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They have tens-of-thousands of parts--literally--to identify, sort, photograph, catalog, list, etc. Do people not realize the complexity of dealing with that sort of thing? Yes, they had hoped to have everything up and running by now, but the more they found, the more there was to be found. The philosophy of the individual handling the process is "do it once and do it right." If it takes more time, well . . . so be it. The result WILL be worth the wait.

I'm hoping when they do open, that they won't be running out of things like circuit boards the first week because of pent up demand and there is a 6 month wait period to restock. I have needed a steam PS3 board for many months!

MTH, like the rest of the world is waiting on the microchips. The chip manufacturer won't even tell them when they can expect chips until October. We have a long wait. I have a Proto3 board I blew on a 400E last year. It maybe 2022 before I see one.

Scott Smith

A bit of practical wisdom ...

Many anxious parts-hungry hobbyists would recall these maxims from grade school:
* haste makes waste
* patience is a virtue
* do it right or do it over
* a watched pot never boils
* Rome wasn't built in a day.

And so it goes ...

Diplomatic tip ... when the MTH part(s) you ordered ultimately flow to you from the newly re-organized department, send a THANK YOU note via e-mail or snail mail. It's better to BLESS than B****.

Mike Mottler    LCCA 12394

Last edited by Mike H Mottler

Well, it would appear the proverbial "cat" is out of the bag?

So, as a bit of a teaser, here is a document we put together to help everyone understand the MTH part numbering system. As always, there are exceptions to these rules, but for the most part it holds true.

So, as everyone waits in anticipation for the launch of the site understand that we are entering our testing phase at the end of this week.  We need to ensure the auto-generated emails are working, the shipping label integration and subsequent emails with tracking numbers are working, etc. This site has been in the works for almost a year now, another couple days to a week to ensure the site is fully operational without any hiccups is not a lot to ask. (and if it is, our apologies!)

Hope you find this document of interest.

Thank you,
Mike Reagan
MTH Parts & Sales LLC


Files (1)
MTH Part Numbers deciphered!

I have to say, one of the biggest tag lines of this entire endeavor is this message;

My name is spelled M-I-K-E, not M-I-D-G-E!

Midge did a great job and is enjoying retirement now.

We have designed this site to be very intuitive. You should not have to call to find the parts you want! The ENTIRE parts database is open to every user. It includes a very powerful search engine that allows you to search every part we have in the database. Our primary form of communication will be email, as there just aren't enough of us to be on the phone, pull orders, ship them and continue adding to the inventory. We are really excited to get the site up and running, but make no mistake, all of my "Midge" efforts are being put into the site to help EVERYONE, not just one person!

We have some videos to create to show you how to use the site to your advantage, very streamlined, very easy to use. It's been over a year in the making!

Please be patient for a little while longer!

Thank you,
Mike Reagan
MTH Parts & Sales LLC

Last edited by Mikado

It was great chatting with you early this morning, Mike. Always great to hear from you. Obviously the "parts numbering system" document works just fine. I printed a version for use here at home and all six pages looked good. Keep in touch, my friend! Hope to see you next month.

. . .and, yes folks, Mike is still with TW TrainWorx as well. These days a guy needs all the careers he can get.

Last edited by Allan Miller

Thanks for posting the parts information Mike Reagan!  I'm most grateful for your vast expertise and I have utmost confidence in your abilities in that this job is being done right.      You are the perfect person to be heading/handling this HUGE task.  Thank you for sharing as to where the MTH parts website process stands at the moment.  I'm sure many of us are breathing a sigh of relief.  

"Mike once said at York..... Im here to sell trains not parts."  Yes, but, if you can't support what you sell and consider the whole product a throw away item when broken, not a real good business model.  A parts inventory is also a monster to create and to keep track of, even with a computer, so hats off to MTH and anybody that can do that.  If you do it right, you know the failure trend and what to keep on hand in quantity, and it may take a while for a trend to develop and you have to play catchup.

Another thing for all to remember too, just how big is the train market?  How many O Gauge folks in this country who buy and maintain MTH or any other brand?  Trains of all scales are a niche industry,  this is a H-O-B-B-Y, some of it priced out of the real world market and hidden from the public arena unlike the days of Lionel, American Flyer, the Sears 'Big Book', and store displays, when a 100 bucks or less outlay was all it took to get started.  I know, somebody will say that 100 bucks in 1950 is like 500 today, in my world it is not, but when was the last time you saw an ad for trains anywhere but in a train related publication?  Plus a train of any kind except full scale does not look like a smart phone which seems to have removed all incentive to do anything hobby related requiring study or use of hands from the mindset of youth, and appears to have also affected adults since so many things used to only be found in kit form, come already assembled now.  The market keeps getting smaller.

There is only one thing that is cheaper now when you factor in inflation, that is a TV.  In 1970 a 25" RCA color set cost you $1K bucks, that is a bunch in 2021 dollars.  But a 40" TV can be had now for 200, factor that backwards to 1970, and it would cost you something like 35 bucks.

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