Kitmaster Coaches, how good were they compared to others.

Another thread reminded that I have had for the best part of 50 years
some Kitmaster Coaches assembled for me when I was small for a push
along layout.
All in Southern Green and with card interiors which I discovered in
later years were a Peco accessory.
These were virtually layed aside when I got a Tri-ang Princess Royal
set with some extra track and found that Kitmaster coaches did not run
well on Tri-ang series 3 Track or points.
Even at that young age I was aware that besides being the correct
colour for a Train my Kitmaster coaches looked a lot better than the
Tri-ang ones. A lot was down to the flush windows and the longer
length.
In later years I have heard it mentioned that well put together
Kitmasters were way ahead of much that was available and that it was a
shame that Airfix was unable to reintroduce them after the demise of
Kitmaster (was the tooling damaged or something?)
If that was true roughly how many years passed before it became
possible to obtain something of similar quality whether ready made
from the likes of Tri-ang/Present day Hornby/ Bachmann etc or easily
assembled kits.
Also wondering if it worth giving mine some restoration to running
order with new wheels ,replacing missing buffers ,broken rigging etc
or leave them as they are and stay with present day models.
G.Harman

Reply to
damduck-egg
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The specialist plastic kit shop at the bottom of my street had the boxes on display in their window long after the kits went out of production. I had to pass it every day on the way to school and got the impression they were really slow movers? Little did I know then just how much they were going to be worth one day :o(
(kim)
Reply to
kim
They were a bit pricey for the time, and required "proper" bogies to run well, both of which discouraged schoolboys with barely adequate or inadequate pocket money (which was just about all of us).
Cheers,
Reply to
Wolf K
Agree regarding appearance, but high friction of wheels / axleboxes was a problem - had to replace the plastic by metal wheels / axles when I used some on a Hornby Dublo 3 rail layout.
Bevan
Reply to
Bevan Price
I bought two of the German coaches and found like everyone else that they wouldn't run well as presented. In those days there was no way for me to make bearings and fit decent wheelsets. I mounted them on Fleischmann bogies from damaged models. The bogies were wrong - except I now know the DB fitted whatever bogies they had spare and the Fl ones were right. The Kitmaster German coaches were correct HO 1:87 scale - the Fleischman ones that visually matched were 1:82 and the Kitmaster BR23 that theoretically went with them was OO 1:76.2. I still have the Swiss Crocodile OO 1:76 scale and the Royal Scot TT3 1:120 scale.
You have to wonder what market the developer was aiming at!
Greg.P.
Reply to
Greg.Procter
I have the SNCF 241 P. I do not know here what scale, but certainly bigger than H0.. Goes well with the Fleischmann OCEM coaches.
Reply to
Wim van Bemmel
Which was precisely the problem. Instead of sticking to one market, they went off at several tangents. I have some old Railway Modellers from the 60s and are full of TT, like everyone was going to have layouts in both scales. Instead it split the market with a much smaller segment of TT fans (not surprising with the worse than OO, narrow gauge effect). With Kitmaster, they seemed to have forgot, that there would be a need for a *range* in any scale produced and of course their pockets weren't deep enough to do so. Nor is it likely their customer would either.
The kits were cheap but not that cheap.
Kevin Martin
Reply to
Kevin Martin
I can remember my father worrying if he had made a mistake going for 00, probably around 1966/67 or so, as the local model shop in Weymouth was convinced TT was going to take over. I can remember a layout called Lydney, or similar, covered in Railway Modeller ("Like Topsy.." was the title) that, had I held the purse strings, convinced me that TT was the way to go. Luckily I didn't get a say on spending back then!
A mate over the road's dad had a large collection of Kitmaster - all beautifully made - but I couldn't understand why someone would want a push-along layout then. Mind, I still can't!
Cheers Richard
Reply to
beamends
Is that the layout featured on the cover of "A Home for your Railway"? Always wondered where the photo came from. It is not mentioned within the booklet (orange cover).
Neither can I, nor the old tinplate and lots of other such stuff.
Kevin Martin
Reply to
Kevin Martin
I've had a bit of google, but the only picture I can find is a bit indistinct, so I can't say for sure.
Found a Minic Motorways User Manual though! That brings back memories - I wonder what happened to all Minic stuff? Mother Dear strikes again I fear...
Cheers Richard
Reply to
beamends
raises the question if there might be a market for reasonably priced kits for passenger rolling stock that actually were to scale: Athearn in the US used to produce most of their rolling stock in CKD condition and it was not too expensive to buy five or six of one type... given the ubiquitous Mk1 coach, a number of models including DMUs and EMUs could e produced...
David but I still want a Kitmaster Beyer Garratt.
Reply to
chorleydnc
No, because in the USA the tax laws made a CKD style kit worthwhile, whereas the rest of the world had the same taxation regardless of the packaging (which is really what it amounts to).
I would rather a working model.
Kevin Martin
Reply to
Kevin Martin
The Lydney Branch was built by Alan Smith, a long-standing member of the Leeds MRS. The layout on the front of "A Home for your Railway", if you mean the oval layout viewed from one end with a row of terraced houses across the far end of the oval, is not Lydney. It is another TT layout, the Thorpeness Branch, which was Railway of the Month in the March 1962 Railway Modeller. It was built by N Dodsworth, also of the Leeds MRS as it happens.
Reply to
John Nuttall
Thank you for that interesting history lesson. It is unusual for Peco to not give proper credit for a layout. By chance, I have the 1962 March issue (with loose pages), given to me amongst a bunch of old RM a couple of years ago. You are correct.
By chance this issue also mentions the release of the Hornby Dublo Deltic which has been "modified" & has the headboard "Royal Scot" on the front - oh dear. ;-)
Also a set with the dreaded C0-B0 loco as well. In addition there is a review of a Peco demo layout which features the Guide way track for model roads, with the connection between road & rail being provided by the "fabulous Roadrailer" set.
Another article features John Charman's Charford Branch and its timetabling. A classic RM of the 60s?
Kevin Martin
Reply to
Kevin Martin
Did Hornby-Dublo ever refer to this loco as "Deltic" or was it just "Diesel Co-Co"?
(kim)
Reply to
kim

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