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Author Topic: Bachmann Thomas & Friends in 2020  (Read 107334 times)
« Reply #315 on: February 09, 2020, 06:38:01 PM »

There is a large scale Diesel coming out.

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« Reply #316 on: February 09, 2020, 06:45:33 PM »

Well here are some initial thoughts...

The green LBSC Thomas is definitely a highlight in this yearĎs announcements.  It isnít surprising at all since the tooling was there but Iím glad Bachmann was able to pull this off all the same (especially as a nice laugh to those being contrarian over the screenshot saying Bachmann was referring to Daisy and/or Peter Sam earlier).  Either way, the green Thomas is definitely an all-around winner and Iíll happily be purchasing one.

On the opposite end of highlights though, the busy bee James is definitely a lot more of a questionable choices. Iím sure Mattel thought that a yellow and black striped James would be far more marketable than just a simple black one.  Unlike the black James or even the green Thomas for that matter, Busy bee James really doesnít have that strong following or connection with the fanbase and was a lot more of a marketing gimmick from Hit that was exploited to death by them and Mattel by making various busy bee James merchandise.  A black James wouldíve been far more suitable this year with the green Thomas, but I can definitely say that if Bachmann is willing to go as far as making recolors of previously announced engines, then I donít think of black James wouldnít be that far off in the future since the tooling is already there.  In the meantime though, because we are already getting a green Thomas, Daisy, and Peter Sam I can let Busy Bee James slide for now and I will be planning on talking about a black James in another thread in the future, or whenever 2021 thread gets made.

Without a doubt the most exciting announcement goes to the narrow gauge brake vans!  Itís nice seeing matching pairs go with the coaches but I am disappointed there is no brown one yet.  Hopefully one gets announced next year as a recolor.

The large scale Diesel is returning and itís got a price!  Nice to see the large scale range getting something again.  Without a doubt this will be a MAJOR hit once released and all the large scale collectors can be happy again!  And again the joke is on some fans who were going around saying the large scale range was getting discontinued too. Roll Eyes

N scale James is no surprise but itís nice seeing the range get another engine.  The tankers are a nice addition but Iím a bit bummed that they announced a water tanker instead of a milk tanker but I guess thatís a recolor I can do myself.

The new Thomas set is interesting especially with the plasticville recolored hopper coming back exclusively to this set.  Donít know how many people will be buying that though as a starter set.

Overall everything plus the N scale starter set are pretty nice choices, minus Busy Bee James, but I think everything else that got announced is a solid follow-up to the NMRA announcements last year and I think Bachmann made some solid choices.

« Last Edit: February 13, 2020, 03:12:26 PM by Chaz » Logged

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« Reply #317 on: February 09, 2020, 07:25:00 PM »

Did somebody on Twitter just leak the announcements early?

Thomas is being made in his LBSC livery, which I knew was coming, but did anyone ask for Busy Bee James? People asked for Black James, but Busy Bee James was just a really weird choice. Did Mattel not think Black James was marketable enough? They must have thought James in his Season 10 "Busy Bee" livery would be more marketable. I guess it's still a cool-looking livery. Would've preferred Black James though.

No HO Rolling Stock has been announced. I guess that makes sense because there were several that got announced at last year's NMRA.

Daisy is not getting cancelled, as she is still in the catalog, but there's no image of her yet. Same for Peter Sam, and everything else announced at last year's NMRA.

At least we're FINALLY getting Narrow Gauge Brake Vans. Those have been requested for years. I knew Sir Handel wasn't going to be there, considering the fact that Peter Sam is still on the backburner.

N Scale James has been officially confirmed, along with N Scale Oil, Fuel, and Water Tankers, but still no Milk Tanker. At least N Scale James is coming. Maybe next year, Bachmann can announce Gordon and Henry for N Scale, unless they want to make Emily the 4th N Scale engine, as she was the first female engine to be made in both HO and Large Scales.

Large Scale Diesel is finally coming for real this time. Ever since his cancellation, people wanted him back. It's good that Bachmann reconfirmed Diesel in Large Scale, so he's getting released after all. It's about time Bachmann uncancelled Large Scale Diesel.

My wishlist for HO Scale: Stepney, BoCo, Sidney, Norman, Porter, Timothy, Samson, and Green Salty.
My wishlist for N Scale: Gordon, Henry, Edward, and Diesel.

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« Reply #318 on: February 09, 2020, 07:31:24 PM »

Well, this was very unexpected, but it's very welcome. Perhaps it's not a leak, because that looks like the printed catalogs, and there was a train show this last weekend. The catalog probably was there. I'm sure that Bachmann probably figured this would happen if they displayed the catalog.

Anyways, these definitely seem to be fairly solid announcements. It is a bit strange, though, that Thomas and Percy's N Scale models weren't pictured in the catalog.

Bachmann trains are awesome! Here's my ShapeWays Shop link:

Hello, glad to be here! "Ew Aw Few Few"

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« Reply #319 on: February 09, 2020, 07:43:48 PM »

LBSC Thomas is really nice to see especially coming from the person who drew a LBSC Thomas concept. Itís very nice to see.

Busy Bee James is unexpected and a bit weird but I welcome it. The reception on Twitter for it is actually pretty positive. Probably because itís simply a good recolor.

N Scale James & Tankers. Good, good. The prices are iffy but you could always find it for cheaper. The NG Brakevans are good too but I wish theyíll do a Brown one for goods trains eventually.

Large Scale Diesel is ABSOLUTELY welcome. Iím so glad that I was actually right about it coming back, considering all those who doubted.

Overall, all this plus Daisy, Peter Sam, and the other N Scale products, this is a pretty good year for Bachmann.

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« Reply #320 on: February 09, 2020, 08:08:30 PM »

I'm okay with Busy Bee James coming to HO Scale, since we are also getting Daisy and LBSC Thomas. I'll be picking up all three when available, but man, I need to save up.

Maybe if there's popular demand, Bachmann eventually will give us the Black James from The Adventure Begins. Another HO recolor that we should get eventually is Sidney. Now that it's been a few good years without another Class 08 getting announced, I think I'm about ready for Sidney.

My wishlist for HO Scale: Stepney, BoCo, Sidney, Norman, Porter, Timothy, Samson, and Green Salty.
My wishlist for N Scale: Gordon, Henry, Edward, and Diesel.

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« Reply #321 on: February 09, 2020, 08:26:33 PM »

Anybody know if anything was discontinued in the catalogue or not?

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« Reply #322 on: February 09, 2020, 10:00:13 PM »

All I can say is, Wow. I did NOT expect to see an LSBC Thomas. Would definitely buy over the celebration Thomas As for everything else, the new set looks intriguing and correct me if Iím wrong, but I thing itís the first Bachmann set to include a building. The Busy Bee James looks nice, but I think I speak for everyone when I say Black James would have been nicer. N scale James was expected to happen, although I did not expect a G scale diesel. I know he was canceled before, however itís nice to see. Overall, about what I expected.   

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« Reply #323 on: February 09, 2020, 10:07:22 PM »

Also, the busy bee James has a painted smokebox. PLEASE let this be something that carries over to the normal model.

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« Reply #324 on: February 09, 2020, 10:09:33 PM »

I suppose after HO Scale gets recolors like Sidney and Black James, other ideas for recolors can include Silver Spencer, or Blue Bill and Ben. Maybe Green Salty if Bachmann decides to bring back Salty. Not sure about any of the Mainland Diesel Shunters because they don't really have personalities or names (with Ulli being the only one named). Splatter and Dodge are too obscure.

The only reason why we can't get any Percy recolors is because Percy has never been recolored during the entire history of the show. Unlike Thomas and James, Percy has always been green since day one.

My wishlist for HO Scale: Stepney, BoCo, Sidney, Norman, Porter, Timothy, Samson, and Green Salty.
My wishlist for N Scale: Gordon, Henry, Edward, and Diesel.

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« Reply #325 on: February 09, 2020, 11:28:52 PM »

I actually am excited for Busy Bee James. Iím gonna get it along with LBSC Thomas. Anyone else gonna get those two?
Falcon the 2nd

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« Reply #326 on: February 10, 2020, 12:46:32 AM »

This is actually the first time I myself have witnessed a full lineup of Bachmann items get shared early. And boy are they (mainly) knocking it out of the park with this variety! Smiley

LBSC Thomas, N Scale James and the Narrow Gauge Brake Vans all felt like the most reasonable announcements to expect. I still plan on picking up N Scale James and I anticipate more info on him in the future. The brake vans are also strong considerations for adopting Narrow Gauge products. I may pick up LBSC Thomas depending on my household's financial situation.

I will agree that Busy Bee James is a bit of a strange pick, as the aesthetic was only seen for about a minute or so in one episode to my memory, but it's still welcome as a unique announcement nonetheless. The only James model I own is a little worse for wear, so a recolor like this could serve as a reasonable upgrading option even if I'm mainly aiming for his recent repaint.

Large Scale Diesel returning is perhaps the single announcement that makes me the most happy. As someone who's among the many people that have expressed concerns about Large Scale's future through the years and has also been on the edge of adopting said scale for a long time because of its uncertain future, this is a pretty gratifying confirmation to bear witness to. It serves a likely indicator that he wasn't as expensive to sell, let alone manufacture, as we initially thought he was for quite a while and that ideas for engines that require new toolings are back on the table. Large Scale deserved at least a little something special this year and this was more than enough to satisfy.

Diesel will almost definitely be one of the first engines I buy in Large Scale and I'm certain the longer wait will have been worth it for a greater product. And if he is successful enough, I hope more engines are considered after him. I'll continue standing by that Mavis is the next best pick for being a beloved longtimer and the cost-effective chance of sharing Toby's chassis.

Between this assortment, the UK expansion, the launch of N Scale and last year's NMRA announcements, 2020 is almost definitely one of the best years for this line and it'd be fair to assume that it will only get better going forth to this summer's NMRA batch.

HO Scale - Stepney, Tar Tanker
N Scale - Edward, Mavis, Henrietta, Milk Tanker, Brake Van

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« Reply #327 on: February 10, 2020, 11:13:28 AM »

For the first time in our little community's history... A leak! Never thought I'd see the day; Bachmann usually has these sort of things tightly knit, not that I'm complaining. Anyway, on to my thoughts...

James being added to the N Scale range is sort of a surprise to me; it was obvious that James was going to be added to the range at -some- point, but I didn't think he was going to be announced until the range was out for a good year or so. I'm curious to see if he's going to get an open cab or not, since that's something fans have been critical of the HO model of for quite some time.

A little disappointed the trucks still sport those 2002 faces. I thought for sure by now they'd update to the CGI faces, at least, or trade them out for more accurate model faces that don't resemble the early 2000s stock art.

N scale tankers? About the same boat as James, for me; a bit surprised, but welcome nonetheless. I'm still wondering how these models are going to scale up compared to the Tomix equipment. We've seen pictures of them on N Scale track and next to some Japanese N Scale equipment, but no photos alongside Tomix itself yet. If I had to make a personal wish, it'd be that Bachmann introduces the TAR tankers, since those were re-introduced into CGI via a flashback, and sport the classic decals; would certainly be fitting to go with an N Scale James.

Daisy and Peter Sam lacking new photos seems to be part of a pattern going on the last few years, where Bachmann announces a new product one year, and we usually see an update on it at NRMA the next years Summer. I'm hoping by then we'll get some new details on those two.

The LBSC Thomas has to be the most expected thing at this point, and seeing its arrival is pretty much no surprise. It's an item everyone wanted in 2015, and it's an item everyone wants now. While I don't see myself buying this one in the long run, I'm sure this one is gonna sell like hotcakes.

Still wondering how those Troublesome Tankers are gonna look, guess we'll have to wait longer on that. Here's hoping they don't go with the "BWBA" look that they found as a stock photo on the Wikia.

Bee James? I feel like this is something thats been joked about for years among the forums community, but not in a million years did we actually expect it (but then again, Rosie was seen as something that would never happen, and here we are with -two- of her).

I have to question the logistics of this one, honestly. I don't consider it to be a "welcome addition" as I've been hearing, but rather seems like a financial risk. If I recall correctly, Bachmann usually does their product runs in units of 500 or so? It's easy to say that Bee James probably doesn't cost a lot to make, but that's still paint, material, parts and packaging being invested into making this thing.. Well, exist. I've thought about this a good bit overnight, and my only guesses are Bachmanns run the economic numbers and seems confident they can sell at least 500 of these things will sell and get their bank back on the cost it took to manufacture them. It's possible they're hoping that something like this will sell better in the international markets of the UK and JP, though I still feel like Bee James is... Missing something?

There we go, looks better already, doesn't it? Now I'm a fan of options, so lets have a.. ..B.. choice as well:

Which would you prefer?

Anyway, this leads me to my next point; is Bachmann actually thinking ahead of the game? I remembered last night that at one of the NRMA shows, I believe it was Yardmaster who made a comment during a video that more or less stated "The Thomas range basically funds all of the other ranges under Bachmann." If Bachmann -does- manage to sell this successfully at a low manufacturing cost, then this could theoretically (keyword there) be a quick buck for Bachmann to fund bigger and better projects. Could a gimmicky recolor like Bee James actually fund better engines like Sir Handel, Stepney, or non-Thomas engines in Bachmanns other line ups? It's hard to say. I personally feel that they had enough ammunition already with LBSC Thomas, and that Bee James is an out of left field gamble.

The concern I have and want to voice though is I don't necessarily -mind- gimmicky models, as long as they come with the offset of quality announcements like Daisy and Peter Sam as well. Basically, I fear and don't want to see the Thomas range dwindle into a range that's -nothing but- gimmicky engines like you'd see in Wooden Railway or Trackmaster. Considering how much it costs to manufacture a model train as it is, I feel like it's a slippery slope... But I'm not the manufacturer, so what do I know? I just hope Bachmann knows what they're doing with this one.

Anyway, onto the last few announcements!

Narrow gauge brake vans are a welcome addition. I was really close to buying some 3D print ones, but I might wait to see how these turn out. I have to wonder if these are going to be based on the TV series brake vans, or the Talyllyn No. 5. All of the Bachmann-made toolings for the Skarloey range so far have been based directly off the TR equipment so far (though the blue coach sported the TVS livery). It makes me wonder if they're going to be consistent with the brake van, or finally break tradition.

Lastly, it's refreshing to see the Large Scale Diesel is being reconsidered! I've always considered the Large Scale Thomas to be one of the more tempting brands that I don't own yet, and this is only adding fuel to that fire. In terms of repaints, I feel like Diesel is a very good choice to have in the Large Scale Thomas range. His tooling would allow them to make Arry, Bert, and Paxton in the range, giving plenty of new additions at a low cost. My curiosity is though, will Bachmann design the LS Diesel tooling to be more "friendly" and versatile to other characters who have face shapes different from Diesel? The OO Paxton got a lot of criticism for his oversized face, and I'd love to see Bachmann learn their mistake from that and have the tooling designed with multiple characters in mind.

Anyway, that's about it for my two cents on the announcements. Looking forward to seeing updates throughout the year, Bachmann.
Griffin (TheBlueSnowplow)

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« Reply #328 on: February 10, 2020, 12:38:00 PM »

I wasn't really bothered by the Busy Bee James until I saw your face edits, cheeky. What a missed opportunity! I would really love to see Bachmann reconsider the face (as we have seen them do in the past with the likes of Paxton) and consider one of the options presented. It would certainly make the model more enticing and stand out in more way than one.

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« Reply #329 on: February 10, 2020, 01:18:19 PM »

I'm still wondering how these models are going to scale up compared to the Tomix equipment. We've seen pictures of them on N Scale track and next to some Japanese N Scale equipment, but no photos alongside Tomix itself yet.
Yes we have seen their scale:

Bachmann made them in British N gauge, and it's been known that Tomix made theirs oversized. So Bachmann's are smaller.
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