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DJModels Ltd End of Year Report 2016


DJM Dave
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Thank you for the "Report Card" Dave and I wish you and the business a happy new year with every success in 2017.  

 

If any business were ever plain sailing I'd worry why.  It's the lows that help us appreciate the highs all the more.  It's also too easy to allow a "small" (in terms of persons employed) business to over-run any hint of social or outside life so I trust some form of life-work balance has been established.  On the other hand if we were to spot you fly-fishing at some secluded spot might we also go looking for the laser-scanner in the bushes? ;)

 

I'm sure we shall catch up face to face somewhere in the year.  My forthcoming move will make that much easier!

 

FWIW all pre-orders currently stand here and no crowd-sourced items have been cancelled.

 

Rick

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Nice year end report and also a happy new year to all.

 

I remember some murmurings about dark events hitting Chinese production a couple of weeks back. Was this statement related to the effects of Brexit adding 20% to the price? Or is there another big change coming?

 

I know that a lot of manufacturers have revised their prices upwards in the wake of this and I hope no further knocks are due, though to be honest any statement made by the UK or EUR leaders which looks negative can deliver further shock waves.

On the other hand, positive news like the UK with have preferential dealings with the commenwealth/USA etc could reverse it, but I do feel that such news is a good way off at this time.

 

Concerning the 74, it is one of those prototypes which has the following characteristics:

1/ lived a short period,

2/ lived in one basic colour

3/ lived in the not very popular blue only 70s period, so it cannot be merged with the end of steam nor with the later brighter toothpaste period.

4/ never had any real detailed changes

5/ no preserved example

 

Yet its rather unique character should make it more appealing. Lets hope delivery of the 71s will see more commitment on this prototype. I must admit that I for one, do not like having money tied in too many crowd sourcing models at the same time. Currently I have paid for up front 3 locos still pending delivery (71, 74 and Stirling Single - > about £450 of stock), and will not commit to more until at least one is delivered.

 

As an anecdote, when I worked at the Signal box in the 90s, we often asked them why they did not do a rebuilt Merchant Navy. Hornby's reply at the time was that, in order for them to think it will sell, it had to appear 3 different liveries and live a long period. Of course when they finally did do it, it broke that false rule, but it took a lot of public requests to convince them!

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Concerning the 74, it is one of those prototypes which has the following characteristics:

1/ lived a short period,

2/ lived in one basic colour

3/ lived in the not very popular blue only 70s period, so it cannot be merged with the end of steam nor with the later brighter toothpaste period.

4/ never had any real detailed changes

5/ no preserved example

 

 

I see those attributes as positive with #3 just being a personal value judgement/opinion. For me that is a popular modelling period and one that I understand is growing in popularity. I'd certainly be interested in a few examples if DJM (or any other manufacturer) is prepared to shrink it down to N gauge scale.

 

G.

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3/ lived in the not very popular blue only 70s period,

 

A very subjective opinion in my view.  If blue only is so unpopular why are so many models released in blue and selling out?  Some are reissued multiple times over.

 

While the other points are matters of historical fact we could compare with some even less numerous types on at least some of the criteria.  And for models which have sold reasonably well at that.

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I see those attributes as positive with #3 just being a personal value judgement/opinion. For me that is a popular modelling period and one that I understand is growing in popularity. I'd certainly be interested in a few examples if DJM (or any other manufacturer) is prepared to shrink it down to N gauge scale.

G.

Blue might be getting more popular, but there is still a location restriction on a 74, of course more EMUs will help keep the south in people's minds when modelling.

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Believe me, I like the 70s blue era. However some surveys show that it is no where near as popular as BR steam nor the later sector/privatization periods.

 

Most people, will either tie in some blue locos with late steam (just about feasible) or with the colorful sector periods. Prototypes that were both green then blue obviously fit well.

The 74s appeared when steam was dead and disappeared a long time before more colorful liveries appeared. They did cover a wider area than the 71s however.

 

That said, someone with a late BR steam layout can still run 70s blue items on them, as much of the equipment, buildings etc had not yet gone under any drastic changes and still pretty much existed. Someone doing late BR steam may not wish or cannot afford to stretch the concerned era.... but my layout can and does switch between the two eras easily.

 

However BRM recently had an Osprey BR blue southernish layout (I say ish as there were various BR blue diesel intruders from other regions, though perfectly legit), and there are other cases, so I agree Blue is starting to get a bit more popular, probably because the private era is in constant evolution and what was fashionable yesterday (EWS etc) is now obsolete and gone today.

 

Hopefully, once the 71s have gone out, people will turn their thoughts to the 74 aided by Kernow's 4-TC.

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TBH you can't really go wrong with a bit of blue, post the beginning of NSE is a minefield, you have to pick a year.

 

My layout is Southern, but the green steam type so a 74 is the wrong type of DJM Southern, but I do admire the commissioned steam stuff owning a couple of DJM Kernow items plus the Gate stock on order, difficult decision to make between a 14xx or a pre-order on a steam railmotor, the lack of a GW auto coach (hint hint Dave) is leaning me towards a fourth Kernow item.

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Believe me, I like the 70s blue era. However some surveys show that it is no where near as popular as BR steam nor the later sector/privatization periods.

 

Some surveys, eh? Probably a bit like most Opinion Polls these days. :O 

 

Check out Gwiwers post (#29). And there is a lot of evidence to suggest that the transition period, often trumpeted as the most popular modelling period doesn't exactly live up to that claim and that the most popular era is slowly easing forward in time. 

 

G.

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Some surveys, eh? Probably a bit like most Opinion Polls these days. :O

 

Check out Gwiwers post (#29). And there is a lot of evidence to suggest that the transition period, often trumpeted as the most popular modelling period doesn't exactly live up to that claim and that the most popular era is slowly easing forward in time. 

 

G.

 

Oh even backwards in time to pre-grouping. A lot of people who have done BR steam era layouts now, find that it is somewhat hard these days to have something unique running on it. When I first started BR steam southern in the mid 90s (particularly south east), there was not much out there so I had to do my own EPB, Q class, Q1 and S15 (a H and P would have followed but my wife appeared in my life postponing those!). These were complemented with the few RTR Southern items and some Bachmann ex LNER locos.

 

Today only the Q class is unique and many layouts now have EPBs, Q1s, S15s etc IF I was doing shows in the UK. Of course being based in  France and doing shows here, I remain unique in having the only UK layout. But over here when on show I can (and do) mix locos from all 4 regions and all era's, and not have any person coming up and saying "that would not have run with this".

 

That said, if people are looking for something special, the 74 hits the spot for sure.

Edited by JSpencer
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Some surveys, eh? Probably a bit like most Opinion Polls these days. :O

 

Check out Gwiwers post (#29). And there is a lot of evidence to suggest that the transition period, often trumpeted as the most popular modelling period doesn't exactly live up to that claim and that the most popular era is slowly easing forward in time. 

 

G

 

Hi Grahame

 

What evidence is it you speak of? I think we have perhaps exchanged more than once on this subject in the past. As far as I know there has been nothing published suggesting any significant shift in popularity or sales of late and BR blue has always been popular.

 

According to retailers I know Transition remains by far the most quick to sell. As another recent indicator, perhaps, of the recently commissioned NGS Thompsons it is the lined maroon one that is according to the website closest to selling out. No mention of how the BR blue one is doing. What cannot be disputed is that right now between them Transition and BR blue are combined be biggest single market and one where many products overlap significantly and there are doubtless the safest bet for manufacturers. Even some early M2s were turned out in BR maroon after all!

 

On the subject of the 74 specifically, I would have thought a relatively short lived and small class with limited geographical spread and limited livery choice is always going to be a niche product in any scale probably worthy of the crowdfunding initiative in 00. However personally I would be surprised if there were anywhere near sufficient demand in an N Market which is (we are told) somewhere between 1/4 and 1/5 of 00.

 

Regards

 

Roy

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Sorry to hear about the theft, glad it's been sorted though.  I recently bought your new 14xx and 58xx and I've been very impressed with both.  I currently have 5 more pre-orders with you for various models that I am looking forward to even more now than I was before.  Best of luck with 2017 Dave!

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You say there is scope for lots of different J94s to be made, does that mean an original WW2 WD liveried one might be on the cards? As far as I'm aware not a single one has ever been released in pre-LNER days, which is frustrating.

 

Edit: obviously by Pre-LNER I mean before they were bought from the War Department, not pre grouping... :P

Edited by GreenGiraffe22
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What evidence is it you speak of? I think we have perhI the pastps exchanged more than once on this subject in the past. As far as I know there has been nothing published suggesting any significant shift in popularity or sales of late and BR blue has always been popular.

 

 

You're right, 'BR blue' period has always been very popular and is increasingly so. There is a lot of evidence that has been recounted to you and officially published in response to very similar questions you have proffered in the past. To save me having to type them out again it might be best if you check back on RMweb records.

 

Thanks. Cheers.

 

G

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You're right, 'BR blue' period has always been very popular and is increasingly so. There is a lot of evidence that has been recounted to you and officially published in response to very similar questions you have proffered in the past. To save me having to type them out again it might be best if you check back on RMweb records.

 

Thanks. Cheers.

 

G

 

Hi Grahame

 

To be fair anything I have been referred to previously has been based far more on opinion than any hard facts or numbers, so I'm not going trawling for that..

 

BR blue is quite popular, no argument on that score from me, but any significant shift in popularity between that and transition? There has been little if any evidence produced confirming this and indeed any evidence that there has been (alongside the experience of retailers I know) is that transition still sells better by some margin than any other era.

 

Without going onto too much detail as it is late, I would just refer you to a couple of examples: -

 

The first the forthcoming Farish Class 40. Two green and one blue to be available at launch. This for a loco that bore BR blue from the late 60's right into the 80s.

 

Second example - Mk1 coaches - look at some of the more commonly sought Mk1s, the BR Maroon SO and SK have both had more production runs than their corresponding blue-grey counterparts, and that's not even taking into account that is only one of the Mk1 liveries possible during the transition period.  

 

Time will tell whether your prophecy comes to pass but I do not think it is anything like as simple as saying - i.e. that people model what they remember - I don't and most I know don't either. It is much more to do with capturing a place at a point in of time in miniature and steam/diesel transition is far and away the most appealing because the traditional railways and their practices were only slowly changing so there were modern diesels using older infrastructure. Trip freights and small goods yards, wagonload traffic and more...

 

Fast forward to the BR Blue era - the period I grew up in -  for sure it had it's own fascination, some old traditions remained, but it was a time of run-down and rationalisation and was pretty gloomy, this continued well into the 80s..

 

Regards

 

Roy

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To be fair anything I have been referred to previously has been based far more on opinion than any hard facts or numbers, so I'm not going trawling for that..

 

 

I think you might have missed or ignored them then. It's not a matter of negatively saying what doesn't sell well but recognising what does. Take RT for example, and, while only anecdotally, post #29. And, of course, the model railway market in total is far bigger than just N.

 

G

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I think you might have missed or ignored them then. It's not a matter of negatively saying what doesn't sell well but recognising what does. Take RT for example, and, while only anecdotally, post #29. And, of course, the model railway market in total is far bigger than just N.

 

G

 

...... though I do remember being told at very great length by George Smith of Dapol that "banger blue" was the only Class 73 livery he couldn't sell and he was "never going to listen to people who told him what was popular again".....

 

Les

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...... though I do remember being told at very great length by George Smith of Dapol that "banger blue" was the only Class 73 livery he couldn't sell and he was "never going to listen to people who told him what was popular again".....

 

Les

Took too long to release it - many people who wanted a blue one repainted one of the earlier production.

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Took too long to release it - many people who wanted a blue one repainted one of the earlier production.

 

... which with production runs of under 500 per livery presumably means the market is very small......

 

Les

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This all hinges on:

There is a niche in the market but is there a market in the niche?

That is the simple economic judgement producers have to make. If we as modellers believe there is but producers do not then we can crowd source funding. If there is a genuine market, enough will subscribe.

I model pre grouping so am pretty certain this epitaph applies to most models I would like rtr but have to accept will be kit built by me.

Richard

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