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Model Railroading > Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?


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Date: 01/09/21 07:33
Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: CaliforniaSteamin

A friend of mine made an interesting statement the other day.  He said eventually this hobby will only have two companies to look towards for excitement:  ScaleTrains and Rapido. 

Rapido is hiring all the staff from rivals that were useful.  They took Bobby Allard from Atlas and Matt Gentry and others from Athearn. 

Athearn has terrible work environment which spawned Scaletrains and caused Chris Palomarez and Matt Gentry to quit. 

Other companies seem stuck in a loop of re-runs because it costs so much to build all new locomotives.   So will it eventually come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?  What are your thoughts?

CSN



Date: 01/09/21 07:51
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: railstiesballast

Opinion:
Kato, Kadee (with Microtrains), Atlas, Bowser, Moloco, Intermountain, and Bachman all have good products and I know I am forgetting several others..
To me Walthers is a slightly different case, seldom as high quality but with a very broad range of offerings and a big marketing effort.
Athearn has had a good run, it sounds like an executive failrue if key staff are leaving.  I hope someone at the top realizes this.
The worst thing for Rapido and ScaleTrains to do is get into the habit of listening only to the praises of their high end products and ignore the entry and middle levels of the market. 
Rolling stock is only a part of the hobby.
I think that the hobby market is ripe for advances in software to make programming, consisting, and operation more consistent and user friendly.  I am simply unwilling or unable to keep track of so many function buttons, programming options, rules of consisting, separate "throttles" for the sound of an engine vx the power or speed of that same engine, etc.  I had hopes for the Proto Throttle but while it had basic controls that are intuitive (I have run full size locomotives) setting up each engine to work with it and calling up engines and consists appear to be clumsy.  



Date: 01/09/21 08:10
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: BAB

I agree with you about the way things are and seem to be about that throttle deal, well after running Digatrax and having NCE at my home layout am glad that I picked it. Also run Soundtraxx in my engines its easy to just stick on a program section, do what I want with the basic needed items to change and run.  Still working on my layout slowly but all of the NCE 40 plus controled switches work fine and reversing blocks too. 



Date: 01/09/21 09:07
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: WAF

What happen to Exact Rail? Big plans for many cars



Date: 01/09/21 09:14
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: CaliforniaSteamin

WAF Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> What happen to Exact Rail? Big plans for many cars

The same thing that happened to Athearn and others, greed and poor management to not tool something new so keep re-running everything you already have to oblivion.

 



Date: 01/09/21 09:24
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: trackplanner

I have purchased a grand total of two Scale Trains products, while I have dozens from many, many other manufacturers. ST doesn't offer much for the late 60's, 70's modelers so far. Rapido, while expanding their product line, hasn't hit my sweet spot yet either. Wasn't too thrilled with their BN FA2, it needs some additional detail work. I do have a couple of their other products and I'm sure I will purchase more stuff from boith companies in the future. 

With this hobby being so diverse, there is just too much variety for only a couple of companies to do it all. We are truly blessed with the variety and quality of what is coming down the tracks these days. I do my best to support all of the manufacturers as best as I can to help ensure their growth. I am very impressed with many of the homegrown companies we've seen enter the market in the past few decades; Tangent, Moloco, Exactrail, Trainworx, Wheels of Time to name a few. I wish them all great success and the all of the big boys too, we need them all and even more new companies too. 

Don DeLay



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/21 09:26 by trackplanner.



Date: 01/09/21 09:26
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: mully

Tangent has excellent products and customer service.

Gary

Posted from iPhone



Date: 01/09/21 09:27
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: dmaffei

railstiesballast Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Opinion:

> I think that the hobby market is ripe for advances
> in software to make programming, consisting, and
> operation more consistent and user friendly.  I
> am simply unwilling or unable to keep track of so
> many function buttons, programming options, rules
> of consisting, separate "throttles" for the sound
> of an engine vx the power or speed of that same
> engine, etc.  I had hopes for the Proto Throttle
> but while it had basic controls that are intuitive
> (I have run full size locomotives) setting up each
> engine to work with it and calling up engines and
> consists appear to be clumsy.  

VERY well said, I see more frustration in this hobby in this area more than anyplace else. 
Anyone listening?
Also,
Hopefully manufacturers will realize to slow down on modern high end models and revisit the old school locomotives needing to be done 
my opinion ...
SD9 maybe?
Great thread!




Date: 01/09/21 09:34
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: atsf5704

Repeating this from last week’s version of this post.

SD90MAC-H 
SD80MAC 
SD70ACU 
GP18 
Dash 9-44CW 
UP Ca-8 and Ca-9 Cabooses 
B&O C-26 and C-26a Cabooses 
CB&Q W-V Caboose 
SAL Caboose 
Santa Fe Ce-6 and Ce-8/11 Cabooses 

Yep, not one damned new thing in the last two years.  Also left off the three window SD60M.



Date: 01/09/21 10:25
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: CaliforniaSteamin

atsf5704 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Repeating this from last week’s version of this
> post.
>
> SD90MAC-H 
> SD80MAC 
> SD70ACU 
> GP18 
> Dash 9-44CW 
> UP Ca-8 and Ca-9 Cabooses 
> B&O C-26 and C-26a Cabooses 
> CB&Q W-V Caboose 
> SAL Caboose 
> Santa Fe Ce-6 and Ce-8/11 Cabooses 
>
> Yep, not one damned new thing in the last two
> years.  Also left off the three window SD60M.

Athearn has spent money but that was under old leadership, the same people they chased away to different companies.  For heavens sake, Christopher Palmarez would rather go to the sinking Caboose hobbies ship than stay at Athearn.  SD90MAC, SD80MAC and SD70ACU are all essentially the same frame, small shell variations and the same guts.  I am glad you are so excited about Cabooses, I am not.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 01/09/21 10:26 by CaliforniaSteamin.



Date: 01/09/21 10:33
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: WAF

Can't even get the UP cabooses right



Date: 01/09/21 10:44
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: ST214

Just my thoughts....

I have not purchased any Bachmann stuff in many years, as I had major issues with the last few things I did purchase, and they refused to stand behind their warranty. As far as other companies, in no particular order.....

Atlas- I think Atlas will disappear. It might take another 10-15 years, but between how many people I know that refuse to purchase their products because of all the delays ofver the last few years, plus their new excessive prices and staff turnover, I do not see a good future for them. 

Kato- Quality products, but WAY too focused on N scale. I am surprised they have not given up on HO scale altogether. 

Exactrail- Not sure what is going on there, but you can't live forever on reruns..

Walthers- They seem to like to make stuff everyone else is making too, take their most recent boondoggle, rerunning Horizon cars while Rapido is making them. Yes, some people will buy them because they do not want to pay $80something a car, but you also have to remember, the Rapido cars are super detailed and already lit. Walthers will survive, between all the pre Amtrak passenger cars and distributing other brands will keep them afloat. 

Athearn- Some new products, some NEEDED things like SD80MACs, and a lot of reruns. Yes, the revolving door of staff continues, but as long as they do not raise prices the way Atlas has on rolling stock, they should be OK. They have a huge company behind them(Horizon Hobby) and if they end up in trouble, Horizon will ditch them and someone will pick them up.

MTH- I can't speak for their large scale stuff, but as far as HO, good riddance! Everyone I know that had MTH products had NOTHING but issues with them. Not only that, but there are the shipping crate sized ditchlight housings.......

Broadway Limited- I do not have enough experience with them, they have not made anything I really need. 

ScaleTrains- They are still a new company. I see a lot of complaints about them only making modern stuff, but they have done the UP turbines, SD40-2's and the C39-8's. Give them time and see what they produce in the future. They produce great models, seem to be doing it right, and I am excited to see what they will produce in the future. 

And last, but not least....
Rapido- Even given some recent QC issues, I see a VERY bright future here. Yes, they did try a lower cost line and abandon it, but still here you have a company that is not afraid to produce stuff that most others say no to. For instance, all the variations of F40PH that are about to come out, the comet cars where the CDOT and MN cars will actually be correct and not have a firemans side window! Yes, they do mostly Canadian prototypes, but they have not been afraid to jump into the almost completely neglected commuter market. They are a growing company that listens to customers. 



Date: 01/09/21 10:48
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: mcdeo

I think many players will stay, new ones will come, others will leave, simple cycle of any business. As mentioned, what about non-rolling stock? Lots of players still in that realm and new ones coming along. I think 3d printing, while not yet mainstream, will also help curve the future and allow small start ups to enter the space.

Technology as mentioned can still improve. I was turned onto the LOK programming software recently, while easier than JRMI (which is easier than CV's...yikes), as mentioned, there are many options for an engine: doors opening/closing, radio chatter, air compressors of all kinds allowed to be edited, not to mention all of the different horns and bells, sound file updates, consisting options, speed matching of different engines, configuration matching of different decoders, speaker choices for engines and which enclosure to use...the list just keeps growing and growing. Which is good, but not as easy to keep up with as it was. 

Mike ONeill
Parker, CO
Colorado Photos



Date: 01/09/21 14:40
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: SP4360

SP C40-1 and -3 cabeese would be nice.



Date: 01/09/21 17:04
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: BNSF-E9

Scale Trains,
GP30 please...
.



Date: 01/09/21 17:28
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: Highhood

I disagree. Kato and tomix n scale ( japanese style )seams unlimited and they appear to be coming out with more new stuff this year. I don't see either of those companies craping out any time soon

Jon Fink
Schenectady, NY



Date: 01/09/21 18:22
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: mully

BNSF-E9 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Scale Trains,
> GP30 please...
> .
I second that!!!

Gary

Posted from iPhone



Date: 01/09/21 18:30
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: wpjones

Can't but them at my local train store so they don't exist to me.
Steve

WAF Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> What happen to Exact Rail? Big plans for many cars



Date: 01/09/21 21:16
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: cchan006

Highhood Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I disagree. Kato and tomix n scale ( japanese
> style )seams unlimited and they appear to be
> coming out with more new stuff this year. I don't
> see either of those companies craping out any time
> soon

Keep in mind that the thread is mainly discussing the U.S. market.

Don't know about now, but did you know Kato manufactured on behalf of Atlas years ago?



Date: 01/09/21 21:18
Re: Will it all come down to ScaleTrains and Rapido?
Author: californiarails

Agree to the above points about the many top notch offerings from multiple other manufacturers. Scaletrains and Rapido both have commendable new products and great service that's worth noting. Also want to point out that both Rapido and recently Scaletrains have rewarded modelers with undecorated offerings of most of their new models - and they sellout fast. Seeing new products is great and all the better when available in a form that allows building, painting, decaling... and the rest of the modeling by the hobbyist. It's what I enjoy most at my workbench.

I have great memories building Athearn bluebox kits and would love to see more future offerings from Athearn in undecorated kit form. It won't please everyone, but it's what I look for as an option from any manufacturer.



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