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Thread: Are the people at Horizon/Athearn insane?

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    Default Are the people at Horizon/Athearn insane?

    Was going through my email today. Found the latest update from Athearn.

    Great News! The Overtons are back!

    http://em.horizonhobby.com/t/l?ssid=...7KLm6155L1_tzQ

    But what the hell is up with their pricing! The molds for these cars are decades old. The tooling was long paid off before Roundhouse was sold. These are tiny cars without interiors and fine details. Yet the individual cars are the same price as the Bombadiers that are only a decade old. The cost of Chinese slave labor cannot have increased that much.
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    Apparenyly Athearn is enjoying being the only supplier of old-timey passenger cars.

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    That does seem pretty steep. But those are MSRP which can often be high. My uneducated guesstimation would be that certain dealers/suppliers will be able to offer lower. Hopefully much lower....

    Does seem like a good time to sell any unused cars and sets....
    Steve - Jugtown Modeler..............Don't know enough about railroading yet, but scale modeling is my life..............Web-Folio

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    Quote Originally Posted by dwwojcik View Post
    Apparenyly Athearn is enjoying being the only supplier of old-timey passenger cars.

    End of the day this is it. Might not be cool but it is business.

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    I haven't bought anything from then since getting back in the hobby, not sure I want to give them any of my money given what they did by ending the blue box kits out of plain old greed.

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    Well, although I do understand your gripe, I just looked at a set of four ATS&F cars that I bought sometime ago. The price I paid was $89.99. Now in all fairness those are Canadian dollars but I don't think that the exchange back then was that bad. I know that you can get far better prices in the US but I'm not as shocked as you.

    Rob

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    Quote Originally Posted by parccedres View Post
    I haven't bought anything from then since getting back in the hobby, not sure I want to give them any of my money given what they did by ending the blue box kits out of plain old greed.
    They are a business, not a charity. They have to make decisions that are best for the business. We can criticize, but if any of us think we can do better, start your own business and show us how it's done.
    Karl

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    Quote Originally Posted by jpwisc View Post
    They are a business, not a charity. They have to make decisions that are best for the business. We can criticize, but if any of us think we can do better, start your own business and show us how it's done.
    Overall they produce some very nice models and are very fair overall in terms of the market and pricing. Like any products you can search elsewhere for their rolling stock for example and find it cheaper as well if thats the main issue.

    Whether they removed a product or discontinued others is again a business decision. What some of us may like may not be enough to justify production from a business standpoint or head office could simply make other decisions ( as they have the right to do ).

    I was very upset in the late nineties when PWRS came onto the scene and essentially pushed several quality model shops out of business in my area and then they alone produced limited runs on EVERYTHING to the point unless you were a very well paid professional or retired you'd not have the income to play the game. But it's their right to do so and I have found good options on the secondary market.

    I have also found simply emailing a few companies they tend to provide prompt and productive dialogue, thinking out loud here Intermountain, Exact Rail, and Micro-Trains to name a few from experience.

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    Will stick to eBay purchases, not that I am purchasing much like these cars... still a better price for me and availability makes it a bit easier to find just what I want.
    jerry
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    Quote Originally Posted by sunshinetrainman View Post
    ....

    I have also found simply emailing a few companies they tend to provide prompt and productive dialogue, thinking out loud here Intermountain, Exact Rail, and Micro-Trains to name a few from experience.
    Don't get me started on PWRS, I have no love for that company.

    As far as the good companies you listed, I agree and would add Train-Worx to that list.
    Karl

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    I RARELY buy anything new. I'm glad I started buying when I was a kid. If I were just starting out now I couldn't afford this hobby.
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    It comes down to one thing.

    If you want it, you'll pay for it.

    Otherwise, you'll let someone else pay the ridiculous price for it and view it from afar.

    It can't get much simpler than that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpwisc View Post
    They are a business, not a charity. They have to make decisions that are best for the business. We can criticize, but if any of us think we can do better, start your own business and show us how it's done.
    Happily I don't have to give them a cent of my money. Microtrains makes an excellent product and they manufacture here in North America, I happily support that business practise and will pay extra for their ideals and the attention to detail. I also enjoy buying Kato products because I know I'm getting quality every time.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jpwisc View Post
    Don't get me started on PWRS, I have no love for that company.

    As far as the good companies you listed, I agree and would add Train-Worx to that list.

    my brother used to paint the " custom painted " locomotives for them. Sweet gig if you have the talent and ability to do 50 locomotives at a time. But other than that less than stellar.

    Question: when PWRS started, they claimed to be building a model of the CP mainline from Vancouver to Calgary in their Vancouver warehouse. Has anyone ever seen this or heard of it ? I have never heard if that actually happened or not.

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    Quote Originally Posted by parccedres View Post
    .... Microtrains makes an excellent product and they manufacture here in North America, I happily support that business practise and will pay extra for their ideals and the attention to detail. I also enjoy buying Kato products because I know I'm getting quality every time.
    Athearn makes the most detailed tank cars in N Scale right now (Excluding their HCl cars), so if its details you want, they are the ones to buy from. You do know Kato is make in Japan right? What kind of car do you drive? I love buying American where I can (I drive only Jeeps, every one made in Toledo, Ohio), but you would have a tough time being a model railroader if that was your whole criteria. Athearn products are made the same place as Intermountain, Atlas, Scale Trains and on and on.
    Karl

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    The big price might be justifiable, if these were all new Athearn tooling for 85 foot long passenger cars with wire ladders and grabs, detailed interiors, hand painted uniquely placed passengers and accurate highly detailed trucks. Built in lighting wouldn't hurt.

    But these cars were tooled before I got serious about N in 1997. Roundhouse made them as kits. They are less than forty feet long. Don't have a hint of interior and are still riding on freight car trucks. The grab irons are molded into the body. Granted the trucks are McHenrys where the originals included pairs of dummy knuckles and Rapidos.

    Somehow BanDai is able to release and sell out, runs of modern cars in a similar size with new tooling every couple of months. Not only that, but they come in snapkits of two or four cars for under $10 a car. Many of the kits include extra parts to allow you to create the variations of the cars. The BanDai kits have more parts than the Roundhouse one do.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpwisc View Post
    Athearn makes the most detailed tank cars in N Scale right now (Excluding their HCl cars), so if its details you want, they are the ones to buy from. You do know Kato is make in Japan right? What kind of car do you drive? I love buying American where I can (I drive only Jeeps, every one made in Toledo, Ohio), but you would have a tough time being a model railroader if that was your whole criteria. Athearn products are made the same place as Intermountain, Atlas, Scale Trains and on and on.
    It sounds like Athearn is trying to rip people off with that price, and they aren't even new products, old tooling at a mega price made in China! Funny how Microtrains can afford to manufacture in the US and stay in business while all the other companies, like Athearn, ship off to China? And don't we read constantly about how lousy Atlas track has become since they started manufacturing in China, oh and at no savings to the consumer. I think there are too many family members buying sports cars in some of those companies and that's why we're seeing the crazy prices.

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    Quote Originally Posted by parccedres View Post
    It sounds like Athearn is trying to rip people off with that price, and they aren't even new products, old tooling at a mega price made in China! Funny how Microtrains can afford to manufacture in the US and stay in business while all the other companies, like Athearn, ship off to China? And don't we read constantly about how lousy Atlas track has become since they started manufacturing in China, oh and at no savings to the consumer. I think there are too many family members buying sports cars in some of those companies and that's why we're seeing the crazy prices.
    Atlas did have some QC issues with track, so they changed manufacturers. Micro Trains has a unique business model, and it works for them. Their models also have a lower level of detailing than IM or Athearn and cost the same.

    The prices arent crazy at all. Again, if you think you could do it for less, prove everyone wrong. I don't see anyone stepping up and actually trying. Just a lot of armchair business people.
    Karl

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    Quote Originally Posted by jpwisc View Post
    Atlas did have some QC issues with track, so they changed manufacturers. Micro Trains has a unique business model, and it works for them. Their models also have a lower level of detailing than IM or Athearn and cost the same.

    The prices arent crazy at all. Again, if you think you could do it for less, prove everyone wrong. I don't see anyone stepping up and actually trying. Just a lot of armchair business people.
    Ahh yes, someone who wants the last word in the discussion. Best of luck with your trains, could care less about your opinion, I disagree with you and think you're wrong. End of my involvement with you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by parccedres View Post
    Ahh yes, someone who wants the last word in the discussion. Best of luck with your trains, could care less about your opinion, I disagree with you and think you're wrong. End of my involvement with you.
    Oh, that's funny! I've gotten more mature responses from my 8 year old!
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