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Oh Hornby - what are you doing mates? (short rant:(


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This is going to be a short rant, be warned.

Rocket (Ltd. ed., out of box failure with loose wires and missing axle housing screw) came back today after 4 months in Hornby's custody (no updates whatsoever but that's NOT the issue) to show no movement at all owing to A LOOSE WIRE. At least they managed to replace the missing screw. What are you doing mates?

 

Now I understand that transport damage occurs and it may have worked in the shop but that means that the connections between Rocket and its tender are so poorly designed (FLIMSY RUBBISH) that any child couldn't have done worse planning it. Apart from that, I think they just snotted on some solder in the workshop and hoped for the best.

 

Anyhow, thanks for listening, you're the only ones that understand how I feel!

If you had a similar experience, I'm honestly not surprised and you're not alone; my heart goes out to you Bro/Sis.

This thing looks so magnificent but mechanically, oh dear. It resides in the display cabinet now!

 

Let's end it with this: Hornby is never going to win Le Mans! 

IMG_20200729_171150633.jpg

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17 minutes ago, AchimK said:

Hornby is never going to win Le Mans! 

 

Nor am I. Despite living only 40 mins drive from the circuit and watching it from the Members' Grandstand for more than 20 years. Some of us are just slow learners. 

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I think Hornby’s assembly sub-contractors in China need to up their game in terms of QC; there seems to be a lot of this sort of thing and bits that fall off, going back a few years now.   I have the skillsets to deal with it but not everyone does and it’s very irritating.  
 

I suspect the fragile wires have been used because of the (lack of) weight of this tiny model; beefier ones are probably stiff enough to push the tender off the road in curves.  Poor design IMHO and a better method of connecting the tender pickups is needed; for this loco I’d have gone for a split pickup from  all wheels and a plastic bar link between loco and tender with phosphor bronze or brass strips top and bottom, painted over to disguise them. 

Edited by The Johnster
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8 minutes ago, The Johnster said:

I think Hornby’s assembly sub-contractors in China need to up their game in terms of QC; there seems to be a lot of this sort of thing and bits that fall off, going back a few years now.  

Hornby's Subcontractors are Sanda Kan, who are owned by San Kader, who own.....Bachmann

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Bachmann don’t seem to suffer these issues, at least to nothing like the same extent and at least in my experience.  Sabotage?  Can’t imagine Simon Kohler letting them get away with that!!!

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9 minutes ago, TheQ said:

Hornby's Subcontractors are Sanda Kan, who are owned by San Kader, who own.....Bachmann


Hornby stopped using Sanda Kan way back in 2008-2012. Which was the main reason why they went through quite a bad patch in terms of delays and deliveries as they had to look for new factories in China.

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It's down to poor design and probably not helped by the design team one side of the world and the assembly line the other.   Drawing office and production have historically not gotten on in many industries but the number of loose parts now specified to be assembled has probably tripled compared to the good old UK produced Hornby and many of them are now much less robust with the increased likelihood of mistakes and breakages.  You could disassemble a Triang Dock shunter with your pen knife back in the 1960s, yet you can't even buy a tool locally to fit the hex bolts on a lot of Hornby.  Bachmann may be the same but they never give me (That) trouble.

Its like the old British Leyland cars,  We had one which shed its oil drain plug while being delivered, one A series with no head gasket and one where  the propshaft bearing was not bolted its bracket, and we know what happened to BL....  Same problem quality control and slap dash assembly by semi skilled workers.     Still they look good in the display cabinet, no one actually runs a "Rocket," do they?

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1 hour ago, DavidCBroad said:

It's down to poor design and probably not helped by the design team one side of the world and the assembly line the other.   Drawing office and production have historically not gotten on in many industries but the number of loose parts now specified to be assembled has probably tripled compared to the good old UK produced Hornby and many of them are now much less robust with the increased likelihood of mistakes and breakages.  You could disassemble a Triang Dock shunter with your pen knife back in the 1960s, yet you can't even buy a tool locally to fit the hex bolts on a lot of Hornby.  Bachmann may be the same but they never give me (That) trouble.

Its like the old British Leyland cars,  We had one which shed its oil drain plug while being delivered, one A series with no head gasket and one where  the propshaft bearing was not bolted its bracket, and we know what happened to BL....  Same problem quality control and slap dash assembly by semi skilled workers.     Still they look good in the display cabinet, no one actually runs a "Rocket," do they?

 

Poor design?

 

People really do post rubbish on this website. Mine works perfectly and looking at the thread there isn't exactly a flood of complaints about non working models. More a discussion about what they pulled and that they can't get one. Almost certainly a contender for model of the year.

 

The OP has a duffer, had a mild rant, that's all.

 

No, my one is not going to be running regularly as it's an oddity and goes with my other oddities such as the Stirling Single and APT-E.

 

But why wouldn't somebody run a Rocket? The NRM have done so since 1979 and it's been all over the country. 

 

 

 

Jason

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3 hours ago, Pete the Elaner said:

 

86214 was indeed a good machine. :biggrin_mini2:

 

38 minutes ago, Steamport Southport said:

 

It was a bit of a Novelty.

 

Oh sorry that was 86235.  ;) 

 

 

Jason

Now stop it, the pair of you!! :punish::mosking:

You're ruining someone else's perfectly good Rant, y'know!!  :jester: 

 

 

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49 minutes ago, Steamport Southport said:

 

Poor design?

 

People really do post rubbish on this website. Mine works perfectly and looking at the thread there isn't exactly a flood of complaints about non working models.

 

Even though mine is a non-runner, I agree with you.

Rocket had a small boiler & a small open tender with water stored in a barrel. Once it is scaled down, there is not really much opportunity to hide weight & a motor.

The options are to make it more robust (& overscale like the 1970s version was) or make it to scale & accept that it will be delicate.

There is actually a 3rd option for modellers: model in a more suitable scale!

 

Mine had broken wires. I could have tried re-soldering them, but if I slip, it is my model which gets damaged. The model is brand new, so why shouldn't it run?

I have taken the option of reporting it to my retailer, who will deal with the issue for me.

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Mine is currently back with Hornby. it great on dc, when I tried to install Hornby’s 6 pin decoders it fried two of them then stopped running. But like the Murphy’s, I’m not bitter. My retailer was sold out so Hornby accepted it without a blink, if its not right when it comes back I trust Hornby’s to put it right. Having dealt with them before I know they are that sort of company.

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7 hours ago, The Johnster said:

I think Hornby’s assembly sub-contractors in China need to up their game in terms of QC; there seems to be a lot of this sort of thing and bits that fall off, going back a few years now.   I have the skillsets to deal with it but not everyone does and it’s very irritating.  
 

I suspect the fragile wires have been used because of the (lack of) weight of this tiny model; beefier ones are probably stiff enough to push the tender off the road in curves.  Poor design IMHO and a better method of connecting the tender pickups is needed; for this loco I’d have gone for a split pickup from  all wheels and a plastic bar link between loco and tender with phosphor bronze or brass strips top and bottom, painted over to disguise them. 

I would suggest that if the  words China and QC occur in the same sentence, in the majority of cases that will be in a negative context.

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22 hours ago, AchimK said:

This is going to be a short rant, be warned.

Rocket (Ltd. ed., out of box failure with loose wires and missing axle housing screw) came back today after 4 months in Hornby's custody (no updates whatsoever but that's NOT the issue) to show no movement at all owing to A LOOSE WIRE. At least they managed to replace the missing screw. What are you doing mates?

 

Now I understand that transport damage occurs and it may have worked in the shop but that means that the connections between Rocket and its tender are so poorly designed (FLIMSY RUBBISH) that any child couldn't have done worse planning it. Apart from that, I think they just snotted on some solder in the workshop and hoped for the best.

 

Anyhow, thanks for listening, you're the only ones that understand how I feel!

If you had a similar experience, I'm honestly not surprised and you're not alone; my heart goes out to you Bro/Sis.

This thing looks so magnificent but mechanically, oh dear. It resides in the display cabinet now!

 

Let's end it with this: Hornby is never going to win Le Mans! 

IMG_20200729_171150633.jpg


Just asking...couldn't this have just been posted in the Hornby Rocket thread (rant included)? :jester:

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It is amazing to my mind, given the complexity of different component manufacturers and their geographic separation in a vast country, organised by sub contractors of sub sub contractors of sub sub sub contractors (exaggeration, but not massively so), that QC can be attempted at all in China.  But my experience of it is that Bachmann, who engage with the same system, seem to produce locos that work and do not shed bits all over your layout. 
 

Therefore there is effective QC in China, as is proved by the clear evidence that Hornby doesn’t use it as effectively as Bachmann!

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46 minutes ago, rab said:

I would suggest that if the  words China and QC occur in the same sentence, in the majority of cases that will be in a negative context.

I believe all Apple products are made there. There is a high degree of market penetration by Apple, with plenty of users then upgrading/updating Macs, iPads and iPhones. If Chinese QC were inherently crap, I suggest Apple would have collapsed years ago. 

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7 hours ago, DavidCBroad said:

You could disassemble a Triang Dock shunter with your pen knife back in the 1960s

 

And if the web wasn't full of people demanding ever greater levels of detail then we could still have models that all used a generic chassis (the Dock shunter was an an EMU bogie), looked nothing like any prototype.

8 hours ago, The Johnster said:

I suspect the fragile wires have been used because of the (lack of) weight of this tiny model; beefier ones are probably stiff enough to push the tender off the road in curves.  Poor design IMHO and a better method of connecting the tender pickups is needed; for this loco I’d have gone for a split pickup from  all wheels and a plastic bar link between loco and tender with phosphor bronze or brass strips top and bottom, painted over to disguise them. 

 

Since there are 4 wires between loco and tender, that's some chunky and complicated connection you envisage. Bachmann are getting stick for chunky DMU couplings which can be hidden under corridor connections, how would people react to something similar here?

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Fair point; thought it was two, why do they need 4?  
 

With my pedant’s hat on, the dock shunter used the Transcontinental diesel bogie, which was use under the TC road switcher and the double cab electric as well.  I believe the emu bogie, a similar design but on a longer wheelbase, was used on the MetroCam dmu and the Blue Pullman, despite having cast sides representing a Southern Region 3rd rail power bogie.  The other bogies on this UK based stockwere the generic B1.   
 

The side frames on all these bogies were cosmetic and the driven wheels do not have actual axle boxes, but generic power bogie cast mazak frames prevented correct detail on the dmu or Blue Pullman.  
 

I cannot recall the power bogie for the TC Budd RDC, but IIRC it was the emu bogie with the usual generic TC coach bogie at the other end.  
 

A similar form of mechanism was used for the Co-Cos/A1A-A1As, on which the centre wheels were dummy and integral with the bogie casting, but this time the EM2 and the Brush Type 2 had correct representations of their bogie sideframes in the casting.  The later English Electric Type 3 and Brush Type 4 incorrectly used the Brush Type 2 bogie, in actual fact a 4 wheel bogie. 
 

The EM2 unit could have served as a correct bogie for the Ivatt twins or a D600 Warship, but the opportunity was not taken up.  

Edited by The Johnster
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1 hour ago, Phil Parker said:

.....  a generic chassis (the Dock shunter was an an EMU bogie), looked nothing like any prototype. .....

Not sure whether you mean the whole Dock Shunter resembled no known prototype or just the chassis ...... but the body certainly had ( slightly ) more than a passing resemblance to 1950s North British Loco machines - of which B.R. bought eight ( in two variants ) Nos.11700-7 / D2700-7.

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1 hour ago, Oldddudders said:

I believe all Apple products are made there. There is a high degree of market penetration by Apple, with plenty of users then upgrading/updating Macs, iPads and iPhones. If Chinese QC were inherently crap, I suggest Apple would have collapsed years ago. 

The difference is that with high volume products such as those a good deal of time, effort and money is put into designing them to need the absolute minimum of hand assembly, which is where poor QC tends to show up. Toy trains are at the opposite extreme, with ever more hand fitted parts and insufficient production volumes to try and engineer some of that hand assembly out; although you could say 'design clever' was a step in that direction, and look how well that went.

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