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Author Topic: The demise of non sound steam  (Read 20949 times)
boomertom
Clinchfield/C&O modeler


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« on: April 28, 2009, 12:15:11 AM »

It appears that Spectrum steam is rapidly becoming sound only.

Case in point the 2-8-0 that was a great little locomotive for a small layout seems to have disappeared unless you get it sound equipped. This is not alltogether bad but becomes pricey for many of us old guys on fixed incomes.

Granted you can still get some nice standard steam that is not sound equipped but these tend to be larger locomotives rather than the small engines common on short line or branches.

Is this a trend that will lead to sound only in the near future?
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Tom Blair (TJBJRVT68)
Yampa Bob

Y.V.R.R.


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« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2009, 02:28:40 AM »

Hi Tom,
I think it has to do with the current state of the economy. Perhaps a company like Bachmann (Kader) can't currently afford to offer models in both sound and non-sound.  During hard times, a company has to maximize profits on fewer sales.  To do this means selling fewer units but at a higher price and (hopefully) better net profit.

When the economy improves, will such a company revert back to offering lesser priced units with fewer features?  Historically the answer is no. Consumers continue to demand more "bells and whistles".  The most common expression is: "If you wanna play, you gotta pay". 

There was a time when a radio or air conditioning was an option in automobiles. Then radios became standard, but you had the option of a CD player. Today most all cars are fully loaded, including GPS navigation and tracking. The economy is controlled by the demands and buying habits of consumers. 

The Spectrum 2-8-0 DCC was possibly Bachmann's biggest seller. What do you do when an item is a long time seller but generates low profit due to increased production cost and decreased sales? You quit making it in favor of perhaps a bigger market. It's often called "planned obsolescence."
« Last Edit: April 28, 2009, 05:43:09 AM by Yampa Bob » Logged

I know what I wrote, I don't need a quote
Rule Number One: It's Our Railroad.  Rule Number Two: Refer to Rule Number One.
boomertom
Clinchfield/C&O modeler


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« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2009, 11:00:05 AM »

Or you put the non-sound 2-8-0 in a train set with a dc power pack, three passenger cars and track at a suggested retail of $400.00. v. $318.00 for the sound equipped version as a stand alone model.

In a similar  manner, it seems that analog locomotives are becoming dinosaur except for the basic low cost train set lines from Bachmann, Model Power and Lifelike.

If horse racing is the sport of kings, has model railroading become a rich mans hobby ?

Pardon me, but my grape juice was extremely sour today.

Tom
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Tom Blair (TJBJRVT68)
richG
Guest
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2009, 11:38:31 AM »

our prices are quite high. You need to do some careful shopping. Many modelers are not aware of price comparisons. Many buy on impulse.

Change is inevitable, struggle is an option.

Rich

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Johnson Bar Jeff

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« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2009, 12:33:44 PM »

our prices are quite high. You need to do some careful shopping. Many modelers are not aware of price comparisons. Many buy on impulse.

Change is inevitable, struggle is an option.

Rich



Resistance is futile. ...
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richG
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« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2009, 02:45:52 PM »

I heard the same story years ago about brass.

Rich
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jward


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« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2009, 03:21:06 PM »

it is interesting. when many of the other manufacturers started loading up their locomotives and prices went through the roof, i gave bachmann another look after years of buying other brands exclusively. dcc onboard was a pleasant surprise: a good running dcc equipped locomotive for less than the others were charging for analog......guess what i started buying.....


put another way, if you have a sound equipped locomotive only, at $300, i will only buy one if i REALLY want that locomotive. an impulse buy is not an option at that price. strip it down to analog and sell it for $100, i may buy 5 of them.....
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Jeffery S Ward Sr
Pittsburgh, PA
trainmaster971

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« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2009, 03:26:50 PM »

This brings up the question of the repair of a non sound steam loco should it break while still under warranty.
If the loco is not repairable and needs to be replaced what will the options be?
Will it be replaced with the sound equipped version? If so will there be a fee required even though it is still under the one year warranty?.  Will they offer whatever leftover that they may still have that is not sound equipped?
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richG
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« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2009, 05:45:09 PM »

I just took a quick look at Micro Mark. A few steamers around $222.00 for DCC sound, some around $160.00 with sound, some DCC on board, no sound under $100.00.

Rich
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James Thomas

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« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2009, 06:49:17 PM »

Yet, we can't get the new locomotives in On30 WITH sound.

-JRT
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richG
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« Reply #10 on: April 28, 2009, 06:54:35 PM »

Yet, we can't get the new locomotives in On30 WITH sound.

-JRT

I guess the below link is false advertising or maybe not in stock.

http://www.micromark.com/bachmann-on30-locomotives-and-powered-equipment.html

Rich
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rogertra


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« Reply #11 on: April 28, 2009, 07:12:02 PM »

All sound STILL sounds like a 1950s transistor radio, no matter what anyone tries to tell me. 

I hear what I hear, not what I want to hear!

And what I hear is tinny and nothing like a real loco sounds.  It's even worst for diesel sound.

I say this fascination with sound  is akin to the first "talkies".  People were and are blown away by the fact that we can now get sound into such a small model, just like they were when they first heard talking movies.

Now compare the movie sound of not just the 1930s movies but even the movies made in the 1960s and 70s to what we hear these days.  AFAIC, model sound is only just in the 1930s mode and sounds just like that 1950s transistor radio.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2009, 12:07:00 AM by rogertra » Logged

richG
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« Reply #12 on: April 28, 2009, 07:16:47 PM »

I hope you feel better after that rant. You will get over it.

Rich
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hotrainlover

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« Reply #13 on: April 28, 2009, 09:37:49 PM »

I love my sound engines.  If I do not want sound, I just F8 out...
No more sound  Smiley
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Pacific Northern


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« Reply #14 on: April 28, 2009, 10:00:30 PM »

This brings up the question of the repair of a non sound steam loco should it break while still under warranty.
If the loco is not repairable and needs to be replaced what will the options be?
Will it be replaced with the sound equipped version? If so will there be a fee required even though it is still under the one year warranty?.  Will they offer whatever leftover that they may still have that is not sound equipped?

I know that there will be an extra charge if you are returning a non-sound engine for repair/replacement and the item is no longer in production. Hopefully the members of this site will let us know what Bachmann is charging.

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Pacific Northern
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