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Old 08-23-2016, 11:40 PM   #1
time warp
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MY NEW INTEREST: EUROPEAN TRAINS

I've been an HO modeler for a LOOOOOOOng time, pretty well content with it. But many years ago my interest in British railways was piqued by seeing, of all things, Derek Carter's "Tales from Turkey Bay" cartoon series in RMC and a column in MR I think, of a British prototype steam engine being imported at the time by Chester Holley.
That locomotive was a Triang BR M7. How odd it looked to me compared to U.S. stuff. The strange 0-4-4 wheel arrangement and the massive hook and loop couplers were so different from what I was used to ,and I had never seen European trains in person so it was hard for me to imagine running one with my equipment. Plus,in 1982 where would I get one?
Fast forward to a few months ago. I saw an interesting British locomotive listed for sale on this forum, and through some dealing with my now friend Wolferz, I had the beginnings of a OO collection. That's how I got the LMS train.

compound train.jpg

An LMS compound 4-4-0 and 3 coaches with passengers, Beautiful! Runs very nicely. Hornby with Tender drive, Coaches are Bachmann. A little too much train for our little layout!
So here we go! Bug Bite. I then stumbled across a British Railways (BR) 2-6-0 "Ivatt" at an Antique mall and struck a deal.
Neat locomotive that reminds me of a Pensylvania G5, and it runs very well. It runs along kind of slowly and has a nice gait. A real joy to behold. And naturally there had to be some goods wagons.

ivatt running.jpg

wagons.jpg

Now the snowball is rolling , so I started looking for my old friend, The M7. Dug around a little on Ebay and what do you know? A mint Hornby BR M7 courtesy of train shop in Derbyshire!
The first trip around the layout was very interesting and my little gem didn't disappoint. really strange watching it chug along balanced on the front coupled drivers. Of course a coach was required so I found this Hornby Ex LMS BR Brake coach at my favorite train shop.

M7 running.jpg

Did some research and found one of the prototype M7's was at steam town for a while before being taken back to England.
Now it starts getting tricky. Eras. The bane of my OO existence. Equipment has to be era correct, and coupler correct.
The first three engines are Hornby, couplers match. Now comes the Fowler 0-6-0. Cool little locomotive made by Airfix, British OO but with the smaller Euro couplers. Runs great!(You were right, Cycleops). Now starting to gather wagons for this one.

airfix Fowler.jpg

Now a Tri-ang class 36 diesel, later era lettered for BR intercity.
And........Coaches! Coaches are Lima, again found at my favorite Hobby shop. See how this goes? In case you missed it, this is how I "thin" my collection.

class36.jpg

intercity.jpg

Now I'm certainly no expert on these things, so feel free to comment on these car types and correct eras, etc. For storage sake I'm holding to rakes of 2 coaches, and I will need to add 1 coach to the M7 rake.

Last edited by time warp; 08-24-2016 at 07:10 AM.. Reason: add info
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Old 08-24-2016, 12:53 AM   #2
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Hehehe! The old UK 00 coupler conundrum met you have. Many of us who model UK are actually switching to Kadees for the reason you mentioned as well as for other reasons.
Aside from that...enjoy!!
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Old 08-24-2016, 07:04 AM   #3
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Yes G, I'm thinking there are at least 4 different coupler types? Even the ones with Euro style aren't necessarily the same height.
I'll leave them as is because I am just not that ambitious.
Now to mix it up a little this one is European HO, A Fiat diesel 445, FS. Made by Lima, probably the smoothest running locomotive I've ever had. I do have some wagons, or freight cars( I don't know) arriving soon so this one can earn it's keep.

fiat.jpg
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Old 08-24-2016, 08:38 AM   #4
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Nice one TW. Interesting to see somebody's interested in European/UK trains from across the pond. I currently don't have any OO trains as I've always been at odds with the scale/track gauge discrepancy and the horn hook couplers have never appealed. I much prefer the Kadee types on US trains which is what drew me to them in the first place.

I've recently bought a Roco DB diesel with sound which I'm very pleased with and fitted it with Kadees, which you can now do with all European trains due to the NEM coupler pockets. Strangely it doesn't like the frogs on my Peco 83 track. That Fiat is very nice. Lima used to make diesels and steamers for the US market and they have very good mechanisms.
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Old 08-24-2016, 08:51 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cycleops View Post
Nice one TW. Interesting to see somebody's interested in European/UK trains from across the pond. I currently don't have any OO trains as I've always been at odds with the scale/track gauge discrepancy and the horn hook couplers have never appealed. I much prefer the Kadee types on US trains which is what drew me to them in the first place.

I've recently bought a Roco DB diesel with sound which I'm very pleased with and fitted it with Kadees, which you can now do with all European trains due to the NEM coupler pockets. Strangely it doesn't like the frogs on my Peco 83 track. That Fiat is very nice. Lima used to make diesels and steamers for the US market and they have very good mechanisms.
Nice looking diesel. There are a few guys here with Euro stuff(right, G?). I find these trains interesting.
My class 36 Tri-ang has a little trouble because of the wide tread wheels, the Ivatt is a nightmare on switches because of the huge flanges. It was bought new from AMRO, Paul's RR shop, way way back when.
I'm planning on posting some track comparisons in a few days.
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Old 08-24-2016, 08:51 AM   #6
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Well the UK manufacturers over the past say 20 years at least ,settled on the horn-hook coupler, albeit each with their own slightly different design/size. Generally they were compatible athough they were never able to come to a height standard until very recently.
Unlike North American were we generally all accept NMRA standards in height above rails of the coupler pockets etc for many years, the Brits are only just coming around to standards not only of coupler pocket height but mechanism also. Almost all UK and European manufacturers have now accepted the NEM coupler pocket design and height standard....as an example.....15 years ago Bachmann and Hornby were a nightmare if you wanted to change couplers to something more unobtrusive like Kadee....even within the same manufacturer it could be problematic. Now...generally speaking, just slip a Kadee 18,19 or 20 coupler into the NEM pocket and bobs-your-uncle.
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Old 08-24-2016, 09:01 AM   #7
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Bachmann Class66
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Old 08-24-2016, 09:45 AM   #8
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Wow! That 66 eats up some real estate doesn't it? Nice!
Hey, Cycleops, I can't quite see in the photo but is your diesel a CoCo?
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Old 08-24-2016, 09:50 AM   #9
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TW, nice stuff, how big is your layout????
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Old 08-24-2016, 10:00 AM   #10
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It's 4 by 8. Freight trains look good going around there, no problem. But running scale length passenger coaches, especially three of them looks a little tight!
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