News from August 2022

Our News

No railway modelling activity has occurred this last month! Summer shut-down is typical for Sweden, so it was not possible to buy materials, either. Now that the Autumn is setting in, things should pick up a bit, and in September there is one event that we hope to get to.

As hinted previously, we have now added a more in-depth review of the tour of railway installations here in Sweden. You can find it under ‘General Articles’ from the home page.
(In the article, mention is made of problems with a new Doro phone. This has now been replaced following its inability to display incoming SMS; a problem other Doro owners have reported. So, for the first time, we provide consumer advice not related to railways: don’t buy a Doro!)

Manufacturer News

Danish manufacturer Dekas has advised of their Swedish outline models, that IBAB TMX 1014 (DK-8750121~4) has arrived and that most of the dealers pre-orders have been dispatched. The rerun of the TMX from Vida and Tågkraft (blue and orange) should arrive mid-September. (Our photo below shews the Heljan version of this loco!)

Fleischmann and Roco have introduced a new article numbering system, but in the examples that they give in their news item about it, do not fully tally with the descriptions, and it seems that there will now be no distinction between Fleischmann and Roco products.

PCX87’s Volvo 343 is now in the shops, as is the second batch of 240 sedans and estates.

Other News

The last C6 train ran on the Blue line on Sunday 7th August. We are a little confused about what the event signified. The train was brought in for the occasion from another line; the C14 (of the same “first generation”) will be in service on that line for possibly two more years; so the event wasn’t a true end of an era, as the promotional texts implied! (We understand that the blue line had a small allocation of C6 from 1975 to 2003/4, running alongside C7, C8, C9 and C15. But the C6 was used more on the red line.) Nevertheless, it was an enjoyable day out, to ride on the old noisy and bumpy rolling stock, and to meet an old friend from the UK!

Behind the Scenes

Before we get underway with our Mini-Series about the FLMJ; following our review of the Railway’s Epoch, better clarification and understanding was requested, so here is a brief summary.

For authentic representation of a period of railway history on model railway layouts in Europe, a division into different eras/epochs was established. Often this information on the epoch is given in the catalogues and/or on the product packaging. It is NEM recognised. The published periods are quite controversial, as they tend to have no direct reference between the epoch designation and a specific year or a specific decade. The time epochs could just as easily be given in the time segments of the decades or with specific year numbers, as is usual in North America.
As a rule of thumb, then:
~Epoch-I until around 1925.
~Epoch-II from around 1920 to around 1950.
~Epoch-III from around 1945 to around 1970.
~Epoch-IV from around 1965 to around 1990.
~Epoch-V from around 1985 to around 2010.
~Epoch-VI from around 2005.
Sweden’s new ‘blue’ themed liveries were introduced in 1989 and are said to be the start of Sweden’s Epoch-V. Previously, a major reclassification of rolling stock occurred around 1970, so that could be the Swedish start of Epoch-IV, not 1965 as suggested above. (But this is complicated by the 1967 arrival of the revolutionising Rc-loco!) So, the Epochs are vague within countries, not just between them.

The United Kingdom uses it’s own system and is already into Epoch-9!

Mini-Series about the FLMJ, 9: The Scenic aspect

Scenery was a sore point on the FLMJ. Very little was weather-proof, and nothing was cat-proof! In 1996, in the final days of the KRBJ, the whole infrastructure suffered extensive vandalism. Subsequently, only the track and platforms became permanent features. Everything else was taken in at the end of the day. This meant that it took a couple of hours to set up each time we wanted to operate the railway, and the same again to put away. This was in addition to cleaning the track in the mornings, and drying things off in the evenings if we had endured typical British weather! For some weekend ‘open’ events, not everything did get put away on the Saturday evening, just hidden from incidental view; but a good night’s sleep was not then possible!

All locations had a number of model buildings (which were mounted over locating blocks to ensure that they were correctly positioned) and most of the roads were painted down. Lövhöjden and the nearby Kopparberg received a bit more attention. Gradients and contours appeared in the scenery, along with corrective measures to keep the buildings upright in strong winds! Greenery was added, and the area around the loco-shed especially, became very photogenic. But the final and delightful addition was the lighting, around the loco-shed area and in the church much farther away.

The church in question was a model of the church from Seglora, now preserved at Skansen. Other authentic buildings were the Diö and Åmål station buildings at Månstorp and Lövhöjden respectively; but many other authentic representations existed all over the layout. Special mention should be made of the block of flats kit produced by Auhagen, of which we had two; of German origin, but so authentic for 1940s/1950s Sweden and still current today.

Most of the model cars were faithful to the epoch (see last month’s update), but we decided that rather than reject interesting models, we would treat the whole diorama as a heritage setting, and allow modern vehicles to creep in. Sometimes, these represent cars that friends have. But currently, thinking of Swedish brands, the most modern Saab is a 900 from the mid-80s and the most modern Volvo is the 850 from the early 90s. But whatever our new diorama is, it will have to accept a Swedish Koenigsegg from 2015! One of our members also has a private collection of SL buses, which are quite modern; but too nice to not have on the layout! Doh!

Before moving to the address where the FLMJ existed, the Director General had managed the Herpham & District Railway, a combined H0e/00-9 model railway; which was more of a scenic diorama with the small railway running through it. It was inspirational, charming, and a delightful setting that people enjoyed. With the new FLMJ being planned for an indoor location, the scenic possibilities are inspiring.

Next month, back to the railway itself, we’ll look at the track and infrastructure!