One of the most exciting parts of building a model railway for many is the purchasing of rolling stock and trains to run. This can also be the most expensive part of the hobby; however there are a few brands of model trains that offer starter kits at affordable prices. Bachmann is one of these brands and provide an ideal starting point. This article looks briefly at the interesting history of Bachmann model trains and the range currently available.
Bachmann was found as long ago as 1833, around the time of the first railways in England. They did not produce model railway products however but manufactured of all things, vanity products!
After the Second World War, Bachmann created a product which became a household name. “Plasticville USA”. This was a range of plastic model buildings to use on your model railway. It wasn’t until 1966 that Bachmann entered the model railway market in N scale due to the increasing popularity of this scale at the time.
Today Bachmann has grown internationally and produce a wide range of model train products. They now have model trains available in N scale, HO scale, G scale and On30 which is basically O scale trains running on HO gauge track to represent narrow gauge trains. Bachmann is also planning to move into O scale in the near future.
In 1988 Bachmann introduced a range of model trains which appealed to the more advanced modeller. The “Spectrum” range had more detail, better quality construction, better motors and more realistic paint schemes. As Bachmann had a strong reputation for beginner level and inexpensive model trains, the Spectrum range acted as a totally different company to Bachmann in an effort to build the reputation of Spectrum as an exclusively high quality product.
Prices for the Spectrum product were at the upper end of the scale so in 1992 Bachmann introduced a mid range product called Bachmann plus. Eventually all Bachmann model trains were upgraded to the plus series and the plus was dropped from the name and all Bachmann trains became the silver series in 1997.
Bachmann has ensured that all its trains are brought up to DCC (Digital Command Control) standards where a small microchip needs to be installed into the locomotive for it to receive digital signals to operate the train. Most Bachmann trains today are DCC ready straight out of the box.
Bachmann manufactures trains of North American, British, German and Chinese locomotives and trains. In Britain the brand “Bachmann Branch-Line” is used for its OO scale British prototype trains and Graham Farish is used for the N scale range. Graham Farish was a popular N scale model train manufacture that Bachmann bought out in 2001. In Germany the name “Liliput” is given to the German prototype train range.
Bachmann produces a wide range of model train sets which can help you get started with rolling stock, track and controller all included.
So when the time comes to purchase your model trains, make sure you check out Bachmann for entry level, relatively inexpensive rolling stock.