Re: Necessary Freight cars (UNCLASSIFIED)

Gatwood, Elden J SAD

Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
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It may be reality, or just blather.

I know modelers and layout builders that have HUNDREDS of hoppers, all less
than state-of-the-art, and ALL of them tell me they'd buy dozens of RTR cars,
IF they were offered. Yes, they each have good numbers of Kadee twins (which
we all LOVE), but honestly, if you're not modeling the RDG (or C&I, GA etc.),
just how many do you need? Most coal road modelers are ACHING for their pet
hopper to be made in RTR plastic. Trouble is, most of them are one-road
cars, or small road cars.

When Bowser came out with the PRR H21A, in singles, six-packs and 12-packs,
they couldn't keep them on the shelf. Now they've reached saturation. Folks
just don't need them with all they currently own.

Could someone produce an RTR H21A/E with state-of-the-art details, and would
it sell well enough to re-coup? Absolutely. Do manufacturers believe this?
Those we've spoken with say no. I say they are missing a big opportunity.

One of these days one of them will bite, and off to the races.

It'd be the same with a GLA, an X31A, and several other PRR freight cars.
Each road has its examples.

I also believe an alternate standard offset twin would sell, and yet we don't
even have a resin kit....but we do for a chisel-side IC offset twin?


Elden Gatwood

P.S. There is one resin manufacturer doing EXTREMELY well off a niche
market. Anyone want to guess who that is?

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of gsc3
Sent: Thursday, April 14, 2011 10:26 AM
Subject: [STMFC] Re: Necessary Freight cars (UNCLASSIFIED)

Sheer puzzlement about hoppers being slow sellers. As a coal road modeler I
can see that most modelers would only buy one road's hoppers. But they are
slightly more than half of all the cars on my layout. Should be more, but I
can't resist the occasional oddball boxcar you know.

George Courtney

--- In <> , "armprem2"
<armprem2@...> wrote:

Hear hear.Well put.Armand Premo
----- Original Message -----
From: Gatwood, Elden SAW
To: <>
Sent: Thursday, April 14, 2011 7:57 AM
Subject: RE: [STMFC] Necessary Freight cars (UNCLASSIFIED)

Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE


A solid data package will go a long way to advance the possibility
of a model being produced.
No doubt, but ........I've already talk to Exactrail and Tangent,
didn't seem to be very interested. The larger manufacturers like
Athearn, Walthers, Atlas, already have a lot of coal hoppers in their lines
ditto Bowser. Intermountain I haven't talked to about it, oddly
enough, it's kind of up their alley - they have done a bunch of
covered hoppers (albeit only one steam/transition era), and not a single
coal hopper.

You bring up another good point, and I have talked to a number of
manufacturers about it; what type of cars sell best and get the most

This is the inevitable answer:

Box cars, box cars, box cars;

Covered hoppers

Gondolas and flat cars

Open hoppers bringing up the rear.

There is a lot of speculation on why, including: RTR open hoppers are
extremely costly to assemble, don't sell as well as other car types,
and have big differences between RRs that render them applicable to
only a handful of roads. Open hopper kits are "hard to assemble", and other
reasons above.

So, the answer we get, repeatedly, on the "why don't we have an
alternate standard twin offset hopper" is: a) many detail differences
between RRs, b) not enough major roads for one version to warrant
doing one, c) people don't really buy a lot of open hoppers compared
to other projects we could do that would do better, and d)... Richard
Hendrickson won't buy any of them.

I don't buy all of this, even the part about Richard, and will
continue to work with open-minded manufacturers on ANY project that
might benefit us. I also have hope we will see an alternate standard
twin offset hopper in HO, just probably not RTR.

Elden Gatwood

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