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Up to last year I had not bought Railway modeller for many, many years. Then, last year, responding to a local advert, I bought a complete set of the years 1994 to 2006 for £20 with the intention of gradually working my way through them.

I have only got about half way through, but a thought has increasingly been crytalising in my mind. This is that the magazine should be called "Narrow Gauge Monthly". Of course this is an exaggeration but reflects my feelings as anything involving narrow gauge immediately makes me turn the page. I've just finished three months in a row that did seem to have an awful lot.

Do any of you agree?
 

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I've been taking "RM" for about 6 years, since I decided to return to railway modelling after a 40+ year gap. I have bought occasional copies of the other railway modelling mags. It does seem to me that RM perhaps mentions narrow gauge more than some of the other magazines. RM also covers garden railways more than the others, and as these tend to have a 'narrow gauge' appearence, perhaps they add to the feeling that RM has a lot of narrow gauge.

Although I am not 'into' NG, I still find the articles of interest, particularly on the scenic side. RM does excel in it's lists of exhibitions and toy fairs, etc.

But I don't think RM is as good as the relatively new 'Hornby Magazine', although it's noticeable that RM seem to be making some attempt to smarten up a bit!

Regards,
John Webb
 

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Yes - I see your point about narrow gauge. If you look at the last few issues there have also been lots of trams in it. No problem with occasional NG and tram layout, but there do seem to be an awful lot in RM, way out of proportion to those who actually model it, I would have thought.

Still on the plus side - it is still a good read although maybe not as good as its heyday (in my opinion) of late 70s/early 80s when it catered for the "average modeller". There is a new editor, so lets hope he gets it back in the mainstream.

Russell
 

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QUOTE (neil_s_wood @ 24 Jul 2008, 06:18) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I thought "Brass kit and obscure uninteresting wagon modeller" would have hit it on the head.

***As a builder in brass I don't know whether I should feel insulted or not.

Thats a very strange take on RM Neil, given that its about the last magazine that any modeller of skill or builder of brass or specific prototype models would consider important reading.

RM's always been termed the toddler simply because its a magazine that reflects what serious modellers have no real interest in.

Richard
 

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QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 24 Jul 2008, 14:09) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>***As a builder in brass I don't know whether I should feel insulted or not.

Thats a very strange take on RM Neil, given that its about the last magazine that any modeller of skill or builder of brass or specific prototype models would consider important reading.

RM's always been termed the toddler simply because its a magazine that reflects what serious modellers have no real interest in.

Richard
I find the bulk of its content is aimed at minority interest subjects. These are two that came to mind that they feature regularly. I am not saying that they are good or bad just not very interesting to the majority of modellers.
 

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QUOTE (neil_s_wood @ 24 Jul 2008, 12:58) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I find the bulk of its content is aimed at minority interest subjects. These are two that came to mind that they feature regularly. I am not saying that they are good or bad just not very interesting to the majority of modellers.

**Isn't it interesting how differently things are read:

I've always seen RM as aimed at the out of the box or trainset modeller with little real focus or modelling merit in its pages most of the time... I generally spend more on prototype stuff mag wise and consider MRJ as perhaps the only really well focussed modelling mag for the true modeller, with the other 3 UK mags waning hot and cold, but generally with a far fresher and more interesting content than RM.

I must admit the one thing I disagree 100% with is the "bleat-bleat print more of this and less of that" I often read.

D&E modellers can learn a lot from steam era skills and vice versa too as there are some super D&E modellers that are super too - N can teach OO or HO and vice versa sometimes....

Basically good modelling is good modelling and its rare enough that I don't care which scale, prototype or period it is... as long as its not another layout full of peco track, Faller, skaledale or superquick and unmodified (name any EU or US brand you like) or farish or Hornby or Bachmann loco's and stock.

Richard
 

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I think you right Richard about good modelling. Unless you go to specialised magazines its all the same stuff. Now I am not trying to be detrimental, but a layout built to 1970's standards just does not cut it to my mind.

MR is as bad as RM and CM. My club gets the CM and thats just about a US prototype magazine now. I browse the MR and RM at Borders in town at lunch time, and really its the same old same old type of thing every month. 5 minutes browsing and I am done.

Now I appreciate that it is about the publications getting quality articles, but surely if they went around the model shows they would find at least one great layout at each show. I look at the Miba website and the layouts at the german shows that they cover are pretty special, not many british outline layouts though.

John
 

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Well RM is (or was, last time I bought a copy) billed as for "the average modeller" - whatever an "average modeller" is - there are many, many "average modellers" here. but all different !

I think the main problem is that there is a hell of a lot of complacency from Devon, but at the same time put yourself in charge of a magazine & look at the changes that have happened over the years, just look at the availability of products that are available now in different scales/gauges/countries/periods - what to go for, not an easy one is it ?

I am primary an HO european modeller (with a little 45mm/LGB in the garden), but I still appreciate P4 (for example) & admire the people that have the patience to build things from raw materials, so I also enjoy reading about & even better seeing them at shows. RM (& it's counterpart CM) does cover a wide range, but maybe it needs to define it's direction. Personally, I think HM has got it right (as near to 100% as possible) in being general in it's appeal.

To a certain extent RM is the Hornby of the media - many returnees remember it as the one they bought 20/30 years ago, same as Hornby
 

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QUOTE (john woodall @ 24 Jul 2008, 07:25) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I browse the MR and RM at Borders in town at lunch time, and really its the same old same old type of thing every month. 5 minutes browsing and I am done.
With the exception of HM which I buy on a regular basis, that's what I do with all of the magazines, but if there is just one article I like then I buy it, read it, make any notes & then pass it on.
 

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From my point of view Railway Modeller has improved significantly in the last couple of months. Despite it being the August issue there is only one garden railway and only one (short) narrow gauge article. I particularly enjoyed the feature on Law Junction, which focused on how the model was developed from the prototype rather than being a conventional layout article. It was also N and contemporary so close to my own interests.

I must admit I'm not in the target market of MRJ, my usual purchase is Model Rail but the last couple of issues of that have had little of interest to me.
 

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QUOTE (john woodall @ 24 Jul 2008, 17:52) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>CM March/April are good for the toy fair report, but more beacuse of the niche manufacturers than the big boys.

John
CM has declined a bit of late. A couple of years back there was some interesting stuff in it but recently it has been a bit light. I may not renew my subscription.
 

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Well RM is (or was, last time I bought a copy) billed as for "the average modeller

Clearly not bought one for many years then Brian!

There is a new editor, so lets hope he gets it back in the mainstream.

Bit difficult to argue its out of the mainstream with it having the largest circulation of the mags though
 

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QUOTE (papamikepapa @ 24 Jul 2008, 22:23) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Well RM is (or was, last time I bought a copy) billed as for "the average modeller

Clearly not bought one for many years then Brian!

There is a new editor, so lets hope he gets it back in the mainstream.

Bit difficult to argue its out of the mainstream with it having the largest circulation of the mags though


You call Narrow Gauge and Trams mainstream?

Overall I do think Railway Modeller has been improving- lets hope it keeps improving!

Russell
 

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You call Narrow Gauge and Trams mainstream?

I said it was the magazine with the largest circulation, therefore by default its firmly in the 'mainstream' Its wide subject range allows it to appeal to a tramway modeller, OO, N, etc etc. If it didn't cover the 'mainstream', it certainly wouldn't be the market leader in sales figures would it?
 

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"The Toddler" - yes read that for many years but last week decided , it was time to stop getting it.
Over the last 4-5 years I have been in UK modeling, I had MR, MRJ BRM, RM & now HM. ( In my previous USA modeling era, I had at least 3 mags a month & eventaully drppped that to one).

All are good in various ways but having so much to read on paper plus forums, decided to cut forums in half & just having HM.

The big problem is storage space for all of these mags.
 

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QUOTE (Sol @ 25 Jul 2008, 23:00) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>The big problem is storage space for all of these mags.
Yes, it can be, but I have the perfect solution - appoint BRITHO as "group librarian" & keep them at his house ! (seriously though, he has everything catalogued in his head & knows where it is).
 

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It seems to me that as the major modelling magazine (in circulation figures), 'RM' is going to get criticised what ever it does. If it doesn't include narrow-gauge and trams, the proponants of those subject will complain, even though they be a minority (or perhaps because they are?) and when RM does include them, others complain!

I personally prefer a wide range of topics to a 'narrow' one, if I can express it that way, as that stimulates the mind a bit more.

The magazine I remember with most affection is 'Model Railway Constructor' which always seemed to have an excellent balance of mainstream and minority items.

Regards,
John Webb
 
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