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Author Topic: What's the future of Bachmann 1:20.3 scale?  (Read 45319 times)

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« Reply #60 on: August 17, 2014, 09:55:19 PM »

Dear Mr. Yardmaster:

A clerk at a mail order dealer explained to me that when LGB went bankrupt the sales of the other large scale products simply froze up.

I guess that when the LGB collectors realised that their collections were not a financial investment, but rather were only an investment in fun, the LGB collector sales market collapsed.

I still do not understand why the other large scale manufactures also suffered but there it is.

I hope that you will expand your 1:24 / 1:22.5 product line and add piston rods to the Little Hauler loco with tender while also moving the smoke stack forward in line with the steam cylinders.

The Little Hauler loco with tender has the components required for the Baldwin forney presently on the Disneyland RR as loco No. 5 .

At present, I have been purchasing locomotives from the HLW product line as they produce product in the 1:24 / 1:22.5 scale.

I hope that you can improve the Gandy Dancer drive and re-release the model in yellow and once again offer reasonably priced products in the 1:24 / 1:22.5 scale. I have bought several Spectrum 4-4-0 and 2-6-0 locos but not all product is required to be designed at that extreme level of detail. The 1:20.3 caboose is excellent but again this caboose is positively huge and is of no use to myself. Detailed models in 1:24 / 1:22.5 scale would be attractive to a large segment of your former customers wishing to again return as a customer of Bachmann  if new 1:24 / 1:22.5 product was offered.


Skarloey Railway

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« Reply #61 on: August 17, 2014, 10:08:51 PM »

It's pretty clear from Bachmann's products that they see large scale as simply a bigger version of HO: that is, for the most part they're in the business of model railroads and there's been a shift toward more detail and more accuracy from all manufacturers in all scales.

It's pretty clear from your preferences that you see model railways as 'toys', with locos and stock little better than caricatures of the real thing.

Nothing wrong with that, and Bachmann cater for the market in their Li'l Big Haulers and 'Thomas' range. But Bachmann also want to cater for the model railroader in large scale and they've done okay doing it.

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« Reply #62 on: August 17, 2014, 10:16:05 PM »

Hi Jerry:

" Norman, I really do appreciate your interest in no-scale, toy trains. That in itself is a hobby. "

For myself as long as the model is a scale model ( with an incorrect track gauge ) I am happy. So my interest is in 1:24 scale models with the compromise of an incorrect track gauge enabling the model to turn on  R1 curves.

I do not like compressed models as per the Lionel 0-27 locomotives. But this compression served a purpose of enabling Lionel to sell locomotives which would run on 0-27 track in a confined space. Exact scale Lionel locomotive models were of greater length and hence required greater track radius thereby reducing total customer sales. It is all a marketing compromise.

Even the track gauge of HO scale ( half of O scale ) is not exact.  

All of these model railroad products are toys regardless of scale and regardless of price. The model railroad products offered differ in their approximation to the prototype but all of these products are toys.

Only the non powered engineering prototype models originally built as a " one of " by the locomotive manufacturers to present to the end customer to generate sales of the prototype are not toys as these models are static.

We are all playing with toys regardless of scale, price and if the model is electric powered or live steam powered. This is just a hobby to relieve stress through the distraction of playing with toy trains.



Chuck N

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« Reply #63 on: August 18, 2014, 04:02:15 PM »

It will be very unlikely that I will be buying any more 1:22.5/24 trains.  The one exception would be if Bachmann or some other manufacturer came out with  K-27 or 28 in 1:22.5/24.  I have a significant collection of narrow gauge freight and passenger cars in that scale and I'd like to have a suitable engine(s) to pull it. 

I have been in LS since about 1980.  About 90% of the time I am running 1:20.3 or 1:29 on my layout in Virginia.

 We spend about three months a year in the Phoenix area.  When we are out there I have a temporary layout on the patio.  Everything on that layout is 1:22.5/24.  I took some of it out there because it just sat unused here. 

In my opinion, R1 curves are fine for a temporary layout.  Such as under a Christmas tree (on a dark rug,or easily cleaned floor).  There is a lot of wear on the wheels and track, not to mention gears and motors in the engines with small diameter curves.  People complain about black dust on the floor under the track.  That dust is brass and plastic.  The brass is coming from the engine and other metal wheels grinding the railhead and the plastic is coming from the plastic wheels being ground down by the railhead.  This wear can be minimized by using larger diameter curves.  It can never be totally eliminated, it is just a fact of life with our heavy engines and cars.

I will continue to support Bachmann and other manufacturers in 1:20.3 and 1:29, just not 1:22.5/24.  I like the detail and size of those scales. 



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« Reply #64 on: August 18, 2014, 05:24:21 PM »

My belief is that your move to 1:20.3 scale torpedoed largescale.
1:22.5 ( actually 1:24 with the LGB rolling stock, USA Trains narrow gauge and HLW product ) was an excellent product size for both interior and outdoor layouts.


I know Jerry already commented on this, but I agree with him, that moving away from 1/22.5 and 1/24 and moving toward 1/20.3 has *helped* the hobby tremendously, not hurt it..Given a choice, I think most people would prefer models that are much closer to scale (or exactly to scale in the case of 1/20.3) than models that are significantly off, which was the case with models of 3-foot gauge trains in 1/22.5 and 1/24 scales..

So, 1/20.3 = much better idea.
sticking with 1/22.5 or 1/24 = much worse idea..IMO.

And, we really have to have two different scales in Large scale, one for narrow gauge, and one for standard gauge.
because they simply aren't compatible in one cant be done.
Narrow gauge has pretty much settled on 1/20.3 scale, thanks to Bachmann mostly, as it should, since 3-foot gauge is the most
modeled and most popular of narrow gauge gauges, and 1/20.3 is the correct scale for 3 foot gauge on 45mm track.
so that's definately the right choice for the "narrow gauge scale"..that half of the hobby is "fixed" nicely now.
I wont get into 1/29 versus 1/32 for standard gauge! Wink

Even the track gauge of HO scale ( half of O scale ) is not exact.    

That is not correct..HO scale track is exact for standard gauge in 1/87 scale,
also correct for scale/gauge is HOn3, On3, On2, Fn3, 1/32, S scale, N scale, and lots of other scales..
There are more scale/gauge combinations that are correct, than there are incorrect.

« Last Edit: August 18, 2014, 05:36:27 PM by scottychaos » Logged


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« Reply #65 on: August 18, 2014, 11:54:27 PM »

Well, in 1:24, 45mm gauge works out to 3'6" which just happens to be the narrow gauge in this part of the world (and in many others of course; hence it's nicknmae "cape gauge").  But very little is now being produced which is scale accurate in 1:24; and even where it is it's era is not appopriate to what I model, or is in some other way compromised. However, I'm not expecting Bachmann to cater to my taste; they need to go where the best successful commercial propositions lie because any other route is likely to see them join the list of those who once made large scale models.

So I'm reduced to kitbashing what ever they choose to produce where I can see a successful bash.  But that's the point isn't it? - If I could buy RTR everything I wanted then, given I have minimal interest in the minutae of operation I'd just be playing trains; where as as it is I have to model to get what I want. 

So my bottom line is that I would welcome anything that Bachmann chooses to produce provided it's not limited to just 1:29 - that would cause me a problem.  I don't think they're going the route of 1:29 only as it would let a lot of customers down who might just take their bat and ball and go home, but it is a worry at the back of my mind.

At the same time I'm not all that well off - a loco which is selling for $750 in the US will be $2000 or so if I were to buy it from one of the small number of retaillers in Australia; but even buying from the US I have a self imposed limit of $400, whcih means I can usually afford Big Haulers but not Spectrum.  On the other hand, I don't need the bells and whistles - I'm battery r/c so I don't need DCC compatability and if I want sound I'll install MyLocosound which I can buy by hopping in my car and going to see the manufacturer, or buying at one of his open days, and from a detail point of view the current Big Haulers are fine.

So my plea would be for Bachmann to not forget those of us towards the lower end of the market, and to (occasionally at least) keep going with a few models in the Big Hauler range with relatively low spec electronics.  But that still has to fit in the business model, I guess, and I imagine there is more profit in the high end spec Spectrums.


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« Reply #66 on: August 19, 2014, 10:33:47 AM »

That was a great post, Steve, and a reminder that not everybody can blow a month or two's spending money - maybe more - on a single loco, rather than boring stuff like food, utilities, clothes and so on.

A while back I tried sending some stuff to a contact in Melbourne - all in vain.  By the time he had received my model train 'care package', with a genuine declared value of 95.00, it had somehow 'grown in value' to north of AUS$500.00.  We never tried that again.

Best down there, Sport.

Ottawa Valley GRS
Tony Walsham

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« Reply #67 on: August 20, 2014, 06:08:43 PM »

The GST free threshold for mail items into Australia is A$1,000 so the assessment from 95.00 to A$500 +, should have made no difference to the cost of importing the parcel.
Customs Duty may be payable but should never be more than 71/2 %.  So, if ever sending model RR related items via the mail always quote the TC #9503.00.00, then no import duty is payable.

Tony Walsham
Founding member of the battery Mafia.

(Remote Control Systems).
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