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Bachmann 4BEP


Paul.Uni
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Just now, SRman said:

I want one, but that's going to hurt! :)

I agree on both counts.  These are in tooling apparently.  

 

Considering only the buffet car has required tooling that is a very hefty price hike from the most recent 4Cep models.  I shall definitely be reconsidering.  

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I am mystified as to the costing.  Two "motor" coaches one of which will be powered in the model but which are otherwise identical and from a written-down tool.  One trailer composite also from a written-down tool.  One buffet car which is all-new and has required R&D and would be costed at 2020 prices.  Hmmmmm.  

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Yes, it's a lot of money. But as has been rehearsed again and again, model railways are not priced on a 'cost plus' basis, because the materials are but a small part of the process. CEPs at £70 were a steal for us, but no way representative of a sustainable business model. To get the 4BEP made under Bachmann's current global strategy, it (as a niche product for a small market) has to 'buy' its slot in production by contributing to global overheads. 

I will still buy it because, although I am now very selective about purchases, this a real essential for me - and when I amortise the cost over all the Bachmann BR era EMUs I have bought (many at ridiculously cheap bargain prices) the price will be a bit more palatable.

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3 hours ago, Gwiwer said:

I am mystified as to the costing.  Two "motor" coaches one of which will be powered in the model but which are otherwise identical and from a written-down tool.  One trailer composite also from a written-down tool.  One buffet car which is all-new and has required R&D and would be costed at 2020 prices.  Hmmmmm.  

 

Unless one is taking the written-down tooling and using it for a railroad range (like Hornby), the fact that the tooling is paid for isn't relevant to the pricing - the pricing will be close to as if it was a newly tooled product so that the pricing remains consistent across the entire range.

 

Which isn't saying I agree with the price, just that the existence of tooling isn't reflected in the price.

 

But what will likely be considered in the price is not just the new reality of Bachmann/Kader manufacturing costs but also that it is a niche model - only of interest to a small geographic area and the unfortunate reality that for most of the market (who are unaware of the differences between the various 4-car units) it will be a "but I already have one" and so won't be buying it.

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Hi,

 

I thought the RRP of £449.95 was announced a while ago.

 

Contrast the Bachmann 4 BEP - a variant of a largely BR(SR) Eastern Division EMU to the Hornby 4 VEP which is based on a more widely used prototype but which is out of production. Also the 4 VEP model had a number of design errors, oversize flanges and an inferior motor bogie.

 

If you want to see a 00 boat train composed of three CEPs plus an MLV there should be one running at speed on Beggarwood Lane at the Basingstoke show on the 14th/15th March (easier to park on Sunday).

 

Regards

 

Nick

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11 hours ago, Gwiwer said:

...Considering only the buffet car has required tooling that is a very hefty price hike from the most recent 4Cep models... 

I believe the current practise is that a complete tooling suite is created for a product line, so it will be all four vehicles newly tooled.

 

Whatever, the pricing is very clearly for a low volume: relatively few sales on which to cover the overhead in bringing this product to market. Presumably Bachmann's dealers have been consulted and feel that among their customers there are the numbers to make the product commercially viable.

 

Considering the extra sophistication that Bachmann have put into their generally very satisfactory BR MU series, compared to the contemporary traction and 4W wagon subjects in their range the pricing doesn't look so unreasonable. The same train length from an E4 and a dozen 4W wagons takes us into the £300 to £400 range, dependent on the vehicles selected.

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30 minutes ago, 34theletterbetweenB&D said:

The same train length from an E4 and a dozen 4W wagons takes us into the £300 to £400 range, dependent on the vehicles selected.

Or three main line diesel locomotives.  The 4Bep has only one motor not three.  

 

The market is a fairly modest one but the same was argued when the Cep was first announced.  And the Hornby Vep, Bil and Hal.  All have confounded the nay-sayers by going on to be released, re-released and in the case of the Hornby Vep also reworked to address some of the early problems.  

 

There are successful types (not, perhaps, of multiple units) in the market where prototypes were in single-digit numbers not least the Heljan "Falcon" of which how many were eventually produced?  All advertised as limited editions but several thousand in various liveries and variants were released to satisfy demand.

 

It may be the same with the 4Bep.  They seldom ran solo other than sometimes on Bognor portions of Arun Valley trains (more commonly 8-car with a Cep) but they can run alone and some of us have layouts capable of presenting a Cep+Bep formation and a few of us can run 12-car formations.  

 

The Bep interests me as a Southern Electric enthusiast even though I don't currently have space to run 4-car units realistically.  The 2Hap also interests me and two of those would make a typical train although they frequently ran singly and in multiples of up to five in a train (six 2-car units was not permitted) but I fear the price will mean I may have to live without both.  

 

Glancing through the Forthcoming section of Bachmann's catalogue shows that most other multiple units including 117 and 150 are similarly priced and arguably disproportionately to a solo locomotive plus two or three carriages.

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.

 

Apart from the ridiculous price, the problem I have is that the first (?) version released will be the small yellow panel version, whereas IF pushed I would prefer the plain green version (not yet announced) so, WITH RELUCTANCE, I will probably forgo the small yellow panel version (hoping that the model is chucked in the bargain bin in future) and wait for the putative plain green version.

 

The same sort of decision regarding the BR Black version of the 45-ton crane (I will await the Southern Region version).

 

Lovely models, but the prices mean that sensible hard decisions need to be taken.  I still wish Bachmann well with these models.

 

.

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2 minutes ago, Gwiwer said:

...Glancing through the Forthcoming section of Bachmann's catalogue shows that most other multiple units including 117 and 150 are similarly priced and arguably disproportionately to a solo locomotive plus two or three carriages.

Quite. I suspect the problem from a sales volume perspective is the inflexibility. My operation requires a two car DMU, which typically ran as four or six car sets, alongside steam transitioning to diesel traction on short carriage sets.

 

A five or six carriage train combined with any of the four steam and five diesel locomotives at one time or another regularly on the turns crudely enables 18 'different' trains to be permed. It's actually better than that, a total of 18 traction units and 26 carriages enables somewhat over 40 legitimate 'different' trains to be permed.

 

3 x two car DMU provides for either a 4 car or 6 car set. Other than sticking a loco on to drag it home after it failed again, there's not the intrinsic variety from the spend.

 

19 minutes ago, AlexHolt said:

I honestly don't know how some people can keep defending Bachmann prices. Whilst other manufacturers are starting to go down in price (slowly but they are going down), Bachmanns are just always getting higher and higher. 

For myself it is more a matter of having some comprehension of how they came to this position. I feel it is a classic of getting a brand established and then exploiting it. Started out with very competitive pricing for RTR product that had formerly required DIY model making to achieve; and now solidly established, have transitioned to a corporate standard return on investment pricing model.

 

It's entirely with Bachmann UK to do any defending required. Has the business called it correctly? Will the customer base for their product pony up the cash? Free market economics; we customers will make our decisions and the 'invisible hand' will supply the verdict.

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Although 3 of the 4 coaches are "re-issues" I suspect Bachmann may have taken the decision to make improvements to the lighting and conductive couplings in line with the recent 4TC. The lighting is not only poorly implemented in the 4CEPs (eg very dim in the motor coaches) but the couplings are are difficult to assemble without turning the unit upside down. Nevertheless the price is still daunting ....

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35 minutes ago, truffy said:

It was up there yesterday and I had assumed it had been updated that day along with several other models such as the GWR 94XX, MR 1P and the BR Class 20/3, which is why I started the thread. NIK said the RRP was announced before yesterday and I was explaining I wasn't aware of that.

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33 minutes ago, John Tomlinson said:

Given that early issue green 4CEP's in mint condition can be had on Ebay for around £90, it looks like an opportunity for some overlays and paint to convert the one coach that is different!

 

John.


True, but you have to have a real way with painting to avoid the converted coach not looking like the odd one out.

 

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Downer said:


True, but you have to have a real way with painting to avoid the converted coach not looking like the odd one out.

 

 

 

That's a fair point, and I would admit in the past to having struggled to precisely match colours whilst spraying. It's probably simpler to take out the glazing from the other three coaches and respray all four pairs of sides at the same time.

 

John.

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Not a 4BEP admittedly, but there are some Bachmann 2EPB bargains to be had. Unit 5771 ( cat no.31-379 )

has full rrp of £219.99, but can be bought for £109.99, and from one retailer £ 104.99 + free postage.

It would seem that retailers are being stuck with this model and need to shift them.

I now have two 2EPB's units 5770/1 and consider 5771 to be a real bargain.

If Bachmann's present prices stick, then fine, but if there is customer resistance bargains will follow.

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14 minutes ago, trevor7598 said:

Not a 4BEP admittedly, but there are some Bachmann 2EPB bargains to be had. Unit 5771 ( cat no.31-379 )

has full rrp of £219.99, but can be bought for £109.99, and from one retailer £ 104.99 + free postage.

It would seem that retailers are being stuck with this model and need to shift them.

I now have two 2EPB's units 5770/1 and consider 5771 to be a real bargain.

If Bachmann's present prices stick, then fine, but if there is customer resistance bargains will follow.

If RRP on the 4 BEP, is £449, that should get to around £330 - £350 at the main box shifters, thereafter is anyone's guess.

 

However, I think you are right. After the initial splurge by those who must have one at any price, it seems further stock is harder to shift and engenders discounts. This is true across our hobby, look for example at the Heljan 02, or various efforts from both Hornby and Bachmann. Interestingly for us, the discounting isn't necessarily a reflection on a poor model, so much as the appeal compared to production.

 

John.

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1 hour ago, trevor7598 said:

...If Bachmann's present prices stick, then fine, but if there is customer resistance bargains will follow.

For a while at least. Dependent on how it works at retail, stocking items that tie up cash and never generate the expected return, will lead to resistance from that quarter. I assume at the moment that the hits that swiftly depart the shelves more than compensate for the damp squibs that fail to go off and have to be shifted at a discount; so the game is still worth the candle.

 

 (Personally I feel Bachmann are pushing it with this specific subject choice. How difficult would it be to make a decent representation from four of the plentifully available mk1s and drive units or other means already mentioned? Been there, arguing with some distant guy in corporate with a calculator; about allowing some local flexibility in pricing policy, to permit adjustment to market conditions.)

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