Thursday, 8 November 2012

"First look at the Bachmann Duck"

Since breaking the news on Bachmann's Duck a year ago, I've endured a few hits in my time. I feel I've been somewhat vindicated by Bachmann's latest model.

There's no doubt in my mind that Bachmann have nailed Duck. The proportions are spot on for the TV series model. The only thing is missing is the white painted running plate. With that done, the model hits all the right spots. And if you look carefully...there's a hint of a stovepipe too!

Do bear in mind folks that this is likely to be a late pre-production model. This will have been made to test the moulds and the livery prior to release. As a result, minor aesthetic changes are not unlikely, but any major retooling at this stage is not going to happen.

Not that it needs to, to be frank!

Support Bachmann's superb range by buying Duck when he comes out. Know that I'll have a special Duck VS Duck review lined up at some point in the future, too!

Until next time.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Updates & a Re-design

I intend to completely overhaul the Hero of the Scales blog, amongst other things, whilst I work on the BMM giveaway video.

One of the things which will change greatly is the emphasis on Thomas - I want this to become a more model railway orientated blog in future.

The re-design is going to take some time, particularly as we'll have an all new set on which to test models in future.


Thursday, 13 September 2012

"Blue Mountain Mystery Giveaway"

Yes fellas, I am doing a Blue Mountain Mystery Giveaway in October. Copies of the DVD and some Take N Play models as a pack for each of three winners.

It's my way of saying thank you for your patience as we wait for new reviews to come out. I'm still sitting on Oliver and Murdoch, which are in the editing stage but not finished yet. Simply haven't had the time, sorry.


Thursday, 23 August 2012

"You cannot be serious!"

One of the reasons I have been reluctant to post more Thomas review videos for a good while has been done to some of the YouTube comments I get on a daily basis. I don't expect everyone to agree with me, and it would be a pretty boring life if everybody did (!) but some of the things which get thrown at me are, to say the least, incredible.

This for example, from "Thegodsrighthandman" on YouTube this week, regarding the Diesel VS Diesel review:

 Sorry but how did Bachmann win?

Hornby had Much better detailing through and and through, engine covers, rivet lines etc . . . The cab was hollow allowing for drivers to be sited, the side rods were finer quality and the face was correct. It had equal pulling power and better speed.

Did you fail it just for being discontinued? What about ebay prices?

There's summat not quite right about this . . . .

How Much Did Bachmann Pay You????

So to clarify (once again) the two brands, Hornby and Bachmann, are marked on different criteria. For Hornby it's adherence to the prototype, for Bachman it's to the TV series model. Bachmann's Diesel model nailed the criteria I was marking it on. Hornby's didn't. The side rods are incorrect compared to the prototype, it's not scale length, there are many incorrect details including engine covers, exhausts, and so on and so forth. If Bachmann had paid me I wouldn't have taken the mickey out of the Bachmann Diesel's face!

So to remove any doubt, I only get paid by YouTube for my videos. There is absolutely no commercial arrangement with either Hornby or Bachmann.

However, that wasn't the end of the story from Thegodsrighthandman this week...on the Edward video, this is what was said:

I'm sorry. I've watched several of these vid's an' I'm not gonna watch any more.
You are obviously Payed by Bachmann.
The Bachmann Models are based on the Dreadful US-made Thomas series. Rev. W Audrey is turning in his Grave at what they have done to it. The faces of the Loco's have little individuality so they have become Bland. The story teller is Bland. The stories are Bland. The characters have been changed to be so PC they are Bland as well.
D/L the Ringo Starr series. So Much Better!!!

I can't tell if he's being serious or not...

To clarify a few points: Awdry is spelt thus and not Audrey.  The two models are (like in the Diesel VS Diesel review; like every review in fact) marked on different criteria.

Hornby's choice of the D49 as a basis was an odd one and the wrong one in my opinion.

The current storytelling of the TV series isn't down to me I'm afraid, so not quite sure why I'm getting the blame for it. Incidentally, the TV series is not US made (up until this year it was made by a Canadian company called Nitrogen Studios, prior to that it was all filmed in the UK) and the Bachmann models up to Bill & Ben have been drawn from the UK made series 1-5.

So you imagine my frustration with having to deal with this sort of nonsense. I'm not paid by Bachmann. If I were, I'd give much better reviews. I wouldn't have completely undermined the Bachmann Percy's design (which is still very poor compared to the high standards set by Edward, Bill & Ben and Donald & Douglas) either.

I am however (against my better judgement) working on several new videos, including Murdoch, Oliver and Mavis, so Hornby VS Bachmann will return around September time.

Until next time.


Wednesday, 27 June 2012

"Changes afoot - new videos coming up!"

I have promised new reviews - and they will be coming later this year. Murdoch, Oliver and Mavis will be incoming during September.

There's been a few changes to the video descriptions and this blog too. My preferred supplier for the Bachmann range in the UK used to be trainsontime, but they sadly closed this year, for completely fair and understandable reasons.

Happily, the chap behind trainsontime has set up a new mail order business, and as a token of my appreciation for the hard work he's put into setting up the new "The Dieselworks", all of my review videos now have in the description:

Simon's preferred supplier for the Bachmann Thomas & Friends Range is:

It is, after all, true! I wholeheartedly reccomend

Until next time!

Saturday, 21 April 2012

"The Virtue of Patience"

 There is a point where I begin to wonder: why bother?

I have had a spate of comments on this blog with some pretty uninspiring stuff being posted. The sort of things which have a wholly negative effect.

Well, here is that update. The Murdoch review is in the filming stage, and due in no small part to my full time job, and The British Railway Stories, which I am working on very hard, is being delayed until I can be satisfied it is to my own exacting standards.

You'll forgive me I hope for not wanting to emulate many of the extremely poor reviews by the rest of the fandom; which do not go into the pinpoint, precise, and carefully considered commentary that the Hornby VS Bachmann videos do. There are exceptions, of course, which are a lot better.

So why post now? Well, here's a selection of the comments:

Well it's been a month and no sign of a new review yet. :(
Understandably, I have been very busy, and the review series is a "nice to have and fun to do" additional on my Youtube channel, which is primarily there to promote my made for Youtube The British Railway Stories, and the companion books.

The relief at reading the next comment was palpable!

Simon's probably got loads going on in the 'outside' world.. it'll be here whenever he can get it here.
Honestly I didn't know about this until just now, and I'm very excited. Hornby's Murdoch is a good-looking engine, I'd love to see a full review on it, especially from Simon!
Henry's review should be excellent as well. :)
 I am extremely grateful for comments such as the above. A proper grip on reality, and a positive outlook. A personal thank you to Lightninging93 is in order.

Then we get this:

Simon.....I love and respect you dude. Your videos are awesome. I understand you have tons work and a life....but seriously.......It's been over a month and nothing.....smh

Then this:

I agree with you man. Understanding can only go so far...You are supposed to be running a website. At least give us some updates.

And this:

Is this website even being run anymore?

All "Anonymous" of course, because they are far too many cowards in this fandom who don't want to be held to account for their own failings in life.

Yes it's still being run: no, I don't have any updates as yet: and I do not owe anyone a living on Youtube, Blogger or elsewhere.

You might not see a new Hornby VS Bachmann video for another six to eight months, know this now. Real life is currently rather tough with a job which sees me driving all over London and the South East, day to day, racking up in and around 450 miles a week.

So in short - have some patience, please.


Friday, 9 March 2012

"Reviews on the way"

Yes, some new reviews are on the way this month! More 60 second reviews, and a full and detailed look at Murdoch, in which there will be the chance to win a fabulous prize...!

Until next time!

Saturday, 18 February 2012

"Bachmann Thomas 60 Second Review!"

In response to feedback over the last year, I will be revisiting many of the models I reviewed last year, with succinct and to the point 60 second reviews. I intend to do one or two a week, focusing mainly on the Bachmann Thomas & Friends range, in anticipation of the Duck The Great Western Engine release later this year.

All feedback on this first video in the 60 Second Review series will be much appreciated.

Until next time!

Thursday, 16 February 2012


Oh look:

Bachmann Duck with moving eyes

So for those of you who doubted mine and my source's credibility, I only have one thing to say...



Looking forward to revealing more as it arrives in the Hero of the Scales office.



Sunday, 12 February 2012

"Duck-ing for Cover"

It's not often I get a bit of amusement from the Bachmann Trains Forum, but seeing the comment below this evening really did make me laugh:

Hey, hey, hey. What if Duck wasn't announced this year? You gotta think, it was Simon who brought the news. If it's false, then you can say goodbye to him. That will practically destroy his reputation to fans everywhere.

First and foremost, my contact - a very good one who has been on the ball for nearly four years of knowing him, hasn't been wrong before. The unfortunate thing is that I've never reported in four years any of his tips previous to Bachmann making their own announcement.

Out of respect for his privileged position and his confidence, no, I won't be revealing my source. Anyone who thinks I should needs a reality check. You don't reveal sources if it puts someone's job on the line. It would be a disgraceful thing to do. Disgusting at that, and more than likely despicable, too!

Secondly, over at the Sodor Island Forums, we had confirmation from a completely separate source, that Duck was on the cards from Bachmann. Their source had different dates of release to mine, but the overall information remained the same. My source said late 2012, theirs said late 2012 probably early 2013.

Ryan and I decided to make a bit of a thing about it last week because, purely and simply, we want people to support the Duck model when it comes out, and we want people to support the excellent Bachmann range. No ifs, ands, or buts.

If you support the quality products, you get more quality products. That's why the Bachmann Diesel popped out of nowhere last year, when people were clearly buying into the superb Bill & Ben models of the year before.

Credibility isn't about getting it right all of the time - it's facing up to when you've got it wrong and putting your hands up and saying "we're wrong". In this case I don't think we are wrong, at all, particularly with the very credible and very separate sources we have..

HOWEVER - if by some way we've got it wrong here, then I'd go back to my source, Ryan to his, discuss what's happened, and then we'd come back with an explanation and an apology. That would be the right thing to do, and we would be sincere about it.

On the flip side, there is always one user somewhere who wants to blow things out of proportion anyway. I think we've found that particular one for this month!

In any event, I'd like to think my "reputation" with this fanbase would be based on more than just a single bit of product news...!

Until next time - night all!

Monday, 6 February 2012

"I'm Great Western and..."

Yes, it's the news you've been waiting for - Duck the Great Western Engine will be made by Bachmann USA in 2012. This is not so surprising really, given the character's continuing popularity, despite his absence in the current incarnation of Thomas & Friends.

More on this news and hopefully some discussion on the pre-production samples, when it breaks.

Until next time!

Saturday, 4 February 2012

"Incoming news on the Bachmann Range"

Within the next week or so, there will be some news on the 2012 Bachmann T&F range - at least one group of fans is going to be very happy I'll wager. After last year's Donald & Douglas models kicking about quite happily here, there and everywhere, this year's model announcement is sure to delight a great many.

Until next time!

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

"More reviews planned"

A few more reviews have been planned. Oliver, Duck and a rolling stock review will join this year's lineup of videos.

I'll also be covering the Bachmann announcements later this year.

Until next time!

Thursday, 12 January 2012

"Videos for this coming year"

First and foremost, my apologies for the lack of updates!

There's been a lot going on at the other blog - Copley Hill - and I've also started a new job, which has taken up a lot of my time. That and Christmas, obviously!

The video reviews due for this year include:








...and I will be doing one more competition to finish the year off as I did last time out. The next review is likely to feature some green engines...

Until next time!