A running commentary of new models is not really what we wanted with this website, even in the current situation. It makes it seem as if we’re collecting trains. We’re not collectors, we’re modellers. So, we are going to steer away from that sort of news, except when there is something extra special to announce. (Also, we try to avoid buying models in November! This is because their annual service is based on the month in which they were delivered, and November has traditionally been a ‘purchase’ month. Once we’re back into the regular schedules, we have a lot of work to do every November! Once the new FLMJ is functional, we will investigate a different schedule.)
There are a few items of news that are suitable here, this month, however. First, we have obtained from Byggsvenskt, a new chassis for one of our X10 units, number 3149. This is a heavy and powerful drive system for the model, and it will be perfectly capable of working the four coach train (so X10 3148 will not be powered at all). We actually arranged for three drive-chassis units, the other two for friends of the former FLMJ who also have models of the X10 from UGJ. Secondly, and from the same supplier, we have obtained the decals required for the Yd railbus and both trailers, the UF2 and the UF6. The supplier has also agreed to make especially, some decals for the UGJ F4F baggage carriage which has the wrong number. The only numbers that seem to be available as decals are for the F4F which had the office at the end of the carriage, not the few where the office was in the centre. Guess which version ours is!
We’ve also acquired some interesting road vehicles which are worth a mention. Two Volvo Amazons and a PV544 (the last with a caravan) are Wiking models, not Brekina or Praliné/Busch. So they do not duplicate what we already have (in storage), but they give us something to use for a diorama if we can get one built! The buses are really too modern for our epoch; but these are really for a private collection, a sense of nostalgia relating to the last 30 years as a tourist to Stockholm; so although they might appear on the FLMJ from time to time, they are more likely to be used on a separate static diorama! The Checker cab respects the fact that many Swedes import and restore old American cars, and this is a classic!
HNoll advises that the next passenger carriages (B4) are likely to appear in March-May, depending on shipping options. Some carriage types are completely finished with the supplier and the BC4, WL4, WL6 and R4/R12/S12 are a closed chapter, subject to any remaining stocks with retailers. However, a small series of brown R4s will be manufactured as demand allows, and the RB11 in Blue-X/IC-11 will be supplemented if there are not enough at the release of the A11 and B11.
PCX87 has announced four new versions (colour options) of their Saab 99, but of greater excitement, a new model, the Volvo 164, in 1968 condition; again, in four colours. Many years ago Kniga Modelle made a kit of the 1973 version of this car (of which we have assembled three), so it will be nice to have one (or more) ready made!
There is little news regarding Minichamps’ proposed models. Expected during December are the Volvo 480 coupé, 740 estate, and 850 sedan. Their Volvo 240 (sedan and estate) is expected in January and both of the Saab 900 versions in February. But, the Volvo 740 sedan has been put back to September 2022.
The Modelljärnvägsmässa in Uppsala on November 13th/14th was attended on the Sunday, and took place in just one hall, even though the advertising said, “Fyrishov Hall C & D”. The fact is that the two rather small halls can be opened up to make one larger hall. Upplands MJ had their modular layout there, which incorporated a model of Uppsala station before it was modified. Whilst this is a work in progress, it was certainly inspiring, and it would be interesting to see the progress at next year’s show – they are hoping that it can become an annual event. Being a DCC layout, they seemed to spend a lot of time fiddling with it, trying to get things to work, but not universally; there was plenty of activity and some nice train rakes to admire. In addition to this, there were some train sets for children to play with, and quite a lot of traders – most of whom had stock-loads of Märklin products. It was quite refreshing to find a stall with some other brands! One wagon was purchased, but nothing else!
Hjulmarknaden in Solna on November 27th was just as big and impressive as it usually is. Cancelled last year due to the pandemic, it was good for this event to be back. This is not a model railway exhibition, and although there was one small H0-scale layout on display and a live steam track, the event was really a gathering of railway model manufacturers, and heritage railway groups. For the FLMJ, this is where we purchased the chassis and decals. Research and reference material was limited to two books and two DVDs. One mishap was a trader who had some locally produced models of the ‘Kalmar Tjorven’ post car, but asked us to come back to see the right person who could accept a non-cash payment, and then suitably distracted, we forgot! Travel to and from the event was with the Uppsala—Stockholm Pendel, but it was disappointing that both outward and homeward journeys were in modern X40 units, not the favoured 1980s carriages topped and tailed with Rc-locomotives! This journey almost didn’t happen because SJ’s App didn’t function properly and an alternative online process was used instead, which actually produced cheaper tickets. So, we’re not complaining about SJ’s App not working; its failure did us a favour!
SJ’s X2000 is to run for many more years yet, with the first having just received a major overhaul and minor facelift; it still has an unimaginative livery, but some sort of effort has been made! It does now have a third level of comfort, the Second Class Calm, where you pay extra to have a so-called “quiet carriage”!