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New Zealand Hornby Railway Collectors` Association

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Hornby publicity photograph from the early 1930s. Taken at King`s Cross station, London. Young lad showing his Hornby locomotive to loco crews. ***************************************************************


Hornby M0 locomotives. The earliest type at left, dating from 1930. Centre one is the upgraded type with cylinders etc. This one was made in 1950. At right is the same type but now in British Rail colours. Production ceased mid 1960s. These were the bottom of the Hornby range, intended for youngsters. Few prewar ones have survived, even though made in big numbers, but they had a tough life! **********************************************************************


Hornby lettered certain prewar items NZR for export to New Zealand.   This an example of an older style chassis being used for export. The couplings are a later style than the chassis.


Permanent layouts are nice, but most toy trains were played with on the floor, with the railtracks being set out for a few hours.  Even a layout such as this is more than most young boys achieved.   Sharply curved rails  did not take up much space on the lounge floor.  These are 3 rail tracks for electrically powered locomotives (as common in the USA) but clockwork engines will run on it too.


My first Hornby loco, given to me in playworn state many years ago. Now at least 90 years old! Bottom of the range. Motor was broken and Models Ltd (NZ Meccano/Hornby agents) crudely installed an M0 motor. *************************************************************


Hornby in trouble!   The first type of 20volt  motor powered Hornby (using the French Hornby style motor) has a problem!  The Hornby crane is inadequate to lift the loco so a bigger Lionel crane is assisting.   Not sure how an American crane got to be in New Zealand (note the NZR lettering) -  perhaps during the war  some USA equipment was sent to help.


This illustrates  how toy trains varied considerably in size! They are same gauge which means they run on the same track spacing.  This is Gauge 0 which is one and a quarter inches between rails.  These are not scale models!  Left is a Brimtoy.  At right is a Bowman. The Brimtoy has a small clockwork motor  which gives a running range of about 24 feet.  The Bowman is a methylated burning live steam locomotive and runs for over half an hour on its water and fuel supply.


`Standard Gauge` was not really standard, but called that by Lionel of the USA. Production ceased with the start of WW2, but replicas were introduced made by MTH Trains. The gauge is 2 1/8th inches. Here are three locomotives. The small red one is over 85 years old and runs well. Trains were made to last then. The other two are modern replicas built in the old style with old type motors. The rolling stock is all prewar Lionel. *************************************************************


Advertisement for Bowwman live steam locomotive. Production of these ceased in 1935. **********************************************************************************

Links to other pages of this site are at top left.
Also Note --- COMING EVENTS - 1, Napier Model Railway Show 6th/7th July- Napier Boy`s High School - Includes 0 Gauge layout. 2, Taupo Hobby Expo - 13th/14th July - Taupo Events Centre -0 Gauge & Dublo. 3. Wellington Area - 24th August - At the MacKay`s. Plus a meeting at Christchurch on 29th June. Sorry - for security reasons addresses cannot the given.

****Links to other sites of interest****

Train Collectors Society

Live steam 0 gauge locomotives in action. NZ made Cranko & Auld, plus Bowman and Bing.

NZ made Cranko Electric Trains

Hornby Railway Collectors Assn.

Hornby Railway Collectors Assn of Australia

Dutch Hornby Railway Collectors Assn.

Lew Schneider Album of Toy Trains

Binns Road - Photos of many types of toy trains, etc.

Youtube showing 0 gauge airscrew propelled `Zeppelin` railcar.

Glenn Ball`s illustrations including toy trains.

Tinplate Times

Railmaster - Trains for sale