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I try to pace myself with purchases but now I can't get the B&O powered E8 #92 locomotive .  I was lucky to get all the B&O smooth sided passenger cars I wanted but I had to make a lot of phone calls and pay a premium for some of them.  I've tried calling places like Stockyard Express, who supposedly have the unit, but they never call me back.  Maybe they are overwhelmed with people looking for the last hurrah MTH stock?

Anthony

@A. Wells posted:

I try to pace myself with purchases but now I can't get the B&O powered E8 #92 locomotive .  I was lucky to get all the B&O smooth sided passenger cars I wanted but I had to make a lot of phone calls and pay a premium for some of them.  I've tried calling places like Stockyard Express, who supposedly have the unit, but they never call me back.  Maybe they are overwhelmed with people looking for the last hurrah MTH stock?

Anthony

Be persistent with Stockyard Express. Clyde and Diane are great people. I have had no trouble reaching them. They open at 11 a.m. and are closed Sunday-Monday. I have found that the best time to reach them is mid-afternoon.

Pat

I've not had a problem reaching Clyde at Stockyard Express either.

Not that it much matters anymore I suppose, but it seems to me more often than not that the dealers do not keep their inventory up to date on MTH's product locater.  They are updating as the dates are changing, but lately it seems the dealer no longer has an item that I found on the product locater.  I recently contacted a dealer looking for 9 pieces of rolling stock that they had listed, and they replied that they only had one of the items.

I slightly bumped my locomotive purchases in 2020 with a pair of UP diesels. Thinking about adding a BNSF unit as "run-through' power. But my biggie is pulling the trigger on the restoration Big Boy (I didn't say anything in the announcement thread since I pre-ordered elsewhere than Trainworld). That plus MTH freight rolling stock and full Santa Fe passenger set (for my 2903), GGD Viewliners (and an E60MA) have made for my largest single-year outlay ever. But for once I have the slush funds to accommodate that without affecting regular fiscal commitments. As to where to put it, I have till that stuff is shipped (much of it is behind schedule) to figure that out.

---PCJ

Last edited by RailRide

A. Wells - Don't know whether you've acquired everything you're hunting for but if you haven't and are still looking for MTH stuff - now or in the future - I'd suggest contacting Engine House Hobbies in Gaithersburg MD as it is an MTH Super Station and has a ton of stuff (more than is listed on their website).

Good Luck!

With the likelihood of MTH, which I've never before admired more than now (fear of loss?), soon going out of business, is now the time to get as much MTH as one can?

I confess that this is the way I feel, and I have recently acted on those feelings big time (at least for me).

How about you?

Arnold

A bit late eh?  People have been hoarding MTH since the announcement last year!

All I know is I am glad I picked up most of my non powered units and demonstrators from MTH.  I wish they did the demo schemes for the following diesel models:

FM C liner passenger units

S4 switcher

RSD4/5

SD80

"SD50" faux

Last edited by prrhorseshoecurve
@PH1975 posted:

A. Wells - Don't know whether you've acquired everything you're hunting for but if you haven't and are still looking for MTH stuff - now or in the future - I'd suggest contacting Engine House Hobbies in Gaithersburg MD as it is an MTH Super Station and has a ton of stuff (more than is listed on their website).

Good Luck!

Thanks! I'll give them a call tomorrow. There is really only a couple of items at this point that I'd like to have and only one item in particular that I'd really, really like to have.  A

FWIW, recently I tried 3 of our sponsors about various items via their website and attempted to purchase. All were out of stock even though their website says the item is in stock. Called one and they said an email was sent, but I checked and never received it. Another I just got an email. One called me, nice touch, and I thanked them. In all 3 cases the items were not recently released, so I figured they actually had the item.

I surmise, there's a disconnect between balance on hand and the site's inventory list. It would be interesting to see a solution developed where the BOH automatically updates the website at sale / scan time, or at least nightly. Seems like a lot of manual work otherwise.

Bryant, I just got my 1st Proto 3 Steamer with that new drawbar arrangement. No problem so far, but it does seem fragile and somewhat flimsy. However, I'm impressed by the detail. sounds, smoke and relative affordability of the Railking Imperial steamers.

Arnold,

Your having to return this engine is exactly what keeps me away from MTH S gauge engines.

Gunny

People complain quite a bit about the MTH wireless drawbar but I've had no issues with the 3 locomotives I own that have it (Premier AC6 Cab Forward, Premier DMIR Yellowstone, and Premier ATSF 3460 class Hudson). I run on 072 curves and haven't had an issue with the drawbar coming out.

That being said it isn't the best design, and I say that because it's not idiot proof like the wire tether. The wireless drawbar leaves a lot of room for user error to cause issues.

@A. Wells posted:

Does anyone want to comment about the latest MTHRRC notice regarding Mike Wolf's Political Fantasy releases?  I personally think it's very ill timed and I feel like it's a jab with a sharp pointed object.  I would like to say more, but I'll maintain my decorum.

Anthony

I’m betting that some folks will say he’s deplorable, but I say “His train house, his rules”.

Hi Arnold, I’ve been in the MTH last hurrah bandwagon since the announcement.  I’ve picked up 5 RK steamers, two from the MTH auction, to round out a collection I thought I’d have years to build.  Gave 3 of the five to my wife for safe keeping for future Christmas presents.  Also picked up some passenger cars (Pennsy pre-war Madison’s and a FoM streamlined coach) to round out my passenger train consists.  Those are also safely in my wife’s hands.  The MTH operating water tower is just too cool so I picked up one of those too.  

Like many, I will miss the value and diversity of product from MTH.  There is a huge void to fill for Lionel.  

None of MTH's S gauge engines have a drawbar as they never made any steam locomotives.  Plus, with the exception of the electronics, ALL of MTH's S gauge products were designed by S-Helper Service.

Rusty

Rusty,

I know they made no steamers I am speaking to service availability. The only place I saw engines available was MTH on Ebay so who is gonna repair it? No dealers in Maine and the one We had did no repairs.

Gunny

I’m a little confused. Everyone has been saying MTH was not likely to be sold because all of their tooling is overseas and not really transferable for use by a new buyer. As such, the tooling is not really a useful asset to purchase, making any sale far less attractive. However, in the current OGR issue (another good one) there is a great article on the  Lionel 2-6-0T US Army engine (a beautiful color scheme) and they note it was made with K-line tooling purchased and upgraded by Lionel when they bought K-line. So if Lionel can purchase, upgrade, and use the overseas k-line tooling, why wouldn’t there be any interest by some manufacturer in buying MTH to use all of that great MTH tooling? The rolling stock alone would generate sales for years to come.

I never met Mike Wolf, but admire his extraordinary entrepreneurial boldness, ability and success.

I would think that someone like him might get bored pretty quickly being completely retired. I hope he continues MTH in some way, shape and form, maybe smaller but meaner, so to speak, maybe make everything built to order, maybe like Sunset/Third Rail.

Maybe others who have met him, and gotten to know him, can chime in on this.

I never met Mike Wolf, but admire his extraordinary entrepreneurial boldness, ability and success.

I would think that someone like him might get bored pretty quickly being completely retired. I hope he continues MTH in some way, shape and form, maybe smaller but meaner, so to speak, maybe make everything built to order, maybe like Sunset/Third Rail.

Maybe others who have met him, and gotten to know him, can chime in on this.

I only met him once or twice at York.  Certainly not long enough to know him, but long enough to see that he is a model train enthusiast.

One ray of hope (or wishful thinking).  I noticed that there were a number of announcements that said things like “The last of (this or that model).” I have now been seeing a few MTH announcements that say things like “The last of (this or that model) for 2021.”

@Lehigh74 posted:

I only met him once or twice at York.  Certainly not long enough to know him, but long enough to see that he is a model train enthusiast.

One ray of hope (or wishful thinking).  I noticed that there were a number of announcements that said things like “The last of (this or that model).” I have now been seeing a few MTH announcements that say things like “The last of (this or that model) for 2021.”

Reminds me of Dr. Nafario in the "Minions" movie.  The rising chair took a very long time when he left and said goodbye.  The painting or artwork on an existing model is not very costly compared to development and tooling.  For the most part, the product is in the can.    I think we will be seeing re-labeled merchandise for quite some time to come.  At least until the shells run out.

Speaking to a couple LHS owners, there are a few develpments that are still fermenting.  It sounds like this all mnight come together at the same time.  I will stay tuned, as well as all of us.  BTW, a SF Warbonnet in a SD70ACE premier would be kind of nice.  I woon't get my hopes up.

I have several MTH products, including about 15 diesel and steam locomotives.  I am extremely pleased with all of them.  Other than the occasional glitch, which I have experienced with all remote systems, including Legacy, R/C aircraft, TV remotes, and more, as well as a 5 volt PS2 board failure that was my fault due to a short when an E8 ABA derailed, the locomotives have operated flawlessly (including the used ones purchased from eBay).

I ordered several more items from the last two catalogs without hesitation, including a big splurge on a 2 rail Big Boy.  Interestingly, many of these items have not been delivered and some are not even scheduled to be delivered until later this year.  Businesses have purchased the G and S scale product lines.  Additionally, MTH is reported to have had about $30M in revenue several years ago.  Even if it has diminished to half of that in recent years, that is a big number for a relatively obscure part of model railroading.  I remain optimistic that the train producing part of MTH will continue in some form, along with the DCS business.

Yeah, my heart sank the day I read Wolf was closing MTH. Been collecting Railking and Premier since 1998.

I was doing some eBay browsing of late and only own a couple of simple Lionel steam. I have noticed this LionChief brand that Lionel is pushing out. They have the dedicated controller but it appears to me the engine quality is not that good. Is the low end “Kmart” brand of Lionel? Anyone buy and run LionChief?

@A. Wells posted:

Does anyone want to comment about the latest MTHRRC notice regarding Mike Wolf's Political Fantasy releases?  I personally think it's very ill timed and I feel like it's a jab with a sharp pointed object.  I would like to say more, but I'll maintain my decorum.

Anthony

Huh.  Having seen this, I have finally decided I like Mike Wolf.  Thanks for pointing it out!

" Anyone buy and run LionChief?"

LionChief comes in two flavors now. One is LionChief, mostly in sets and locos have no speed control, modest fidelity sounds, but very inexpensive compared with Legacy or RailKing/Premier locos.  Will not operate in conventional mode.  Much more reliable command control (LionChief, Bluetooth) than RailKing/Premier in my experience but without the features, higher quality motors, scale detail of those products from MTH or Legacy from Lionel. Typical set is $200-300 and typical separate sale loco is around $200.  The second flavor now is LionChief + 2.0, which is the successor to LionChief +.  These  are the current separate sale higher quality locos that operate in LionChief, Bluetooth, conventional, TMCC/Legacy modes.  They are more robust, have better scale detail, better sounds and are less costly than the higher end Legacy locos.  Roughly equivalent in pricing and quality to the RailKing line but with some differences.  Less scale detail on some models, some are not so inexpensive, but likely more solid command control.  LionChief + 2.0 and LionChief + operation is very simple and reliable, but without some of the operating bells and whistles of PS3 or Legacy locos.

I will go out on a limb and suggest that MTH is not going away. They have disposed of/ sold off everything that is not "O" gauge. Now they are a leaner company and can focus on just the one thing. They are still churning out new items. I believe either they will continue in "O" only, with the current owners, or a new owner will emerge, again, producing "O" only. Time will tell.

Jeff

In reading this thread I have found it interesting that many people in this hobby only think of O gauge a Lionel or MTH.  There is a huge world of O gauge and O scale that doesn't involved either company.  While O gauge and O scale is a shrinking marketplace, there is room for some else to come into the market, or at the very least create more market space for existing manufacturers to offer more product, or a higher volume of product that can reduce per unit costs.

There has been talk about the MTH tooling, but there really hasn't been new tooling in sometime.  It would be nice to see some new ideas other than just more paint schemes on existing tooling moving forward.  Where some may see loss, I see opportunity.

@GG1 4877 posted:

In reading this thread I have found it interesting that many people in this hobby only think of O gauge a Lionel or MTH.  There is a huge world of O gauge and O scale that doesn't involved either company.  While O gauge and O scale is a shrinking marketplace, there is room for some else to come into the market, or at the very least create more market space for existing manufacturers to offer more product, or a higher volume of product that can reduce per unit costs.

There has been talk about the MTH tooling, but there really hasn't been new tooling in sometime.  It would be nice to see some new ideas other than just more paint schemes on existing tooling moving forward.  Where some may see loss, I see opportunity.

Regarding new tooling, last night I was thinking it would be nice to see a run of the "Illinois Central Green Diamond".  I even inquired on where one might find the blue prints for all the units. A

@Landsteiner posted:

" Anyone buy and run LionChief?"

LionChief comes in two flavors now. One is LionChief, mostly in sets and locos have no speed control, modest fidelity sounds, but very inexpensive compared with Legacy or RailKing/Premier locos.  Will not operate in conventional mode.  Much more reliable command control (LionChief, Bluetooth) than RailKing/Premier in my experience but without the features, higher quality motors, scale detail of those products from MTH or Legacy from Lionel. Typical set is $200-300 and typical separate sale loco is around $200.  The second flavor now is LionChief + 2.0, which is the successor to LionChief +.  These  are the current separate sale higher quality locos that operate in LionChief, Bluetooth, conventional, TMCC/Legacy modes.  They are more robust, have better scale detail, better sounds and are less costly than the higher end Legacy locos.  Roughly equivalent in pricing and quality to the RailKing line but with some differences.  Less scale detail on some models, some are not so inexpensive, but likely more solid command control.  LionChief + 2.0 and LionChief + operation is very simple and reliable, but without some of the operating bells and whistles of PS3 or Legacy locos.

I agree 100% with this response.

MTH and Mike Wolf got me in the hobby in the year 2000. For quite a while due to space and other reasons my trains were stored. My wife and I have been enjoying our new layout immensely in this last year now. I very much respect him as a  businessman and for his passion for the hobby. As for his political fantasy set... I won’t be buying that. However, if he releases a Russian Steamer pulling box cars lettered with Rikers island plus the lettering in his fantasy series, put me down for two!

I was going to post this question in a new thread but thought maybe here...

Q. Has anyone in the know or heard if MTH will release a last load of RealTrax?

I won't have a bench top for a while and between last year before the announcement, or at least me hearing of it (shutting down) I bought over 80 linear feet of RealTrax for living room floor ovals. I'd like to buy some 072  and 054 LH and RH switches and probably a couple of 072 wyes.

@Lou1985 posted:

People complain quite a bit about the MTH wireless drawbar but I've had no issues with the 3 locomotives I own that have it (Premier AC6 Cab Forward, Premier DMIR Yellowstone, and Premier ATSF 3460 class Hudson). I run on 072 curves and haven't had an issue with the drawbar coming out.

That being said it isn't the best design, and I say that because it's not idiot proof like the wire tether. The wireless drawbar leaves a lot of room for user error to cause issues.

Consider yourself lucky.

Pat

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