as you go down the list, items become either more specialised or niche. While some of the first releases for GE then encourage other votes for follow up classes, the recent releases of things like the J70 tram, and N7 will see some of the popular remaining items chosen for production since the last wish list poll. Follow up engines on previous polls, do not match the way in which some engines have stepped up before, so I can see demand for the GE area falling in the next poll, if trends are anything to go by.

 

This in turn leaves the NER as the remaining pre-grouping area that shows high demand and also, the only pre-grouping area throughout the poll never to fall in demand across the period. With Q6 announced choices grow in number, and on release a similar jump is seen. Demand is now strong for various ex-NER engines that have matched and exceeded the growth in demand shown in polls for other grouping areas. All of these engines poll higher than some engines that have been chosen for production – but that is something that will come later.

 

Ex-NER engines have pushed their position now to the forefront and emerged as the strongest pre-grouping area that exists to be made. This is important as engines largely remained local and has been an issue for some to be selected. However, the boost to their popularity is that some did traverse other routes and regions.

 

The other area that shows continued popularity is the LNE group standard designs. But some of these are highly inconsistent. Engines like Hush Hush actually fall significantly across the period following the P2 release, while others like K4 show a similar growth pattern to other pre-grouping engines like the J36 that was closer to its operating area. The LNER Steam sentinel railcar proves very popular but its position varies considerably – I think the Western steam autocoach unit will have brought back its idea into the spotlight. So overall popular Eastern group standard designs are done and many remain popular over all, but the trends to identify them are a lot less clear for some.

 

What is clear is that the popularity of these engines exists and it was clear even before the period of data used to get these results, as the other engines needed for the region could be purchased and were readily available. The engines that are people are selecting are also interesting for the NE region, but such recent results for the area show that the interest and demand is strong, has been for ages given its starting position and as other popular areas are met, it leaves it as one of the few remaining areas with a demand and following that mirrors other selective periods that have seen models produced to date. That surely means it’s an area that should see further follow up orders, now that K1, Q6 and J72 have, or will arrive soon.

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Some of us have been saying this for some time, and the facts have shows that trends identified years ago continue to be the same. Even when there were engines being started for the Hornby move to GE and Bachmann's move to GC it was obvious that NER was being overlooked, as they chose areas further south, which was odd, given the sheer size of the North East Region was massive compared to these two and would offer a better and wider area to exploit for future releases.

 

Taking information from the previous 4 years of wish list polls as a sample - the trends of what was seen previously continue, in so much that the NER is a popular area that shows up in polls as requesting engines, thus meaning demand is there. To show this I have gone back over the Eastern Region results from the last wishlist polls from 2013 to 2016. To collaborate results a simple test was used. The first 10 engines of each area of the LNE were listed and their votes totalled up, the same test was also given to LNE group standard designs as a comparison.

 

The first result is displayed in the graph below:

 

attachicon.gifcompany popularity.png

 

What is immediately noticeable is the way in which the North East Region area polls strongly. This is compared to the other area that does well as a pre-grouping area, being the Great Eastern. The other two, being GN and GC poll significantly lower, despite some engines being made for these areas, the results would show that follow up models for these areas don't always increase demand in others to follow. While I can understand Bachmann's apparent logic in choosing an area between the East and Midlands to run, so you'd get cross reference across regions, I still think this sub range has not really pushed a scene overall. In fact, for some years GN, GC and NBR did not get 10 engines onto the poll at all, with votes for these engines being significantly below engines of similar age and role from the NER and GE areas. It also explains their positions on the graph but reinforces the idea that demand for these engines is a lot less. The release of the Atlantic, Stirling Single and J50 for the GN area was a big demand fulfilled and the drop after these are done is obvious.

 

Hornby's GE releases seem to be more successful. When they have had a number of releases that satisfied an area that was popular over time and looks to have a stronger demand. Obviously, some engines were released in the GE area and these have seen the numbers dip. While some engines have moved up in popularity as others are announced, not all of those that follow then match the popularity that the previous ones had. Some of this is to be expected, the first ones are bound to be highly desired and as you go down the list, items become either more specialised or niche. While some of the first releases for GE then encourage other votes for follow up classes, the recent releases of things like the J70 tram, and N7 will see some of the popular remaining items chosen for production since the last wish list poll. Follow up engines on previous polls, do not match the way in which some engines have stepped up before, so I can see demand for the GE area falling in the next poll, if trends are anything to go by.

 

This in turn leaves the NER as the remaining pre-grouping area that shows high demand and also, the only pre-grouping area throughout the poll never to fall in demand across the period. With Q6 announced choices grow in number, and on release a similar jump is seen. Demand is now strong for various ex-NER engines that have matched and exceeded the growth in demand shown in polls for other grouping areas. All of these engines poll higher than some engines that have been chosen for production – but that is something that will come later.

 

Ex-NER engines have pushed their position now to the forefront and emerged as the strongest pre-grouping area that exists to be made. This is important as engines largely remained local and has been an issue for some to be selected. However, the boost to their popularity is that some did traverse other routes and regions.

 

The other area that shows continued popularity is the LNE group standard designs. But some of these are highly inconsistent. Engines like Hush Hush actually fall significantly across the period following the P2 release, while others like K4 show a similar growth pattern to other pre-grouping engines like the J36 that was closer to its operating area. The LNER Steam sentinel railcar proves very popular but its position varies considerably – I think the Western steam autocoach unit will have brought back its idea into the spotlight. So overall popular Eastern group standard designs are done and many remain popular over all, but the trends to identify them are a lot less clear for some.

 

What is clear is that the popularity of these engines exists and it was clear even before the period of data used to get these results, as the other engines needed for the region could be purchased and were readily available. The engines that are people are selecting are also interesting for the NE region, but such recent results for the area show that the interest and demand is strong, has been for ages given its starting position and as other popular areas are met, it leaves it as one of the few remaining areas with a demand and following that mirrors other selective periods that have seen models produced to date. That surely means it’s an area that should see further follow up orders, now that K1, Q6 and J72 have, or will arrive soon.

Just for some context Black Hat, could we get a list of each of the Locomotives types that are present in the graph, for an idea of what seems to be polling well.

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... and are folk wish-listing ex-NER &c. engines, or engines in NER &c. condition? As Edwardian reminds us, there's a significant difference. It's not a J21 I hanker for, but a C - and by that I mean a C, not a C1 - a Worsdell-von Borries two-cylinder compound!

Edited by Compound2632

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Just for some context Black Hat, could we get a list of each of the Locomotives types that are present in the graph, for an idea of what seems to be polling well.

 

Give me chance... thats all coming! Id rather let people comment on some things, then produce more for discussion and analysis. 

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I'll agree with Mr J. E. Dwardian in that one should distinguish ex-NER locos (Or locos appropiate for the area formerly run by the NER) from NER locos. As James has pointed out, so many locos produced (especially from the red box stable it seems) are only appropiate for those modelling post-1923, and even in some cases they've restricted the tooling to cater for the BR modeller only. Whilst, as an example, Hornby's EX-LSWR class 700 0-6-0 is useful to me for my BR(S) modelling, it is utterly useless for my pre-1923 modelling. Bachmann, and even Oxford (Well... sort of.) and Dapol, have realised that they will get less sales by offering models ONLY suitable for BR modellers than offering models of long-lived classes that began life in pre gouping days.

 

Let's do a little comparison:

 

Hornby - Pre Grouping Models recently announced/released. (That I can think of off the top of my head!)

 

SECR 'H' Class 0-4-4T

NBR 0-6-0 (I apologise for my ignorance as regards Class and whether it is accurate)

LSWR Class M7 0-4-4T

LSWR Class 0415 4-4-2T

 

Hornby - Pre-Grouping designs in later condition.

 

ex-LSWR Class 700 0-6-0

ex-LSWR Class T9 4-4-0

ex-LSWR Class N15 4-6-0

ex-LSWR Class S15 4-6-0 (Not offered in even ex-LSWR Guise, but essentially an LSWR design!)

ex-NER Class Q6 0-8-0

ex-GER Class J15 0-6-0

ex-GER Class D15 4-4-0

ex-LSWR Rebuilt & Extended Coaching Stock

 

Doubtless there are others.

 

Bachmann, Oxford, Hattons and Dapol:

 

LSWR Class B4 0-4-0T

GER Class N7 0-6-2T

GWR 'Dean Goods' 0-6-0

LSWR Class 0415 Class 4-4-2T

SECR Class 0-6-0T

LBSCR Class E4 0-6-2T

LBSCR Class H1 4-4-2

LBSCR Class H2 4-4-2

GNR Class C1 4-4-2

GCR Class O4 2-8-0 (ROD 2-8-0)

GCR Class J11 0-6-0

GCR Class D11 4-4-0

SECR Class C 0-6-0

GWR 'City' Class 4-4-0

MR Class 1P 0-4-4T

MR Class 1F 0-6-0T

MR Compound 4-4-0

MR Class 3F 0-6-0

MR Class 4F 0-6-0

LNWR Webb 'Coal Tank' 0-6-2T

SECR 'Birdcage' Coaches

 

Again, I expect I've missed a few, but I think it shows that manufacturers are beginning to look at classes that changed little throughout their lives, and as such can appeal to as wide a range of modellers as possible, as the core BR era market gradually fades, and younger modellers (such as myself) begin to get more drawn towards the colour of either the Modern era (as boring as it is!) and of pre-Nationalisation eras, the latter also offering much more variety for the steam enthusiast, and also the electric enthusiast too!

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Just to add a little to the dockyard question-

 

There were NER-worked docks/quays  at Hull, Whitby harbour, Middlesbrough, West Hartlepool, East Hartlepool, Sunderland, Tyne Dock plus other quays upstream along the Tyne, and at Blyth, plus I may have missed a couple out.  I'm not sure about Haverton Hill and Port Clarence.

 

There were also docks along the River Tyne worked by the Tyne Improvement Commission, and Seaham Harbour Dock Co shunted Seaham.   Also there were  dock-owned locos at Middlesbrough and Stockton.  

 

The NER had a total of 24 0-4-0 tanks including those used at York Shed and on hire to the North Sunderland Railway.  The 19-strong H class was used at Hull, Darlington Works, locations on Tyneside and on hire.  The 5 K-class were used at Hull docks and York shed.

 

I think it can be taken as read that most shunting at NER docksides was done by six-coupled locos.  Certainly at least 6 of the locations listed above had no 4-coupled locos.

 

Les

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Again, I expect I've missed a few, but I think it shows that manufacturers are beginning to look at classes that changed little throughout their lives, and as such can appeal to as wide a range of modellers as possible, as the core BR era market gradually fades, and younger modellers (such as myself) begin to get more drawn towards the colour of either the Modern era (as boring as it is!) and of pre-Nationalisation eras, the latter also offering much more variety for the steam enthusiast, and also the electric enthusiast too!

 

One comparison Id like to do is how many releases have been done regionally over the last few years, going further back than the 4 years I have looked at so far for data....

 

I think there will obviously be loads for the Southern region, but it would also be interesting to compare releases with poll requests as some regions vote has diminished and if that's the case then it can show that engines are being produced for areas that don't poll as high as some that do poll well, like NE Region, which is another reason why the latter could be viable.

Edited by The Black Hat

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Really frustrating being an NE modeller. Especially lacking the time to kit build. I was hopeful that Oxford would have announced something. I'm sure Dave Jones in time will replace the OO Q6 with a NE replacement. Bachmann seem to have no interest. Hornby Q6 was excellent and I hope enough were sold to justify another trip into the North East.

 

Personally I almost gave up my modelling interest until the K1 and Q6 were released.

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I'll agree with Mr J. E. Dwardian in that one should distinguish ex-NER locos (Or locos appropiate for the area formerly run by the NER) from NER locos. As James has pointed out, so many locos produced (especially from the red box stable it seems) are only appropiate for those modelling post-1923, and even in some cases they've restricted the tooling to cater for the BR modeller only. Whilst, as an example, Hornby's EX-LSWR class 700 0-6-0 is useful to me for my BR(S) modelling, it is utterly useless for my pre-1923 modelling. Bachmann, and even Oxford (Well... sort of.) and Dapol, have realised that they will get less sales by offering models ONLY suitable for BR modellers than offering models of long-lived classes that began life in pre gouping days.

 

Let's do a little comparison:

 

Hornby - Pre Grouping Models recently announced/released. (That I can think of off the top of my head!)

 

SECR 'H' Class 0-4-4T

NBR 0-6-0 (I apologise for my ignorance as regards Class and whether it is accurate)

LSWR Class M7 0-4-4T

LSWR Class 0415 4-4-2T

 

Hornby - Pre-Grouping designs in later condition.

 

ex-LSWR Class 700 0-6-0

ex-LSWR Class T9 4-4-0

ex-LSWR Class N15 4-6-0

ex-LSWR Class S15 4-6-0 (Not offered in even ex-LSWR Guise, but essentially an LSWR design!)

ex-NER Class Q6 0-8-0

ex-GER Class J15 0-6-0

ex-GER Class D15 4-4-0

ex-LSWR Rebuilt & Extended Coaching Stock

 

Doubtless there are others.

 

Bachmann, Oxford, Hattons and Dapol:

 

LSWR Class B4 0-4-0T

GER Class N7 0-6-2T

GWR 'Dean Goods' 0-6-0

LSWR Class 0415 Class 4-4-2T

SECR Class 0-6-0T

LBSCR Class E4 0-6-2T

LBSCR Class H1 4-4-2

LBSCR Class H2 4-4-2

GNR Class C1 4-4-2

GCR Class O4 2-8-0 (ROD 2-8-0)

GCR Class J11 0-6-0

GCR Class D11 4-4-0

SECR Class C 0-6-0

GWR 'City' Class 4-4-0

MR Class 1P 0-4-4T

MR Class 1F 0-6-0T

MR Compound 4-4-0

MR Class 3F 0-6-0

MR Class 4F 0-6-0

LNWR Webb 'Coal Tank' 0-6-2T

SECR 'Birdcage' Coaches

 

Again, I expect I've missed a few, but I think it shows that manufacturers are beginning to look at classes that changed little throughout their lives, and as such can appeal to as wide a range of modellers as possible, as the core BR era market gradually fades, and younger modellers (such as myself) begin to get more drawn towards the colour of either the Modern era (as boring as it is!) and of pre-Nationalisation eras, the latter also offering much more variety for the steam enthusiast, and also the electric enthusiast too!

 

Looking through this list and ignoring engines from the southern and eastern lines, of which I know little, we have:

 

NBR Class C 0-6-0 - as rebuilt by W.P. Reid from 1913 onwards.

NER Class T2 0-8-0 - introduced in 1913; I'm not well-enough informed to know what condition the model represents.

GCR Class 8K 2-8-0 - introduced 1911.

GCR Class 9J 0-6-0 - in superheated form, from 1913.

GCR Class 11F 4-4-0 - introduced 1919.

MR 1532 Class 0-4-4T - introduced 1881; in the earliest condition modelled, as at c. 1908/9.

MR 1377 Class 0-6-0T - in Belpaire-boilered form, from 1924.

MR 1000 Class 4-4-0 - in superheated form, from 1913.

MR Class 3 goods 0-6-0 - from 1916.

MR Class 4 goods 0-6-0 - introduced 1911 (two prototypes); production from 1917.

LNWR 'Coal Tank' 0-6-2T - in earliest condition modelled (i.e. 'as preserved'!), from c. late 1890s? but livery as c. 1914 onwards.

 

There's a clear pattern there. If you want to model pre-Grouping with RTR equipment, model 1922.

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There's something of a blind spot in much of the above, GNR provision (this line went significantly further north than the Great Central!).

GNR A1 1922

GNR J23, (LNE J50) 1922

GNR J13 (LNE J52) 1910

GNR N2 1920

GNR O2 (wait and see what happens with this one) 1921

Unfortunately the LNER K3 was released too early for complete tooling, which might have represented it as the GNR H4 of 1920.

 

1922 still very much the favoured year.

 

It needs the GNR C2 (LNE C12), J22 (LNE J6),  H3 (LNE K2), and N1 to push us back a good ten years. All survived well into BR operation so some might yet make it in RTR form.

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This in turn leaves the NER as the remaining pre-grouping area that shows high demand and also, the only pre-grouping area throughout the poll never to fall in demand across the period. With Q6 announced choices grow in number, and on release a similar jump is seen. Demand is now strong for various ex-NER engines that have matched and exceeded the growth in demand shown in polls for other grouping areas. All of these engines poll higher than some engines that have been chosen for production – but that is something that will come later.

 

Hello David

 

I hope my table attached will help illuminate the situation. (Sorry...see post below. I still had the wrong year in the table - now updated)

 

Brian (on behalf of The Poll Team)

Edited by BMacdermott

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Just for some context Black Hat, could we get a list of each of the Locomotives types that are present in the graph, for an idea of what seems to be polling well.

 

So... finally getting a chance to try and sort this out next.

 

post-7347-0-86317000-1517490183.jpg

 

The main leaders for the North East Region of ex-NER engines can be seen above. Following the release of J27, the obvious engine leading the polls is the J27, followed by the G5, and J21. The latter two mirror events seen in some other areas that when preserved engines make the headlines there is a corresponding increase in vote - the 15xx is a classic example of this.

 

J27 is another popular freight machine that will be wanted to match and go alongside other releases such as K1, Q6 and the forthcoming new J72. Looking at this, at first, J27 always stays ahead in the poll and its popularity is based on the idea of it being a sure and capable locomotive prototype. Given the few changes to the design, this would easily be able to be produced to cater for variations in the class that are subtle, and give a much wanted engine to the market.

 

B16 initially polls very well, and then maintains its vote share. Really, I think what happens is that people looked for the B16/1 and then the vote shifts across to the later rebuilds B16/2 and B16/3 which in the poll are combined. As a result the latter rebuild vote increases over time, matching the trajectory of the other main NE Region engines.

 

The interesting part here is comparing this against the results of the Scottish based J36. On its own the B16/2 and 3 matches the totals numbered very closely over the period but Hornby have found that it is worthwhile to produce J36, being one of the leading engines for the Scottish region. If that is the case, then based off the poll alone there should easily be a market for all the other ex-NER locomotives. Of course, this can be said for a lot of engines from other regions too, but adding this to the previous information about releases for the region and the interest gained in these engines must make this also a viable option for modelling companies.

 

The other idea that B16 might have going for it is new tooling options that can be done. If engines such as the P2 can be designed incorporating changes to the tooling and chassis in advance to give you later options for the model, then there is no reason why the same could not be done for B16. In many ways you would want it to be happening more. One year release B16/1, then the next release B16/2 and then B16/3, before another B16/1 etc. It gives many different variations on the model and class, that can encompass the different appearances the prototype cost. There would not be a need to relay by much a subsequent range as really the follow up models would be wanted as they are a different type. This would suit Hornby greatly, as with a main range engine produced during one year, a follow up release often happens soon afterwards. B16 would then be a engine where the follow up option is different to the first, thus generating renewed interest and in a time of cash flows and sales, this is another advantage for the idea of producing this type. It would also allow the combination of votes from B16 to give the class an overall place in the poll.

 

G5 is another engine that, like the J27 has few changes to the design overall. Its popularity must be from being a tank design and one that gives it a chance to operate passenger turns alongside the other freight machines. That to me also must show a desire for regional coaching stock to go with the idea of a G5 and J21, that would match the ex-NER appearance and also fit in with other group standard LNE designs operating into transition period. While the arrival of units brought G5's demise quicker than some ex-NER machines that lasted till the end, the subsequent new build has gained publicity which also brings it to the attention of others and thus gain further support. With the new build project going well, this can also tie in for other ranges and special releases.

 

The main dark horse in the listing that may take some by surprise is the gorgeous looking J21. While 65033 is the subject of a bid to get it restored and steamed, this again brings it back to the attention of others in the region and beyond. J21 is also a superb example of the quintessential late Victorian design with the tall chimney, mid size boiler, cab outline (even if it has covered roof), and splashers over the wheels with inside motion. It easily has the appearance to match the releases of similar classes such as the J15, Midland 3F and the Wainwright C class, even surpassing the later if an NER livery was applied (but then I would say that). On its own the J21 polls well, certainly when compared to the popular J27 and G5, but definitely in comparison to the J36. It has the advantage of being a grouping design that goes into nationalisation. Its size would make it an engine that needs less than a larger engine to produce and its design did not change much over the period again meaning a ranges can be produced being accurate for many prototypes. Engines were sent to Anglia as well, giving it another sphere of operation that then moved into Lincolnshire. Four J21s were also sold to the Harton Coal Company and ran on the Whitburn Colliery railway system on south Tyneside, meaning industrial railway liveries could be done as they lasted till 1953.

 

However, the twist in this all comes from the engine not mentioned yet - J25. This engine shares many parts with J21, being the same boiler, tender, cab and smokebox. J25 also is an engine from NER to nationalisation and also went off region down to the Western region too. The only real difference between the two was the main driving wheel size. The J21 has wheels of 5ft 1.25 inch, which is about 20.5mm. J25 had wheels of 4ft 7.25 inch which is about 18.8mm. Given that if you take J21 wheels at 20.5mm and J25 at 19mm that leaves only a difference of 1.5mm between the two classes. While some might bemoan the difference, I doubt few would actually check, or some would even notice unless the difference was pointed out. Engines have frequently been done and found to be 1-2mm bigger, longer, taller than the prototype and still made it happily into production. Reviews often cover an area like this as a compromise for detail or production methods. As a result, I believe which the wheels being such a small difference in reality you could use the same for both J21 and J25 in model form. Should that be the case, the results land with something a kin to a bombshell. J21/25 suddenly overtakes the votes of J27 by a massive margin to 316 votes, which coincidently is the same as the B16. The difference is that J21/25 would take a lot less changes than those needed for B16 but it moves it massively into a range that can compete with and outnumber some engines on the poll representing other regions, including popular western and southern areas.

 

Far from showing these engines are niche, they show they are popular, interesting choices that would follow from previous releases and can compete with and out perform in polling many engines from popular engines that have seen engines produced.

Edited by The Black Hat
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To be Devil's advocate for a moment, whilst as mentioned the J25 is very similar, the boiler sits quite noticeably lower on the J25 and additionally the cab is noticeably different owing to the splasher protruding from the front of the J21 whereas on the J25 (such as my avatar) it is much more flat-fronted

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