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  1. Yahoo (yafuoku) madness

    Two Tomica (?) red London buses, one fitted with N gauge motor and wheels, 7,000 yen. https://page.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/jp/auction/c598497493
  2. Yahoo (yafuoku) madness

    500 grams of Kato/Tomix case inserts (the bits which occupy the space you put the train in): https://page.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/jp/auction/296771957
  3. MicroAce - New Releases

    New skool prices...
  4. Kato Model #'s and Packaging

    That's a reasonable assumption. Forgot to add that the original late 1960's packaging (pre "jewel case") was red and white, see e.g. the picture (not enlargeable) next to "Chapter 1" here: https://katomodels.wixsite.com/50thmm I don't think I've ever seen any of that "in the wild", my working theory is that it was superseded in the early-ish 1970s by the jewel box with yellow/white lining.
  5. Kato Model #'s and Packaging

    Anyway back to the original questions - according to the 50th anniversary book published by Kato, the current branding (KATO logo with the raised "A") was introduced in 1987. That means we can date the changeover from 3 to 4 digits to some point before then.
  6. Kato Model #'s and Packaging

    Maybe it's one of those British English vs. North Amercan English things, I don't associate "casket' particularly strongly with a ceremonial dead body storage receptacle... Sounds a bit archaic though... Mind you North Americans don't seem to get why I find various Japanese product names consisting of an English word prefixed with "Gran" ("Gran Class" etc) quite amusing...
  7. Kato Model #'s and Packaging

    Wordz can haz multiple meanings?
  8. Kato 10-1247 noisy run at speed

    I have a Kato 101 (10-255, 2006 production lot) acquired cheaply via Yahoo Auctions, beautiful condition, painfully noisy runner. Very buzzy-growly, particularly at low speed, was not at all enjoyable to operate so I put it away pending arrival of round tuits. Round tuits have recently arrived so remembering this thread I took a look at the motor, couldn't find anything obviously wrong or unduly vibrating, so speculatively dabbed a couple of teensy drops of oil on the motor bearings, and hey presto, buzzy-growly noise vanished. Note this might not be the right solution for every noisy motor, but worth considering if it's an older model which might not have been run much and has no other obvious problems.
  9. Kato Model #'s and Packaging

    Not sure exactly when but I'd put my money on early 1980s. I'll see if I can find out more. FWIW the 3-digit number still survives on some mouldings still in production.
  10. Mine trundles acceptably slowly, it just lacks fine control at the very bottom end of the range.
  11. It's satisfactory, though not brilliant at slow speeds, and does tend to jump instantly from 0 to say 15 with, OTOH it was second hand and may need a bit of maintenance.
  12. Presumable "older" 700-series sets.
  13. An ex-LNWR 0-8-0 from British niche manufacturer Union Mills. Union Mills G2 by Rail Squid, on Flickr
  14. Old vans at Takasaki

    There's some limited through-running from the Seibu line, but though I've never looked into it in detail I've always had the impression that without the freight operations it would really be struggling, particularly the western section. Many of the stations have three tracks, which I presume is to facilitate freight movements. Anyway maybe we could coordinate a trip, I'm minded to take the Squidlet up to Mitsumine-guchi some time in summer.
  15. Old vans at Takasaki

    A very Chichibu freight working: P1030370 by Rail Squid, on Flickr which are probably what keep the line alive, even then it's still stuck a couple of decades in the past.