Valentine's Day is only a matter of days away which means men and women all over the country will be scouring the shops for that perfect present for their loved ones.

As card shops, chocolatiers and florists are inundated with the standard requests of a dozen red roses, heart-shaped chocolate and other lovey paraphernalia a little more leftfield approach could prove beneficial. There is no better way to show your love and affection to your model enthusiast partner than picking up one of the many products from the Mamod range. However, granted it can be a minefield for those purchasing gifts.

For example, the company states that around 30 per cent of the orders or enquiries it receives is from women looking for a steam gift for their partner. However, it does not matter what gender you are as purchasing a model of this ilk can be a bit of a minefield. Thankfully the staff at Mamod can be on hand to guide you through the process of picking up the best model to the taste of your loved one.

Here are a few tips of what to look out for when purchasing a steam engine model for a Valentine's Day gift.

Narrow down your options

Mamod has a wide portfolio of products that could make a great gift but you need to get an indication of what your partner prefers. The company has five different categories of gifts: steam locomotives, mobile steam engines, stationary steam, the new marine steam engine accessories and simple accessories.

All of these products will be the perfect component for certain collections. For example, if a modeller is building a boat then the purchase of a marine engine would be absolutely ideal as it can happily glide along the water. Accessories are great little additions to someone who already has a growing collection but these components will also be distinctive to the specific model.

It can be a bit tricky but getting it right can be wholly rewarding.

What collection do they already own?

This is a question you must ask yourself before handing over your cash. Steam train collections are extremely popular and many people spend years crafting them by adding accessories, scenery and steam engines. So if you know what kind of collection they are building then it can be much easier to pick an item that could fit seamlessly into their long list of accessories.

One of the easiest collections to notice is the classic steam trains as you can see if they need additional carriages, log carriers or simply extra pieces of track. You could even purchase items that could add to the scenery which would act as the cherry on the cake. For those that just want to purchase a small gift there is always the option of fuel tablets, its always good to stock up on these.

For those that have a passion for Meccano models, they tend to gravitate more towards stationary models. If in doubt, try to drop in a few hints and see if they give an idea of what they would like most on the "most romantic day of the year".