Date   

Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

devansprr
 


Tom, everything you wrote makes perfect sense, except that you forgot
a major fact:

Intermountain does not make an AAR 2-bay hopper... or a 3-bay for that
matter.

Like automobile companies, manufacturers strive to offer a "full line"
of products to their customers. Look how Accurail has gradually expanded
their product line to include many types of freight cars. Same thing with
Walthers, Atlas, and Athearn. Even Kadee.

Intermountain cannot "cannibalize" their existing AAR 2-bay hopper line
because they don't have one. You could argue they might lose sales of the
Tichy hoppers, but since the Tichy hopper is labor intensive to build, a
replacement for it might actually help the bottom line. Intermountain is
free to put ANY paint scheme they like on an AAR alternate standard hopper.

If the car was say, $10 cheaper than the Kadee model, then it would have
NO competition in its market niche. Sure, Athearn and Atlas would be cheaper,
and the Kadee might even be more beautiful -- but Intermountain could do every
single paint scheme that Kadee did, every correct scheme for an alternate
standard car, etc. Potential gold mine, IMO. Most customers who buy IRC RTR
models just think they look nice, right?

So anyway, don't underestimate the importance of competition in the hobby
biz, just like any other biz.

Tim O'Connor
Tim,

I think that perhaps Athearn, Bachmann, MTH and Walthers may compete in that manner, but I do not think anyone else does. The reason the local hobby shop is disappearing is in large part due to the inability to carry the "full" product line of the hobby - no one can afford that much inventory. And only a few companies have enough capital to produce a broad product line (and I suspect the people on this group are not major customers of at least 3 of the companies above).

Based on conversations I heard at Prototype rails, and with the President of Con-Cor a few years ago, the other manufacturers are simply looking for unfilled gaps with market appeal. Con-Cor has found such a gap and has done well with a series of HO and N streamline passenger trains. Great collectors market. How many people do you think model the North Shore, or late 30's UP? Meanwhile Rapido is filling a huge and very old gap in Canadian equipment, as is North American Railcar.

Walthers has clearly entered the safe mode lately - they only sell cars not previously offered in the RTR market for the biggest railroads. Even the vaunted Pennsy SPF's could not buy up all the R50b's, B60b's and N6b's Walthers made - in the end all were on sale for nearly 70% off list to clear the inventory (and now I probably have too many of them - this hobby is more like an addiction ;-) The post-war Broadway Limited set looks to be heavily pre-ordered - not much being built on speculation. Walthers appears to have become very risk averse.

I do not think it is any accident that Rapido's first freight car is a reefer that lasted into the post-transition era - the various billboard schemes will attract enough collectors and "I'll run anything modelers - look at my fire engine red Swift reefer!" to pay for tooling that this list could never afford to finance on our own. (At least I hope it does make money - if it doesn't, do you think Rapido will offer another expensive RTR freight car that does not appeal to today's mass market?)

I think the level of detail expected by this group will never yield a niche market freight car that sells for $10 less than the Kadee hoppers (when was the last time that price point was seen - $22 for a superdetailed RTR HO freight car?) I simply do not think the economics will support it - at ANY volume. Inflation is a bummer.

And it gets worse for those of us who want some more varied hopper fleets - I would trade detail for lower per unit costs so I could have 25-50 Glca hoppers to mix in with my 75 Bowser Gla's.

The question is, is there a viable alternative to Resin to fill all of these gaps we keep identifying?

I inquired because I was considering investing in a niche market project (the Glca being one candidate.) At this point I am not sure if a viable business model exists for RTR runs of cars under 20k units - at least to the fine scale standards of this group. And very few people are offering to develop new injection mold tooling for, dare I say, kits.

If RailShops succeeds with the PRR H30, and uses the same technique to produce a much more common car than the PRR H30 (hint hint - the alternate standard offset twin) and they find sales go wild, then we will know an alternative exists, and that costs for assembled versions may be supportable using off-shore labor.

Until then, I think my "investment" odds may be better in Las Vegas. At least there I will only lose 5 to 10%.

Dave Evans


Re: Sunshine's new GATC tank car

Tom Birkett <tnbirke@...>
 

Clark

I switched the rendering plant track at Wilson's packing haouse in
Oklahoma City the summer of 1972. If you need tallow cars, you need the
model the smell also.

Tallow takes old cars on their last legs, and they need coils to melt
out the product. Interior coiled cars could either be insulated or not
so you have some latitude.

Of course GATX built cars for others so you don't need to limited
yourself to GATX marked equipment.

Tom. Bartlesville






I'm interested in a GATX tank car that was in packing house service.
Would this model work?

GATX 23564 22900-23999 TM tallow
GATX 24950 24264-25275 TM tallow

Clark Propst


Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Bill Schneider
 

Mike prodded:

From: MDelvec952@...
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 5:33 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?


I understand the points and business principles. But if a company in the model business wanted a two-pocket offset hopper in its line, wouldn't there be some promotional value in doing a different car than the other manufacturers, even if only slightly? The wisdom of doing the GA '37 meat reefer is a good example. Those that appreciate the differences are singing praises and asking for more paint schemes, while the oblivious remain cheefully so. Everybody's happy.

An unglamourous coal hopper may not be in Rapido's current business plan. But if one day it is, would Rapido produce the Athearn / Kadee / Atlas car?

....Mike Del Vecchio


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ah, but an “unglamourous coal hopper” might be... just not this one.


Bill Schneider


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Tooling (was Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?)

Dennis Storzek
 

--- In STMFC@..., "Aley, Jeff A" <Jeff.A.Aley@> wrote:

Which would be cheaper:
1: A full multi-slide injection molded plastic model, assembled with wire grabs, etc.

2: An injection-molded "flat-kit" model, assembled, and with wire grabs, etc. (Lower tooling cost, higher assembly cost).

3: A resin model, assembled, and with wire grabs, etc. (Extremely low tooling cost, higher molding cost (?), much (?) higher assembly cost).
--- In STMFC@..., "Dave Evans" <devans1@...> wrote:
Jeff,

A good summary of the options.

From what I gathered at Prototype rails, the lower tooling costs of door number 2 would provide total savings over method 1 at 20k units - I think extra labor assembly would be less than what sounds like $60k more in tooling for method 1.

Selection 2 also entails lower risk - because tooling is much less, if sales do not reach 20k units, the loss would be much smaller than if option 1 was attempted and sales fell short. If sales are falling short for option 2 then one can more readily limit their losses by simply making fewer models. That option is not as viable for option 1 - you are all in when the tooling is complete and test shots are approved.

Method 2 could also be sold in kit form, which might appeal to some of the members of this group, especially if key spotting features could be readily changed (for example, a flat kit of the PRR H21a hopper would not require a large cost in new tooling to make a PRR H25.)

For an alternate standard offset hopper that was at the start of this thread, the tooling cost for different height sides and ends would not be that severe if other mold parts could be re-used (center sill, bolster, hopper bottom). Other variations may also be possible at reasonable cost (which means smaller runs would be viable).

I did not have any discussions about option 3 - I just can't imagine that enough skilled labor can be found at low enough prices to make Resin work unless unit prices were high and runs were relatively small.

Dave Evans
Only if you have total control of your costs... and using contract shops, you don't. In that case, the shop drives your decision by the prices they quote... if they want to build tools, they'll quote that option cheaper, or conversely, they'll sign you to an initial order number that makes the total up front dollars of the "flat kit" version exactly the same as the other. I can hear Jason and Bill laughing in the background even as I type this :)

The other route would to be to contract the tooling and assembly separately, but... there is nothing saying you will find takers for both. Nothing like having a boatload of plastic parts, and no way to make them into complete models, kits, or whatever.

In addition, the deep draw shut-offs required to make the slope sheets on a separate "flat kit" hopper are likely beyond the average cheapie "I gotta CNC on my dining room table" kind of guy, and real tool shops cost real money, either here or across the pond. Think back to the wonderful experience of trying to assemble a E&B Valley cement hopper, and you'll see what I mean.

You are looking at the age old question that has bedeviled model railroad manufacturers since the days when William K. was an active player... how do I reduce costs and increase market at the same time? If you reduce costs by simplifying tooling and it makes the model harder to assemble, you drive up unit costs and lose market, whether you are asking the modeler to assemble them or having it pre-done. If you add tooling costs, you can lower the unit tooling costs, but only to the point that the market absorbs the product... unsold product that has to be put on clearance sale at or below cost doesn't do you any good, it only gets a part of your investment back.

Each manufacturer has to do this calculation at some point, and the answer they get is seen in the way they approach their market, but all have some element of risk... the only sure way to make a small fortune in the model railroad business is to start with a large one.

Dennis


Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

MDelvec952
 

Bill sed:



OK, going to stick my neck in here...

1) Modelers that would appreciate the differences between the “Alternate” and “”Standard” designs also tend to demand high levels of detail and correct design variations, which equates to high R&D, development, production and (therefore) retail costs. The Kadee car priced at $42.95 is pretty much the cost level where any well detailed hopper of this type will end up these days at current costs, here or abroad. Even if they all (on average) bought one or two that would not be enough to pay for the project.

2) Modelers who do not appreciate the differences between the “Alternate” and “”Standard” designs will look at them and ask what the heck makes them worth that much more money than the cars that they already own on droves from Atlas, Accurail and “A-Thearn “and will not buy them because they “cost too much.”


--------------------------

I understand the points and business principles. But if a company in the model business wanted a two-pocket offset hopper in its line, wouldn't there be some promotional value in doing a different car than the other manufacturers, even if only slightly? The wisdom of doing the GA '37 meat reefer is a good example. Those that appreciate the differences are singing praises and asking for more paint schemes, while the oblivious remain cheefully so. Everybody's happy.

An unglamourous coal hopper may not be in Rapido's current business plan. But if one day it is, would Rapido produce the Athearn / Kadee / Atlas car?

....Mike Del Vecchio









[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Re: Sunshine's new GATC tank car

Clark Propst
 

I'm interested in a GATX tank car that was in packing house service. Would this model work?

GATX 23564 22900-23999 TM tallow
GATX 24950 24264-25275 TM tallow

Clark Propst


Re: Paint

tyesac@...
 

as the nearest hobby shops with
decent stock are 5 hours away, so I might as well use the paint I
like best.




Richard,

What, no runway out back?

Tom Casey

-----Original Message-----
From: Richard Hendrickson <rhendrickson@...>
To: STMFC <STMFC@...>
Sent: Mon, Jan 24, 2011 12:00 pm
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Paint




On Jan 24, 2011, at 8:54 AM, Andy Harman wrote:

On Sun, 23 Jan 2011 23:13:58 -0500, Schuyler Larrabee wrote
Scalecoat II? Or the real stuff?
Both. I prefer Scalecoat II, but some colors are just not
available - although they may
actually be out there if you special order. Few hobby shops stock
a full rack of
Scalecoat anymore....
Andy, that's hardly an issue for those of us (most of us, I'll bet)
whose local hobby shops were never very good and are now non-
existent. Get on the internet and find a large dealer who has a full
stock, or order direct from the manufacturer. I have to do that
regardless of what paint I use, as the nearest hobby shops with
decent stock are 5 hours away, so I might as well use the paint I
like best.

Richard Hendrickson









[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Tooling (was Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?)

devansprr
 

--- In STMFC@..., "Aley, Jeff A" <Jeff.A.Aley@...> wrote:

I have a few questions about making new models.

Let us assume that the model will be sold RTR (no kits).
Let us also assume that the model will be a hopper car (as discussed) with "moderate" sales (I don't know how many "moderate" is, but let's say 20,000 units).

Which would be cheaper:
1: A full multi-slide injection molded plastic model, assembled with wire grabs, etc.

2: An injection-molded "flat-kit" model, assembled, and with wire grabs, etc. (Lower tooling cost, higher assembly cost).

3: A resin model, assembled, and with wire grabs, etc. (Extremely low tooling cost, higher molding cost (?), much (?) higher assembly cost).
Snip

Regards,

-Jeff
Jeff,

A good summary of the options.

From what I gathered at Prototype rails, the lower tooling costs of door number 2 would provide total savings over method 1 at 20k units - I think extra labor assembly would be less than what sounds like $60k more in tooling for method 1.

Selection 2 also entails lower risk - because tooling is much less, if sales do not reach 20k units, the loss would be much smaller than if option 1 was attempted and sales fell short. If sales are falling short for option 2 then one can more readily limit their losses by simply making fewer models. That option is not as viable for option 1 - you are all in when the tooling is complete and test shots are approved.

Method 2 could also be sold in kit form, which might appeal to some of the members of this group, especially if key spotting features could be readily changed (for example, a flat kit of the PRR H21a hopper would not require a large cost in new tooling to make a PRR H25.)

For an alternate standard offset hopper that was at the start of this thread, the tooling cost for different height sides and ends would not be that severe if other mold parts could be re-used (center sill, bolster, hopper bottom). Other variations may also be possible at reasonable cost (which means smaller runs would be viable).

I did not have any discussions about option 3 - I just can't imagine that enough skilled labor can be found at low enough prices to make Resin work unless unit prices were high and runs were relatively small.

Dave Evans


Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Tim O'Connor
 

Tony

I have a couple of 46-foot GS gondolas. W&R imported them. :-)

Tim O'

No apology necessary, Garth, whatever the source of the slip. I
too wish there was a 46-foot GS gon out there, but am making do with
40-foot ones for D&RGW in the interim.

Tony Thompson


Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Tim O'Connor
 

Tom Madden wrote

In a private conversation Frank mentioned two IM offerings of cars specific to a major
railroad. He said one was "a disaster", and the second was only slightly better. I fear
a hopper project would be similiarly handicapped - no plausible alternative paint schemes,
and the buying public's misconception that they seldom strayed from their home road.

Hmmmm.. MILW box car disaster, Santa Fe stock car slightly better. (Just my guess.)


Tom, everything you wrote makes perfect sense, except that you forgot
a major fact:

Intermountain does not make an AAR 2-bay hopper... or a 3-bay for that
matter.

Like automobile companies, manufacturers strive to offer a "full line"
of products to their customers. Look how Accurail has gradually expanded
their product line to include many types of freight cars. Same thing with
Walthers, Atlas, and Athearn. Even Kadee.

Intermountain cannot "cannibalize" their existing AAR 2-bay hopper line
because they don't have one. You could argue they might lose sales of the
Tichy hoppers, but since the Tichy hopper is labor intensive to build, a
replacement for it might actually help the bottom line. Intermountain is
free to put ANY paint scheme they like on an AAR alternate standard hopper.

If the car was say, $10 cheaper than the Kadee model, then it would have
NO competition in its market niche. Sure, Athearn and Atlas would be cheaper,
and the Kadee might even be more beautiful -- but Intermountain could do every
single paint scheme that Kadee did, every correct scheme for an alternate
standard car, etc. Potential gold mine, IMO. Most customers who buy IRC RTR
models just think they look nice, right?

So anyway, don't underestimate the importance of competition in the hobby
biz, just like any other biz.

Tim O'Connor


Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Charles Hladik
 

That happens when you keep sniffing that Canadian air, brrrrrrrrr
Chuck Hladik

In a message dated 1/24/2011 9:19:48 P.M. Eastern Standard Time,
bschneider424@... writes:




Speel Chek is a horible thig..

That should have been “graciously”, not “gratuitously”... I think... ;.)

Bill

From: Bill Schneider
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 9:04 PM
To: _STMFC@... (mailto:STMFC@...)
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval
ends?

Oh great, its out now.... Oh well....

Regarding the “In your dreams...”, I would prefer to insert my own
Richard quote here...

Some... well.. several... years ago I was having a particularly hard time
having things... work out to my satisfaction. I confided on the phone one
afternoon to Richard that I would soon be writing a book entitled “So... You
Want To Be A Model Railroad Manufacturer”, to which he gratuitously (?!)
replied that he would be happy to write the forward, entitled “I told you
so...”

Bill Schneider

From: Aley, Jeff A
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 8:45 PM
To: mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com
Subject: RE: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval
ends?

Aha! So Rapido is finally going to do the UP’s slab-sided hoppers! Mike
Brock and I are glad, very glad.

[Insert Richard Hendrickson’s oft-repeated, “In your dreams” here.]

-Jeff

From: mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com
[mailto:mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Bill Schneider
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 2:44 PM
To: mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval
ends?

Ah, but an “unglamourous coal hopper” might be... just not this one.

Bill Schneider

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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Re: Sunshine's new GATC tank car

Jim Hayes
 

Sunshine usually only brings the newer stuff but surprised us at Naperville
by having several boxes of old kits.

Sunshine will be at 3 events in Feb. and March.

Timonium, Feb. 5/6. Sunshine hopes to have the new tank car there in 8
schemes, some of them very colorful. This kit is supposed to be easier to
assemble than past tank car kits and have better instructions.

And 2 events in California, Winterrail, March 12th and the ATSF Convention
at the San Bernardino train station on March 19th. There may be 2 new ATSF
models at San Bernardino.

Jim Hayes
Portland Oregon
www.sunshinekits.com


On Mon, Jan 24, 2011 at 11:12 AM, culturalinfidel9 <
djmiller@...> wrote:



For those who have been to the Timonium show before, does Sunshine usually
bring a stock of older kits with them or do they only sell new and very
recent kits?

Thanks,
Dan Miller


--- In STMFC@... <STMFC%40yahoogroups.com>, "pullmanboss"
<tcmadden@...> wrote:

Frank Hodina just sent me a photo of the pilot model of the new Sunshine
Models GATC tank car:

http://www.pullmanproject.com/GATC%20Tank.jpg

It will be introduced at Timonium.

Tom Madden


Re: Paint

Andy Harman
 

On Mon, 24 Jan 2011 12:31:49 -0500, mike brock wrote
I will add this. As Badger's Greg Konrad said about 15 yrs ago, IF you paint
in Florida you are going to pump out some water.
I remember being berated at the time for not "learning how" to use flex paints and that
I needed a tutorial from Konrad. I watched him painting at one of the shows. He was
blowing oxide red all over an O scale boxcar like nobody's business, using the Bic
disposable airbrush. I didn't see anything special about his technique. Oxides in his
paint line usually worked well, basically if you have a good bottle of paint, even with
sloppy technique things will turn out ok.

On the other hand, I saw up close some of the sample locos that GK had been using in his
ads for his paint. When I actually saw the quality of the finish - one of them had
paint peeling off the walkways, the other looked like it had been blasted with Krylon
from a fire hose, rolled in salt, and blasted again, the idea of "learning" anything
quickly vanished.

I've been airbrushing for - let's see - about 38 years. I don't plan to ever try to
teach anybody anything about it. But I think it's pretty insulting to be told to "learn
how" from someone whose paint jobs I wouldn't even try to strip, much less emulate.

And there are plenty of folks who get outstanding results from acrylics. Their methods
generally contradict each other, as my methods contradict others. That's why I don't
ever do painting clinics.

Andy


Re: Sunshine's new GATC tank car

culturalinfidel9 <djmiller@...>
 

For those who have been to the Timonium show before, does Sunshine usually bring a stock of older kits with them or do they only sell new and very recent kits?

Thanks,
Dan Miller

--- In STMFC@..., "pullmanboss" <tcmadden@...> wrote:

Frank Hodina just sent me a photo of the pilot model of the new Sunshine Models GATC tank car:

http://www.pullmanproject.com/GATC%20Tank.jpg

It will be introduced at Timonium.

Tom Madden


Re: Paint

Andy Harman
 

On Mon, 24 Jan 2011 10:00:38 -0800, Richard Hendrickson wrote
Andy, that's hardly an issue for those of us (most of us, I'll bet)
whose local hobby shops were never very good and are now non-
existent.
My LHS does not stock Scalecoat, but they will order it for me and it gets there quickly
without having to pay shipping. The only problem with that is I have to actually plan
ahead and know what I want instead of impulse buying paint. I do miss being able to
browse such things though.

Andy


Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Garth Groff wrote:
Indeed, I did intend to say "gondola". And I reread this post twice for accuracy. I hope you all will forgive me, as I suffer from a mild dyslexia . . .
No apology necessary, Garth, whatever the source of the slip. I too wish there was a 46-foot GS gon out there, but am making do with 40-foot ones for D&RGW in the interim.

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


Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Garth G. Groff <ggg9y@...>
 

Tony and friends,

Indeed, I did intend to say "gondola". And I reread this post twice for accuracy. I hope you all will forgive me, as I suffer from a mild dyslexia (and I've been a professional editor!; how I survived, I don't know).

Kind regards,


Garth Groff

On 1/24/2011 1:35 PM, Anthony Thompson wrote:
Garth Groff wrote:
For the same reason were are not likely to see my two favorites, the
early 1950s-era GATC 46' GS hoppers used by the D&RGW (lots!) and WP
(not so many) . . .
Surely you mean GS gondolas, Garth??

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



------------------------------------

Yahoo! Groups Links



Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Bill Schneider
 

Roofs, running boards, etc are easy. Internal hopper detail is not, ESPECIALLY on a Seeley! ;>)

Bill

From: A. Premo
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 1:34 PM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?


Yah but,Bill a hopper doesn't need a roof,a running board (roof walk) laterals etc.Just think of the savings..Not that I would opt for an alternate standard I have yet to see a hopper that I didn't like ,even some of those less than handsome NYO&W and D&H Seleys.There are many other hoppers that have yet to see the light of day like the nine panel B&O nee CRP and a multitude of quad hoppers.While I am thankful for the fruits of the Horn of Plenty there is a market for more and different hoppers.'nuff said.Armand Premo
----- Original Message -----
From: Bill Schneider
To: mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 11:27 AM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

OK, going to stick my neck in here...

The “Alternate Standard Hopper” has been suggested and discussed to me numerous time by several people in at least two different business lives. From a manufacturer’s point of view (well, this one’s at least), there are several issues with the car that make this project problematic.

1) Modelers that would appreciate the differences between the “Alternate” and “”Standard” designs also tend to demand high levels of detail and correct design variations, which equates to high R&D, development, production and (therefore) retail costs. The Kadee car priced at $42.95 is pretty much the cost level where any well detailed hopper of this type will end up these days at current costs, here or abroad. Even if they all (on average) bought one or two that would not be enough to pay for the project.

2) Modelers who do not appreciate the differences between the “Alternate” and “”Standard” designs will look at them and ask what the heck makes them worth that much more money than the cars that they already own on droves from Atlas, Accurail and “A-Thearn “and will not buy them because they “cost too much.”
3) The fact that Kadee HAS done the “standard” version and already therefore has many parts usable for the “alternate” cars would hang like a lead weight over the heads of any manufacturer tooling up from scratch. Kadee could (it would seem) have the “alternate” car into production before if they decided to long before anybody who had to start from scratch. Doesn’t make this a great sounding project to sink limited capital into.
Finally, to Tim’s numbers from Frank at Intermountain... Even Frank said “those days are long gone” when giving his talk at Cocoa. Today’s market is vastly different than it was just a few years ago. At one point not too long ago, 50,000 units for a freight car project was an achievable target (don’t ask how I know). Now its likely about 1/10 of that.
As for the Athearn box car, yeh they sold a lot, but surely that’s not the target level of accuracy for this project, is it Tim? )

Swing away....

Bill Schneider
Rapido Trains
From: Tim O'Connor
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 1:10 AM
To: mailto:STMFC%40yahoogroups.com
Subject: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Dave,

I'm pretty sure the IRC Canadian cylindrical and the 40' PFE ice reefer
are pushing pretty close to those production numbers.

I wouldn't be at all surprised to hear that Athearn has sold 2 million
or more of its 40 ft box cars in the last 50 years.

I'm not saying that a new AAR hopper would sell like that. But Kadee made
a model of an unusual prototype, built in relatively small numbers if you
make a numerical comparison with the giant fleets of the major carriers.
Some of us were dumbfounded (well, I was) that Kadee did that car and not
an alternate standard car. (By our definition based on appearances, not the
AAR's definition based on underframe castings.)

Tim O'Connor

Note that at Cocoa Beach, Intermountain presented production run numbers, and
IIRC none reached the 250k unit example you give.


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Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Anthony Thompson <thompson@...>
 

Garth Groff wrote:
For the same reason were are not likely to see my two favorites, the early 1950s-era GATC 46' GS hoppers used by the D&RGW (lots!) and WP (not so many) . . .
Surely you mean GS gondolas, Garth??

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


Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

A. Premo <armprem2@...>
 

Yah but,Bill a hopper doesn't need a roof,a running board (roof walk) laterals etc.Just think of the savings..Not that I would opt for an alternate standard I have yet to see a hopper that I didn't like ,even some of those less than handsome NYO&W and D&H Seleys.There are many other hoppers that have yet to see the light of day like the nine panel B&O nee CRP and a multitude of quad hoppers.While I am thankful for the fruits of the Horn of Plenty there is a market for more and different hoppers.'nuff said.Armand Premo

----- Original Message -----
From: Bill Schneider
To: STMFC@...
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 11:27 AM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?



OK, going to stick my neck in here...

The “Alternate Standard Hopper” has been suggested and discussed to me numerous time by several people in at least two different business lives. From a manufacturer’s point of view (well, this one’s at least), there are several issues with the car that make this project problematic.

1) Modelers that would appreciate the differences between the “Alternate” and “”Standard” designs also tend to demand high levels of detail and correct design variations, which equates to high R&D, development, production and (therefore) retail costs. The Kadee car priced at $42.95 is pretty much the cost level where any well detailed hopper of this type will end up these days at current costs, here or abroad. Even if they all (on average) bought one or two that would not be enough to pay for the project.

2) Modelers who do not appreciate the differences between the “Alternate” and “”Standard” designs will look at them and ask what the heck makes them worth that much more money than the cars that they already own on droves from Atlas, Accurail and “A-Thearn “and will not buy them because they “cost too much.”
3) The fact that Kadee HAS done the “standard” version and already therefore has many parts usable for the “alternate” cars would hang like a lead weight over the heads of any manufacturer tooling up from scratch. Kadee could (it would seem) have the “alternate” car into production before if they decided to long before anybody who had to start from scratch. Doesn’t make this a great sounding project to sink limited capital into.
Finally, to Tim’s numbers from Frank at Intermountain... Even Frank said “those days are long gone” when giving his talk at Cocoa. Today’s market is vastly different than it was just a few years ago. At one point not too long ago, 50,000 units for a freight car project was an achievable target (don’t ask how I know). Now its likely about 1/10 of that.
As for the Athearn box car, yeh they sold a lot, but surely that’s not the target level of accuracy for this project, is it Tim? )

Swing away....

Bill Schneider
Rapido Trains
From: Tim O'Connor
Sent: Monday, January 24, 2011 1:10 AM
To: STMFC@...
Subject: [STMFC] Re: AAR Standard twin offset side hopper with oval ends?

Dave,

I'm pretty sure the IRC Canadian cylindrical and the 40' PFE ice reefer
are pushing pretty close to those production numbers.

I wouldn't be at all surprised to hear that Athearn has sold 2 million
or more of its 40 ft box cars in the last 50 years.

I'm not saying that a new AAR hopper would sell like that. But Kadee made
a model of an unusual prototype, built in relatively small numbers if you
make a numerical comparison with the giant fleets of the major carriers.
Some of us were dumbfounded (well, I was) that Kadee did that car and not
an alternate standard car. (By our definition based on appearances, not the
AAR's definition based on underframe castings.)

Tim O'Connor

>> Note that at Cocoa Beach, Intermountain presented production run numbers, and
>> IIRC none reached the 250k unit example you give.

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