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Over the past several months, there has been a rash of train manufacturing product issues ranging from performance problems, trucks with broken parts or those with parts that just fall off, and incorrect paint from inappropriate colors to blotches on painted surfaces. Have these problems occurred with all the products sent to us as consumers, certainly not, but there were enough of them to make most of us very uneasy. One of our principle train suppliers has recently issued their new catalog that is huge and chocked full of product offerings. With a catalog this large, no reason not to believe that this supplier is very optimistic about the sales that will be yielded from this catalog. That would also suggest that they see a Bull Market.

Not all train suppliers have experienced the number of reported quality issues that one has experienced. Because of this, some suppliers may actually be optimistic about 2019 and predict a bump in sales as a result of other suppliers’ missteps. It will be fascinating to see how all of this shakes out.

This raises some interesting questions. How will the market react to the new train offerings for 2019? Will 2019 be a Bull or Bear market? There are several aspects to this question. First, there appears to be a growing number of O-Gauge enthusiasts who are now taking a posture of “wait and see” before they plunk down their hard-earned dollars. They, until such a time when they can measure an improvement in quality, are not BTO candidates. If a good portion of the products that this group would typically order don’t make it to market before the end of the year, the “wait and see” group most certainly will have an impact on some 2019 sales. Then, how will the dealers react to the “wait and see” group? Will these dealers lighten the load so to speak or be Bullish with their orders despite the potential of less BTO orders? Next are those individuals who may have concerns about past quality issues but will throw caution to the wind and order because they really want an item. How much of the market do these individuals represent? Finally, there are the loyal buyers, despite reported quality issues, will buy no matter what. Are they 10-20-30% or more of the potential market?

So how do you stack up with your current ordering/buying decisions? Do you think this will be a Bull or Bear Market for 2019? I think that most of us would prefer it to be a Bull Market for all train suppliers. After all, that would be good for our hobby. But given the current conditions, I am not sure that is possible for the year 2019.

Personally, I see both a Bull and Bear Market for 2019 (if that is possible). For some, it will be a very good year (the Bulls). For others, maybe not so much (the Bears). Count me in with the
"wait and see” category. I am also one of those that has recently shifted their supplier preference because of quality and more desirable products.
 

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Personally I'm in this hobby for enjoyment. I don't get into analyzing whether or not it's a Bull or Bear. (I have enough problems with that in the stock market, but that's another story.:confused:)
Recently I've stopped pre-ordering because of delays in shipping, etc. I wait till they actually come in and sometimes it's so late I lose interest in the item which actually saves me $$$. :D
 

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Well if I’m any indication, it will be a bull market (with sales on the upswing). In the first 10% of the year, I am well ahead of my normal buying pace with 2 new locos in hand and another expected this month.

On the other hand, a bull market is when prices go up so I hope it’s a bear market.
 

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In the last 12 months I have sold off about 60% of my O Scale trains. In the next 5-7 months I hope to sell half of what I have left. I will only keep a few trains to run at the club.

I am having an HO layout professionally built, wired, buildings and bridges built and weathered. Basically plug & play on delivery.

So I looking forward to a BEER market.:rolleyes:
 

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I'm in it for the fun too, but I think its gonna be a BULL market because I have already bought the SF Gold Bonnets, Pre ordered the Rocky Mountaineer train, along with the SF Passenger set to go with the F3s from December, and also did a Pre order on the Lionel Hudson from Muffins Trains. Hope they don't fall apart.
 
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Discussion Starter #6
The economy is very strong so people will have money to spend.

If Lionel depended on the BTO market to survive it might be a bad year but I am pretty sure they will do really well with LionChief Plus 2.0, train sets, track, etc, enough to offset any loss of sales in the BTO market. I was reading a thread on OGR a week or two ago discussing quality problems at Lionel and the overwhelming majority, 80 to 90%, said that they had ordered BTO locomotives in the last couple of years and had no problems. If that is true then BTO sales should also be very good for Lionel.

I expect MTH sales to be strong, especially their Railking line.

Menards will continue to sell lots of trains and buildings.

Atlas and others should be able to maintain their share of the market.

So, I'm Bullish on trains this year and plan to add at least one new locomotive to the roster.

:smilie_daumenpos:
 

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I have very few "brand new" locomotives in my collection, so supporting the new equipment market really isn't my thing.

The past year has been a big year for me purchase wise. I think in the current year, I find myself a bit more selective and careful with what I buy, thanks to the generous help and advice given to me by members of this forum. I will still buy what I like, but with a bit more caution.

Tom
 

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Despite all the problems with quality and hyper-late deliveries, I still pre-order on occasion. I do believe Lionel has quality issues, but I have three locos and two rolling stock ordered.

I know both MTH and Lionel have massive delivery schedule delay issues: my FP45s, which I waited nearly a year for from MTH, reached America a month or so ago, and then promptly went back to China to be fixed before MTH would sell them. Lionel seems to be chronically late on about half its catalog items.

Despite that, and how annoying it is, I still pre-order. Five items from Lionel, and I'm not sure how many - a couple of dozen from MTH, I think, maybe more.

I do pre-order, and buy, fewer model trains that I would if there were no delays and no quality problems. I have to really want a loco or piece of rolling stock to pre-order it, but them I really want lots of and lots of things.

And that's it really. I'm addicted to model trains. So even when the surly model-train-dealer standing on the corner with the collar of his leather jacket pulled up but the zipper down to display all the bling he has hanging around his neck snarls at me when I try to give him my money, and instead gives me a hard time and the bad news, "No way, Bro . . . they aren't here yet, maybe next month!" I still go back time and time again, because I need another fix.:):D:):D:):D
 

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With colleges payments starting in about a year, its going to be a long bear market for me. Used coupled with a liberal dose of restraint will definatly be my strategy for the next decade.

Visiting colleges in the frigged northeast this week with my oldest daughter so getting a good dose of financial reality. Cant beleive what colleges cost these days, even for state schools.

:smilie_daumenneg:
 

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I suspect it will be a bull market for 3-rail but bearish for me. Like Mackerel, I have huge expenses looming for the kids.

Though, what really is hold me back are quality issues from both Lionel and MTH. I had a new MTH Premier E8 for about an hour. It was DOA and I shipped it to MTH for warranty work the same day. That was 5 weeks ago and crickets. And forget about Lionel. Perhaps ironically, never had a single issue with either a RailKing or LC+ engine.
 
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I buy what I like and I like what I buy. We have 45 locos now and that number will grow to 60 and stop there. The 15 that are left to buy is now all dependant upon manufacturing as to if and when they decide to build our choices. Therefore pre ordering is the way to go sometimes. the larger stores seem to always order more because a lot of customers want to physically see the items and there is nothing wrong with that. For us delivery times are not really important because we will not have a layout for two years. In the meantime I will start scratch building structures and acquiring other necessary accessories.

Regards,

Gary.
 

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As a small operator, I can only run 2 trains simultaneously, so have only 8 locomotives, of which 3 are command control and 5 are conventional. I now have both command control and conventional control on the layout, so for now, these are all I need.

I've recently acquired Lionel's Union Pacific TMCC F3 ABA set MIB and have the Santa Fe counterpart (set #14588) on the way, also MIB. These are the only new locomotives I've ordered in the past year and do not plan on ordering any others in the near future.

So for me, this year will be a bear market. I have no interest in the new stuff given the delays in production and quality control problems. I'm just as happy with "new old stock" from 14 to 15 years ago, which run very well with no issues. :)
 
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"We have 45 locos now and that number will grow to 60 and stop there."

Gary, at one point we have all said something like this. But, alas, a new locomotive comes out after we have reached our pre-set saturation point and the limit is blown away to shreds in a matter of moments. Believe me, I know. :)

But not to worry, you have lots of company.
 
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It all depends upon what actually reaches the market. There hasn't been a lot to get excited about over the last few years, but this could be the year that changes things. If a majority of the products we see cataloged actually make it to the Hobby shops in good working order then this will be a Bull market. If for no other reason than the Pent Up demand for good quality products.

Emile
 

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"We have 45 locos now and that number will grow to 60 and stop there."

Gary, at one point we have all said something like this. But, alas, a new locomotive comes out after we have reached our pre-set saturation point and the limit is blown away to shreds in a matter of moments. Believe me, I know. :)

But not to worry, you have lots of company.
PTC has a very valid point that will affect you eventually Gary. When I had 45 locos and a list of 15 more locos I wanted, there were many, many - dozens of locos - I did not even know about, real locos, quite interesting ones, I had never heard of like the U50C. Ultimately, I wanted a model of a U50C, and a SD24, and a set of Fairbanks-Morse C-liners, and a ATSF flex-boiler Mallet . . . and 96 others.

I'm at 145, and have no doubt that next week, if not later this afternoon, I run into a loco I didn't know about, and just have to have.:):):)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
There hasn't been a lot to get excited about over the last few years, but this could be the year that changes things.

Emile
Or not, but I hope so . . .
 

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Unless I see something new I just can't live without I'll stick to the secondary market.
 
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