US Manufacturer Interested in TT

US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby JohnnyReb69 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:36 pm

Some of you may know me, or at least know of me, as I have posted here at least a few times in the past, and some of you may recognise my name from posts I've made on discussion groups dealing with other scales. For those of you who do not know me... in a nut-shell, I am a long-time model railroader who lives in the southeastern US and I model railroads and prototypes of this region. I model primarily in S and HO scales, but have a growing interest in TT scale as well. I have worked with Jim King of Smoky Mountain Model Works to research and gather materials (blueprints, etc.) for the production of a SEABOARD AIR LINE B-7 class box car (REF-1) in both HO scale (now available through WrightTrak Models) and S scale (coming very soon directly from SMMW). I have also designed and will soon be producing new, closer to scale, more realistic draft gear boxes (REF-2) for S scale which I will be marketing under my own company name. These draft gear will be tailored specifically for the new, forthcoming S scale Sergent Engineering proto-scale couplers.

(REF-1) - http://www.smokymountainmodelworks.com/ ... _kits.html

(REF-2) - http://www.trainweb.org/seaboard/SScale ... ojects.htm


Now I am now interested in working to produce some TT scale models of US freight car prototypes through Jim King of SMMW. For those of you who do now know Jim King and/or the products he produces through his company, just ask anyone in HO scale or S scale who does and you'll quickly find that his resin kits are second to NONE! Period. But after speaking with him a few times via e-mail and phone recently, he has just (today) stated that he is definitely interested in the possibility of producing some freight car models for us. But he needs to know what sort of product and price range the TT community would be satisfied with.

Being as Jim has already produced a number of HO scale models whose CAD files could be fairly easily downsized to TT scale, these same models would (depending on interest) be the first models to be considered for production (because the CAD work is already done). Those models are as follows :

- Seaboard Air Line B-7 "Turtleback" (round roof) Box Car

- B&O M53 "Wagontop" Box Car

- Southern Railway. "Waffle Sided" Box Car

- Southern Railway. Pulpwood Rack

- C&O Pulpwood Rack

- Southern Railway. Low Side Gondola

- Southern Railway. 41' Flat Car

- Southern Railway. 41' Composite Gondola

- Central of Georgia Ventilated Box Car

Finished S scale models of these models can be seen on the following page of the SMMW site :

http://www.smokymountainmodelworks.com/ ... vious.html

There are a variety of ways some of these models could be produced...

1. Shell and primary details only (roofwalks, brake wheels, etc), tailor made to fit on the Gold Coast Railway underframe (where appropriate). Grab irons could be molded on. (decals included) (cheapest route)

2. Shell with primary detail parts AND appropriate underframe and separate brake rigging (decals included)

3. Shell with primary detail parts, appropriate underframe and separate brake rigging AND separate (wire) grab irons, etc. (decals included)

There are a few different ways that both the shells for these models and some of the finer details (such as step wrungs and grab irons) can be produced... all of which can be discussed in depth later if there is any interest.

Sorry folks... READY TO RUN (RTR) is NOT an option. These will be very high quality, unassembled, unpainted resin kits

Jim King is not a member on any of the TT scale groups or sites, but he welcomes you to contact him with your questions and comments. His contact information is below :

Web Site : http://www.smokymountainmodelworks.com
E-Mail : jimking3@charter.net

This is a great opportunity for TT scale to show some serious growth. All we have to do is take advantage of it.

Thanks.


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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby Marquette » Mon Apr 29, 2013 9:44 pm

B-7 and M53 would defs be of interest.
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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby ConducTTor » Mon Apr 29, 2013 9:49 pm

Hey John, very interesting post. I'm going to take a little time and digest the above before I post anything thoughtful but right off the bat I'll tell you the following:

I'll buy whatever Jim/you decide to make available (especially rolling stock) although I'd prefer models that come after the steam era or were at least still used for sometime after. I would welcome pulpwood cars and gondolas. The availability of decals is also important to me. As far as detail parts, I love detail but I'm not a rivet counter. I'll leave it up to the other guys to decide. A safe bet would be the middle option (#2) - there will be some detail parts and cost would be lower. But that's just my opinion.

As far as price range, I think that's his decision. Making it financially worth his while is obvious. How much above cost.....well, I think the market will have the ultimate decision. As with anything else, the cheaper a product is, the more it will sell. The more expensive, the better the profit margins.
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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby Bill Dixon » Mon Apr 29, 2013 10:02 pm

JohnnyReb69 wrote:. . .

Being as Jim has already produced a number of HO scale models whose CAD files could be fairly easily downsized to TT scale, these same models would (depending on interest) be the first models to be considered for production (because the CAD work is already done). Those models are as follows :
John Degnan


Although I would probably buy one of everything if the price was OK, I would take them in this order.

2 x - Southern Railway. Low Side Gondola
2 x - Southern Railway. 41' Flat Car
2 x - Southern Railway. 41' Composite Gondola
1 x - Central of Georgia Ventilated Box Car
1 x - Seaboard Air Line B-7 "Turtleback" (round roof) Box Car
2 x - B&O M53 "Wagontop" Box Car
1 x - Southern Railway. Pulpwood Rack
1 x - C&O Pulpwood Rack
1 x - Southern Railway. "Waffle Sided" Box Car
A bit too modern for my era but one might be nice.

Decals would not be needed for all of them as I would decal some of them for my home road (Flats and Gons).

JohnnyReb69 wrote: 1. Shell and primary details only (roofwalks, brake wheels, etc), tailor made to fit on the Gold Coast Railway underframe (where appropriate). Grab irons could be molded on. (decals included) (cheapest route)

OK but would prefer
JohnnyReb69 wrote: 2. Shell with primary detail parts AND appropriate underframe and separate brake rigging (decals included)

or
JohnnyReb69 wrote: 3. Shell with primary detail parts, appropriate underframe and separate brake rigging AND separate (wire) grab irons, etc. (decals included)


Price: $ 20 / $ 30 / $ 40 a kit.
Regards
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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby JohnnyReb69 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 11:56 pm

One of the things that Jim and I have discussed is what we jokingly call a "brick" model... which, to us, is a SOLID body shell with molded-on underframe (and molded-on ladders, grabs, etc.)... the only separate details being the roofwalk, brake wheel and underside brake rigging. The only possible issue with this would be that the model might turn out to be too light. To combat that problem, I suggested that Jim produce the shell separately from the underframe, yet still make the body solid with exceptions of two (or more) holes (one over each truck) into which small, round lead (or other type material) 'shot' (pellets) could be poured and glued to increase the weight of the model. When the underframe was installed it would hide all pf this.

Now, dealing with the grab irons... they CAN be a separate detail part, but would be made from rigid wire which the modeler would have to cut and bend. The modeler would also have to drill the small holes (in the shell) where these would be installed, but tiny dimples might could be made into the shell to indicate where the drilling should take place. If this route is chosen, the rounded ends of the grab iron (where the rivet runs through the grab and into the shell) would be molded onto the shell, leaving just the wire to be added, yielding a nice, realistic look. But of course, this would definitely increase the price. Going with molded-on grabs will definitely be the cheapest and easiest route.

Step wrungs are yet another issue as they cannot be a molded-on part due to them being too small to survive the stress when the shell is removed from the mold. Jim is wondering if maybe the HO scale parts from Tichy can be used (offered as a separate detail), but I have my doubts due to their size in comparison.

And by the way... the models I listed in my initial post were not listed in order-of-production.

I also want to add that if and when the SAL B-7 box is produced, this would open the door to the SAL AF-1 and AF-2 cars which were identical to the B-7 except that they had four doors instead of two. So it would be a no-brainer to do them as well.


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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby ConducTTor » Tue Apr 30, 2013 12:16 am

JohnnyReb69 wrote:One of the things that Jim and I have discussed is what we jokingly call a "brick" model... which, to us, is a SOLID body shell with molded-on underframe (and molded-on ladders, grabs, etc.)... the only separate details being the roofwalk, brake wheel and underside brake rigging. The only possible issue with this would be that the model might turn out to be too light. To combat that problem, I suggested that Jim produce the shell separately from the underframe, yet still make the body solid with exceptions of two (or more) holes (one over each truck) into which small, round lead (or other type material) 'shot' (pellets) could be poured and glued to increase the weight of the model. When the underframe was installed it would hide all pf this.


This sounds quite sensible. Would there be any curing issues with the resin being so thick? And come to think of it, it ought to do very well against warping in the long term.

JohnnyReb69 wrote:Now, dealing with the grab irons... they CAN be a separate detail part, but would be made from rigid wire which the modeler would have to cut and bend. The modeler would also have to drill the small holes (in the shell) where these would be installed, but tiny dimples might could be made into the shell to indicate where the drilling should take place. If this route is chosen, the rounded ends of the grab iron (where the rivet runs through the grab and into the shell) would be molded onto the shell, leaving just the wire to be added, yielding a nice, realistic look. But of course, this would definitely increase the price. Going with molded-on grabs will definitely be the cheapest and easiest route.


I think leaving the details for the modeler to add is fine as long as there are locating dimples.
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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby Marquette » Tue Apr 30, 2013 12:46 am

JohnnyReb69 wrote:I also want to add that if and when the SAL B-7 box is produced, this would open the door to the SAL AF-1 and AF-2 cars which were identical to the B-7 except that they had four doors instead of two. So it would be a no-brainer to do them as well.


Yeeeesssss... a "Route of the Robert E Lee" boxcar has been on my wishlist for a TT scale model since I got into North American proto.
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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby CSD » Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:02 am

I'm in. Out of those offerings the Waffle car would be my preference. With the turtleback car listed at $80 can I assume that the TT versions would be in the same neighbourhood if option 3 was selected? If the kit builds as nicely as the example on the website, I'm happy to pay for it.
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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby ConducTTor » Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:12 am

I think $80 is a bit much. We TTers are a small bunch and not everyone can make a train out of $80 cars. I think that price would result in small numbers of models sold. I may be wrong but......
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Re: US Manufacturer Interested in TT

Postby Arseny » Tue Apr 30, 2013 3:05 am

As for me, I prefer "transition era", 1940s-1950s, maybe early 1960s, at the worst .
So I would like to get the models suitable for this era.

I like the Southern Railway Low Side Gondola and Central of Georgia Ventilated Box Car, maybe Southern Railway 41' Composite Gondola.
I do not know a lot about prototypes; what about the pulpwood racks? Were they already in use in 1950s?

But what about the price? It seems that $80 per kit is too much for me... :(
I am afraid that I'll be able to buy very few models for such price...
Or maybe TT-scale models/kits will be cheaper?
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