Do you remember when.......

Sitting the other day on the train on the way home from work I was contemplating the fact that I have now been modelling for close on 37 years.
This got me thinking about how very much the modelling world has changed over the years and how it was like when I was a teenager just contemplating my first purchase. So I thought I'd start a thread on what those of us who are old enough remember from the 1970's.
So, do you remember when.....
There was a magazine called Model Railway Constructor. A Peco point cost 1. There were no curved points, slips or code 75 points manufactured by Peco. Railway Modeller was not an A4 sized magazine. Triang Hornby made a "kit" of Princess Elizabeth in maroon livery where all you really had to do was screw the loco and tender bodies to their respective ready to run chassis and it was complete. You tried to build an N gauge layout to a Cyril Freezer plan and it wouldn't fit the board. You went to an exhibition and a man called Slater showed you what Plasticard was. You discovered plastic kits could be assembled with something called Mek-Pak and you didn't need that messy Airfix cement any more. You didn't realise how quickly Mek-Pak evaporated till you left the bottle open while you made a cuppa. Flock powder only came in two shades of green. Controllers all had resistance mats. and finally...there was no such thing as DCC.
I just bought an ECOS colour display DCC controller at almost 600. Has to be the best DCC purchase I have ever made. It is superb.
Why not add your memories to the thread and tell us about your most modern purchase/acquisition to date?
Archie
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I remember my first train set - 1946. Sigh ...
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AoL. Dad brought it back from Belgium when the war ended... O gauge tinplate, 3-rail "oval", a very modern looking EMU with interior lighting, white light at the front, red at the rear. 20 volt supply (the controller ran my Meccano motors long after the train had died) which gave one of my Dad's mates a shock when he used his tongue* to check if the controller was working after the train stalled... When it worked it looked fantastic to my young eyes.
[* using the tongue to short out the terminals was a standard method of checking to see if a bike lamp battery was still working]
--
Dave,
Frodsham
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contains these words:

Those bike lamps were heavy. Must have been the equivalent of 4 D cells. I was using the same style lamp as late as 1958. Seems like I had something smaller when I cycled through Ireland in 1963.
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- Tension lock couplings were all the same size, shape and height as each other. - There was a magazine called Model Railway News. - You could get loco wheels from Romford and Hamblings. - You could get coach and wagon wheels by Jackson and...er... - Astrac was the control system of the future. - Ready to run locos were available in one livery - only. - You could buy new H&M point motors. - You could buy Peco Wonderful coal, mineral and salt wagons. - Railway Modeller cost 2/6. - Every town or suburb had a model shop. - There was an Easter exhibition every year at Central Hall. - You had to cut etched name and number plates to shape yourself.
--

Regards

John



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On 04/07/2010 03:55, John Nuttall wrote:

If you buy Kings Cross plates you still have to do that!
--
Paul Boyd
http://www.paul-boyd.me.uk /
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I know - back in the 60s they were the only ones you could get! I still have some in the spares box but they are unlikely to see the light of day.
--

Regards

John



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On 04/07/2010 13:45, John Nuttall wrote:

They've been around for that long? They must count as one of the longest standing brands still around, surely!
--
Paul Boyd
http://www.paul-boyd.me.uk /
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I got a copy of the 1954/55 Gem cataloge today.
Cheers, Simon
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Postal problems?
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Just hadnt thought to order it - hadnt even thought till mid 1955.
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Prices?
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On 05/07/2010 03:53, Lobby Dosser wrote:

[...]
Prices will look lower than they really are. In real terms (ie, the amount of time it takes to earn the moolah required to buy the model), today's prices are lower, and the product is better. Much better price/quality ratio.
Prices have risen approximately 40-fold since the late 1940s (house prices have risen more than that.) According to an advert reproduced in the The Hornby Companion, Vol 3, a goods train set (EDG7) cost 135/- in 1947, 6 pounds 15 shillings, or 6.75GBP. It comprised an 0-6-2T, two wagons, and a brake van. It's not clear whether that included track and a controller, although the ad states that "complete sets only will be sold for now." In today's money, that would be about 270 pounds....
cheers, wolf k.
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wrote in message

plus presumably as this is a luxury niche market it wont necessarily follow the prices of a basket of required goods
Cheers, Simon
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wrote in message

The big remaining questions are: will you order something and will you get it!
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I got one of those sets for Xmas in 1950.
EDG7 is listed in the 1952 Meccano catalogue at 161/2 or $8 1s 2d, including controller and rails.
The 1959 Hornby Dublo 3-rail catalogue has the equivalent G16 set with plastic-bodied wagons at only 4 16s 0d with rails but excluding power supply and controller.
http://img.chem.ucl.ac.uk/dublo/catalog.htm
--
Martin S.

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Snipped

Power supplies and controllers were almost always sold separately from the models as Purchase Tax (the predecessor of VAT) was then either not applied or was levied at an advantageous rate. I forget which, and please don't ask me the rate!
Riddles
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On 06/07/2010 04:44, Riddles wrote:

I wouldn't say "only", it's about $150 pounds in today's money.

Yes, and they cost a mint. That's why battery power was often preferred, esp. for set that were used only at Christmas. Not that batteries were cheap, either, long term they cost far more than controllers. But the short term hit was less painful.
cheers, wolf k.
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wrote:

I had (still have ) a Hammant and Morgan for my Tri-ang set so was spared the anguish of flat battery's some friends suffered. Some places in 1959 still had pockets of DC mains and ISTR that the Tri-ang instruction book issued warnings not to use such a supply even if a method to reduce it to 12v was used so many used battery power in that situation. Not that my father was any safer as our lone socket was a 2 pin one,to gain an earth installed another 2 pin socket wired to a water pipe. The H and M cable had two plugs both 2 pin one for the current one for the earth. The sole difference was the painted on M for mains on one and painted E for earth on the other. I was not allowed to plug this in myself. When that Dad Died with the Big C I was fortunate to quickly get another, only snag was he had a farm with a Generator and using it in Daylight was a no no. As my Bedtime was before Sunset for a few months of the year I had to buy a Clockwork engine for those months. Cost Half a Crown from a school mate. Recently I have started to use it again. It does the circuit of my garden line to check there is no large debris like sycamore seeds before the main track cleaning train* is sent out. * 1x rotary US style snowplow to flick bits out of the way 1 Lux Model Brau track scrubber 1 x Dapol track cleaner with abrasive disc 1 x Lux model brau vacuum car and a CMX clean machine . Needs a heavy engine to shove that lot so a UP challenger does the job.
G.Harman
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Yep, there were 4 UK locos (presume OO) that could be bought complete or as diecast body with chassis kit and wheels/motor etc. Complete fully painted with X5 motor was GBP7 8s and 8p plus GBP1 6s and 4p postage. Catalogue 1s. Gem established in 1929 !
they even did track and points - perhaps theyre own !
Got catalogue for GBP1 along with some excellent photos of Claughtons in LNWR livery from GCR at Loughborough.
Cheers, Simon
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