View single post by Si.
 Posted: Fri Mar 17th, 2017 01:22 am
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Joined: Thu Feb 23rd, 2012
Location: London
Posts: 5884
" it was hardly a reliable layout for electric contact, but I suspect that wasn’t an uncommon thing way back then "

" Pretty much anything you buy out of the box these days is infinitely better for quality and accuracy "

Hi Lee :wave:

As far as I'm concerned electrical contact is simply a matter of 'good housekeeping'.

If there is less than good wiring and a ton of dust & oil etc. in the mix...

...then the result today or way back when is going to be the same.

Decent layout wiring is easily as important as all the modeling input.

As for what I've bought "out of the box these days"... Bachmann Mogul has a split plastic gear after 5 mins running.

The recently manufactured slotcars I have aren't much better either. :f:

The '50s/'60s machined-brass & diecast-metal drive-trains in the Tri-ang Railways locos I have...

...look & operate like Swiss-watches, despite some being over 60 years old.

As for accuracy, the general build & fit of parts on the Tri-ang products is second to none.

The then 'cutting edge' plastic body moulding pioneered by companies like Tri-ang...

...has really not actually changed THAT MUCH, since the mid '60s.

There is a tendency for companies like Bachmann to stick on a few more wire bits here & there these days...

...but whether a few extra odd grab-irons makes much difference to a model is debatable.

However, like any 50 year old machinery, some maintenance is of course required occasionally.

I won't be needing to spend big-money on replacing busted plastic gears & expensive motors though.

But cleaning out 1/2 a centuries worth of dust & old oil, is obviously a MUST.

The other thing for potential buyers of 'vintage' locos to be aware of, is sometimes the motors old magnet.

They can be the single & simple to fix cause of poor performance, as they 'go weak' over time.

In the case of the awesome Tri-ang motors, the whole assembly can be easily striped & maintained.

New neodymium magnets are available at £3 each, and are a simple job to change.

Spare parts like armatures & brushes are also all available at 'sensible' prices no problem.

The vintage Tri-ang products if taken care of, will still be running when I'm 6ft under.

I doubt I could honestly say the same regarding what I have bought " out of the box these days ".

They can be nice toys to play with while they last...

...but generally like many modern things, they aint built TO LAST ! ;)



Tri-ang Transcontinental, cutaway diagram from the 1960 catalogue.



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