Re: New HO scale USRA hopper?


Dennis Storzek
 

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Kurt Laughlin" <fleeta@...> wrote:

I doubt showing an existing model in an ad counts as "stealing intellectual
property". Copying it and producing it as their own, yes. Showing it with
a label indicating that what you'll buy won't look the same, no.
Kurt,

I'm not complaining. It's not unusual for manufacturers to use other products to mock-up for ad photos, I've done it myself, once using one of my old resin kits, other times using kit moldings from predecessor companies where we now owned the tooling. Unlike some other manufacturers, whose mock-ups looked better than their production run, I always took great pains to not show something other than what you were going to get. I often joke about writing an April Fools Day article on how to add molded on grabs to a car scratchbuilt from Evergreen styrene, because I've done it... but unfortunately, in the rush to meet a deadline, never took any pictures.

I bring this up because the Ertl affair was simply laughable; we had people on various lists waxing eloquently about the detail on the new Ertl boxcar, and correctly claiming the prototype was a NYC boxcar, only to have the actual product model the URSA DS car, with far coarser detail and huge grab irons. Separate, but huge.

Could happen again. The fact that MTH took great pains to not show our handbrake or Enterprise hardware means they don't want you to see them... for whatever reason. And, other kit producers who tried separate wire grabs on hoppers found that you simply can't core two intersecting .013" holes through a .040" square corner post and have things hold together... something's gotta give. So, we'll see.

I'm surprised that no one has ever done what I did with hopper grabs when I was looking at ways to improve the state of the art when designing our 70 ton triple; that is, grind an X-acto blade to clear the side sill, reach inside the body, and scrape the the molded on grabs thinner from the back. It doesn't take very long to do a car, and while it doesn't help with the grabs molded onto the body, it does eliminate the "bookshelf" look of the open ladders.

I'll be interested to see the model MTH actually produces. Meanwhile, we're still at $12.98 per kit.

Dennis Storzek
Accurail, Inc.

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