My understanding is MTH currently makes no tinplate products whatsoever,   No Tinplate Traditions  and no Lionel LLC.

I wonder if down the road if the market changes MTH will start making Tinplate Traditions,  since it was their own product.

Maybe in future catalogues they will offer cars available when you join their rr club to see if there is still interest.  I know I would be happy.  I bought a few in years past.

Original Post

I talked to Mike Wolf about it: he said nothing in the near term, possibly so one offs in the future is demand is there. Another person told me that one of the MTH guys in the booth said nothing most likely for the next 5 years. Let's hope MTH is around to produce them. In the mean time, they made over 1000 different tinplate products over the past almost 40 years, you'll see a bunch of that showing up for resale in the next 5 years. And most will be new or like new.

Some parts still available but the Chinese won't make them unless surplus to a build of finished engines or cars.


I know how you feel!  I got bit by the tinplate bug really hard just as mth was getting out of it for a while, plus the lct agreement was ending.  Everything old eventually gets new again, so I am sure reproductions will start again sooner or later, though as folks have said it don't count on sooner.  And that was before covid-19 trashed the world economy.

I was really hoping for some tinplate style trains with modern controls but in updated styles, such as a 2-6-4 in O gauge, maybe some full body tank cars but with shiny brass handrails or -gasp- tinplate wheels in tin truck assemblies with actual bearings or needle point style bearings. (Oh the horror of not having to oil all the cars every few weeks or so - just blasphemy I tell you!)  How about a factory made Flyer brass piper shrunk down to O gauge?  

How about a tinplate or diecast steam switcher with working tinplate couplers on both ends? (preferably with a slope back tender or a saddle tank style unit!)  I would even be okay with a tinplate style GP-9.  Heck with how easy it is to double head loco's with proto-sound electronics, why not offer factory made front couplers assemblies for the traditional 263e or 259e style loco's.  So much potential, but honestly such a small market.  

I love what you are doing.  Can't wait to see your new switch towers in service, actually being used to control things.

Last edited by jhz563

I was sorry to see that there was no new catalog last year.  I had heard thru the grapevine that MTH was just letting dealer's inventories lessen so that there was not as much product just sitting on dealer's shelves, but you know how reliable the grapevine is.

I love tinplate, especially standard gauge.  That being said, due to several personal reasons I decided to get out and I have only 2 items left to sell.  I noticed that my non-trains friends' eyes lit up when they'd see a gleaming tinplate consist running.  There's really something to say about it!

It should be interesting to see how the market is for Tinplate Traditions stuff in the next few years.  Will it rise since no new product is being made?  Or will it sink due to less interest?  I certainly would love to see this part of the hobby grow.

I notice that a bunch of it went (with one or two exceptions) pretty cheap on the Stout Auction last Saturday, so get on their mailing list for future auctions. Sets show up on ebay as well as individual items, lately I think there are a lot of 'round and rounders', list price stuff (and sometimes higher) that just keeps getting relisted over and over again. You can almost always do better than that if you are patient. And USA Track will continue to make superb quality track in long straights and wide radii that are not available elsewhere. And if you can afford them, the Ross standard gauge switches are fabulous. You can still find the MTH switches in 42 and 72 diameter now and again, they are OK. And plenty of Lionel original 222 and 223 powered switches for real cheap that tend to clean up pretty nice.


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