Much news…

News flow is getting back into gear with the latest announcements including overhead line equipment for 25Kv ac electrification from Peco (also announced new track with pressed steel sleepers) and a Class 86 locomotive from Heljan for 2009-10. All good news on top of ViTrains announced later versions of the Class 47. Pre-production images look very encouraging too. Also, the first of the much anticipated Hornby HSTs has arrived too together with a model which will be a good match: the former Lima Class 101 in Blue and Grey livery.

On my own workbench is a new Nikon Super Coolscan 5000ED slide/neg scanner which was bought to enable both a friend of mine, Graeme E. and myself to scan our extensive slide collections which number over 15,000 between us. It’s quite some beast and takes a great deal of learning to make the most of its advanced features, a task that’s kept me away from the layout this week. However, with the latest modelling news in mind, here’s a selection of scans of newsworthy items – all taken in the summer of 2002. Hard to think that’s six years ago…how times have changed. Especially at Nuneaton.

02-629Cheltenham Spa and a Virgin XC HST…Fuji Provia 200ASA film and a lovely Saturday. Hornby’s HST made an appearance this week – at least the first version of many to be produced.

02-526Heritage livery on a Class 86, also taken on Provia film under less than ideal conditions. Heljan has announced a Class 86 model for 2009-10.

02-593Photographing ‘drags’ at Nuneaton. Whilst passengers were inconvenienced on Birmingham and Wolverhampton services, the WCML upgrade work certainly offered some interesting photographic opportunities at weekends.

02-585Class 47s made it into the news again this year – a new ViTrains model before Christmas – much anticipated here.

02-586Heljan and ViTrains have made good choices – popularity and loads of liveries to produce.

DCC book:

My own news concerns my DCC book published by The Crowood Press: Digital Command Control for Railway Modellers, which was published this summer. To all intents and purposes, it has sold out at the warehouse. Dealers will still have copies if you are seeking one. A reprint is on the cards for next year. I am pleased with this development and the problem with line diagrams being reproduced in mono instead of colour will be corrected.

Platform 4a & 4b:

Another bit of news, or rather a serious consideration is the future of my older exhibition layout. With no invitations on the cards for Platform 4a & 4b plus the issue of storing it whilst working on other projects, I am thinking of dismantling it to recover useful components. It needs an overhaul anyway and I very much doubt it could be sold. After all, it’s EM gauge; I need the stock used on it for other projects and the supports would not be available either as they are shared by Dudley Heath Yard!

Food for thought. I will think more on it during today.

All the best!


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