Fairlight Works

Official blog of the High Weald Light Railway (1977) Co. Ltd.

Cops 'n' robbers

ideas model-railways

So, as you do, I organised a Christmas gift to myself of some tiny radio controlled cars to assess whether their internal workings would be suitable for transplant into a model railway loco. Problem is, they’re too much fun as is!

The chase

The appeal of radio control for industrial and narrow gauge modelling is pretty clear – what better way to aid reproduction of muddy, twisted track than remove the need to send power through it. On the down side you need to find room in your models for the receiver and some kind of battery pack but in larger scales it is perfectly possible. These little cars actually use a rechargeable battery, once this runs out you “refuel” them on a charging dock that takes conventional AAs. This might suit a Wickham trolley or similar light vehicle that doesn’t have a complete train to haul but anything more will probably need something with a bit more punch. Anyway, there is plenty of scope for experimentation here.

There’s some good discussion on radio control in small scale railway models on the Freerails forums. And if you’re near a branch of Waitrose they may have some of these cops ‘n’ robbers sets left, priced at £14. To go with them, see if your local TK Maxx has any Underground Ernie trains on the toy shelves, these are marked down to £9.99 for a DCC ready powered car (i.e. a 16.5mm gauge BO-BO chassis) and bonus trailer!