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Hornby 2019 Speculation

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If Hornby has still got the Lima tools they could reintroduce their 0 gauge class 33 diesel, Mk1 coaches and goods wagons. These were a considerable improvement on the Hornby 0 gauge clockwork trains and Tri-ang Hornby's Big Big train, the Lima models run on Peco 0 gauge track and are much cheaper than the 0 gauge models currently being produced. You can still get second hand Lima class 33s for about £50 and Mk1 coaches for about £20.

Edited by Robin Brasher

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My punt at the surprise item would be some form of DCC controllable uncoupling mechanism. Hits the technology spot and also a play value, as well as being extremely useful.

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What if the big surprise is "Loco Detection"....

Wouldn't be much of a surprise. We've been expecting it every year since they announced it (with R numbers) back in 2013.

Hopefully 2019 will be the year it finally reaches the shops!

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Glamour models first.

 

Original LNER W1(Hush Hush) , Thompson A2/3 or Streamlined P2.

 

LNER Sentinel Railcar. 

 

LNER J27 preserved Loco , which is now back running.

 

LNER Coronation or Silver Jubilee Set which would however be expensive and a limited edition to ensure they could sell them all.

 

LNER Restaurant Car or Triplet version.

 

 

LMS wagon stock they are totally overlooked .

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Reintroduction of TT to modern quality and detail standards. Simon K. is on record as being a fan of TT. High risk but if it it did take off then they would have the market to themselves.

 

O Gauge under Bassett Lowke. Higher price point with better margins. Reuse of existing model designs and research.

 

Extensive reworking of DCC offerings under Zero 1 brand. New version of RailMaster and/or DCC controller similar to ECoS. Voice control via Alexa...

 

Don’t see Hornby entering N gauge in any significant way - crowded market which is relatively small. What would Hornby’s USP be in N gauge (and I am an N gauge modeller).

 

Digital camera wagon/coach. Plays to the YouTube generation of modellers and has great play value.

 

Harry Potter range joining up trains, cars (OD and Corgi), Scalextric and Airfix.

 

Something to do with DC Comics via WB tie up.

 

Reintroduction of Live Steam as this has been requested and out of the range for a long time. Could even be O gauge Live steam as the price point would be more acceptable in that market.

 

Given Hornby’s financial situation I would expect anything radical to be relatively modest this year though.

 

Paddy

Edited by Paddy
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If Hornby has still got the Lima tools they could reintroduce their 0 gauge class 33 diesel, Mk1 coaches and goods wagons. These were a considerable improvement on the Hornby 0 gauge clockwork trains and Tri-ang Hornby's Big Big train, the Lima models run on Peco 0 gauge track and are much cheaper than the 0 gauge models currently being produced. You can still get second hand Lima class 33s for about £50 and Mk1 coaches for about £20.

Hornby are undoubtedly aware of how much stick they get for not clearly differentiating Railroad in OO. They would (and should) be understandably wary about launching an O Gauge equivalent, even without an established range of their own to cause confusion. 

 

Would Hornby's image (or self-image) be well-served by entering a new market (for them) and coming in underneath the competition on both price and quality? I think not.

 

The fact is, all model trains are manufactured in smaller numbers than in the past, and it may be that only the premium models really make enough profit in the quantities it's sensible to produce. Commercially speaking, Railroad is just a means to obtain a continued return from obsolete tooling. Anything with substantial new content (like the Crosti) comes out uncomfortably close to the main range on price.

 

Investment always follows the perceived return, and  the ready availability of old Lima models for a tiny fraction of what current models cost, suggests that [a] there's very little remaining demand for them and there might not be much of a market for "budget" O gauge anyway.

 

John

Edited by Dunsignalling
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I can think of a few anniversaries in 2019 off my head ...

 

50 years ago - closure of the Waverley route and Uckfield-Lewes line;

55 years ago - introduction of the BR corporate rail blue livery;

60 years ago - closure of much of the Midland & Great Northern;

65 years ago - the first Derby Lightweight DMUs entered service in the West Riding and Woodhead line fully electrified;

70 years ago - London Liverpool Street to Shenfield line electrified

 

but I foresee Hornby will release locos and/or matching train packs representing the state of affairs in 1939, the year which I consider to be the zenith of steam power in Britain.

Edited by gc4946

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Financially speaking, Hornby is still in intensive care and nothing really dramatic is on the cards outside of their OO gauge core activities.

 

O and N are areas in which others are well-established and Hornby aren't really into "toe-dipping" despite the N gauge Brighton Belle. I suspect that we'll only see further announcements in that scale if the returns on that were at least comparable with what they can make from OO.

 

We can even more firmly rule out a revival of TT, simply because launching an effectively "new" scale/gauge (at least in standard gauge) onto the market would require a range of models wide enough to be viable for buyers to make an entire layout from. Such breadth is also necessary to convince people that it's a serious long term proposition. Nobody is going to go for it if they think they won't be able to add to it in future. Two locos, two or three coaches and half-a-dozen wagons just won't cut the mustard.

 

Narrow gauge offers the chance of a smaller entry profile. 009 is a possibility and is clearly a growth market. However, O16.5 is a quite popular niche which has the benefit of using what, for Hornby, is more familiar technology. There are also enough people doing it already that even a single loco would find a market. Quarry Hunslet, (with all its myriad options) anyone?   

 

My estimation is that anything really innovative will be in the area of control (not necessarily DCC) and is likely to be something that's transferable to other scales.

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My punt at the surprise item would be some form of DCC controllable uncoupling mechanism. Hits the technology spot and also a play value, as well as being extremely useful.

Already available.

 

Keith

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Wouldn't be much of a surprise. We've been expecting it every year since they announced it (with R numbers) back in 2013.

Hopefully 2019 will be the year it finally reaches the shops!

Was being sarcastic....

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The fact is, all model trains are manufactured in smaller numbers than in the past, and it may be that only the premium models really make enough profit in the quantities it's sensible to produce. .

 

John

The biggest difference is the bewildering number of actual models now available and the frequency of new releases.

 

Go back to the Hornby Dublo & Triang era. The same models would be available for years as the retailer had steady sales of the same item over a long period.

New locos were rare and once released would be available for ages unless a complete flop.

 

"Loco Sir?", " I can offer a Princess in black with no valve gear or for an extra 2/6, a Princess in green with some valve gear" :jester:

(Yes I know it wasn't quite as bad as that!)

 

These days many new models appear, most are snapped up immediately, the dregs are later sold off cheaply and something else is produced.

 

Keith

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Steam:  GNR / LNER J6

             SECR D class

 

Diesel:  DAVE DON'T DO DIESELS  :jester:

 

Coaches:  GWR clerestory

                 Gresley articulated stock (hopefully with better teak effect than recent efforts)

 

Wagons:  SECR dance hall brake

 

Surprise:  O gauge (they do have a history!)

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I'd like to see TTS sound on Railroad models that haven't been done yet, maybe classes 26 & 33. It was reported in the model press that a retool was being carried out on the VEP. Quite interested to see if something materialises on that front.

 

Mk1 buffet or sleepers maybe, other than that - not a clue.

 

Hi,

 

Do you happen to recall where in the model press was a mention of a retool being carried out on the VEP?.

 

I only ask in case I could afford VEPs at the new higher prices (and Brexit to come which may reduce sterling for a number of years).

I would like to see an improved VEP maybe with an improved power car mechanism (no traction tyres, more weight, increased torque motor, flywheel?).

 

 

Regards

 

Nick

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Steam: Southern Q 0-6-0.

LNER B16.

GWR Saint.

 

Diesel: NBL 0-4-0 Shunter.

 

Wagon: Detailed Siphon.

 

What I want:-J6,A5,C12,N5 and L&Y 0-6-0.

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Point 2 reminds me of Doctor Beeching.

One piece of 'Beechingisation' is already on view. The entire Sodor railway closed, presumably due to insufficient traffic. That won't account for all the 50% of their current range that is contributing little to the bottom line. I have no idea what that 50% may be, but I do expect it will be identified and axed.

 

Positively - what this thread was about - Hornby are paying for a finance facility to pull themselves out of the ditch, something which even the hardest pruning will not achieve. For recovery Hornby has to invest that money quickly to introduce new product which will enthuse customers and result in rapid return on the investment. There had better be at least one real surprise in there that has customers promptly reaching for their wallets.

 

The good news is that among our small and unrepresentative sample, there is a substantial majority interested in Hornby producing 'the right stuff'.

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The biggest difference is the bewildering number of actual models now available and the frequency of new releases.

 

Go back to the Hornby Dublo & Triang era. The same models would be available for years as the retailer had steady sales of the same item over a long period.

New locos were rare and once released would be available for ages unless a complete flop.

 

"Loco Sir?", " I can offer a Princess in black with no valve gear or for an extra 2/6, a Princess in green with some valve gear" :jester:

(Yes I know it wasn't quite as bad as that!)

 

These days many new models appear, most are snapped up immediately, the dregs are later sold off cheaply and something else is produced.

 

Keith

All true, but how many of us would be happy if things went back to how they were in the 1950s/60s? When (for instance) Tri-ang didn't even bother to change the number/name on their "Winston Churchill" in well over a decade. It didn't matter to many because almost nobody even considered having more than one loco of the same type.

 

Back then anybody who had more than six r-t-r locos was considered a plutocrat, now anyone with less is probably a beginner. Those with more cash built (or had others build) kits.

 

The current scene does take some keeping up with, but I know which I prefer. 

 

John

Edited by Dunsignalling

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Reintroduction of TT to modern quality and detail standards. Simon K. is on record as being a fan of TT. High risk but if it it did take off then they would have the market to themselves.

I suspect that if they did so, it would be an introduction across the continental ranges as well where there is still a relatively healthy market and all to a unified scale as it's a clean break situation for the UK side of things. Not really seeing this happen myself but will gladly have an edible hat on stand by for grateful consumption if it does.

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One piece of 'Beechingisation' is already on view. The entire Sodor railway closed, presumably due to insufficient traffic. That won't account for all the 50% of their current range that is contributing little to the bottom line. I have no idea what that 50% may be, but I do expect it will be identified and axed.

 

Positively - what this thread was about - Hornby are paying for a finance facility to pull themselves out of the ditch, something which even the hardest pruning will not achieve. For recovery Hornby has to invest that money quickly to introduce new product which will enthuse customers and result in rapid return on the investment. There had better be at least one real surprise in there that has customers promptly reaching for their wallets.

 

The good news is that among our small and unrepresentative sample, there is a substantial majority interested in Hornby producing 'the right stuff'.

One effect that cutting out the "dead wood" products might have is to divert some of our spend towards new items that will help Hornby to thrive. 

 

(An uncharacteristically optimistic view for me :jester: )

 

The duds will fall into two obvious classes; those as items that don't sell well and make little or no profit when they do. Those should get the chop immediately.

 

For items that sell in reasonable numbers but don't produce a return, first jack the price up to a point where they will and see if they still sell.  If that doesn't work, then scrap them.

 

However, never forget that some items are pivotal partners for others. Someone has already mentioned the most obvious one (HST coaches and Power cars) but there will be more subtle connections too. An example might be the SR Pull-push set, sales of which would presumably be affected were there no suitable loco in the range.

 

John  

Edited by Dunsignalling

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The big surprise will be Hornby with their years of electric traction experience are in the running for providing the trains for HS2.

 

Main range will have opening doors, internal lighting and LED displays plus padded seating and a real driver. Sound versions will use Shinkansen recordings for a truly high speed experience.

 

Railroad version allows for broke Britain after a no deal Brexit - sealed doors, plastic seating, no internal lighting or displays and the driver can only operate it from a Hornby Select system. TTS sound will use a Valenta HST recording to remind everyone of the age of the train.

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My Two Pennorth:

GWR Saint (90% already tooled with the Star)

?

I’m not sure the availability of existing tooling is relevant. Didn’t Hornby say some time ago that with different factories being used and moving tooling around between them, that every locomotive now had its own complete set of tooling.

 

As to what may appear, I agree with others that a Princess is the most obvious low hanging fruit on the steam front. For D&E, I think this year is too soon for an new 86/2; more likely for 2020. I can’t see a new Class 91 anytime soon; it would just lead to calls for new Mk4s to go with it, and without them sales may be weak. Something all new such as an brand new EMU or Mk5 coaches perhaps.

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They'll do a pretty loco in a colourful pre-grouping livery

 

For example a GER T26/LNER E4.

 

And then will promptly shoot themselves in the foot by producing a variant of their 4-wheeled coach to go with it!

 

 

Though a T26 would fit well with their J15s.

 

edit  For great justice! (and clarification)

Edited by Hroth
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I’m not sure the availability of existing tooling is relevant. Didn’t Hornby say some time ago that with different factories being used and moving tooling around between them, that every locomotive now had its own complete set of tooling.

 

As to what may appear, I agree with others that a Princess is the most obvious low hanging fruit on the steam front. For D&E, I think this year is too soon for an new 86/2; more likely for 2020. I can’t see a new Class 91 anytime soon; it would just lead to calls for new Mk4s to go with it, and without them sales may be weak. Something all new such as an brand new EMU or Mk5 coaches perhaps.

I think that’s right re tooling and even if in the same factory, they wouldn’t want to wear parts of the overall tooling at different rates. Where it could save is on cad / design time however I don’t feel that’s the overall driver of cost.

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Steam: LNER J27, retooled Princess Royal, GWR 78xx.

 

Coaches: GWR Collett Bow-Ended Suburban Stock, LNER Gresley Driving Trailer Brake 3rd.

 

Wagons: LMS 20T Brake Van, and NER Wooden Hoppers.

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I can think of a few anniversaries in 2019 off my head ...

 

50 years ago - closure of the Waverley route and Uckfield-Lewes line;

55 years ago - introduction of the BR corporate rail blue livery;

60 years ago - closure of much of the Midland & Great Northern;

65 years ago - the first Derby Lightweight DMUs entered service in the West Riding and Woodhead line fully electrified;

70 years ago - London Liverpool Street to Shenfield line electrified

 

but I foresee Hornby will release locos and/or matching train packs representing the state of affairs in 1939, the year which I consider to be the zenith of steam power in Britain.

.

 

You forgot  70 years since June 1949 when the first and only (thank god) Bulleid Leader emerged from Brighton Works !

 

Probably the only Southern Region loco I wouldn't buy  -  why anyone votes for it in the wishlist poll I cannot imagine.

 

------

 

At least three people people have mentioned 009, including one the Ffestiniog !  IF I remember correctly, afew years ago there was speculation on these boards regarding Hornby producing a FR double-Fairlie via Fleischmann, which SUPPOSEDLY floundered due to cost ??????????

 

------

 

IF I remember correctly remember it was stated here that this set of announcements are the last products of the "old regime", no doubt edited by the new brooms.

 

----- 

 

IF they do produce a D-Class, I do hope that as with the Bachmann Atlantics they design it such that a D1 class can also be manufactured.

 

.

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