hello everyone, traimfam here 

 

As you can see on another one of my posts on the form called “train signal”, I have a interest in Dorfan piece pieces. I specially like the pieces made of zinc, Unfortunately it’s a pain to collect these items as they suffer from the terrorizing zinc pest. This add on top the fact of how incredibly rare that certain items are makes me ask the question, does any body make reproduction parts or reproduction pieces in their entirety? I know that there are some reproductions, like the Dorfan crocodile, but has anyone made reproduction accessories? I ask this question because Dorfan accessories are what Products that I mainly collect by Dorfan. Any information is appreciated.

 

                                         Trainfam

Original Post
Nation Wide Lines posted:

I see 2 problems with this whole issue:

1) in order to reproduce any item, a minimum order is going to be required;

2) it is unlikely there is enough demand out there to generate enough interest to attain a minimum order.

You are probably right about that but it won't hurt to ask.  After all, you don't hit the ball unless you swing the bat.

Well, a Dorfan 417 block signal sold for $650 dollars with 14 bids in 2015, and $900 dollars back in 2012. So there’s still people out there willing to buy these Dorfan accessories, at least the 417. At least that’s my “train of thought” 😉

TrainFam posted:

Well, a Dorfan 417 block signal sold for $650 dollars with 14 bids in 2015, and $900 dollars back in 2012. So there’s still people out there willing to buy these Dorfan accessories, at least the 417. At least that’s my “train of thought” 😉

Yes for good originals, the prices can be astronomical in some cases.  However, when reproducing an item you are not going to sell reproductions for those prices and are unlikely to be able to sell all of the items in the minimum order and the person contracting to have these items made would be responsible to purchase all unsold items made under the minimum order.  

An example of this is the American Flyer Old Glory, at one time good originals sold in the $2,000 to $4,000 range; however, when MTH reproduced these items, the reproductions were priced for around $100.  

My understanding is that the individual who had the Dorfan crane reproduced by T-Reproductions was unable to sell all of the items initially and was stuck with unsold items, which I believe he is still slowly selling.  Considering that these cranes were reproduced c. 15 years ago, that is something to consider.   

I also know that the person who reproduced the American Flyer Union Station (the large wooden station) initially had parts for 25 stations made and then had parts for an additional 75 stations made.  Apparently, he sold less than 50 of these stations, and these items were reproduced around 1990, when the tinplate market was significantly better than it is today.  

I have also heard stories of when Rick Ralston had the cast iron trains book printed, he was selling those books for around $200 initially, and after there were no longer sales at that price he had to eventually lower the price of the books in order to sell them and was selling those books for years.

Are you willing to guarantee the reproduction cost of a minimum order and purchase any unsold items that were produced under the minimum order requirements and take the risk of selling them?  

NWL

I can’t guarantee anything, especially in this crazy economy in which we live in, but what I can guarantee is the fact of how many people are after these original accessories. The economy can fluctuate so no one, including you or me, can say weather or not if these reproduction signals would tank, or float. Remember that even though those items that you listed in your post failed, but there are still reproduction items sell great, for example the mth 437 switch stations. Just remember, nothing can be guaranteed. 

 

                                                 Trainfam 

There is one other requirement in order to reproduce one of these cast signals.  You will have to either purchase one of the perfect ones at whatever price you can get it for or convince someone with a perfect one, to allow it to be measured/detailed in order for a mold to be made to cast the new ones. 

As these are fragile items, I would suggest that you plan on purchasing one for this process, as individuals with perfect ones are unlikely to lend you their item for this process.

NWL

 

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