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My elderly father wants me to make a list of the trains (and accessories) he has collected over the past 50 years. He has thought of selling them, but just can't seem to part with them yet - yeah, he still plays with some of them! He asked me to search on-line and see if I can make a detailed list of exactly what he has (in case he does decide to sell later on).

He has said names like Lionel, Cox, Hornby, Chessie, Bachmann, Athearn, and who knows what else!. I believe they are all HO and N scale. Excuse my ignorance at this point in my research as I am just figuring out whether the name on a train means the actual railroad (i.e. CN) or whether it is the name of the manufacturer (Lionel).
Although, I think I now know what a box car looks-so I"m getting better! By the time I'm done with this I might just set up my own model railroad. The research is proving quite interesting. I never really looked at his trains, but some of them are wonderful to look at (others, not so much)!

I can find tons of info on new products, but not "old" models.

I have been trying to find book(s) that would describe what era they are from. I have only found two (one was Greenberg)-can't remember the other one. Both books don't appear to be available anymore (at least where I live).

I have been researching for a couple of weeks and just found this website. Does anyone have any suggestions on where I can find information on how to track down the years that his trains were made, or other useful information?

Thanks for any help.
 

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He has said names like Lionel, Cox, Hornby, Chessie, Bachmann, Athearn, and who knows what else!. I believe they are all HO and N scale. Excuse my ignorance at this point in my research as I am just figuring out whether the name on a train means the actual railroad (i.e. CN) or whether it is the name of the manufacturer (Lionel).
I can guarantee you that the Lionel items are either O scale or Standard scale... As far as Chessie goes, that is the name of an old railroad (i.e. CN)... Those other names you listed all sound like HO manufacturers :)

I have been researching for a couple of weeks and just found this website. Does anyone have any suggestions on where I can find information on how to track down the years that his trains were made, or other useful information?
Create some threads on here and I am sure that you will find a lot of answers... HO and O scale are our two most popular scales, with N scale coming in third... Pictures will help a lot if you can... Show us a picture of a Lionel item and both me and T-Man will be able to identify it in a snap, LOL :cool:
 

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Here is the Lionel one - I guess it is the only Lionel he has (sorry about that). He has 3 of the attached (all in original boxes), but all the same item.

I have done so much research I am getting side-tracked and looking for the wrong manufacturers.

It seems a lot are Bachmann or Tri-Ang (and a few Cox items, which is hard to find on-line). So far I have listed about 200 items for him, but nothing in detail (i.e. CN box car, etc.).
 

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Here is what I would do....

Get all of the trains in a box and find a few hobby/train modeling shops. Stay away from the big box places. Let them have a look. Market values vary greatly from region to region. It would be better to sell it as a whole, but one could probably get more selling individual pieces. Definitely less o fa headache. Arrange a time when some knowledgeable person will be there to help you without being disturbed.

I would not take the word of one individual store. Some are known to be a bit unfair, especially if they want the piece. Contact multiple dealers. A train show or club in your area would be another source. Another idea would be to visit a dealer of older things, like and antique dealer. A trip to the library for reference material would also be recommended. Hopefully they will allow you to check out reference books to take home. Some do not.

Definitely make a list of what you have BEFORE taking the items anywhere, at least a piece count. Things, especially rare, valuable things tend to come up missing when you are not around.

I may, personally, be interested in some f what you have. I, like many, am looking for rare, unique pieces. But, like them I am looking for a deal. One of the reasons why I suggested selling the collection as a whole, if you should decide to take that route.

If you have any questions or comments to me, personally, either PM me or send an email, I will do what I can to help.
 

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I can guarantee you that the Lionel items are either O scale or Standard scale...
Here is the Lionel one - I guess it is the only Lionel he has (sorry about that). He has 3 of the attached (all in original boxes), but all the same item.
Well you learn something new every day... I never knew Lionel dabbled in HO scale


I did do a Google search and that same flatcar with a boat sold for $83 :dunno:
 

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Here is the Lionel one - I guess it is the only Lionel he has (sorry about that). He has 3 of the attached (all in original boxes), but all the same item.

I have done so much research I am getting side-tracked and looking for the wrong manufacturers.

It seems a lot are Bachmann or Tri-Ang (and a few Cox items, which is hard to find on-line). So far I have listed about 200 items for him, but nothing in detail (i.e. CN box car, etc.).

I like the boat. Ho is my thing and boating is how I spend my free time in the summer.

If you have the time start a photo Gallery on this forum and just ask for asstance with ID ing the trains.

And welcome. If I were you I would just keep them and jump right in to this hobby..

John
 

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Yard Master & Research
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Welcome Ellen Shar

The big plastic era around the 70's saw a lot of HO manufacturing. The neat thing about Lionel is that they copied some of their O scale stock. The boat car is a good example. Original boxes are desireable too.
 

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The neat thing about Lionel is that they copied some of their O scale stock. The boat car is a good example. Original boxes are desireable too.
Yea, when I looked at the first picture I thought it was the O scale 6801 (do not worry, I had to just look that up; I did not pull it out of my head :laugh:), but then I glanced up at the printing at the top of the package :eek:
 

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Treasure of Time!

Hi Ellenshar,
You have something that most collectors would die for. All the advice from these learned gentlemen is good and very accurate. Move slowly, think what you have,take a complete inventory of what you have and create a spread sheet on your computer, catalogue it, descriptions,make, model, serial numbers, original price, put all the info on a floppy/CD, make copies.....Check with your personal Hobby shop buddy then start talking with dealers, antique accessors. Just that Lionel flat car w/ boat alone looks to be in pristine condition. And do the right thing...honor your dad! Sorry if I sound preachy but a friend of mine sold off his Dads Lionel collection the was worth a little more than $10,000.00...no lie. In an estate sale, he needed cash which was too bad. So good luck my friend!:thumbsup:
 
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