(First posted 21-Sep-2020)
We had been expecting delivery of the Hunslets very soon but the latest communication we’ve received from the Factory has unfortunately changed this. Two things have conspired to cause this final delay, the first is that the assembly of the production Hunslets is proving to be more challenging than the Factory first thought due to the additional Quality Control processes required, to ensure the previously advised wheel set issues are resolved, and also the complexity of the models themselves. Second is that COVID restrictions and associated resourcing issues from the Pandemic are slowing up the production cycle. (This last point is also affecting deliveries of other models from other manufacturers.)
So with this development, the Factory have committed to a new schedule that means the Hunslets will now be shipped in 3 batches (with specific liveries in each batch) starting with the first scheduled for late October (NB latest info seems to indicate a further delay). Each batch will be airfreighted to the UK so should arrive relatively quickly after despatch from the Factory. As you will recall our intention had been to get one batch delivered from the Factory and ALL pre-orders shipped out by our volunteers as soon as possible before any models would be made available for sale to the membership. This process has to change now due to the 3 batches being delivered with different liveries in each. (We did ask for all pre-orders to be sent first but this was not possible due the detail differences on each model that are required to setup the production lines and effectively lengthening the time to produce).
The Revised Process.
1. Members who have pre-ordered one model only: balance requests for the full value of your order (inc p&p) will be sent out after we have confirmation that the batch containing your required livery is on its way/has arrived. Your model will be despatched to you as soon as possible after receipt of your payment.
2. Members who have pre-ordered two models: balance requests for the full value of your order (inc p&p) will be sent out after we have confirmation that the batch containing either or both of your required liveries is on its way/has arrived. If in fact your models arrive in separate deliveries, your first model will be despatched as soon as possible after receipt of your payment, and your second model a.s.a.p. thereafter, at no extra charge.
3. Members who have ordered three or more models: balance requests for the full value of your order (inc. p&p) will be sent out after we have confirmation that the batch containing the first of your required liveries is on its way/has arrived. If, as is likely, your models arrive in separate deliveries, the first item(s) received will be despatched as soon as possible after receipt of your payment, and the balance of your order as soon as the final liveried model is received thereafter, at no extra charge. If you decide at any stage that you would like the balance of your order in a second and a third package, an extra £4 p&p will be requested, to help to offset additional costs incurred.
The above process will ensure that pre-orders will be despatched, either in whole or in part, as soon as reasonably possible after each shipment arrives. The liveries from each shipment will then go on General sale to all members once the pre-orders relating to that shipment have been dealt with. This is the best way we could find to ensure that those members who have pre-ordered more than one model at least get something to be going on with, if not everything that they have pre-ordered, as soon as possible, rather than waiting for everything to arrive.
Overall whilst disappointed with this final bump in the road, our end goal remains unchanged – to deliver the best possible model to our members with game changing features, excellent performance and all at a very, very competitive price.
(Any further queries regarding pre-orders, which are not answered in the above text, should be directed to the Membership Secretary, who is overseeing the pre-order distribution process. To the best of our knowledge at the moment, the first delivery will include the three NCB liveries, the British Steel livery and the ‘Big John’ livery. When we know which liveries will be included in the later deliveries, we will post the information on this website).