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Easy there Yellow Belly Mike. I don’t have time to type a three page report. Read all the posts on this thread and you will likely come close to my conclusion.

Thanks for shooting the messenger.

I have read them.  No one in this thread, other than you, has come even remotely close to making such a profound statement.

Please define "sucked".

Mike

Last edited by Mellow Hudson Mike

This was my first time at the York show.  Had the pleasure of attending with my 27 year old son Jacob.  We arrived Thursday and took advantage of every minute through closing on Friday.  We took the approach of it being a learning experience and not as much of buying experience.  We learned more than hoped and bought more than planned.  

By reading comments on here, I understood it was less crowded, which afforded us many conversations in all the halls with members and dealers.  We learned so much and met so many friendly members.  Initially it was a little overwhelming, either the blue or the silver hall was as big as any train show we’ve attended. Once we got our bearings as to where everything was, we settled down and took our time.  Learned about things we didn’t know existed, Learned where we overpaid some in past deals, and where we got some good deals in the past.  My son actually taught a few things during the trip.  Besides is interest in O-gauge, my son is becoming very knowledgeable in G-scale LGB from the 80s and 90s.  He looked at most every piece of LGB equipment at the show and pointed out the importance and use of some items to members that didn’t realize what they had, especially when it came to the rare specialty track pieces used in the non-digital era. My focus was on learning what options are on the market that will help or improve my building of a permanent layout.

In regards to buying, Jacob only purchased one O-gauge item, a 86’ high cube boxcar to compliment his Lionel Big Blue set. His weakness was the LGB items, and picked up some large diameter track, a set, and a couple of misc rolling stock.  He also sound some track to go with his N-scale Japanese train set. I did well on day one, sticking to my plan of avoiding rolling stock and focusing on layout accessories, with the exception of a purchase of one tmcc K-line Allegheny.  My discipline faltered on day two with the purchase of a second K-line tmcc Allegheny in a different road name, and some complimentary smaller scale hoppers.

overall the trip was well worth it and a great experience.  I know I will be back again.  

@CBQ_Bill posted:

@rplst8

Is Steve from Ross Custom Switches in your picture ?  

Is he one of the guys sitting behind the table ?

If yes, which guy ?

Steve is the fellow at the far right, sitting at the table. Always great to see him, and to hear that he is backed-up on getting product made (U.S. made, which is a real plus). And, of course, he has been a strong supporter of OGR magazine for a great many years, and OGR forum since its inception.

@jim sutter posted:

Today, I saw Micro Mark in one of the pictures that someone had taken. Micro Mark is a great place to buy miniature tools. One of these days we will see Menard's with a table. Did Ready Made Trains have a table?

Would be great to see Micro-Mark support OGR (magazine and/or forum). but they apparently can't be convinced to jump on board. Agree with you that they are THE place to go to for modeling tools and related items of all types and for all scales. I have purchased a number of On30 locomotives and rolling stock from them in the past. I also agree that Menard's should consider having a presence at the York Meet. There is a particular Menard's building that I am looking for and would have bought it at York if I had found it. As it is, I will be driving over to their Niles, OH, store tomorrow and will but it there since they show having three in stock. They would likely do very well at the York meets. No RMT presence at the meet that I know of, although several dealers had RMT items available.

@G3750 posted:

Generally speaking, prices in the Orange Hall could be described in one word:  stupid. Business looked slow there.

George

Actually, I guess it may depend on what one was looking for. Al, at Sidetrack Hobbies, sure seemed to be having a brisk business selling modern tinplate (he's truly one of the go-to places for those who want contemporary tinplate in O and Std. Gauge). I left the show on Friday afternoon with a couple of new-in-box MTH tinplate items that he was offering at ridiculously low prices. Would have bought even more from him, but I exhausted by budget for the meet.

@jim sutter posted:

One of these days we will see Menard's with a table.

I think Menards doesn't need to go to York with the rate the trains sell for them.  I suspect the only time train inventory is in one place is when the container arrives, otherwise the inventory is decentralized among their stores and distribution centers.  It would be an unnecessary expense to corral that all stock, take it to York, then redistribute any unsold stock.

Just because something is shipped to "your store" or home, it may have been shipped from different store or distribution center that had the item in stock.

Rusty

I have been attending the bi-annual TCA Eastern Division York Meets for some 32 years now, and have thoroughly enjoyed each and every one. The meet this past week was no exception, and I had a great time.

For the first time ever, I did not even have to drive to the meet since I rode along with three train buddies (Brian, Chet, and Frank) from the Mercer/Greenville, PA area who figured they could tolerate me for a couple of consecutive days. We had a great time in every respect.

I also found everything I was looking for at the meet, plus a few items that I wasn't looking for but could not resist buying. Most of all, since OGR did not have a booth at York this time (as at the Oct. 2021 meet), I had ample time, in addition to shopping, to just walk around and talk with people, including manufacturers, dealers, magazine authors and prospective authors, subscribers, forum members, and others. At this stage in my very long involvement in the hobby, the people are what give me the greatest joy. I'm up to my ears in trains, but one can never have enough friendships. My sincere thank to all who took the time to say hello or to stop and chat.

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My second day of my first York experience was even better than day one. Gathered up even more buildings, a station, double engine stall, many misc parts, my first passenger set ever, another freight train set, a beautiful Pennsylvania diesel plus a gorgeous PRR switcher.

It was more packed Friday compared to Thursday but still didn’t seem very clustered in the isles which made slowing the pace better and talking with sellers more enjoyable. I got bumped into on Thursday resulting in minor damage to a custom built track side water tower but that’s an easy fix.

All in all, I had a great first York experience. Many sellers would see that I was a guest and the friendly conversations would pursue. I was even holding a fragile item and a separate seller called me over and pulled out bubble wrap and a double bagged it for me. Just such an amazing atmosphere with wonderful people. I’ll definitely be back in the Fall!

Enjoyed the show and meeting some friends Thursday and Friday. Hope the show continues with more room in the aisles. The somewhat smaller crowds made it easier to chat with the sellers and representatives. I was lucky and found everything on my wish list as well as a few other items that now take up residence here on Long Island. Got to spend some time talking with Andy Edleman and was encouraged to hear about the new TIU-W and will be placing an order get one and upgrade my layout

Hope to see ya'all in October

Even though the shows (bandit meets and Fairgrounds) were noticeably smaller, my friends and I had a great time and I bought everything on my list, some other items that I was thinking about and then a few surprise purchases. Dealers were dealing!

Due to the wider aisles and fewer vendors, we had plenty time to make a number of visits to all of the halls, so we left for home Friday evening instead of Saturday. We arrived on Tuesday (Boy, cold and windy that day - barely any vendors outdoors, same on Wednesday). We spent Thursday and Friday at the Fairgrounds.

MPC (Pre LTI) rolling stock, new in boxes, could be found on many tables for $5 - $15 each. Not my thing, but I thought worth mentioning.

Any day at York is a good day. yes the attendance may have been down, but it was easier to see all in one day. I had a wish list and was able to obtain all I wanted. there were deals to be made, people to meet, and an abundance of tinplate in my opinion. I found the member halls to be the best and after all isn't that what it's all about. looking forward to the next one.

@Traindiesel posted:

I may have missed the reason, but Trainworld left the Meet early Friday afternoon. I hope they’re all ok.

I was wondering about that too. I was wandering around the orange hall about 4 o’clock and the tables were scarce and there was someone packing up all the remaining inventory into their van.

P.S. It was a pleasure meeting you there @Traindiesel!

Last edited by rplst8

Steve is the fellow at the far right, sitting at the table. Always great to see him, and to hear that he is backed-up on getting product made (U.S. made, which is a real plus). And, of course, he has been a strong supporter of OGR magazine for a great many years, and OGR forum since its inception.

Yes, I loved the big sign they had…

Unfortunately we don’t have much to sell, because of all our customers buying our products! Thank you to our customers for creating the “problem”.

Or something of that nature.  Steve really does make a great product… but maybe it’s time to expand?  @RCSSTEVE I hear another big manufacturer that recently “reorganized” might be looking to sell the tooling for their “scale” track offering.  It could make a nice addition as a lower cost option maybe?

Would be great to see Micro-Mark support OGR (magazine and/or forum). but they apparently can't be convinced to jump on board. Agree with you that they are THE place to go to for modeling tools and related items of all types and for all scales.

There was another great tool vendor there in the orange hall called B & B Hobby Supplies. The difference was - they had inventory there to sell.  A great selection! I picked up an engine cradle and some rollers for repairing and upgrading the broken ones I buy off the auction site.  The gentleman there was super friendly and knowledgeable.  He helped me remember the name of a tool that I couldn’t think of to drill and tap small holes in models… A pin vise!

I think the word I would use to describe York this time around would be "subdued".   I did see some product priced to move and others have reported bargains, but by and large, my impression was of high prices and stagnant sales in the Orange Hall.   Certainly I didn't see much to induce me to open my wallet;  this was the least I have spent in the 42 York meets I have attended.  In fact, I thought the Orange Hall looked more like a Greenberg train show than anything else (which is not a good thing).

I am hoping for a rebound in the fall.

Despite all that, I did have a good time seeing friends.

George

@G3750 posted:

I think the word I would use to describe York this time around would be "subdued".   ...

I am hoping for a rebound in the fall.



I agree.  Yes, it was easier to walk around without the usual crowds, but I don't feel that is a good thing.  I hope the dealers and sellers sold enough to keep coming back.

I didn't think the prices were crazy, but maybe that was just on the items I was looking at.

I think it would have been nice to have the Standard Gauge layout back, and situated in the center of the orange hall.  But I suppose it comes down to economics. (?)  Putting the other layouts alone in the purple hall was not a good choice IMO.  Too bleak.

@rplst8 posted:

There was another great tool vendor there in the orange hall called B & B Hobby Supplies. The difference was - they had inventory there to sell.

Very true, and I apologize for not having mentioned them in my earlier post. Not sure if they are an active supporter of the magazine and/or forum, but they sure should be. I always spend a lot of time looking over the tremendous selection of items they bring to York, and on numerous occasions over the years have found some very interesting and useful tools and other workbench-type accessories at their large booth (actually more of a separate room) area.

Actually, I guess it may depend on what one was looking for. Al, at Sidetrack Hobbies, sure seemed to be having a brisk business selling modern tinplate (he's truly one of the go-to places for those who want contemporary tinplate in O and Std. Gauge). I left the show on Friday afternoon with a couple of new-in-box MTH tinplate items that he was offering at ridiculously low prices. Would have bought even more from him, but I exhausted by budget for the meet.

I helped to reduce the number of boxes that he had to take home.  However, I was a bit disappointed at the small range of things that he brought to sell.

@Traindiesel posted:

I may have missed the reason, but Trainworld left the Meet early Friday afternoon. I hope they’re all ok.

Seeing how they did not attend, Fall 2021, and the sparse attendance this April, probably figured no need to stick around. Would not be surprised if they joined the ranks of Charles Ro and Nickolas Smith and said farewell to York. For the big internet sales dealers York is only a place for them to remove excess inventory from their shelves, and not worth the travelling expense, it's a business.

Enjoyed the meet. Bought 3 significant items for my layout. Crowds were down but some sellers told me they passed the October show in earnings. I was there on Thursday and Saturday. Some vendors in the White Hall were packing up as early as 10:30 AM. One poor fellow in the Orange Hall was sleeping soundly at his tables. Met a lot of nice people and enjoyed the looking around immensely. Looking forward to expanding my layout...

Oh, and too many empty tables......

Last edited by Michael Hokkanen
@Arthur posted:

Seeing how they did not attend, Fall 2021, and the sparse attendance this April, probably figured no need to stick around. Would not be surprised if they joined the ranks of Charles Ro and Nickolas Smith and said farewell to York. For the big internet sales dealers York is only a place for them to remove excess inventory from their shelves, and not worth the travelling expense, it's a business.

They skipped last fall because Ken Jr. caught covid the week of York and did the right thing by staying home. They were very slow yesterday according to them yesterday around midday when I stopped by to say hello.  They did have some deals going, but there was literally no one around. Most of Thursday and Friday the orange hall was pretty dead.

Last edited by Boilermaker1

Alan Miller, Jimmy Sutter and others who asked... RMT/Ready Made Trains was not attending this York as a 'company', but Walter was there in person on Friday walking around and talking to RMT dealers about upcoming products. Any RMT product that was on tables was older stock made in the 2009 era. New products have not arrived yet at Emery Distributors.  Next RMT product arriving will be the BEEPeople Seated and Standing Figure sets. Watch for arrival notice on OGR Forum but you can pre-order them now at your favorite train store dealer.

Thanks.

Marty,

Did you just buy the train or the whole layout? !

FYI...For this Thomas set, I needed to use electrical tape surrounding the coupler to keep the back of the engine reliably connected to the first passenger car. (Maybe I had uneven track sections.)

Years ago, this Thomas set was my first introduction to the LionChief handheld and use of a smartphone for simple train control. Even though I had Legacy and DCS, I was actually amazed by the simplicity of operating toy trains this way. It is a wonderful approach for introducing young people (and some old ones too) to this hobby.

Having attended many York meets since 2006 (yes, not as far back as some), I would have to say that this had the lightest attendance in both sellers and buyers that I have seen.  There were no crowds, and I saw plenty of yawns from the sellers.  We drove almost seven hours total today and walked around the show for 3 hours.  I actually think that I might skip the Fall meet.

I find it interesting (concerning?) in regards to the larger dealers at the show, such as Mr Muffin, Trainz, Stockyard Express, Trainworld and Nassau Hobbies.  Considering that their inventory is available online, I see no reason to visit their booths.

Besides picking up pre-ordered shelving from Glen Synder, I only purchased 2 pieces of older rolling stock from Just Trains.

I was tempted to buy some Super-O track, as there seemed to be a reasonable amount of it available, and I thought the interior detailing on the 64' Woodsided coaches from the vendor in the Orange hall, was fascinating.  Does anyone have the contact info for that vendor?  BY the time I had gotten there I was pretty much done.

Frank:

While it is true that we can all buy on line or over the phone from the dealers, there are still some very good reasons IMHO to visit their booths. A number of them, like Mr. Muffin, offer significant discounts at York. For example, Steve brought a number of Legacy NYC Mohawks to York and was selling each at a blow out price of $1,400. I bought RN 2775 from him. There are also no shipping costs for items purchased at York. Shipping costs have steeply increased and are significant for engines. Another reason to visit dealer booths is to search for old new stock that is not always listed on their websites. Grzyboski's Trains is a good example of that. I purchased several Lionel old new stock freight cars from Joe. A third reason is to spend a few minutes with the owners of these businesses, as they are friends, and I like to chat with them about what is going on in their businesses, get their take on what is going on in our hobby, see if they have some items I am looking for and, if not, whether they know of a dealer who has or may have what I am looking for, find out what special runs they may be rolling out, etc.

Pat

@dk122trains posted:

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Don:

Great seeing you at the breakfast! Jack Pearce is the best in the business when it comes to lighting and detailing vehicles and passenger cars. He has been doing so for me for many years. I have well over 100 vehicles that he has lit and detailed for me on my layout as well as three passenger car sets he has lit and detailed for me. I don't know if you saw the MTH Strasburg Green Woodside Coach set he had there. He upgraded the lighting, added additional passengers, and detailed that exact same set for me, and it contained even more detailing than the one he had at York.

Pat

Last edited by irish rifle

this is my 20th straight year going to york for both spring/fall,except when we couldn't ,first time was in the 70's with only one hall !.yes it has and will change,just like in our own lives ,alot of people have passed on or unable to attend.i myself was on the fence about going,but sure glad i did.its a 3 1/2 drive each way,and only go for fri.i was happy i went,saw lots of people i dont see any other time ,get to see lots and lots of trains.do i need anymore ,no,but it,for me has it own charm.will it get smaller,sure,life changes so will york ! as tina turner sang"big wheel keeps on turnin" !! 

I attended the Wyndham Garden meet for the first time, but ran out of time ( and budgeted funds) to hit the Four Seasons meet that day. Any feedback on the Four Seasons or Reliance meets? Hope to hit them both for the first time this October.

The Four Points and Reliance meets are much smaller than the Wyndham.  The Four Points is in two rooms and is mostly pre-war and post-war with a little bit of modern here and there.  The Reliance is mostly S guage with a little bit of O gauge.  IMHO, they are worth checking out.  We bought stuff at all three bandit meets.

Andy

Still trying to figure out what I thought of April York.  We did very well selling in October in the Yellow Hall.  Since that was closed, they moved us to White, which from a selling prospective was a disaster.  Almost no one was there Thursday afternoon, Friday all day, and NO ONE was coming in on Saturday.  At this rate, we would probably not do an April York again.  Unfortunately, they are putting us back in White Hall in October 2022 as Yellow is closed again.

On the other hand, I spent two and a half days with my wife (including on our 34th anniversary), my son, and his fiancé.  As a vacation together, it was great.  With our sales, it was a net lose on hotels, food, etc.  A big concern is next October.  The price of our hotels was around $650 for two rooms for two days at the Tru by Hilton.  I just tried booking for October and the price is now $950.  Many hotels were quoting the same price or higher.  I did find a Comfort Inn in York that will cost about $550.  I hope it isn't a dump.  Spending time with family is still a good time.

On the buying side, table holders in the White Hall had some good prices. On Saturday morning, the gentleman across the aisle from me pulled out a Lionel 12782 Lift Bridge, new in box, and put $100 on it.  I couldn't pass it up and my wife said Happy Anniversary!  You should have seen us trying to stuff that gigantic box in to the car.

On the other side of me were two gentlemen selling off their father's collection and were selling at about 50% of book but almost all late 90's and early 2000's items.  They moved a lot of items, even though there were not a lot of buyers coming to White Hall.  They eventually sold the rest of the collection Saturday morning to Trains, Inc.  We did buy a Pratt's Hollow Engine and 4 car set from them for $400 so we will put together a Halloween layout.

A big concern was a rumor we heard (and it was just an overheard rumor so I don't know the veracity) that the York Fairgrounds was raising the site rental price by $30,000.  That would seem to me to be a big increase.  Maybe Eastern Division will start to consider doing away with the April meet.  I know at the price of rooms and the lack of attendance, I probably won't return for April 2023.

@lionelflyer posted:

A big concern was a rumor we heard (and it was just an overheard rumor so I don't know the veracity) that the York Fairgrounds was raising the site rental price by $30,000.  That would seem to me to be a big increase.  Maybe Eastern Division will start to consider doing away with the April meet.  I know at the price of rooms and the lack of attendance, I probably won't return for April 2023.

I have no knowledge of what it costs to rent the fairgrounds, but I do have some knowledge of what it costs to rent other event facilities. I would be very surprised to hear that it even costs that much now, let alone it going up by that much.

You’d be surprised what places are charging. I work with a USA Swimming club in the North Harris county burbs. When we started meets at the local high school after COVID, when I showed up the hospitality room was set up in the pool area. I asked what happened to the usual room. The meet director said they couldn’t afford it. A 20x30 room for the weekend would be $1000.

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