Graham Farish (Grafar) produces large quantities of British outline model railway equipment in N gauge.
Graham Farish entered the model railway business in the late 1940s. Prior to this they had been manufacturing radio parts and kits. By 1950 it was offering British outline models in OO scale. The early days of Farish focussed on British OO gauge, and they manufactured track, wagons and other supporting items. Many of the more obscure items such as the Graham Farish Coronation figures (by Russell Gammage) from 1953 are considered collectors items.
Originally the OO railway locomotives were powered by an unconventional 2 pole DC electric motor. Unfortuately many of their diecast items were manufactured with impure mazac (an alloy of zinc and aluminium) which later crumbled.
Graham Farish really found its marketing niche with the arrival of N scale becoming the major supplier of British outline N scale models at a time when the market was shrinking and the other OO gauge players were suffering badly.
For some years it was the only major supplier of British outline models in this size. While Graham Farish produced reasonable models and had many fans, some of their products, in particular the diesel outline models, were notoriously unreliable and regularly suffered splits in plastic gears making the models run badly or in only one direction.
In 2001, Graham Farish was purchased by Kader Industries of Hong Kong, and absorbed by its subsidiary Bachmann Industries. Bachmann set about improving the at times poor model robustness of the products by reintroducing the entire range, adding a larger number of rolling stock, while moving production to China.
Graham Farish products are generally divided into two categories. British made equipment is sought more by collectors because it is 'older' and 'British' while model railway users generally prefer the more robust and detailed Chinese-built models.