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  1. Some preordered, slightly delayed but earlier than expected, tractive effort arrived today. It’s the Kato EF65-2000 (1-316) It comes with the usual array of detailing parts, the only minor difference compared to the Kato EF65-1000 (1-306) is that it has pre-drilled holes for the antenna and there’s an included GPS antenna. (Also no headmarks for obvious reasons) The paint job is nicely finished and there’s some nice detailing of loco plates under the drivers cabs. (My phone camera sadly doesn’t work well in macro situations.) I hope to get some more Takis in the coming months so I can have a couple of oil trains to shift around. Apologies for the initial photos. I ideally need Mark’s photoplank to do the loco justice.
  2. Takara Tomy have produced a Pura-rail version so obviously have a license deal. Maybe Tomix will do it at some point.
  3. Kamome

    What did you order or the post deliver?

    Hey Gavino The original EF81 with the pop art-esque paint scheme was later replaced by a pair of EF510-500s painted in the silver Cassiopeia livery from about 2010 onwards . (509 and 510 to be exact.) These were later sold off to JRF and lost their star and stripes. The lounge end sat behind the loco towards Aomori. This meant the luxury suite was at the rear of the train when traveling northbound. Between Aomori and Hakodate the train changed direction so it was only this section (northbound)when the luxury suite sat behind the loco. (Usually an ED79) I assume Southbound, the luxury suite would see a lot of loco.
  4. I hope they do, although they currently don’t have a chassis for something with driving rods etc.. A nice steam tram engine could work initially, failing that World Kogei do some narrow gauge tank engines. Not that I’m planning on investing heavily financially in narrow gauge but never say never I suppose. For those interested in a few more shots. Here are the Kihas and the DB1 compared to a bigger brother Kiha 28. I managed to catch the driver on his break.
  5. I’ve been a little “narrow-minded” of late. One of the chaps at the Nogata, first Sunday of the month, running club had started making some narrow gauge modules using the Tomytec NaRo gauge 80 range. Needless to say, I have become slightly engrossed in the level of detail that some of these Japanese narrow gauge modelers have produced. Due to a few of these models being on clearance at a local hobby shop, (¥2000) I got a bit carried away and now have quite a fleet, although currently unpowered. I will in the future convert all with the relevant motors (TM-07R) as well as scratch build some interiors and possibly add working lights, due to the workable space with HO. It’ll be a long-running side project. Adding motors will be simple enough but working out what to do internally may take some time. DCC or DC? Until then, they make nice display pieces. Anyway, they looked fantastic navigating around the tight curves of the club members layout so I’ll be keen to create something along the same lines.
  6. This weekend, being a 3 day weekend thanks to Ocean day, I managed to secure a bit of time to pin wash my Kato Koki 104s and the odd Tomix 106 as well as add container details and wagon numbers. I used a mix of Tamiya Enamel black with Tamiya enamel thinner. About 5 parts thinner to 1 part paint. This way I could build up greater tone with a few more applications as needed. Still need to get a compressor so I can airbrush more muck to the side and top but this gives a nice starting point. I also added some hazard yellow to the handbrake side of the railings on the Kokis and the forklift points on the containers as I’ve noticed this on the real thing. The containers especially needed something to make them look less “plasticky”
  7. With all the recent Usui Pass releases, I’d love to see Kato releasing a set of ED42s . I recently saw a lovely HO version running (possibly Tenshodo) and love to see a version in N from someone other than Microace.
  8. Kamome

    Kato - New Releases

    You won’t be disappointed, Sammy. It’s such a nice model and one of my favourite (not so blue) blue trains. Would be nice if Kato or Roundhouse produced EF65 1124 in TE colours just as a little update. I know Tomix produced this already.
  9. Nice work Mark. I still need a quiet moment without toddlers to number mine as well as numbering a load of Takis and Kokis. Do you add a layer of clear coat over yours? I wondered how well these dry transfers hold up in the case of imprecise handling.
  10. Kamome

    MicroAce - New Releases

    The Japanese modelers that I meet at the monthly running sessions all love the MA variety but not the quality of the motors. There’s a lot of “マイクロ, ね!” when something MA isn’t running well. (“Micro ace, isn’t it!”) I am really tempted to get a Kiha 31 but I haven’t seen one at the meets that doesn’t make a horrible gear grinding noise as yet. My Kiha 32 Hobby Train is a bit temperamental and needs constant love and attention to keep it running.
  11. Kamome

    Takara Tomy Linear Liner

    Although these came out a fair few years ago.l, I do still see them around in model shops and the odd toy shop. I think they’re about ¥35000 and the box is enormous so definitely an expensive shipping item. What a great innovative model of an actual maglev that levitates and uses magnets to accelerate
  12. Kamome

    What did you order or the post deliver?

    This is where my initial interest came from so I was glad when Kato announced another version. I have an older 20 series Sakura service with a KaNi 22 with pantographs. Not sure why they moved away from this way of powering the train apart from the obvious unelectrified sections on some routes. My later 20 series Sakura (Nagasaki/Sasebo formation) had the pantographs removed from the KaNi 22 but the respective insulators remain.
  13. Kamome

    What did you order or the post deliver?

    A few more coaches arrived this week. I ummed and ahhed about the re-release of the OE 1988 formation and I had only a mild interest in the train at best. I’m so glad I went for it as those CIWL coaches have been recreated beautifully by Kato. The twin lion logo is a raised detail which adds extra depth to the model and the window details are stunning. Also a nice booklet included with some interesting photos of the various locos pulling the train around Japan. The best part was no premium price tag. It was the same price as other Kato coach sets unlike some of the recent Cruise train releases and announcements. I also grabbed the 24 series Seto/Asakaze JR formation blue train. It’s was the SuHa 25 300 that swung it for me although yes I could’ve just got the assy parts and built one separately. I’m a real stickler for these Kato sleepers despite them all being relatively similar. Perhaps it’s the need, being heavily invested in them already, to collect them all or perhaps the ability to protypically change locos over at various intervals. Gotta love those sleepers. I now have: 24 series Seto/Asakaze 24 series Deluxe Hokutosei 24 series Nihonkai E26 Cassiopeia 24 series Fuji 24 series Twilight Express 14 series Noto (JR version) 20 series Sakura (Nagasaki/Sasebo formation) 20 series Sakura 10 series Taisetsu Just hoping there’ll be a release of the Akebono again at some point. Just waiting for the weekend to give them a proper run.
  14. My 3 year old loves Hot Wheels and I enjoy finding cool hot rods for him. I’m probably more into it than he is. Much cooler than the Corgi and Matchbox cars I had. He loves shinkansens and steam engines whereas Iida line EMUs he finds extremely dull.
  15. Also remember that these items are incredibly expensive in Japan. Not many manufacturers have touched Shinkansens in HO due to the fact that a 16-car 0 series in HO is around 5 metres long. My local Hobby shop and Club have one. There aren’t many in Japan who have space to run something of this size. That means that production is left to companies with smaller production runs, usually in brass. So more skilled work is necessary to put them together in asmall factory hence a higher price. These models are aimed at the high earning rivet counters who want a museum quality model to run. You pay your money and take your choice. I think Ken Patterson said on one of his pod casts, “If you’re looking for a cheap hobby, you could collect Hot Wheels!” For me, I like N for running 10-15 car trains around and stop/starting at stations. I like HO for shunting and yard operations with the more controlled slow running you get. This also allows you to appreciate the higher detail. For me personally, watching a bullet train whizz around a track would be no better on HO than it would be on N. Yes you’d have greater detail but would you have an opportunity to appreciate it as it screams past?