Wednesday, July 30, 2008

NETTE Auction is Up! (August 15th and 16th)

The NETTE auction is up and there are definitely some diamonds in the rough. There are plenty of items for any and all train disciplines. I also REALLY like the fact that NETTE groups trains together and makes the sorting of them much easier (several other auction houses put the auction items all together to make you search through everything. They think you'll buy more because your sorting through all kinds of HO and On3 stuff).

Who is attending the auction? I may be going (with camera of course!).


Saturday, July 26, 2008

New Lionel Catalog (Yawn)

Well, the above is all of the new Tinplate from the Lionel catalog. A Lionel Christmas set. Go out and take a look at the catalog for another (better) shot of it.

All told, the catalog is mediocre at best. It's a yawner. Hey, they have the new GG1! Ok, so that's been done (alot) before. They also have exciting new roadnames of the GP-7. Yawn, been done before. They also have a ton of new electronic gizmos to further enchance the running of trains! And if your brother in law or family member is an electrician, maybe you can get them installed and decypher how to use them.

By the way, I am going to ask this "Conventional Classics"? Why? To compete with Bachmann or low end MTH? Wow.

Conventional Classis is truly is one of the worst marketing attempts at branding I've seen or heard in a long time. It's like calling a Batman Villian "the Mediocre Menace". And worse, it's already been done by Jerry Williams.

Look, I still like Lionel but they're going to have to come into the 21st Century both with their product direction and with some kind of understanding of their demographics. Did the spirit of Gary Moreau creep back into Lionel headquarters somewhere? I'm not going to hide my disappointment at the non-existent tinplate offerings but do we have to see the same postwar crap vomited up every year as well?

I'll leave one ray of hope open, I did like the MTA offering. I also would love to see Lionel keep evolving products like the Harry Potter Train and Acela. The Acela is the kind of innovation that makes the catalog worth looking at. The 101 Trolley was our mini-ray of hope for tinplate people.

How many UP Boxcars or Christmas sets have we all seen floating around train shows or hobby stores?

They can do better than reheated Postwar.


Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Photographing Trains

Taking pictures of trains for the blog is fun but also can be a hassle. I love the trains but finding a natural setting for them outside of a layout can be trying.

Here is a perfect solution from Hammacher Schlemmer. I have seen it discussed in other forums but I could never remember where or how to get it. This flavor might be a bit pricey but I like the kit form that can go basically anywhere. It's nice especially if you have to insure a substantial number of toys and trains.


Monday, July 21, 2008

Stations, Stations, Stations....

How many of you actually use the "stop/start" facility in Old Lionel Stations? With all of the new fangled electronics, I know there are better ways to do this. Any thoughts on the best way to do this?


Home Made Tinplate

This is a hand built model of a mid-1930s Sakai streamliner (Japanese) toy train. The model was made by David Argent, who lives in St. Louis. It is powered by a Lionel 0 gauge motor. David is a very talented craftsman. See Tinplate Times for an article on another of his construction projects.


Saturday, July 19, 2008

I loved this picture...

Another wonderful shot on the cover of a TTOS Bulletin.

I remember going to homes likes this when I was a kid and seeing the exact picture you see here....


Thursday, July 17, 2008

A little nostalgia....

It's hard to believe this was published 23 years ago.  There were kids that were born that month that have already graduated from college and can drive (albeit not very far).

The cover was by Ward Kimball.  It was designed to tell a little story.  Blow up the cover (click on it) and see if you can figure out the story Ward was trying to tell.  Voltamp is just timeless and so was Ward....


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Thought this was a cool picture....

Ward Kimball put this pic on the back of a TTOS bulletin in 1985. 23 years ago seems so distant. Blow it up and check out the picture, it has some wonderful little nuances...


If Only....

If only the price were close to this now.... Let's face it, we haven't gone in the right direction with price vs. value. I know the whole story about $16 buying so much more 80 years ago than it does now. I don't really care. It was a good value than and it would be a great value now (because of the quality of manufacturing than and the quality now). I know, oversimplifying economics of two different eras, blah blah blah. I don't see much these days I'd readily like to snap up like these trains! Heck, a tank of crummy gas is $70. Even dollars adjusted for yesteryear my yearly gas bill is a whole lot more than $16 ....

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Ridiculously Cool...

I see Aristocraft Trains at many train shows here in the Northeast US and they are always top shelf. Click on the link above to go out to their website to see more samples of this gorgeous PCC car. I am getting one and I don't even do G Gauge! With the world blathering over the latest iPhone I am more interested in this little PCC from Aristocraft. It's lines are just as sleek and I bet the monthly charges to run it are a bit less...

Go check it out, it is worth the five whole minutes!


New Plots from Olson Displays

The Olson's just keep cranking out the hits with some new plots. I am hoping that they catch the bug and make one of those giant scenic plots that are near impossible to find (the one that looks like a city block).


Monday, July 14, 2008

Scratch Built Steeplecab

o3raledale just posted a pic on the O gauge forums of his new scratch built steeplecab.

I saw a great article in an old TTOS Bulletin on Scratchbuilding Standard Gauge. I'll scan it in and get it posted!

Check out the pic! Wow, very nice!

And some more Youtube....

Ok, I will stop talking about this. I wanted to refresh the Blog a bit with some new content and this little City of Amsterdam made quite an impression on me. I have to tell ya as well, I had one of the best Eclairs of my life in the comissary at this place. The food was good, we grabbed a quick sandwich there. I also threw an eclair on my plate as well. I am overweight so now when I eat I try to make sure every calorie I consume is a good one. This eclair just kicked butt. Most of these kinds of places have awful food but this just wasn't the case here.

Just check out the detail in this city:


More Youtube of Madurodam

Ok, check this one out with the moving planes:

Oh ya, the little luggage carts move too!


Took this train a couple of weeks ago...

I took this train a couple of weeks ago from Amsterdam to Paris. Smooth ride and amazing scenery. I have seen these modeled in G Scale and I have something close in Standard Gauge!

Hah! And you thought uncoupling a couple of 200 series freights was a hassle! Check out these couplers!

I have to admit, Paris has a nice train station. At one point long before any of us were born Grand Central in NYC had a canopy much similar to this. This one reminded me very much of the Ives Glass Domed stations... There were some major slimy people in the station that attempted to rip me off and pick my pockets. Not gonna happen....


More of the wonderful Model Amsterdam

Madurodam is actually a full model of Amsterdam. Since trains figure into the landscape I tended to watch them the most however there is much more to see in this wonderful little city. I haven't seen modeling like this since I went to Legoland outside of the San Diego (no kidding, Legoland has the next best model and the trains on the Legoland city are underwhelming).

Check out this Youtube I took of the working ship lock.