Recently a thread appeared on RMweb that was started by Dave from Dapol asking for suggestions for future products. A few suggestions for a 009 loco have been given, including one by me.
This list of suggestions sparked quite a debate over on NGRM online as to the pros and cons of having RTR 009 appear on the market. There seem to be two main schools of thought on this;
1 – Those who want it. It will help further the hobby, attract new people, provide a much needed 009 specific chassis, provide scracthbuilding fodder etc.
2 – Those who don’t want it. Thinking that it won’t happen, or that it’s not economically viable, that it will ruin the niche feeling of 009 and make it much more ‘mainstream’.
I sit in camp ‘1’, surely it’s of benefit, it’ll provide a very useful resource for those of us who like our narrow gauge models small.
RTR 009 is a topic that’s cropped up many times before on various fora, often resulting in a ‘no, it’ll never happen’ consensus.
We’ve been a little further down this road before, a couple of years ago Roco sort of announced that they planned to do a model of a Ffestiniog Double Fairlie. I say ‘sort of’ deliberately as they provided no details of which loco it would be (and they’re all subtly different), but it looked like David Lloyd George in the photo. They gave no indication of price, estimated time until it would enter the shops, or even if it would be 4mm or 3.5mm scale. The plug was pulled due to lack of interest, or pre-orders, hardly surprising given the lack of information to enable people to make a decision, really. The fairlie is such a unique design that it’s buyers are limited to a collector, someone who is building an FR layout, or someone who just wants one for the sake of it (perhaps from the FR shop). A more widespread design, such as Fowler 0-6-0WT ‘Limpopo’ at the Bredgar and Wormshill Railway is what, in my opinion, is needed.
There are plenty of other examples of locos like this that were ‘catalogue’ items (standard designs) which saw use all over the world, and now have examples in preservation. This would allow various liveries to be produced maximising the amount of ‘different’ locos that could be produced from one set of dies.
Anyway, if we don’t ask we don’t get, so why not head over to the thread on RMweb and put in a request for a 009 loco, it’s here. Or, if you’re not a member of RMweb, contact Dapol using the email address on this page.