NEWS: DJ Models Class 92 CAD nears completion
Arriving in your email 'Inbox' if you’re a depositor on DJModels’ Class 92 locomotives in N and OO gauge, is an update on the project and shots of its final CAD images. A high specification is promised, with views welcomed from depositors before the model is sent to tooling. Howard Smith asked Dave Jones, proprietor of DJModels his thoughts on why these models will stand out from the crowd.
Howard: What’s the most time-consuming part when designing a new model like the Class 92?
Dave: The most time consuming is the tooling, testing and painting of the models. First EP tooling for this model, for instance, is likely to take up to two months because of the number of parts, especially the roof which is exquisitely-detailed with lots of separate parts. Each colour on the CAD drawings is a separately-attached part. In some cases there are visible parts beneath parts... like the bell fan beneath one of the etched-steel grilles. Compared to these, the design was easy, and the model will use a heavy American-style chassis for maximum traction.
3D CAD of forthcoming DJModels Class 92 model.
Howard: Talk us through some of the detail options for your Class 92 locomotives.
Dave: Well, luckily in its life, the Class 92 design hasn't received that many modifications. However, the DJM model has original lighting and revised lighting on both the OO and forthcoming N gauge versions. There are a couple of other items that are interesting that will be catered for - one being the transponder placing.
Howard: Designing a model to please the majority must be difficult at times – where do you draw the line on detail?
Dave: The Class 71 was the world's first ever 100% successfully-crowdfunded model railway locomotive. I decided at an early stage that compromise wouldn't be made on certain things. Those same details will make the new models in N and OO gauges, stand out as distinctly better than those already, or soon to be ready, for the UK market. For instance, on the Class 71, it was the detail on the bogie frames, on the Class 92 it's the roof shoulders and well details. We all look down on our models to a degree when operating, and the thought of seeing something of such fine and outstanding detail I hope will give owners a great deal of pleasure.
Howard: You’re open to critique, asking depositors their thoughts on the Class 92 CADs before the model reaches tooling. Are depositors really that influential in the design process?
Dave: I have always said that I don't see or know everything. An extra pair of eyes is a wonderful thing to have available and I thank each and everyone of my customers that voices an opinion. There are always a few things we, as designers, have to compromise on. Somethimes we miss things because of being 'too close' to the problem. Examples I've seen recently include models that are simply gorgeous at first look, but have intrinsic faults in their design. By simply asking the buying public their opinion, most could be avoided. It's just as easy to cut steel for a correct model than an incorrect model, and pretty much the same cost too.
Howard: Nine livery variations in OO and N gauge, with options for sound – that’s a lot of choice for a first release. Why?
Dave: This has come about due to the need to ensure the model 'washes its face' and breaks even at launch. Anyone pre-ordering via the website gets certain livery / number / name combinations which won't be repeated. As such they'll be special models owing to their uniqueness for the crowdfunding customers. Some of these models will be made in a run of less than 100 models, making them very special. There are also the models being offered to stockists who want iconic and well-detailed models - these are being offered at an RRP or higher than the crowdfunding models. These must be different from the crowdfunded models, and what better way than to ensure the stockists have a good chance to sell their versions, than to offer different livery, number and named combinations? It's easily forgotten that the Class 92 was introduced in 1993 - it's seen many different liveries and small changes on a theme.
Roof detail - each colour represents a separate component.
Howard: Who is providing sound for the model?
Dave: Sound is being provided by a currently unnamed 3rd party, with unlimited access to a Class 92 to get all the sounds. No doubt he'll not use all of them that are available, but it will be good for the hobby, especially in the future, to have these extra sounds on file and fill the sound gap that exists currently. DCC sound-fitted options was a 'no-brainer' reall - I can't wait to hear the first DJM Class 92 'roaring' with traction motor sounds emanating from its speakers.
Howard: When can we expect to see models arrive?
Dave: If within four weeks tooling commences, then it's approximately eight weeks until test samples and running samples are available to view. I intend to show the tooling in-progress in pictures that I'll give to the press plus show on my website. It's an exciting process (due to its nature quite a slow one) but fascinating to see it happen. I hope to bring that to the customer and bystander alike in various media at the time. After this has been done, it's second prototype status tooling, where details are added to the tools... rivets, grilles etc. While this is completing, final artwork will be signed off and I'll get the box designed. This is what I like to have a big hand in - if anyone saw my Western Enterprise box design, and the Class 71 box design, you'll know what I'm looking at for the OO gauge Class 92. The N gauge Class 92 will have a plastic bespoke-sized jewel case instead.