Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Eureka Web-Site Malware Warning.

Visitors accessing our web-site through Google are receiving a warning that malware may be present. I have had this problem looked at and am told that there is no malware present (Google itself states that no-one has been infected) and that the warning is being caused by the fact that we are using a very old version of Java. Whatever the cause of the warning, the site is currently being up-graded (and up-dated) to eliminate the problem.

The latest edition of The Eureka Times is in preparation and posting out will commence at the end of this week. It will also be available on our web-site early next week.
The edition will contain an update on all current projects and timelines for all current and proposed projects. It will also contain order froms for our 3-dome bogie oil tank wagon 3-packs.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Fun and Games in China

It has been some time since my last post, too long in fact but there have been major developments at the factory and whilst there is some awareness of these developments in the public domain the situation in China has changed almost on a weekly (and sometime daily) basis so it has been difficult to state definitively at any point in time what is the current position. However, understandably there are a lot of inaccurate rumours going around so this post will attempt to clarify what is the current position regarding Eureka Models in the turmoil which is currently engulfing the factory.
The signs had been there for sometime but in June this year we were summoned to our manufacturer's head office to discuss what turned out to be a major re-structuring of the company's activities. Our manufacturer, Sanda Kan is now owned by Kader the large toy manufacturer who also owns Backmann.
At the meeting company management opened procedings by stating that they were having problems maintaining deliveries (which we already knew) and that they intended to downsize the Sanda Kan operation to a more manageable size. This would be done by completing existing projects for customers but for the majority of customers no new projects would be commenced.
Now, whilst the suddeness of these decisions came as a surprise, as mentioned above, the signs that something was happening had been there for sometime and so Eureka had already started to make arrangements with an alternative supplier.
When Eureka first started with Sanda Kan Ivan was our project engineer. Ivan delivered the first four of our projects, all were excellent in terms of quality, accuracy and operation. Just over two years ago Ivan left Sanda Kan and in partnership with an existing manufacturer went into business for himself. Eureka kept in touch with him and early this year after seeing the quality of projects that he was delivering for other customers commissioned him to do a project for Eureka. This is the VR E wagon project outlined elsewhere.
The E wagon project is progressing well and so when the problems at Sanda Kan surfaced the decision was taken to switch all new projects to Ivan.
This is working well. Sanda Kan have been very supportive and have assisted the move of projects to Ivan. This is taking the pressure off them which I suspect they appreciate. In a recent discussion with a US based supplier the word that they used most in discussing their dealings with Sanda Kan was "chaos".
The current arrangement then is that Sanda Kan will complete the AD60 re-run, the 38 class re-run, the CPH/CTH sound units and the 40 class. Ivan has taken over the R class, HUB sets, NSWGR oil tankers, 59 class, 620/720 re-run and LCH/CCH re-run.
As stated above things are very fluid at Sanda Kan but I expect the above arrangements to hold. The move to Ivan will have very positive outcomes with the E wagon project already demonstrating the ability of Ivan to deliver quality items in a more timely manner.
There will be more problems in the short-term but once things settle down with Ivan I think that we will see a much improved delivery result which would be a pleasant change.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Back from the Middle Kingdom

Just arrived back from a visit to the factory and have much news. So much in fact that another edition of The Eureka Times (no. 20) is probably warranted. (Distribution of ET19 has only just been completed.)
ET20 will include artwork for 3806 and 3807, updates on the R class (test shots are close), details of new projects which we have been working on (both VR and NSWGR) the delivey of which is now expected much sooner than we thought, updates on existing projects such as the 40 class (8 -12 weeks), CPH/CTH (12 weeks) and news on our re-runs (38, AD60, LCH/CCH and 620/720).
We will be at the Brisbane exhibtion next weekend and will start work on ET20 when we return but don't expect to see it before the end of May as it may include some surprise details which we have been promised from the factory.

Sunday, March 14, 2010


I have two 3801s, one with sound and one without which have a very slight bind in their mechanisms. They are available at $100 off, that is $540 for the non-sound and $639 for the sound version.

Attended our first exhibition for the 2010 at Healesville last weekend. I regard this exhibition as one of the most enjoyable on the exhibition circuit. The organisation, the associated activities and especially the location always combines to make for a pleasant weekend away. The drought appeared to break whilst we were there but this just added to the atmosphere.

The four major manufacturers were in attendance and in the occasional quite times they could often be seen huddled together trading old war stories.

The factory has been back at work for a couple of weeks and most projects are making steady progress. A new edition of The Eureka Times is in preparation and should be available in a week or so. For those who have an R class on order there will be an accompanying letter with a special offer regarding the K class.

Distribution of the 38s is now past the 90% mark and anyone who has not yet received their model(s) might like to contact us.

Most modellers will know that Eureka Models is operated on a part-time basis. In the first half of 2010 I will not be available to answer the phone at all on a Thursday but there is generally someone at home who will.

Plenty more news but that will have to wait for The Eureka Times.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

38 Class Update:

Distribution of the 38s is nearing completion with over 80% now having been delivered.

All units are tested before they leave our office and in this process some models are found to have minor defects. With past models such units are either put aside for repair or have been sold at a reduced price at exhibitions. This has meant that only those who attend exhibitions get a chance to purchase these items and, although this policy will continue in future I intend from time to time to advise the availibility of these items on this blog.

I will describe as best I can why the unit is being offred at a reduced price and the units are offered for sale on the basis of no warranty and no return. If the response at past exhibitions is any guide these items will go very quickly.

As an example from our testing this morning I have 3805 in weathered green with sound on which the headlight does not work. Normal price for this combination is $774 posted but this is being reduced by $100 to $674 on a first come first served basis.

I have half a dozen other units available details of which I will put up on this blog from time to time.