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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Dear All,

Hi, I am new to the model rail hobby. I live in the UK and while searching for a starter kit, I came across Hornby models at Daniel store. This week, during my holiday visit to the Brussels, I saw Marklin models as well. Would you please advice me on selecting the right setup and good foundation for model trains so that I can expand it over the years.

Many Thanks

Warm Regards
Adiesun
 

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Hi Adiesun, welcome to the forum.

Hornby and Marklin are two very different companies making models for two very different markets with virtually no overlap. You can't mix and match.

The best is that you decide on what you would like to model. Local UK, Continental or other; Old, new or perhaps a transition from old to new; and what scale.

This will help you decide on which company to start looking at in detail.
 

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Hi Adiesun & welcome to the forum.

I can only echo Doug's comments, except to add that Hornby (Bachmann also) are in different leagues to Marklin.

Marklin uses a stud contact system (similar in principle to 3-rail) & AC - very popular in mainland europe but relatively rare in the UK. Nearly everyone else uses 2-rail DC, not forgetting DCC.

Unless you are in a hurry, do come research & if possible attend a few exhibitions to help you decide.

Any more questions just ask - plenty of ppl here with lot's of experience to help.

BTW - whereabouts in the country are you ?
 

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Hello Adiesun,

Welcome to the forum and the world of small plastic boxes with motors inside them! Hang on, that's slot cars!
We're got rails here too, and that's where it gets complicated...the two main scales are N and H0 in Continental Europe and N 'gauge' and OO in the UK. The European scene is very large and will take some time to explore before you settle down to one scale or another etc. whereas in the UK it is more a question of choosing between Hornby and Bachmann in OO or Dapol and Farish in N gauge. I hope I'm not patronising you! I shall let others talk with greater eloquence and knowledge...

Goedel
 

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Welcome to the forum.

Märklin is a closed system,but with a great quality. The rolling stock offer to DC is more grater than AC or 3 rail (are the same). If you plan work with digital, in 2 rail have a lot of manufacturers and a big range of prices and qualities. For Märkling only have Märklin and i think Intellibox.

Regards from Spain,
Oscar
 

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QUOTE (odiaz @ 17 Aug 2007, 07:59) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Welcome to the forum.

Märklin is a closed system,but with a great quality. The rolling stock offer to DC is more grater than AC or 3 rail (are the same). If you plan work with digital, in 2 rail have a lot of manufacturers and a big range of prices and qualities. For Märkling only have Märklin and i think Intellibox.

Regards from Spain,
Oscar
The ESU ECoS and Viessmann commander will operate Maerklin systems too.

However the first decision to make is what do you want to model UK, Continental or US outline. The other decisions will be made after that.

If you do want to model Continental, Maerklin are by far the biggest and one of the best manufacturers and are certainly well worth considering. Other manufacturers make versions of their locos specifically to run on Maerklin systems.
 

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Welcome aboard Adiesun.

Make your own decisions but don't let others influence you that they are always right, I personally would endorse the comments made by Doug and dbclass50. If you have a problem post it here and you are certain to get the help you require.

Regards
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Dear All,

Thank you very much for your responsiveness and positive statements. As advised by most of you, I need to do study and research before I go ahead with the investment. Since I am new, I guess it will take sometime for me to understand the technical details of the rail networks.

Many thanks again for your help.

Cheers
Adiesun
 

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If you like Märklin but finally you decide to work in two rail or digital DCC, the Trix catalog are the same that Märklin in a 90 %.

Regards,
Oscar
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hi Doug, dbclass, Britho and others dear members,

Based on your advice I have done some study over the past couple of weeks and visited few shops.

At the moment, I have narrowed down my search to Hornby Digital Train set for two reasons:
1. I live in the UK (Maidenhead) so I guess Hornby models (and parts) will be accessible
2. I like the style and class of the trains running in the UK and associate myself with them.

If you have some final advice for me, please let me know.
Also, if you can tell me about your preferred online stores or shops in the UK to buy Hornby train models (I plan to buy Hornby Pendolino DCC Train Set Product Code: R1076). I am surprised that most of the stockists listed in the Berkshire areas are closed on Sunday and others do not have this model (talking of accessibility hmmm! sometime forces me to think for Marklin but can't find appropriate store/shop for this either and finding it more expensive).

Warm Regards
Adiesun
 

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Hi Adiesun

Main dealers in UK are Hattons, Rails and The Signal Box. They will almost certainly have the new Pendolino set and probably at a lower price than you can achieve locally.

Your choice of Marklin or Hornby must be down to the prototype you want to model. If its the UK scene it really needs to be Hornby and Bachmann (and then later on you might get into Heljan and Vitrains). Don't make the mistake of thinking everything UK is Hornby. Bachmann make some very good UK outline models and should certainly be considered.

The choice of power is also critical. The power unit supplied with the Pendolino is called a "Select". If you are only going to use it with recent Hornby locos you will probably not have any problems. However, again there are other alternatives.

There are lots of questions that will spring up. What I would suggest is that you buy one of the model Railway periodicals. As you seem to be into modern image I would suggest Model Rail. These magazines have large adverts from the main shops in the UK and you will soon see whats available.

Good luck! Although I've been into model railways for 41 years , I sometimes think how exciting it would be to start with a clean sheet . Especially with todays models.

Russell
 

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Hi Adiesun

Hattons, Rails and The Signal Box are the major "box shifters" in the UK.

Hornby DCC can have a few "issues" when used with other long established DCC systems - have a trawl through the forum & you will find plenty of discussion (albeit often heated to nuclear level) regarding this.

Take your time & if possible try to have a play with as many DCC systems as you can.
 

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> I live in the UK (Maidenhead)
If you have your own transport or can persuade someone to drive you there, I suggest visiting the following model shops which are within a reasonable distance of Maidenhead:-

Alton Models - Alton Hampshire.
Osbournes - Abingdon, Oxfordshire. They are an 'n' gauge specialist but have a reasonable selection of Hornby.
Howes - Kidlington, Oxfordshire.

If you can only make one trip, I would say choose Alton Models it has the widest selection of Hornby and Bachmann. If you don't see what you want, ask and they will probably have it.

David
 

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QUOTE (dwb @ 27 Aug 2007, 11:15) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>if you can only make one trip, I would say choose Alton Models it has the widest selection of Hornby and Bachmann. If you don't see what you want, ask and they will probably have it.

That is very sound advice which I would heartily endorse.

Regards
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Dear dwd, Britho, Doug and Members,

As advised, I made a visit to Alton Models and it was a great experience with a very helpful staff.
Not only that I had my first purchase in Model Rail journey and invested in the following:
1. GWR WESTERN PULLMAN DCC SET R1077 - £230 (Amazon is giving for 225 - shipping free)
2. VIRGIN TRAINS PENDOLINO TRAIN PACK R2467 - £108 (Amazon is giving for 120 - shipping free)
3. Track Pack Extension Pack D R8224 - £25.20 (Amazon is giving for 28)

I am sure there must be better deals but I just made the decision against time and money spent so far in this research


The entire I had a great time with my 7 yr old son. I have yet to try Pendolino. I am sure it will be fine.
I realised the benefit of DCC controller when I was able to manage 2 locomotives from one controller. Wow, I am talking your language, all credit to you guys for helping me.

I made two observations:
1. When I run the locomotive GWR CASTLE 'BUILTH' No 4086 (R2389) in the REVERSE direction it makes a "ticking" sound which is not there during FORWARD movement.
2. There were no lights in any of the components of GWR WESTERN PULLMAN DCC SET R1077. Perhaps, these are the kind of details I should make when I go for next investment.

At the moment I will use what I have got with this purchase and only when I have identified appropriate place and some permanent location, I will plan for landscape and layout.

Many thanks,
Kind Regards
adiesun
 

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Nice to hear that you had a pleasant shopping experience & at some good prices too - just goes to show that mail order/internet shopping is not the be all & end all either.

You just cannot beat seeing that purchase in the flesh & handing the money over.

Good luck with the sets & please let us know how you get on.

BTW - not all sets have lighting factory fitted.
 

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Glad to hear you had a good shopping trip Adiesun. On my recent purchases from Alton, the discount has been 10% off list. I think that's fair enough for a "walk in and buy" deal.

David
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Dear Members,

So I am facing the first challenge now since 01-Sep-2007 (my first step into model railway).
As mentioned earlier in my post on 02-Sep, I bought:
1. GWR WESTERN PULLMAN DCC SET R1077
2. VIRGIN TRAINS PENDOLINO TRAIN PACK R2467
3. Track Pack Extension Pack D R8224
and additional, tracks, trucks etc

However, only PENDOLINO TRAIN set I had tried yesterday for my son (he is 7 seven and kept it reserved for his birthday. He is very fond of it).
What I found was that unlike the other two train pack (or engines), this Pendolino's start and stop actions are not smooth at all. There is vibration, shudder and strange motor noise as if it is trying overcome some rough resistance. It becomes ok only after reaching some high speed.

Today morning, I called Alton Models and explained this observation. The lady (who is discussing with other gentleman/partner also at the shop) told me that:
i) they do not have any more PENDOLINO TRAIN pack
ii) they do not have any digital DCC ready spare parts
iii) I should contact Hornby on Monday and call 01843 233 500 and ask for Service Department, which can tell me what to do next. If I have to ship it to them etc.
iv) that I should not run it any more to avoid further damage etc (actually I kept it aside last evening itself and put it back in the pack to dispatch)

My initial reaction is that I am quite unhappy because I have spent £108 for the PENDOLINO (Total of £461.35 purchase from Alton Models). I was expecting replacement from Hornby/Alton Models and not expecting denting/repair work on a brand new set and using the same again.

Could you please advice and share your experience.

Many Thanks

Kind Regards
adiesun
 

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As a retailer we would offer the choice of a replacement (OK this is not an option in this case), a refund, to send it back for repair/replacement or exchange for something else.

We would strive to offer a solution to the customer - a happy customer is a return customer.

You have a right, as a consumer to reject the faulty goods under the Sale of Goods act for a full refund.
 
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