Re: Random Thoughts from my two articles in Volume 3 of Speedwitch'

Rossiter, Mark W <Mark.Rossiter@...>

5d. Re: Random Thoughts from my two articles in Volume 3 of Speedwitch'
Posted by: "Tony Thompson" tony@... sigpress
Date: Fri Mar 20, 2015 12:59 pm ((PDT))

Dennis Storzek wrote:

I rarely comment on other people's business; today I'll make an exception. Dick fell into the trap that many smaller manufacturers do... they become "married" to one tool shop and refuse to see the limitations of that shop. Eastern Car Works is another example. Dick relied on the same toolmaker from the beginning to the end of his business... If Lloyd said it couldn't be done, by golly, it couldn't, don't bother me with the pesky detail that others are obviously doing it.

I had an interesting conversation with both Dick and Lloyd back in the nineties when Accurate Finishing was looking to get into developing our own tooling; learned a lot, also saw the limitations. Why Dick never could is beyond me.
I greatly appreciate these insights into both MDC, from Brian Leppert, and into what Dennis knows about C&BT Shops. But as someone who knew Dick Schweiger well (when I lived in PIttsburgh), I can tell you that Dick was endlessly frustrated with Lloyd's inability to produce molds for more refined parts. Dick does seem to have talked himself into believing it was "good enough," but let's not think for a minute he didn't know better. He was a skilled modeler himself and certainly was very well aware of how details OUGHT to look. What I never understood was Dick's failure to find another toolmaker.
Then he fell into the belief that molded-on details would result in FAR more sales. On this list, we don't need to discuss the pros and cons of that one.

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@...
Publishers of books on railroad history

I too appreciate the inside scoop on those manufacturers of long ago. I don't recall if it was at the Pittsburgh or Valley Forge NMRA convention years and years ago, but I remember C&BT Car Shops had a booth at the National Show with some of their recent products on display. They may have just released their Santa Fe reefer. At any rate, they had a few of their assembled cars sitting next to an super-detailed, fine-scale model. I was admiring the scale-sized grab irons and other details on the car and asked the person in the booth if it was one of their products. He turned red and sheepishly stated that no, it was a Westerfield car. I believe the intent was to show that the C&BT models were every bit as good as those from Westerfield, but to me it was one of the worst marketing blunders I had ever seen. There was absolutely no comparison! I smiled, said 'Thank you', and walked away shaking my head.

Mark Rossiter

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