144 pages profusely illustrated colour & b/w photos – Author Bruce Macdonald takes us on an interesting and informative journey from the beginnings of toy and model trains in Australia and New Zealand, to the days of mass production of what is now known as O Gauge . Bruce’s book covers the pre and post World War 2 period – when experienced model makers were leaving their regular employment to start cottage industries, producing models for a toy-starved public – up until the 1960s. These cottage industries grew to the point where they contributed to the economy of the country, employing considerable numbers of workers in their production, before crumbling under the onslaught of imported toys, changing tastes, and the arrival of TV. As well as the details of fifty-five manufacturers such as Ferris, Maurlyn, Robilt, and Scorpion, the book has over six hundred full-colour photographs of many of the models produced and includes coverage of the retail outlets that were the public face of the industry. The author’s passion for trains over a seventy-year period, his engineering background, knowledge and understanding of railways, and his long social contact with many of those involved has given him a special insight into the subject.
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