Value of Prewar Standard Gauge Blue Comet

Question, what do you guys suggest would be a real world fair price on an all original prewar standard gauge single owner set, c7 condition with original boxes for all the cars? Any help would be apreciated.

Original Post

unfortunetely the boxes for the engine and tender are missing but the train looks great, this was owned by a single person and stayed in the family since originally bought. Makes me feel alot better knowing there are no chances for reproduction parts to be on there. Some guys are saying alot lower then that on facebook. Arghhhhh!!!

 

I don't think that facebook is a reference in the toy train market. Look at the results of past auctions, Stout Auctions is a good reference for quality pieces but there is others, after look on the auction site but there is mainly junk....

The price Scott. Smith geaves you is right but without any pictures it is impossible to geave a real price and there is several variations in Blue Comet...

Very best,  Daniel

 

unfortunetely the boxes for the engine and tender are missing but the train looks great, this was owned by a single person and stayed in the family since originally bought. Makes me feel alot better knowing there are no chances for reproduction parts to be on there. Some guys are saying alot lower then that on facebook. Arghhhhh!!!

Don't be so sure. People's memory can be faulty. Maybe they brought it to someone and had it gone over. Yes, it is great to get a train out of the wild, especially from the original owner. But you still need to look it over carefully.

C.W. Burfle

Depends on what it is.  1930 390 BC brings different money than brass 400 BC, and those bring different money than nickel trimmed 400BC.

With the BC, condition is King. C8 is more than double C7 usually. C7 is likely about double C6.  Boxes add 10-20% depending on their condition.

The price on these has been falling slowly over the years.

Prewar Tin...Any maker, any gauge, anytime!

In the right group facebook is not a bad barometer of process. Stout auctions can realize great prices BUT condition and having the right bidders (2) is everything. I have seen a piece bring @$20,000 and the exact same item sold a few years later for $4500. So the bidders are the key, then rarity and for the box collectors then boxes. I am sorry to say that many collectors who were goung to sell there stuff and retire may have to lower their sight on final value as the young folks don't collect like we do and do not have the connection. SO buy what you enjoy and pay what you can live with it

For at least the last 2 York meets, a dealer has had a Blue Comet headed by a 400E (I think with nickel trim) for sale in the Orange Hall, and the price was around $16k. To my knowledge, it hasn't sold. This dealer also has one on ebay, headed by a 390E, for $5900. It's been there a while, and hasn't sold either. Pretty big spread there, and both prices are too high, or they would've sold by now. 

John

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  TCA 90-30847

  NJ HiRailers Associate Member

I ended up buying the set, It is really nice but a few things I noticed in person that I didnt notice in the pictures. Here they are There are a few missing grab irons on the passenger cars, this is no big deal really however if im gonna be paying a premium everything is taken into account. The boxes for the coaches were way rougher then expected, split at the seams, deep staining etc. Also The two biggest deals to me is that the leading and trailing wheels have the beginning of metal fatigue and I really wanted the original wheels. I dont know if it would be a good idea to run like this as they would probably eventually fall apart. And lastly there is an ever so slight bend to one rear corner of the cab roof. Now I think the cab roof should be able to be fixed because it really is very slight. On some good note the paint is beautiful, also the front boiler has zero gap and closes perfectly. This was owned by a single person who was not a train collector, they were the owner since new. I believe after clean-up this will be in the c6+ range and I snagged it for 3200.00. I feel like I did well, I was willing to pay more if some of the things that I mentioned didnt exist but overall im happy. I will try and get some pictures posted.

I dont know if it would be a good idea to run like this as they would probably eventually fall apart.


How much do you want to run it? Will it get many hours?
I don't think worrying about the wheels decaying would stop me. But I wouldn't run any one collectable loco very much. I have operator pieces to run.

If you want to preserve the pilot and trailing wheels, how about picking up complete reproduction front and rear trucks? Use the repros for running, and put the original trucks aside.

How are the main drive wheels?

C.W. Burfle

That’s a good idea and I think I even have some repro trucks in my parts supply.  The main drive wheels are very good but it looks like in another 20 years they will begin to degrade as well. There is the beginning of a hairline fracture in one of the wheels. Now to clean this set, it’s scary because I don’t want to harm the paint in any way but I would like to get it as good as possible.

stevin posted:

I ended up buying the set, It is really nice but a few things I noticed in person that I didnt notice in the pictures. Here they are There are a few missing grab irons on the passenger cars, this is no big deal really however if im gonna be paying a premium everything is taken into account. The boxes for the coaches were way rougher then expected, split at the seams, deep staining etc. Also The two biggest deals to me is that the leading and trailing wheels have the beginning of metal fatigue and I really wanted the original wheels. I dont know if it would be a good idea to run like this as they would probably eventually fall apart. And lastly there is an ever so slight bend to one rear corner of the cab roof. Now I think the cab roof should be able to be fixed because it really is very slight. On some good note the paint is beautiful, also the front boiler has zero gap and closes perfectly. This was owned by a single person who was not a train collector, they were the owner since new. I believe after clean-up this will be in the c6+ range and I snagged it for 3200.00. I feel like I did well, I was willing to pay more if some of the things that I mentioned didnt exist but overall im happy. I will try and get some pictures posted.

That seems like a decent price for the condition and with some boxes. Enjoy! I have seen several go for around this price, and yours may be in better condition. 

Wow! That's a lot of dust! Bet she will look nice once you get her clean and put a little polish on her.

George

Great find, and if everything else in the set looks like the loco, I think you got a very good deal. Take your time cleaning her and please post photos of your progress. Also, when you are done cleaning and servicing it, don't be afraid to run it. That's what these trains are for. If your benchwork is stable and your trackwork is good, the risk of devaluing it would be minimal in my opinion. 

John

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  TCA 90-30847

  NJ HiRailers Associate Member

I did notice one of the feared drive wheels is a bit expanded more then the others. I had to loosen the screw securing the drive rods so they would rotate freely. It seams solid enough to run, but I would love to locate a replacement original. I have all the tools to change them out. The tender came out gorgeous, I spent last night taking it apart and carefully cleaning it. I haven’t got to the wheels and couplers yet but that’s next. Here’s a picture:

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