Getting things mostly right
There is something about the Robinson 4-6-0s that just make them seem like 'proper' steam engines. The high chimney, the large dome, sizeable splashers over the wheels and a simple and clean appearance which belies the utility of these locomotives.
They just seem 'right'
Great Central Models was established between 2010 and 2015 to create kits for these locomotives. This page is preserved as a reference archive for those who have purchased a kit.
The models are suitable for P4 and EM gauge in 4 mm scale and the etches cover both these ‘finescale’ options. “00” is an option but that will require additional work on the part of the builder except for the tender, Version 3 of which has this option.
None of these kits will be repeated. Support for these models will continue using spare parts collected during their production.
The models listed on this page are not simple, beginners models. They require an investment in time and skill to make a finished model. The original design parameters were that they should be as close as possible to the original locomotives yet still be capable of producing a working model.
If you have acquired one of these models then I can be contacted via the details below. The receipt of constructive, detailed criticism is the only way that kit designers can modify their designs.
Please contact me (details below) if you wish to know more about these designs or talk through any building techniques.
How Great Central Models came to be…
My modelling period until 2010 was very definitely post WW2, big steam and stuff but there has been a diversion.
I have always thought the Robinson 4-6-0s were plug ugly engines and every time I heard somebody expound on their beauty and style I had always concluded that the world in which we live is truly a strange place. Later I began to realise that there really was something about these ‘ducklings’ that did catch one’s attention. I noticed that in quite a few classes there were so many similarities that it was a wonder that there seemed to be no models for these ex-G.C.R., L.N.E.R. and then for a while, B.R. engines.
They lasted quite a while so must have been useful to somebody! Then in conversation with a modeller of note, it was remarked that very few models of these engines existed in model form, probably due to a perceived shortage of kits and interest. I opened my big mouth and indicated that it should be possible to build the whole set of Robinson 4-6-0s using a large number of common parts and run them as P4 models. Big mistake, huge!
During 2009 and 2010 Scalefour News and MRJ ran articles about using etched brass or etched nickel silver to produce kits, there were some discussions and a few minor disagreements about methodologies but the concensus seemed to be that models could be built by the private modeller for private satisfaction using modern tools and at a cost that would be within modest budgets. A rough calculation did show that a model could be completed at a similar cost to that of a fully fitted commercial kit or a ready-to-run model and for my own interest I began to play with CAD to try to build some of my own models.