Model steam engines are manufactured according to a variety of scales and gauges. The choice of scale and gauge is crucial as they are the major differentiating factors between the model steam engines.
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Model Steam Engines: Explaining Scales
Model steam engines are manufactured according to a variety of scales and gauges. The choice of scale and gauge is crucial as they are the major differentiating factors between the model steam engines. What makes things more confusing is that many model steam engine enthusiasts, and even seasoned fans, often use the two words ‘scale’ and ‘gauge’ interchangeably. However, they are two distinct attributes. For starters, scale establishes the size relationship between the model engine and the real one. It is often represented as a ratio, such as 2mm:ft or 1:148 scale. This means that every part of the model engine is one-one forty eighth the size of the original steam engine. On the other hand, gauge is an attribute of the railway track. It is the distance between the inner edges of the track rails. Gauge is a more important attribute to consider, when purchasing a model steam engine. Let us understand why by looking at the main gauge types. O Gauge O Gauge model engines were produced from the beginning of the 20th century, and were among the most popular models for a long time, until the 1960s. Since then, they have lost their popularity and are difficult to find. They were manufactured in multiple scales from 1:1.48 to 1:43.5. But, they eventually lost their fame to smaller scale models. O Gauge model steam engines are not known for their finer details and accuracy. In fact, they were designed for pre-adults and therefore, cost-effectiveness, and durability were given more importance. Although they are valued by some collectors because of their rarity, most of the collectors and enthusiasts, with an attention to detail, do not prefer these models. OO Gauge OO Gauge or Double-O Gauge model steam engines belong to a family of model railway systems, which follow the standard gauge model. The OO Gauge has a railway track that is 16.5mm wide, and is built at a scale of 1:76.2 or 4mm:ft. A highlight of OO Gauge models is that they rank very high in terms of realistic appearance and finer details. For this reason, they are of great value to serious collectors. Moreover, many of the manufacturers also place a lot of emphasis on durability and affordability. Naturally, they are among the most popular model steam engine categories today. G Gauge G Gauge models are big in size. They are manufactured on a scale range of 1:22.5. Because of their relatively huge size and highly durable construction, they make the best garden railway models. Their extensive use as garden models have led to modern train enthusiasts to believe that the G in G Gauge stands for Garden. The truth is that the G comes from groß, which means “big” in German. Oh yes, the G Gauge models were born in Germany, just like many others. A large scale means that the parts are not as intricate as the other models, say O Gauge for instance. Therefore, they are easy to produce and are readily available. Final Thoughts As you can see, the choice of gauge will be quite obvious to you based on the purpose of your purchase of a model steam engine. If you want a garden mode, then G Gauge is what you need. If you are a collector who enjoys the finer details, then OO Gauge is what does the job for you. However, if you are buying a model engine for your kid, then O gauge is just the thing.
Review: Mamod SR1A Steam Roller
Review: Mamod SR1A Working Live Steam Roller Young boys and older men who are interested in vehicles of all types are going to love the Mamod SR1A Working Live Steam Roller. This delightfully coloured model is a perfect replica of a 19th Century British Road roller and will provide males from every generation a chance to let their imagination run free. This is the perfect model for creating fun stories, characters, ideas and scenarios. Also, even though this is a boy’s toy, mums, sisters and daughters can still have fun playing and creating these wonderful stories and worlds as a family. The Mamod SR1A steam roller comes fully assembled, so for those of you out there who love the finished model product, but aren’t really too keen on the building process, this is the perfect model for you. Father and son duos looking to either build up an existing collection, or start a new hobby together can jump right into the fun. Due to this model not needing any assembly, it’s perfect for boys who are just starting out their model collecting hobby and because it’s suitable for ages 14+ for non supervised use, the worries of mum and dad concerned about what to buy their teenage son are no more! (Also suitable for dads needing an excuse to add to their collection!) As the pictures show, this model is exceedingly beautiful. The steam roller is simply designed using the most durable metal materials, giving the model a realistic overall look. A more modern and pristine look is given to the steam roller by it being finished with top quality colourful paint. (Get your hands on the model to help give it a more used authentic look! Real life steam rollers wouldn’t look this luxurious afterall. Of course, hardcore collectors wouldn’t dare ruin the exterior appearance of this fine piece, but that’s the beauty of the SR1A – it’s suitable for all!). The model’s dimensions are 255 x 177 x 144 mm, making it a perfect size to handle and not so big that it takes up too much room in a collector’s room. The Mamod SR1A live steam roller is exactly that – live! The model is fully functioning as if it were an actual steam roller used on the street. The model uses solid fuel tablets (which are much safer than the fuel used for models similar to these in the past) and water. Water is poured in, the burner is lit and the steam roller is set to go. Once the model is fired up, it can easily be controlled by using the steering rod to control the front chassis. The flywheel controlling the belt to the rear wheel is powered by a brass piston and cylinder, just like a vehicle in the real world. Steam rollers in real life obviously have the ability to move forwards and backwards; Mamod have put thought into this too, giving their product the ability to travel in reverse, as well as forward. What really gives this model a special touch is the sound it makes; because of the real life components making up the steam roller, the sound made mimics that of a steam roller of its time. This is made possible by the chimney billowing steam from the model’s exhaust unit. There isn’t a live steam roller quite like the SR1A on the market and the high quality materials making up this model ensure a longlasting product you’re going to enjoy today and for many years to come. CHECK PRICES
Review: Burrell Showman’s 8 NHP No.3938 ‘Quo Vadis’
Review of the Burrell Showman’s 8 NHP No.3938 ‘Quo Vadis’ This magnificent miniature replica of a Showman’s road locomotive revisits a golden age in travel, dating back almost 100 years. These locomotives were mainly used to transport a fun fair or circus from town to town and, once the destination was arrived at, it would then serve as a power source for the entertainment. A far cry from motor vehicles today which whizz past you in an instant, the arrival of this beautiful piece of machinery would have been easily visible on the horizon with the emission of vast plumes from its slender chimney. The fact that Showman’s road locomotives had numerous uses – from vehicle to power supply source and beyond – was just one reason behind their immense popularity. This beautiful miniature model is aimed at collectors who appreciate fine vintage craftsmanship. It will also interest those who collect models and artefacts relating to modes of transport dating back to the 1920s. Introducing the iconic Quo Vadis model All of these road locomotives were given names – much like car models of today – as well as an identifying serial number. This particular model is a direct miniature replica of the much-loved ‘Quo Vadis’, number 3938. Purchased in 1922, the Quo Vadis travelled the roads of England for well over a decade before being sold on to amusement contractors in 1935. By the time it was once again purchased, in 1965, it had been retired ten years earlier and was in a sad state of decay and disrepair. Quo Vadis was subsequently restored and is now a truly iconic symbol of the era to which it belongs. This collectable piece is a representation of the restored locomotive which, by extension, also makes it identical to how the vehicle original appeared upon completion of design in 1922. Showman’s road locomotives stood out for many reasons, not least their attention to aesthetic deal. Three key aspects became signature characteristics of these stunning vehicles – the canopy which runs the length of the locomotive, the tall and slender chimney and the highly decorative, skilled paint work. Attention to detail that will impress the discerning collector The Quo Vadis boasted all three aforementioned characteristics, and they are superbly brought back to life in this eloquently designed model. Only 1,500 of these miniatures have been commissioned, each of which comes with a certificate of authenticity. The structure is made from diecast metal as well as plastic components. It is suitable for children of all ages but will probably be best appreciated by an enthusiast of vintage road locomotives. Perfect for display at home, this model will appear particularly well in a cabinet that is accompanied by appropriate lighting to illustrate its delicate features. Online reviews have praised the model for its historic accuracy, customised packaging and impressive attention to the smallest of details. Key features Outstanding collector’s item Historically accurate One of just 1,500 miniature replicas commissioned across the globe Comes with certificate of authenticity Eye-catching attention to detail Appropriate for children and adults Presented in customised packaging CHECK PRICES
Review: Wilesco Showman’s Engine D409
Review of the Wilesco Showman’s Engine D409 The Wilesco Showman’s Engine D409 is a fully working scale model of a steam-driven farm engine, the likes of which would have been used to power agricultural machinery such as threshers and ploughs before the modern tractor. You can still see a small number of engines of this type in the UK today, powering old-fashioned fairground carousels and other rides, as well as at shows and fayres around the country, where they often draw a large crowd of fascinated onlookers. This technically perfect scale replica is painted in traditional colours and carries traditional writing on the side of the canopy indicating its origin in Middlesex, England. It is delivered ready-made, with no assembly needed, and will look stunning either as a static model or a working demonstration of times gone by. On the model itself, the boiler measures 7.3” by 1.8” and has a water volume of 14in. A water gauge glass is included, and the boiler vessel itself is chemically painted black, giving a durable protective finish. A powerful, double action cylinder powers the engine alongside the red-painted, 3.2” flywheel. Depending on the direction of rotation of the flywheel, the engine can be run in forward or reverse. Traditional chain steering as would be seen on a full-size engine of this type is included along with a spring loaded safety valve, steam regulator, steam jet oiler, footbridge, and steam whistle. A clutch engaged gear wheel allows the engine, and dynamo, to be used while stationary as well as when moving. A dynamo lights the eight LEDs mounted on the canopy of the engine. Water is condensed and reused from the engine, just below the chimney. Users will be able to run the engine for up to 15 minutes on each charge of fuel. Each individual part of the engine is carefully constructed from finely painted, high quality, metal. The model is a total of 13” long, almost 6” wide, 8” high and weighs 4lbs. Fuel, in the form of dry spirit tablets, as well as other consumables, are available from specialist retailers as well as online. As a working steam engine, this item is not a toy and is not recommended for anyone aged under 18. Where the engine is being used in the presence of children, close supervision by a responsible adult it required. Steam engines can be dangerous, and if not properly maintained there is a very real risk of explosion. Users should be certain to follow all operating and maintenance instructions provided by the manufacturer. Key features: High-quality, steam traction and show engine Manufactured from high-quality metal parts Fully painted Technically perfect, fully working engine Clutch gear enables stationary as well as mobile use Dynamo powers LED lighting around the engine canopy Delivered ready-made, no assembly needed A stunning static model, or fascinating demonstration of technology from times gone by CHECK PRICES Variants of the Wilesco Showman’s Engine D409 Many Wilesco products are available in different variants – the D409 reviewed here is a working steam model that can be upgraded with a radio remote control. The model also comes in two other variants: Wilesco Showman’s Engine D499 – which is the same fully-built model, with remote control. Wilesco Showman’s Engine D419 – which is a kit for the model (which requires assembly).