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So, I waited to post this after Lionel dropped their new catalog. I was hopeful that they would exercise some common sense and perhaps flesh out their semi scale offerings to fill the vacuum left by the absence of the Railking line. However, after perusing the new catalog, it doesn’t seem like Lionel has any interest in the semi scale (Railking size) trains.

This represents a MAJOR problem for folks like me. I just recently got back into the hobby. I am limited on space, so running full scale sized trains is just not really an option. The Railking line was absolutely perfectly sized for the “average Joe” who puts a layout in a spare bedroom or garage. But, it doesn’t look like MTH is interested in using their Railking steamer tooling either.

Does anyone on the forum have a good enough relationship with a large dealer to talk to them about doing special runs of Railking steamers? Or are there any dealers on the forum who could chime in about the logistics of getting that done? Would it be possible to create a poll to see how much interest there is in even doing it?

I think it’s a crying shame that such a large segment of the hobby is being left out in the cold. There has to be a way to fill that gaping hole in the current offerings from Lionel and MTH. What are everyone’s thoughts?

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I only glanced at the new Lionel catalogue on their website, but aren't the LC+2.0 steamers in the new Lionel catalogue roughly equivalent to MTH Railking steamers?

My recollection is that the new LC+2.0 steamers navigate 031 curves as do most, if not all, MTH Railking steamers.

I agree with you regarding Lionel Visionline and Legacy. It is rare for a Legacy steamer to navigate 031 curves, and I have never seen a Visionline steamer that does.

Arnold, great point, however, I was just notified that much of the LionChief type trains are shown on the internet, However, not in the recent release of the paper catalog. The paper catalog doesn’t show the traditional trains or accessories but they are on the online catalog. I do not have the paper catalog yet.
NCOgaugefan, look at the catalog on the Lionel website. I could be wrong.

Happy Railroading Everyone

The lionchief plus 2.0 line is a schizophrenic disaster. They do run on o-31 curves, however they are not nearly as detailed as the Railking imperial locomotives. They produced the recent baby k4 with a real coal load…..that’s awesome! Then they show a new semi scale pacific in this catalog with….wait for it…..a molded in diecast coal load!?!? I have no idea who is making these decisions at Lionel, but it’s sad. Not to mention the fact that I don’t see the lionchief plus 2.0 line becoming as extensive as the Railking imperial line was. And don’t get me started about the new S2 turbine set. Out of all the tooling that Lionel could have purchased from MTH, they bought the awful looking bantam tooling. The Railking Imperial S2 was a gorgeous model in semi scale, but Lionel didn’t go that route. In my opinion, semi scale o gauge trains are all but dead with the loss of the Railking line. I suppose I’m going to be dragged into the scale world if I want diversity of product offerings. And perhaps that was Lionel’s business plan all along. Who knows. But to say that the recent traditional catalog was a huge disappointment is an understatement.

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