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April 2020

COVID-19 and Model Train Production

As the effects of this virus were taking hold in China, and at about the same time as their New Years celebrations were commencing, many workers were displaced. Bans on travel made it impossible for the annual New Years' migration, back to their family homes, for the impending celebrations. Many workers left stranded in February 2020 have now taken time to travel home, many have not yet returned to the Dongguan area. 

Of the four companies we presently do business with, all are saying that they are open and ready for business. However they are all affected by staff shortages and this will impact delivery times for some while.

SDS NR Class

DCC Motherboards are due to arrive later this month and reassembly will commence thereafter, delivery will be Qtr 3 2020.  The Great Southern and Real Trains Not Road Trains models are in the paint and decorating phase but delivery has been pushed back.

81 Class Locomotive

All the plastic parts were moulded late last year and they have commenced painting the Series 1 and 2 bodies. We are waiting on tampo printing and the supply of metal parts from sub-contractors. Hopefully we'll have fully decorated running samples shortly and we can proceed to production soon.

South Australian Railways 800 Class Locomotive

The DC versions of these SAR locomotives are due to ship from Hong Kong in early June 2020. The DCC sounds are in development and will be available soon, we need to thank the NRM at Port Dock for allowing us to record their locomotive earlier this year.

Victorian Railways PL Series Passenger Carriages

These will be shipped from Hong Kong in early June and available around the first week of July. Last week we were fortunate to be able to buy Kadee couplers again, as they had been closed since late March.

PL Smooth Sided Swing Door Cars and Improved LHG Brakevans

The newly tooled and retooled engineering samples of these are due mid June with production TBA.

Victorian Railways    T Class Locomotive

We expect some painted and running samples shortly, delivery is still slated for late 2020.


Victorian Railways    Y Class Locomotive

Tooling modifications to a small number of body and chassis parts to accommodate DCC/Sound and LED lighting is underway and we'll also produce a spoked driving wheel for 'as delivered' models.

                                 Victorian Railways      D3 Class Locomotive

Development of the model is complete and we expect painted production samples to leave China later next week. We have a production slot booked for June/July/August and should receive stock in Qtr4 2020. Steamrail Victoria had set aside time for us to record the necessary sounds we required back in April but due to restrictions this didn't occur. Hopefully in the not to distant future we can take up the opportunity to complete the sound recordings and develop our own authentic sounds.

                                       Victorian Railways      K Class Locomotive

Producing some running samples has been affected by reduced staffing levels, however once the D3 samples are shipped they'll concentrate on the K class.

NSWR End Platform cars

To assist one of our vendors in some reasonably simple production we have commissioned some very limited quantities of models for later this year. The proposed new cars to form the sets: VUB 75, DUB 63 and the RG (greyhound car), have been pushed back until 2021.


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