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I've been out of the loop for a while with Lionel releases and have two questions:

- Is there a preorder deadline? When does Lionel close off preorders?

- Is there a preorder minimum/what is the minimum?

I understand the reason for the BTO/preorder method. It makes sense to me. I just keep hearing about there not being enough preorders for Lionel to produce something and that's a bummer as a guy just starting to expand his fleet. I was hoping Lionel makes some kind of announcement for what actually made the cut (assuming there is a minimum for them to make something).

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Good question, Bill!  I have never ordered BTO from Lionel, but from what I have seen over the years, Rusty has stated the situation in a nutshell perfectly.

I know I am showing my age, but every time I see Lionel's acronym, BTO, I always think of Bachman Turner Overdrive.  I guess it is fitting, Lionel is Taking Care of Business!!    BTO is the only rock concert I ever attended; Pittsburgh Civic Arena - Summer 1974.  A classmate and I drove down right before he left home for the Marines.

I also think of Bachman Turner Overdrive every time I see it. And the igloo was awesome! I saw the Pens play there. We had standing room only tickets and our standing room was right in front of a blower blowing cold air on us. We couldn't see past center ice because the next level of stands came down so low haha we ended up sneaking up near these platforms where the cameras were. It was a great view but the camera flash would go off every so often like eight feet from our heads. It was rough haha Ah well, those old arenas were rough but they sure had character!

BTO is a good way to make sure that product comes your way, it usually takes 6 months to maybe a year to become reality. It protects the dealer and gives Lionel the assurance the product is sold. One other nice part of BTO, it allows you time to save up for those higher priced scale engines, or sets. It sort of locks in your choice items. Early order pricing is usually great, Good luck, it’s the best hobby in the world. Happy Railroading Everyone.

Thank you for the help @JR Junction Train & Hobby and the for the detail about accepting order. I preordered an 0-6-0T in December of 2020 from my local shop and thought for sure I was past the deadline but they must also have access to availability at Lionel and distributors.

@leapinlarry I actually don't mind the BTO thing. This is my first go around with it and I feel pretty good about it. I'm locked in assuming there are enough preorders and the wait is long enough that I'll forget about it! Anything that helps these companies stay in business is something I'm likely to support.

BTO = Bachman Turner Overdrive.  My first concert was Jimi Hendrix at the Virginia Beach Dome!!!  Plaster was falling from the ceiling they were so loud.  Maybe that's why my ears still ring.

I've pre-ordered 2 or 3 times, always disappointed in the length of time it takes to get something (years not months).  But if I hadn't pre-ordered I would never have gotten the items otherwise cause they're usually gone within weeks if not days.

@BillYo414 posted:

I also think of Bachman Turner Overdrive every time I see it. And the igloo was awesome! I saw the Pens play there. We had standing room only tickets and our standing room was right in front of a blower blowing cold air on us. We couldn't see past center ice because the next level of stands came down so low haha we ended up sneaking up near these platforms where the cameras were. It was a great view but the camera flash would go off every so often like eight feet from our heads. It was rough haha Ah well, those old arenas were rough but they sure had character!

Like the old MSG on 50th and Broadway. I remember tickets to Ranger's games stamped 'obstructed view' ...and those old musty smelling concrete corridors! 

The Civic Arena in Pittsburgh was a cool building.  I hated to see it go.  I remember going to hockey games with the original seating.  The overhanging seats weren't there, so it gave a better view.  I don't think there were any obstructed views unless you were standing in the runways.  My brother and I used to get tickets way up high near center ice.  Those tickets were inexpensive.  They never filled the place in the 70's and 80's so you could buy those tickets at the gates.  Years later, my late father-in-law would always get tickets for the Shriners' Circus and each of our daughters would take a friend.  Me and 5 girls at the circus!  It was always a riot when they wanted to ride the elephants.  I'm sure those extra seats weren't there when I went to se BTO in '74.  There was so much cigarette and other smoke, they should have opened the roof, but they didn't fix it until many years later.

Back to Lionel BTO.  I went through the catalog again.  They have some very nice items, but none of them remotely pique my interest. If we had grandchildren, I could pick out a LionChief set.  I am going to sorely miss MTH.

I just assume the worst for the timeline. I don't waiting a year because I'll probably forget about it. A three week wait would be an eternity compared to life taking over when something isn't likely to arrive until December 2021.

I can't believe you saw Jimi @Bob Delbridge. He turned his amp up loud enough to get that special distortion. I have a couple little 5 and 10 watt amps that do it but my ceiling plaster is intact My bigger amps gave me hearing damage on the left side after playing a few sessions for hours at a time. I didn't realize it was bad until years later. But I sleep with my left ear to the ceiling when the neighbors are loud and I'm trying to get to sleep!

That's awesome @Henry Cohen 022118 haha I remember the old Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh giving me vertigo because of how steep the stands were. I was just a kid and had no fear of heights but I almost fell into the row ahead of us when I jumped out of my seat for a homerun. Those were times haha it stinks that a lot of the hockey arenas are cookie cutter arenas now. But I guess I'm really there to enjoy the game!

Yeah I hated to see the Igloo go too @Mark Boyce. It was such a cool building. We used our student IDs to get the discounted standing room only tickets. But yes! Back on topic!

There are no items that caught my eye that pertain to the prototype of my layout. But I got a thing for big articulated engines and teeeeeeeeechnically that one did haul some coal. It's a stretch but that's fine by me. I am going to miss MTH as well. I really like their rolling stock and their tendency to make different road names and engines.

Edit: That's why we had them! My parents could afford them and my brother and I liked going to games. PNC is a beautiful park though. I go to the Youngstown Phantoms hockey games because they're affordable and nearby. The hockey is great! Maybe not NHL but still great for the price point and how close it is to home.

Last edited by BillYo414

I like big articulated engines too, but I don't have room to run them.

My nephew played for the Phantoms at one time.  We went to one game there and one game in the arena near the Pittsburgh airport.  He played one year of minor league hockey after college hockey.  He realized he was getting too old to move up much farther and got a job in medical equipment sales.

BTO. (One of my fave bands too. We must all be the same age!) Randy Bachman and Fred Turner. Both Canadians, born in Winnipeg. Famous, not only for BTO, but also for its importance as a major hub in Canada's coast to coast railway system. Both CP and CN converge in Winnipeg and then go their separate routes, both east and west, as well as into the US, to reach their destinations.

Bob

I can't help but feel like the Lionel BTO and quality issues exist but the crowd having problems is the most vocal about it. I'm basing this off my experience with...well everything in life. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. The grease is the spotlight in this case. But we'll see in a year if I'm all angry and whatnot because I got a pile of parts instead of a locomotive.

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