KUA Update September 2020 - Check Out Our Decorated Samples!
As the factories in China return to normal post COVID19 shutdown, we are able to bring you the latest updates on our announced projects.
Over the coming weeks we have updates for the Class 92 and JSA wagons for you, and we have already provided updates for the Mark 5 coaches, Class 37, Class 55 and PTA/JTA/JUA wagons.
This time it is the turn of the very popular KUA nuclear flask wagons!
These colossal wagons have been the subject of great interest since we announced them at Warley 2019 (Ah, model railway exhibitions, how we miss them!) and seemed to be the perfect companion to our then newly announced Class 37/6 locomotives.
These beasts have certainly generated significant interest among modellers, with pre-orders flooding in since launch! Work was well underway on this wagon before we launched it, with Revolution Trains providing us with a helping hand on the back of their N gauge model.
We received our first engineering prototype during Chinese New Year, and spent a number of weeks assessing the sample for corrections and critique before planning to progress to the next stage of decorated samples after Chinese New Year ended and the factories re-opened. Unfortunately, COVID-19 had kicked in by then which lead to delays.
While this disrupted our delivery plans of late summer 2020, we had already made significant progress on the project. As you can see in these images, our decorated samples have now arrived and have been assessed by our design team ahead of manufacture. We are generally very happy with the decoration and look of the model, but there are still some areas ripe for improvement.
The walkway thread for instance, was added after we received the first sample and is too large, coarse and of the wrong pattern. The brake shoes on the bogies are also receiving attention as they are quite wrong and were not updated from EP1. The buffer heads will be darkened for production and they will also be corrected to stop them spinning around in their shanks. All these issues have been corrected by the factory and were minor issues overall.
As you can see below, our friends at Hornby Magazine have taken a closer look at the KUAs and put them through their paces. Check out their exclusive first look video!
With the COVID19 impact and tooling corrections the KUAs are now due to be completed in January 2021., with production already underway.
The assembly team will be working round the clock to complete the models over the Christmas period and into early January. They will then be packed ready for shipping. We will then be faced with a decision on air or sea shipping.
Due to the COVID19 pandemic, there are less flights in the air, which means significantly reduced air freight space. While we use air freight for many models, this is freight space in the holds of passenger air craft. As a result of this significant reduction in flights, air freight prices have increased dramatically in 2020.
However, we will not rule it out, and if the price is not prohibitive we will fly them in. This would see them in stock in late January 2021.
If the cost is too prohibitive, then they will go by sea and be with us in March 2021.
So, the KUAs will be due in either late January, or March 2021. Keep subscribing to our newsletter and keep an eye on our website and social media channels for further updates!
You can place your order now to avoid disappointment. These giants are bound to be a talking point on any layout or in any collection, make sure you don't miss out! Order here!