When it all started
My name is Stephen (Steve) Lane and I started Railway modelling so long ago, its a job to remember when it all began. I have always been interested in scratch building all types of models, but especially making buildings and rolling stock. That is probably my dads fault as he used to make his own GWR and LSWR carriages and rolling stock. I have memories of sitting at the kitchen table making a station building whilst he cussed and swore making his coaches and I must have been no more that 8 or 9 years old.
Due to family commitments I restarted in the hobby as and when time allowed about 12 years ago, and got back in to structural modelling with a railway bias. With my interest in IT, it was a natural progression to try to see how it could be used to help me make models. I have used computers and various programmes, both free and paid for, to draw wagon and coach sides which can be used as templates to make models.
The next natural progression was to see if one could be used to make a complete model of a building. After a lot of searching I found all the programs that I needed not only to produce a plan of the models, but to produce all the printed parts required to complete the model. I have built several models now, all which are used on my railway layout in the garage roof. They have lasted well in damp and heat, and still look good today.
After all the hard work that went into designing the models I thought it may be a good idea to produce these models to allow others to build them if they liked. There are very few companies that supplied cardboard models to the general public at the time, and even fewer supplied kits as downloads. Some of the ones that do, have been selling the same models that I first bought as a youngster, and they are still selling them today, probably even using the same tooling and graphics.
This was the birth of Railwayscenics in early 2008. Railwayscenics still is a small business with large ambitions. What was needed was a new way for people to purchase these models, and the internet supplied it. All of our models, texture sheets and sign sheets can be downloaded once, saved to your computer, and built and used as many times as you require for your own personal use. I not only sell the models, I also supply a range of single brick paper sheets that will allow you to customise each of our models.
Railwayscenics now supply one of the largest ranges of downloadable texture sheets and brick papers on the market. Plans are a foot to supply all of the texture sheets fully printed onto good quality pure white paper. The range also includes road signs, metal advertising signs, station signage, and pub signs, that can all be downloaded immediately after payment, that will improve many layouts.
At present all model downloads come in a PDF zipped file format. The file includes everything that is required to build a card model including basic instructions. Each page can be reprinted if a mistake is made. The models built as supplied will produce a sturdy 3 dimensional model with some relief, such as windows recessed in their openings and raised brick and stone work for things such as door and window sills and lintels.
During the design process it was decided that no card edges would show, and this has been achieved on all of our models. Extra details can be added either during the assembly or once the model is complete. I have successfully added low voltage lighting to some of our models, as well as things like waste pipes and guttering on buildings.
I have recently been developing a range of pre printed items in 4mm scale. These include all the signage sheets printed onto good quality A5 white card or thick paper. Each sheet includes instructions. These sheets are being marketed towards other model shops. Each come packaged in a clear re-sealable wrapper, to prevent damage when storing.
There is also a small but expanding range of building kits, including the four cottages in full and half relief, and the platform kit. More are being converted with the engine shed being next, closely followed by the new station building.
I have recently added scenic and model assembly products from a wide range of suppliers to the website. I am slowly adding more items to this as they become available. I currently have a range of scatter material, electrical items including switches, lighting and wire, and plastic items including plastic card sheet and profiles.
A range of craft and hand tools have been recently added and these come with a minimum of a 3 year warranty. I believe in keeping prices to a reasonable level, and as I am not tied to any specific manufacturer, I am able to buy from various suppliers. This allows the range to be large and the prices competitive.
After looking for some electrical equipment to add to my layout, I realised that there could be a market for this type of product. Over the last two years, this range has been expanded, and I now stock a wide range of products and items suitable for a wide range of modellers.