Diesel multiple unit
A diesel multiple unit or DMU is a multiple-unit train powered by on-board diesel engines. A DMU requires no separate locomotive, as the engines are incorporated into one or more of the carriages. Diesel-powered single-unit railcars are generally classed as DMUs. Diesel-powered units may be further classified by their transmission type: diesel–electric, diesel–mechanical or diesel–hydraulic; the diesel engine may be located under the floor. Driving controls can be on one end, or in a separate car. DMUs are classified by the method of transmitting motive power to their wheels. In a diesel–mechanical multiple unit, the rotating energy of the engine is transmitted via a gearbox and driveshaft directly to the wheels of the train, like a car; the transmissions can be shifted manually by the driver, as in the great majority of first-generation British Rail DMUs, but in most applications, gears are changed automatically. In a diesel–hydraulic multiple unit, a hydraulic torque converter, a type of fluid coupling, acts as the transmission medium for the motive power of the diesel engine to turn the wheels.
Some units feature a hybrid mix of hydraulic and mechanical transmissions reverting to the latter at higher operating speeds as this decreases engine RPM and noise. In a diesel–electric multiple unit, a diesel engine drives an electrical generator or an alternator which produces electrical energy; the generated current is fed to electric traction motors on the wheels or bogies in the same way as a conventional diesel–electric locomotive. In modern DEMUs, such as the Bombardier Voyager family, each car is self-contained and has its own engine and electric motors. In older designs, such as the British Rail Class 207, some cars within the consist may be unpowered or only feature electric motors, obtaining electric current from other cars in the consist which have a generator and engine. A train composed of DMU cars scales well, as it allows extra passenger capacity to be added at the same time as motive power, it permits passenger capacity to be matched to demand, for trains to be split and joined en route.
It is not necessary to match the power available to the size and weight of the train, as each unit is capable of moving itself. As units are added, the power available to move the train increases by the necessary amount. DMUs may have better acceleration capabilities, with more power-driven axles, making them more suitable for routes with frequent spaced stops, as compared with conventional locomotive and unpowered carriage setups. Distribution of the propulsion among the cars results in a system, less vulnerable to single-point-of-failure outages. Many classes of DMU are capable of operating with faulty units still in the consist; because of the self-contained nature of diesel engines, there is no need to run overhead electric lines or electrified track, which can result in lower system construction costs. Such advantages must be weighed against the underfloor noise and vibration that may be an issue with this type of train. Diesel traction has several downsides compared to electric traction, namely higher fuel costs, more noise and exhaust as well as worse acceleration and top speed performance.
The power to weight ratio tends to be worse. DMUs have further disadvantages compared to diesel locomotives in that they cannot be swapped out when passing onto an electrified line, necessitating either passengers to change trains or Diesel operation on electrified lines; the lost investment once electrification reduces the demand for diesel rolling stock is higher than with locomotive hauled trains where only the locomotive has to be replaced. Diesel multiple units are in constant use in Croatia, operated by national operator Croatian Railways. On Croatian Railways, DMUs have important role since they cover local and distant lines across the country. Two largest towns in Croatia and Split, are daily connected with DMU tilting trains "RegioSwinger" that provide Inter City service between those two towns since 2004. In the early 1990s, luxury DMU series 7021 provided some of higher ranked lines across the country. DMU series HŽ series 7121, 7122 and Croatian-built series 7022 and 7023 are nowadays in high use covering country's local and regional services in country's interior on the tracks that are not electrified.
In the Republic of Ireland the Córas Iompair Éireann, which controlled the republic's railways between 1945 and 1986, introduced DMUs in the mid-1950s and they were the first diesel trains on many main lines. The first significant use of DMUs in the United Kingdom was by the Great Western Railway, which introduced its small but successful series of diesel–mechanical GWR railcars in 1934; the London and North Eastern Railway and London and Scottish Railway experimented with DMUs in the 1930s, the LMS both on its own system, on that of its Northern Irish subsidiary, but development was curtailed by World War II. After nationalisation, British Railways revived the concept in the early 1950s. At that time there was an urgent need to move away from expensive steam traction which led to many experimental designs using diesel propulsion and multiple units; the early DMUs proved successful, under BR's 1955 Modernisation Plan the building of a large fleet was authorised. These BR "First Generation" DMUs were built between 1956 and 1963.
BR required that contracts for the design and manufacture of new locomotives and rolling stock be split between n
Airfix is a UK manufacturer of injection-moulded plastic scale model kits of aircraft and other objects. In the United Kingdom the name Airfix is synonymous with plastic models of this type simply referred to as "an airfix kit" if made by another manufacturer. Founded in 1939, Airfix was owned by Humbrol from 1986 until the latter's financial collapse on 31 August 2006. Since 2007, both Humbrol and Airfix have been owned by Hornby. Airfix was founded in 1939 by a Hungarian businessman Nicholas Kove to manufacture inflatable rubber toys; the brand name was selected to be the first alphabetically in trade directories. In 1947 Airfix introduced injection moulding producing pocket combs. In 1949 the company was commissioned to create a promotional model of a Ferguson TE20 tractor, moulded in cellulose acetate plastic and hand-assembled for distribution to Ferguson sales representatives. To increase sales and lower production costs the model was sold in kit form by F. W. Woolworth's retail stores. In 1954 Woolworth's buyer Jim Russon suggested that Airfix produce a model kit of Sir Francis Drake's Golden Hind being sold in North America as a'ship-in-a-bottle', made in the more stable polystyrene.
To meet Woolworth's retail price of two shillings, Airfix packaged the product in a plastic bag with a paper header that had the assembly instructions on the reverse. Its huge success led the company to produce new kit designs; the first aircraft kit was released in 1953, a model of the Supermarine Spitfire Mk I, followed by the Spitfire Mk IX in 1955, in 1⁄72 scale, developed by James Hay Stevens. This was a scaled-down copy of the Aurora 1⁄48 Supermarine Spitfire kit. Kove refused to believe the product would sell and threatened to charge the cost of tooling-up to the designers. During the 1960s and 1970s, the company expanded; the range expanded to include vintage and modern cars, figures in both 1⁄76 and 1⁄32 scale, model railway accessories, military vehicles, famous ships and spaceships, as well as an ever-increasing range of aircraft, most created at the scales of 1⁄72 for small and military aircraft and 1⁄144 scale for airliners. The growth of the hobby launched a number of competitors such as Matchbox and introduced new manufacturers from Japan and the US to the UK.
During this period the Humbrol company grew, supplying paints, brushes and other accessories as an alternative to Airfix' own range. Airfix launched a monthly modelling magazine, Airfix Magazine, produced by a variety of publishers from June 1960 to October 1993. During the 1970s an Airfix Magazine Annual was produced. In 1963 the Airfix slot car racing system was introduced. Airfix produced cars with front-wheel Ackermann steering and conversion kits so that normal Airfix 1⁄32 kit cars such as the Ford Zodiac and the Sunbeam Rapier could be raced; the first set had Ferrari and Cooper cars and an 11-foot figure-of-eight track: it cost £4/19/11d. Always in the shadow of the Scalextric range, the Airfix version attempted to progress with the higher-end Model Road Racing Company range but the venture was abandoned. Most of Airfix's older range of military vehicles, though sold as 1⁄72, are accepted as OO or 1⁄76 scale - the subsequent introduction of a small number of true 1⁄72 vehicle kits to the Airfix range created controversy regarding the exact scale.
Hornby's new packaging shows 1⁄76 as appropriate. In late 1962 the acquisition of the intellectual property and 35 moulds of Rosebud Kitmaster gave Airfix its first models of railway locomotives in OO and HO scales and its first motorcycle kit. The'60's saw the introduction of an popular line of boxed 1⁄72 scale military figures. In the mid-1970s larger scales were introduced, including detailed 1⁄24-scale models of the Spitfire, Messerschmitt Bf 109, Hawker Hurricane and Harrier "jump-jet"; the mid-1970s were a peak time for Airfix. Releasing as many as 17 new kits a year, Airfix commanded 75% of the UK market with 20 million kits per annum. Series 20 was limited for several years to the 1972 1⁄12 scale kit of the 1930 Supercharged Bentley 4.5 Litre car, with 272 parts and the option of a 3-volt motor. In 1979 four motorcycles in 1⁄8 scale were added to this series; the company introduced an addition to the popular plastic soldier boxed set line with a 1⁄32 scale version. In this period, apart from model kits, Airfix produced a wide range of toys, games and art & craft products.
It was still producing other plastic products such as homewares at this time. Airfix Industries acquired part of the failing Lines Brothers' huge Tri-ang toy business involuntary liquidation, giving it the Meccano and Dinky Toy businesses in 1971; this made Airfix the UK's largest toy company. In the 80s Airfix Industries group was under financial pressure, there were losses in Airfix's other toy businesses and attempts to reduce costs were met with industrial action; the pound strengthened from US$1.56 to US$2.35 in a matter of months, destroying export markets, because customers were unwilling to accept a 50% price increase for the same goods. The financial interdependency of the divisions of Airfix Industries forced it to declare bankruptcy in 1981; the company was bought by General Mills through its UK Palitoy subsidiary, the kit moulds being shipped to its factory in Calais, France. Airfix aircraft kits were marketed in the United States under the MPC label and some MPC kits were sold in the UK under the Airfix name (an example being the 1⁄25 scale vintage Stutz Bearcat kit origina
Stephenson valve gear
The Stephenson valve gear or Stephenson link or shifting link is a simple design of valve gear, used throughout the world for all kinds of steam engines. It was invented by his employees. During the 1830s the most popular valve drive for locomotives was known as gab motion in the U. K. and V-hook motion in the U. S. A; the gab motion incorporated two sets of rods for each cylinder. It was a clumsy mechanism, difficult to operate, only gave fixed valve events. In 1841 two employees in Stephenson’s locomotive works, draughtsman William Howe and pattern-maker William Williams, suggested the simple expedient of replacing the gabs with a vertical slotted link, pivoted at both ends to the tips of the eccentric rods. To change direction, the link and rod ends were bodily raised or lowered by means of a counterbalanced bell crank worked by a reach rod that connected it to the reversing lever; this not only simplified reversing but it was realised that the gear could be raised or lowered in small increments, thus the combined motion from the “forward” and “back” eccentrics in differing proportions would impart shorter travel to the valve, cutting off admission steam earlier in the stroke and using a smaller amount steam expansively in the cylinder, using its own energy rather than continuing to draw from the boiler.
It became the practice to start the engine or climb gradients at long cutoff about 70-80% maximum of the power stroke and to shorten the cutoff as momentum was gained to benefit from the economy of expansive working and the effect of increased lead and higher compression at the end of each stroke. This process was popularly known as "linking up" or “notching up”, the latter because the reversing lever could be held in precise positions by means of a catch on the lever engaging notches in a quadrant. A further intrinsic advantage of the Stephenson gear not found in most other types was variable lead. Depending on how the gear was laid out, it was possible to reduce compression and back pressure at the end of each piston stroke when working at low speed in full gear. American locomotives universally employed inside Stephenson valve gear placed between the frames until around 1900 when it gave way to outside Walschaerts motion. In Europe, Stephenson gear could be placed either outside the driving wheels and driven by either eccentrics or return cranks or else between the frames driven from the axle through eccentrics, as was the case in Great Britain.
Abner Doble considered Stephenson valve gear: " the most universally suitable valve gear of all, for it can be worked out for a long engine structure or a short one. It can be a simple valve gear and still be accurate, but its great advantage is that its accuracy is self-contained, for the exact relationship between its points of support have but little effect on the motion of the valve, its use on engines in which all the cylinders lie in one plane, represents, in the belief of the writer, the best choice." Another benefit of the Stephenson gear, intrinsic to the system, is variable lead: zero in full gear and increasing as cutoff is shortened. One consequent disadvantage of the Stephenson gear is that it has a tendency to over-compression at the end of the stroke when short cut-offs are used, therefore the minimum cut-off cannot be as low as on a locomotive with Walschaerts gear. Longer eccentric rods and a shorter link reduce this effect. Stephenson valve gear is a convenient arrangement for any engine that needs to reverse and was applied to railway locomotives, traction engines, steam car engines and to stationary engines that needed to reverse, such as rolling-mill engines.
It was used on the overwhelming majority of marine engines. The Great Western Railway used Stephenson gear on most of its locomotives, although the four-cylinder engines used inside Walschaerts gear. Details of the gear differ principally in the arrangement of the expansion link. In early locomotive practice, the eccentric rod ends were pivoted at the ends of the link while, in marine engines, the eccentric rod pivots were set behind the link slot; these became known as the'locomotive link' and the'launch link'. The launch link superseded the locomotive type as it allows more direct linear drive to the piston rod in full gear and permits a longer valve travel within a given space by reducing the size of eccentric required for a given travel. Launch-type links were pretty well universal for American locomotives right from the 1850s but, in Europe, although occurring as early as 1846, they did not become widespread until around 1900. Larger marine engines used the bulkier and more expensive marine double-bar link, which has greater wearing surfaces and which improved valve events by minimising geometric compromises inherent in the launch link.
In the United Kingdom, locomotives having Stephenson valve gear had this mounted in between the locomotive frames. In 1947, the London and Scottish Railway built a series of their Stanier Cl
On a steam locomotive, a driving wheel is a powered wheel, driven by the locomotive's pistons. On a conventional, non-articulated locomotive, the driving wheels are all coupled together with side rods. On diesel and electric locomotives, the driving wheels may be directly driven by the traction motors. Coupling rods are not used, it is quite common for each axle to have its own motor. Jackshaft drive and coupling rods were used in the past but their use is now confined to shunting locomotives. On an articulated locomotive or a duplex locomotive, driving wheels are grouped into sets which are linked together within the set. Driving wheels are larger than leading or trailing wheels. Since a conventional steam locomotive is directly driven, one of the few ways to'gear' a locomotive for a particular performance goal is to size the driving wheels appropriately. Freight locomotives had driving wheels between 40 and 60 inches in diameter; some long wheelbase locomotives were equipped with blind drivers.
These were driving wheels without the usual flanges, which allowed them to negotiate tighter curves without binding. The driving wheels on express passenger locomotives have come down in diameter over the years, e.g. from 8 ft 1 in on the GNR Stirling 4-2-2 of 1870 to 6 ft 2 in on the SR Merchant Navy Class of 1941. This is. On locomotives with side rods, including most steam and jackshaft locomotives, the driving wheels have weights to balance the weight of the coupling and connecting rods; the crescent-shaped balance weight is visible in the picture on the right. In the Whyte notation, driving wheels are designated by numbers in the set; the UIC classification system counts the number of axles rather than the number of wheels and driving wheels are designated by letters rather than numbers. The suffix'o' is used to indicate independently powered axles; the number of driving wheels on locomotives varied quite a bit. Some early locomotives had as few as two driving wheels; the largest number of total driving wheels was 24 on the 2-8-8-8-4 locomotives.
The largest number of coupled driving wheels was 14 on the ill-fated AA20 4-14-4 locomotive. The term driving wheel is sometimes used to denote the drive sprocket which moves the track on tracked vehicles such as tanks and bulldozers. Many American roots artists, such as The Byrds, Tom Rush, The Black Crowes and the Canadian band Cowboy Junkies have performed a song written by David Wiffen called "Driving Wheel", with the lyrics "I feel like some old engine/ That's lost my driving wheel."These lyrics are a reference to the traditional blues song "Broke Down Engine Blues" by Blind Willie McTell, 1931. It was directly covered by Bob Dylan and Johnny Winter. Many versions of the American folk song "In the Pines" performed by artists such as Leadbelly, Mark Lanegan, Nirvana reference a decapitated man's head found in a driving wheel. In addition, it is that Chuck Berry references the locomotive driving wheel in "Johnny B. Goode" when he sings, "the engineers would see him sitting in the shade / Strumming with the rhythm that the drivers made."
The cylinder is the power-producing element of the steam engine powering a steam locomotive. The cylinder is made pressure-tight with a piston. Cylinders were cast in cast iron and in steel; the cylinder casting includes other features such as mounting feet. The last big American locomotives incorporated the cylinders as part of huge one-piece steel castings that were the main frame of the locomotive. Renewable wearing surfaces were provided by cast-iron bushings; the way the valve controlled the steam entering and leaving the cylinder was known as steam distribution and shown by the shape of the indicator diagram. What happened to the steam inside the cylinder was assessed separately from what happened in the boiler and how much friction the moving machinery had to cope with; this assessment was known as "engine performance" or "cylinder performance". The cylinder performance, together with the boiler and machinery performance, established the efficiency of the complete locomotive; the pressure of the steam in the cylinder was measured as the piston moved and the power moving the piston was calculated and known as cylinder power.
The forces produced in the cylinder moved the train but were damaging to the structure which held the cylinders in place. Bolted joints came loose, cylinder castings and frames cracked and reduced the availability of the locomotive. Cylinders may be arranged in several different ways. On early locomotives, such as Puffing Billy, the cylinders were set vertically and the motion was transmitted through beams, as in a beam engine; the next stage, for example Stephenson's Rocket, was to drive the wheels directly from steeply inclined cylinders placed at the back of the locomotive. Direct drive became the standard arrangement, but the cylinders were moved to the front and placed either horizontal or nearly horizontal; the front-mounted cylinders could be placed either outside. Examples: Inside cylinders, Planet locomotive Outside cylinders, GNR Stirling 4-2-2In the 19th and early 20th centuries, inside cylinders were used in the UK, but outside cylinders were more common in Continental Europe and the United States.
The reason for this difference is unclear. From about 1920, outside cylinders became more common in the UK but many inside-cylinder engines continued to be built. Inside cylinders give a more stable ride with less yaw or "nosing" but access for maintenance is more difficult; some designers used inside cylinders for aesthetic reasons. The demand for more power led to the development of engines with four cylinders. Examples: Three cylinders, SR Class V, LNER Class A4, Merchant Navy class Four Cylinders, LMS Princess Royal Class, LMS Coronation Class, GWR Castle Class On a two-cylinder engine the cranks, whether inside or outside, are set at 90 degrees; as the cylinders are double-acting this gives four impulses per revolution and ensures that there are no dead centres. On a three-cylinder engine, two arrangements are possible: cranks set to give six spaced impulses per revolution – the usual arrangement. If the three cylinder axes are parallel, the cranks will be 120 degrees apart, but if the centre cylinder does not drive the leading driving axle, it will be inclined, the inside crank will be correspondingly shifted from 120 degrees.
For a given tractive effort and adhesion factor, a three-cylinder locomotive of this design will be less prone to wheelslip when starting than a 2-cylinder locomotive. Outside cranks set at 90 degrees, inside crank set at 135 degrees, giving six unequally spaced impulses per revolution; this arrangement was sometimes used on three-cylinder compound locomotives which used the outside cylinders for starting. This will give evenly spaced exhausts. Two arrangements are possible on a four-cylinder engine: all four cranks set at 90 degrees. With this arrangement the cylinders act in pairs, so there are four impulses per revolution, as with a two-cylinder engine. Most four-cylinder engines are of this type, it is cheaper and simpler to use only one set of valve gear on each side of the locomotive and to operate the second cylinder on that side by means of a rocking shaft from the first cylinder's valve spindle since the required valve events at the second cylinder are a mirror image of the first cylinder.
Pairs of cranks set at 90 degrees with the inside pair set at 45 degrees to the outside pair. This gives eight impulses per revolution, it increases weight and complexity, by requiring four sets of valve gear, but gives smoother torque and reduces the risk of slipping. This was unusual in British practice but was used on the SR Lord Nelson class; such locomotives are distinguished by their exhaust beats, which occur at twice the frequency of a normal 2- or 4-cylinder engine. The valve chests or steam chests which contain the slide valves or piston valves may be located in various positions. If the cylinders are small, the valve chests may be located between the cylinders. For larger cylinders the valve chests are on top of the cylinders but, in early locomotives, they were sometimes underneath the cylinders; the valve chests are on top of the cylinders but, in older locomotives, the valve chests were sometimes located alongside the cylinders and inserted through slots in the frames. This meant that, while the cylinders were outside, the valves were inside a
Isambard Kingdom Brunel
Isambard Kingdom Brunel, was an English mechanical and civil engineer, considered "one of the most ingenious and prolific figures in engineering history", "one of the 19th-century engineering giants", "one of the greatest figures of the Industrial Revolution, changed the face of the English landscape with his groundbreaking designs and ingenious constructions". Brunel built dockyards, the Great Western Railway, a series of steamships including the first propeller-driven transatlantic steamship, numerous important bridges and tunnels, his designs revolutionised modern engineering. Though Brunel's projects were not always successful, they contained innovative solutions to long-standing engineering problems. During his career, Brunel achieved many engineering firsts, including assisting in the building of the first tunnel under a navigable river and development of SS Great Britain, the first propeller-driven, ocean-going, iron ship, when built in 1843, was the largest ship built. Brunel set the standard for a well-built railway, using careful surveys to minimise gradients and curves.
This necessitated expensive construction techniques, new bridges, new viaducts, the two-mile long Box Tunnel. One controversial feature was the wide gauge, a "broad gauge" of 7 ft 1⁄4 in, instead of what was to be known as "standard gauge" of 4 ft 8 1⁄2 in, he astonished Britain by proposing to extend the Great Western Railway westward to North America by building steam-powered, iron-hulled ships. He designed and built three ships that revolutionised naval engineering: the SS Great Western, the SS Great Britain, the SS Great Eastern. In 2002, Brunel was placed second in a BBC public poll to determine the "100 Greatest Britons". In 2006, the bicentenary of his birth, a major programme of events celebrated his life and work under the name Brunel 200. Brunel's given names come from his parents; the first name Isambard was his French-born father's middle name, his father's preferred given name. Isambard is a Norman name of Germanic origin, meaning either "iron-bright" or "iron-axe"; the first element comes from isarn meaning iron.
The second element comes from barđa. His middle name Kingdom was his mother's maiden name; the son of French civil engineer Sir Marc Isambard Brunel and an English mother Sophia Kingdom, Isambard Kingdom Brunel was born on 9 April 1806 in Britain Street, Portsmouth, where his father was working on block-making machinery. He had two older sisters and Emma, the whole family moved to London in 1808 for his father's work. Brunel had a happy childhood, despite the family's constant money worries, with his father acting as his teacher during his early years, his father taught him drawing and observational techniques from the age of four and Brunel had learned Euclidean geometry by eight. During this time he learned fluent French and the basic principles of engineering, he was encouraged to identify any faults in their structure. When Brunel was eight he was sent to Dr Morrell's boarding school in Hove, where he learned the classics, his father, a Frenchman by birth, was determined that Brunel should have access to the high-quality education he had enjoyed in his youth in France.
When Brunel was 15, his father Marc, who had accumulated debts of over £5,000, was sent to a debtors' prison. After three months went by with no prospect of release, Marc let it be known that he was considering an offer from the Tsar of Russia. In August 1821, facing the prospect of losing a prominent engineer, the government relented and issued Marc £5,000 to clear his debts in exchange for his promise to remain in Britain; when Brunel completed his studies at Henri-IV in 1822, his father had him presented as a candidate at the renowned engineering school École Polytechnique, but as a foreigner he was deemed ineligible for entry. Brunel subsequently studied under the prominent master clockmaker and horologist Abraham-Louis Breguet, who praised Brunel's potential in letters to his father. In late 1822, having completed his apprenticeship, Brunel returned to England. Brunel worked for several years as an assistant engineer on the project to create a tunnel under London's River Thames between Rotherhithe and Wapping, with tunnellers driving a horizontal shaft from one side of the river to the other under the most difficult and dangerous conditions.
The project was funded by the Thames Tunnel Company and Brunel's father, was the chief engineer. The American Naturalist said "It is stated that the operations of the Teredo suggested to Mr. Brunel his method of tunneling the Thames."The composition of the riverbed at Rotherhithe was little more than waterlogged sediment and loose gravel. An ingenious tunnelling shield designed by Marc Brunel helped protect workers from cave-ins, but two incidents of severe flooding halted work for long periods, killing several workers and badly injuring the younger Brunel; the latter incident, in 1828, killed the two most senior miners, Brunel himself narrowly escaped death. He was injured, spent six months recuperating; the event stopped work on the tunnel for several years. Though the Thames Tunnel was completed during Marc Brunel's lifetime, his son had no further involvement with the tunnel proper, only using the abandoned works at Rotherhithe to further his abortive Gaz experiments; this was based on an idea of his father's, was intended to develop into an engine that ran
Dapol Ltd is a Welsh model railway manufacturer based in Chirk, Wales. The factory where design and manufacturing take place is just over the border in England; the company is known for its model railway products in OO gauge. Dapol's name is a play on its founders Pauline Boyle's names, he owned a model concern Highfield Birds & Models. In 1981 he first tried to buy the Mainline ranges; the Dapol brand name was first used in a Railway Modeller advert of September 1983. The first Dapol wagons were announced to become available on 20 November 1983. From 1 March 1984 ex Airfix railway kits became available. In the year the Railway Modeller carried a two-page profile of the new concern with the upbeat title An exciting new model empire. A lot of David Boyle's background was explored; some of Dapol's ambitions were frustrated. That article said that the Austerity 2-8-0 and the LMS Beyer Garratt were both under development for 1985 but they never appeared from Dapol; however the L&YR Pug, the Austerity 0-6-0ST and the GWR Hawksworth County which were announced early in 1984 were all produced promptly, well reviewed and have had long model lives.
At this time the operation was headquartered in Northwich. During 1985 Dapol bought Mainline model railway ranges from Palitoy, it was announced in the Railway Modeller of February 1989 that Dapol had bought the former Trix/British Liliput range from Ernest Rosza. The Dapol 1989 catalogue showed that the Model-Land building range had been bought. In 1994, while the company was moving to its previous location at Llangollen in North Wales, a huge fire destroyed the old site at Winsford in Cheshire, large quantities of products and historical Wrenn material were destroyed. In 1996 Dapol sold many of its inherited model railway lines to Hornby. In 1998 the company came under the control of a new board of directors headed by George Smith, who retired on 1 October 2010; the company remains in the ownership of the Boyle family. In 2001 Dapol sold the little-exploited Wrenn product line and trading name to three Wrenn collectors. From 1988-2001 Dapol produced a wide range of Doctor Who action figures. In 2002 the BBC declined to renew the licence.
The Dapol site hosted the'BBC Doctor Who Experience' exhibition until 2003. In 2004 Dapol were awarded the'UK Small Business of the Year' award. In 2007 Dapol were awarded the Model Rail'N-gauge Manufacturer of the Year' award. In 2010 Dapol were awarded the Model Rail'N-gauge manufacturer of the year','Best N gauge steam loco of the year','Best N-gauge Diesel locomotive of the year', Best N-gauge Rolling Stock of the year making a'clean sweep' for all the awards for N gauge. In 2010, following the retirement of previous MD George Smith, Dapol welcomed a new managing director, Joel Bright, a director for the previous eight years and uncle of the current owner, Craig Boyle. Dapol manufactures a growing range of N gauge locomotives and wagons, is the main competitor of Graham Farish in the British'ready-to-run' market. Continuous improvement in model specifications has led to the introduction of 40:1 gearing in locomotive drive mechanisms, NEM couplings on all stock, LED lighting strips for coaching stock.
In 00 gauge, Dapol manufactures ready-to-run locomotives and kits. Kits are moulded in grey plastic and the range features buildings, road vehicles and locos; some of the kits use moulds bought in 1993 from the Airfix company, some of which in turn originated with Kitmaster prior to being bought by Airfix in 1962. Others have come from the Lines Brothers Model-Land range; the first OO scale locomotives to be originated by Dapol were the L&YR Pug 0-4-0ST, the Austerity 0-6-0ST and GWR County 4-6-0 generated in 1984/5. The next was the LB&SCR Terrier; this was shown in the 1988 catalogue having been announced at the 1987 Toy Fair. Dapol official website