Garden Railways (Magazine)

  • Thread starter Gavin Sowry
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Travel, Art, Theatre, Music, Photography, Trains
24 Oct 2009
East Anglia
Aristocraft gone, Bachmann more or less pull out of G scale including Thomas (it seems), LGB's trials and tribulations, major Stateside retailers closing up or reducing their footprint, British dealers closing up or reducing footprint/time open.
A one time flourishing mag reducing its scope and frequency.

Yes it looks like our hobby has felt the effect of the global recession, global and regional uncertainty, tightening of belts etc etc.
There might also have been the effects brought on by mismanagement, over stretching etc.

Also there is a tremendous amount of used kit swirling around so the purchase of 'brand new' can be seen to be a little extravagant if a good used example is available a greatly advantageous price.

But where does that leave us.....

Bucking the trend, 16mm, 7/8ths, gauge 1, live steam, battery powerRC have seen either an increase or at the very least a pretty level take up.

It looks like 'plastic' off the retailer's shelf has been the hardest hit.
Besides Bachmann bringing out expensively produced new models (and they have almost fully pulled out of' Large scale'), there is not a lot of newly tooled rolling stock if any being produced by other manufacturers.
Piko have expanded their range a bit.
Re-liveried older models seem to be the order of the day as they are cheap to produce using existing molds.

For companies to go through the very expensive process of producing brand new models, they need to know that they will sell enough to make a good return on their investment... Bachmann have for many years, produced fine Fn3 locos and cars (even the new version of the 22.5 scale 'Annie' showed commitment), but they were very heavily stung when they bowed to customer requests for new models to fulfil customer wish-lists, produced them, and then found that the customers did not buy them until they were heavily reduced..... so they had made a bad decision business-wise and have subsequently decided to more or less pull out of Large scale. (of course they might return but probably on a more careful basis just issuing re-liveried versions of current molds etc.

Like with brexit and with Trump's output (besides many other pressing world matters), we face a very very uncertain future and so, to a certain extent. does our hobby.
More tea vicar?
Greg Elmassian

Greg Elmassian

8 Mar 2014
San Diego
I get it "eaglecliff", you asked where he landed "within the hobby", and Sean gave you his landing "location" but was not in the hobby.... re-reading your post made it much clearer to me. It is unfortunate he has not landed within the hobby, agreed.



5 Oct 2017
Boston & Cocagne NB (not enough)
I’m confused. If the above were referring to me, I did indeed see that MH is the editor. What am I supposed to have asked, Sean? My comment was simply that automata are not my thing, end of story. My admiration and gratitude for the man remain unaffected.
I did not come away with Greg's thinking . You gave the statement that it wasn't for you me the impression that you did open the link and read into some of the info it provided.
I just gave a quick reply to what Marc is up to these days... Not every one is into this new venture ..but after looking or seeing some things never know..
I'll give it a look see when it's time. :)
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3 Oct 2017
Toulouse - France
I am wondering if the Garden Railways Magazine should be more Railways and less Garden ?

For sure there are amazing railroad articles. That is fine.
But I wondering if this magazine would be more successful if there are more articles related to the rolling hardware ( cars, loks, control) ?
With more detailed reports on new hardware coming out of our current manufacturers.....

I am surprized also to see that Kalmbach did not increased the price of the magazine to keep the interest.
Then deleting the Marc contribution to the magazine is also very surprizing and sad.

Bachmann exiting ? I was thinking the same but they have released a new 2 6 0.
With what is said elsewhere, this is always a consistent investment to develop a locomotive.
I am wondering if they are not redesigning their product range in large scale , but due to the high cost, they must do that slowly.

Piko is a quite progressing manufacturer with several new hardware every year.


19 Jul 2010
Derby, England
Taking up the point about “more railways, less garden content,” my personal feeling is that the bandwidth, for want of a better expression, of garden railways extends from overgrown indoor layouts brought outside to gardens/landscapes through which a railway, albeit a small-scale one, happens to pass..
I would consider the focus of GR to have been generally on the latter, while by no means ignoring the former. Again, my personal view favours the latter. Whatever your own feelings, no magazine can review models as yet not produced, and there are only so many plants suited to the scale, size, location or climate of the reader’s situation. I have begun to feel that after about 5 years or so, GR has inevitably started to repeat itself, apart, obviously, from new models, materials, websites and techniques - 3-D printing being an important innovation, opening up great possibilities. I have often bored my friends bemoaning the “off-the-shelf” nature of G as against O when it comes to rolling stock; are there any loco kits out there in 1/22.5, .1/24 or whatever? Steam, yes, but that’s not for me. Or do people just not want to build them any more? Many years ago there was in the UK a modeller, Sid Stubbs, who produced amazing 00 locos from, it was said, sheet brass, steel rod and magnet alloy. Butchering plastic kits into passable new vehicles was my limit, but I find even that is difficult in G, at least in the UK.
It remains to be seen how Kalmbach will replace GR’s founder and inspiration. I got over the loss of Peter Jones, another true inspiration to me in the hobby; perhaps I shall be pleasantly surprised in 2019. I hope so.