Friday, April 07, 2006

Ode to Brass

Color got me thinking about brass. Brass is used substantially in HO trains, especially imports. It's easy to articulate parts in brass, the metal is soft and it has tremendous flexibility.

But it's the color that really stands out. I know it isn't necessarily prototypical but for some reason shined up brass and nickle look really classy on a toy train.

Now the above is an opinion and it's a subjective one at that. This stuff is all in the eye of the behoder.

Where this gets kind of interesting is when we get to the next few pics I put up. But before I do that, I wanted to cut in these engines from the Lionel catalog.

These are easily two of the nicest standard gauge engines ever made. Come on everyone, you can't tell me you don't look twice when you see these. There's something about the color of a metal without paint that is naturally nice to look at.

The real topic for discussion though is why quite a few of the early train manufacturers opted for a metal like brass? It is very easy on the eyes and is easy to grip. Plus it doesn't seem to scratch deeply or damage easily. It does tarnish and need polishing. But it looks mighty good when plied in the right hands.

More pics coming to get some thought going around brass trains....


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