TT Scale Market

TT Scale Market

Postby Bernd » Thu Dec 01, 2016 9:09 am

It seems like we have a conversation going in the "Cylindrical Hopper" thread that needs it's own thread for discussion. I'll start here with some observations.

Here's a quote from Taxari:

All over the world the market for US TT is about 100 (maybe 150) active modelers, scattered on individual interests in periods, railroad companys and prefered models. So we think, there is no market for a large series of any model. We ever plan with max. 100 - 150 pieces per car; and 30 pieces per locomotive. And that is often a optimistic estimation.


My observations.

Observation one:

I've looked at many model railroad site's selling different scales. As I look down through the selections of scales here's what I see. "T", "Z", "N", "HO" and it's varied gauges, "S" and it's varied gauges, and "O" scale and it's varied gauges. Nothing on "TT".

Observation two:

I experienced this at a show's I've gone to. I asked about "TT" scale. I get a "dear in the head lights" look (for our foreign members this term describes a blank look on the persons face) and a "What is TT scale?" question. So I think ever since TT is no longer advertised in the e-zines and paper magazines TT scale has been forgotten, except for the few that do remember it.

One remedy is, like the North West Coast members are doing, taking their modules to train shows. They are getting some exposure but not enough since perhaps only a few thousand show goers may see this. I believe to get more exposure we need to have articles in magazines. I see a couple of members are posting on Model Railroad Hobbyist. This is good.

I'm looking at contributing to TT scale by documenting a portable TT layout in the future and seeing if I can get it published in one of the major model magazines.

I believe TT scale needs a wider audience before we can think about mass production of models. Take a look at the history of how model railroading products began. They pretty much all started out as one person producing a product in their homes.

Comments and critique welcomed.

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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby ConducTTor » Thu Dec 01, 2016 1:30 pm

Oh man we used to beat this subject to death.

Long story short, anyone that can display at shows should do so, anyone that can make models/kits should do so, anyone that can afford models/kits should buy them to support the makers, everyone should spread the gospel to other modelers and online sources. The more models available and the more exposure there is, new modelers will hopefully give TT a try. At some point if a critical mass is reached, a larger manufacturer will enter the scene. We're a very far way from that.
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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby Bernd » Thu Dec 01, 2016 8:19 pm

ConducTTor wrote:Oh man we used to beat this subject to death.


Yes I'm sure you guys have and I've seen a couple. One observation from years of model railroading (I started seriously back in the early 60's) is the many modelers that have given up scratchbuilding. From what I've read many don't want to do that anymore. They say it takes to long to get up to operations. With todays population that has gotten used to the plug-n-play mentality only want to pull a car out of the box and run it on their "pulled out of the box" layout.

If you look through the magazines starting in the 60's to todays articles in 2016 you see a decline of a lot of scratchbuilding or even kitbashing. The new age modeler wants to buy everything completed, all they want to do is open the throttle and blow the horn. Guess that makes me the dinosaur in the group. I still like to work with raw materials to make something.

One other observation is many that are either starting or returning are more interested in modern railroads, 1990's and up. I more interested more in the late 30's to 50's style of railroading.

I'm going to keep plugging away at it and see what I can do over the long haul. I think their are a multitude of modelers out there that don't know about TT scale and what can be done.

My 2¢ worth. (not adjusted for inflation)

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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby ctxmf74 » Fri Dec 02, 2016 2:22 am

"I'm looking at contributing to TT scale by documenting a portable TT layout in the future and seeing if I can get it published in one of the major model magazines."

MRH has the second largest readership after MRer and they are very willing to publish articles on different scales and modeling subjects .If you can make it a TT scale article with methods or info applicable to other scales even better,that way more prospective TT scale modelers will read it"....DaveB
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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby Bernd » Fri Dec 02, 2016 8:50 am

ctxmf74 wrote: MRH has the second largest readership after MRer and they are very willing to publish articles on different scales and modeling subjects .If you can make it a TT scale article with methods or info applicable to other scales even better,that way more prospective TT scale modelers will read it"....DaveB


That may be true Dave. For about four years of observation of the MRH readership I believe its main interest is in DCC, weathering, and ops. I base this on looking at the articles ratings over the years I've viewed the magazine.

I also believe there is a big lack of interest in scratchbuilding on MRH. I see it as a plug-n-play interested e-zine.

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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby ctxmf74 » Fri Dec 02, 2016 2:16 pm

"For about four years of observation of the MRH readership I believe its main interest is in DCC, weathering, and ops. I base this on looking at the articles ratings over the years I've viewed the magazine.
I also believe there is a big lack of interest in scratchbuilding on MRH."

There's no reason you couldn't write an interesting TT scale article about DCC, weathering, or operations. Most MRH readers don't need to scratch build basic stuff so they scratch build layouts from commercial parts. They don't do TT layouts simply because so far there hasn't been an adequate supply of equipment and details to make it feasible. If the market comes up with more TT stuff more modelers are gonna buy it and more TT layouts are gonna be built. If someone has room for an HO layout they have room for a better TT scale layout :>)
The magazine hasn't had TT articles likely because no one has bother to submit them. More TT articles could make modelers more aware of the possibilities. The magazine is currently having a contest to design a modular layout for a typical spare bedroom which would be an ideal way to showcase TT scale. If anyone is interested check out the MRH website for rules and entry dates.....DaveB
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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby Bernd » Fri Dec 02, 2016 4:38 pm

ctxmf74 wrote: There's no reason you couldn't write an interesting TT scale article about DCC, weathering, or operations.


I don't do DCC. I'm going for the Deltang R/C equipment. Weathering isn't that important to me and I could care less about operations. I guess I'm more into the building of models than operations with correctly weathered equipment.

They don't do TT layouts simply because so far there hasn't been an adequate supply of equipment and details to make it feasible.


Make's one wonder how the scales ever got going before big manufacturers turned out RTR doesn't it?

Oh well, back to the model workbench. :wink:

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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby ctxmf74 » Fri Dec 02, 2016 7:16 pm

"Make's one wonder how the scales ever got going before big manufacturers turned out RTR doesn't it?"

I was a kid at the end of the post war models drought, folks just did without and built less stuff and smaller less detailed layouts. Athearn came out with ground breaking HO plastic models in the mid 50's and the hobby rapidly improved as more and more manufacturers joined in. Somehow TT scale missed the boat, I was too young to pay attention why it did but maybe just because HO got going first then N came along appealing to those with minimal spaces. Today's state of the art and quality of the average model and layout would be hard to imagine for a 50's era hobbyist. I recall when 20 freight cars and 2 engines was considered a large collection :>) .
A how to do article on installing Deltang R/C equipment in a TT scale engine would be just the thing MRH is looking for to explore different methods and scales.....DaveB
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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby ConducTTor » Fri Dec 02, 2016 7:17 pm

The GuiTTar case would be a perfect article....
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Re: TT Scale Market

Postby Bernd » Fri Dec 02, 2016 8:46 pm

ctxmf74 wrote:A how to do article on installing Deltang R/C equipment in a TT scale engine would be just the thing MRH is looking for to explore different methods and scales.....DaveB


Mmmmmm, that's a thought.

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