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Friday, 1 October 2010

A Close Shave?

I was feeling pretty confident that I would be able to complete my ACE train by purchasing the last two Bulleid brakes (34-504A) for it before Christmas. After all, they kept coming up on Ebay and the Bachmann site indicated new stocks were arriving in August/September (having supplied the market with a long awaited batch a little earlier). No need to rush a purchase then.

To my horror, when I checked the Bachmann site again in September they had been flagged as out of stock with no forecast of availability. They never did arrive in August/September.

I had already bought out the local model shop stock and so, turned to Ebay. But, only one (trade) seller was active and his 'buy it now' price was top wack. I was in danger of having to pay a premium price as the stock in the market place evaporated.

Now, I had heard about Hattons of Liverpool being one of the largest model railway shops in the UK. I visited their website and found they had listed more than 10 in stock! And a nice little side comment to boost confidence saying "Are they really in stock. Yes". I have never bought from Hattons before but decided I had to give them a try and fuelled on by the fact their pricing was very attractive/competitive I placed my online order.

Their communication was brilliant, sending me emails about order progress. Firstly an order acknowledgement, then another when my card was charged and finally when it was packed. The coaches arrived safely 8 days from when I placed the order.

Putting together my ACE has taken quite a long time. It started in April 2009 with the purchase of a Merchant Navy loco. Then followed research into the history of the train and my first blog posting appeared in June 2009. You can track my progression in the two ACE archives (links right).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Aha! Hattons!

Glad you've found them - they've been utterly reliable whenever I've bought anything from them and their online purchasing is no worse than most.

Oh and thanks for linking back to Derwent Midland btw.

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