Is our hobby getting more expensive or what?



Good one...
One banana Two banana Three banana Four
Four bananas make a bunch and so do many more...
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Perhaps. But to accuse Athearn of "looting" Roundhouse is totally bogus. How can Athearn, who was given Roundhouse, be accused of stealing them? Heck, it wasn't even Athearn's idea to buy Roundhouse. Now, maybe if Horizon had stayed out and the owner of Roundhouse retired when he did, maybe Athearn would have bought him out...but they didn't.
Paul A. Cutler III ************* Weather Or No Go New Haven *************
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Pac Man spake thus:

As the person who put in the reference to "looting" (it was just supposed to be a stupid little play on words), I can tell you I was not accusing anyone of "looting" anyone else. (Just the normal, everyday looting that's the essence of capitalism. But that's another story ...)
--
The only reason corrupt Republicans rule the roost in Washington
is because the corrupt Democrats can't muster any viable opposition.
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Alluded and actually happening are two different things... Does anyone examples of ex-MDC items which doubled in price after the Athearn purchase?
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How about some proof? This past month, Athearn released the re-tooled MDC RS-3, and have added a lot of detail and re-cut the tooling for better accuracy. It's retail price is $89.98. Are you seriously saying that the MDC RS-3 was only $45 last year? I don't think so. In fact, it was $69.00 in 1993 (according to my old Walthers catalog).
Paul A. Cutler III ************* Weather Or No Go New Haven *************
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Ok, I know I'm quoting myself, but I just found my 2004 Walthers Catalog, the last one (IIRC) with Roundhouse Products in it. Here are the prices from 2004:
Roundhouse Freight Cars RTR: 50' Single Door Box - $19.98 50' Plug Door Box - $19.98 40' AAR Box - $18.50 54' FMC Covered Hopper - $19.98
Roundhouse Freight Car Kits: Most Kits - $9.98 36' Boxcar - $10.50 36' Reefer - $10.98 50' Hi-Cube - $8.98 50' Express Reefer - $12.98 40' Gondolas - $8.50 50' Mill Gondola - $8.98 34' 2-Bay Covered Hoppers - $10.98 38' Sand & Gravel Hopper - $13.50 50' FMC Covered Hopper - $12.50 26' Old Time Tanks - $10.98 30' & 50' Modern Tank - $10.98 Old Time Cabooses - $12.50 Steel Cabooses - $12.50 22' Ore Hoppers - $7.50 60' Bulkhead Flats - $9.98
Roundhouse Passenger Cars RTR: Pullman Palace Cars - $42.98
Roundhouse Passenger Car Kits: Pullman Palace Cars - $13.98 50' Overland Cars - $10.98 34' Overton Cars - $9.98 60' Harriman Style - $10.25
Roundhouse Locomotives RTR: HO 2-Truck Shay - $159.98 or $169.98 HOn3 2-Truck Shay - $159.98 HO 2-8-0 Old Timer - $159.98 HO 2-6-0 Old Timer (51" drivers) - $149.98
Roundhouse Locomotive Kits: Class B 2-Truck Shay - $79.98 Class C 3-Truck Shay - $89.98 0-6-0 - $65.00 0-6-0T - $45.00 4-4-2 Harriman - $79.98 4-4-2 Santa Fe Style - $95.00 4-4-2 PRR - $75.00 2-6-2 - $82.50 2-6-2 - J-28 - $85.00 4-6-0 PRR - $82.50 4-6-0 - $85.00 2-8-0 - $95.00 Climax 2-Truck $39.98 RS-3 - $75.00 Box Cab - $39.98
Now the ball is in your court, Big Rich... Where are the "doubling" in prices?
Paul A. Cutler III ************* Weather Or No Go New Haven *************
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I'm going to use a '75 Walthers catalog and the AIER calculator for the following, the today price is using the calculator to show what the '75 price would equate to:
Walther HW passenger car kit--$9.75, today $35.38 [it's amazing how close that is to a Branchline kit of a similar car]
Walthers TS-5 switch motor--$4.95 Today $17.96 [really close to the cost of a Tortoise]
Here's an interesting one, SS Limited (remember them) roundhouse kit--$86.00 today $312.03
Tools seem to be cheaper, Dremel moto-tool $49.95 today $181.23
The point here is you can plug in any price and see what it would/should be today. Using this data it seems to me the hobby has not gotten more expensive but in many cases cheaper.
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Stephanie Miller wrote:

Agreed, and when you consider price/quality ratios, most current production much, much cheaper. Eg, that Walthers passenger car kit you mention. It had a basic wood body with pressed metal sides, cast metal ends (which required a great deal of cleanup), some metal detail parts (the steam traps were small nails, BTW), and no trucks or couplers. I have a couple of those old Walthers cars - and I keep them for sentimental reasons only.
Also, people have gotten used "deep discount" prices and have forgotten that in the 50s/60 and early 70s you rarely if ever were able to purchase model railroad items at the heavy discounts that are common today. IMO, many consumers think of MSRPs as pure fantasy, and with good reason. There's dumping of excess product once the initial market has been satisfied and the expected profit has been realised. There are distributors that operate a direct-to-consumer division selling product at close to the dealer discount of 40%. The secondhand market pegs 20-30% of original price as the norm. And so on. What's a "comparable price" in such a market and with such expectations?
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I agree...and if you look at how much easier it is today to find used model RR equipment via Ebay, Model RR shows (Greenberg, etc) then it can be viewed as even less expensive than looking at the AIER calculator.
Cheers, Bill S.
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What we need to establish is a "cost-of-modeling-index" to keep track of the prices of common modeling products.
Maybe a plastic freight car kit, a small loco, and a bottle of paint.
:-)
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Mark Mathu wrote:

After thinking about it and perusing the magazines, I've modified my thinking. It's not so much that things are getting more expensive, but that there are more and more high end products and less and less low end products.
And I include scratchbuilding supplies as "low end" because they can save quite a bit of money.
This trend would seem to me to be a death knell for the hobby, as it'll be harder and harder to get young people with lower budgets into the hobby.
Oh, we'll survive, but it'll become more and more a hobby of well off old farts. Sort of like NMRA's domination by "life" members :-).
--
It's turtles, all the way down

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the hobby< While this may apply to some I also think it's a red herring. Has anyone noticed what younger people spend on clothes and electronic toys these days (among other things). I would think model railroading would seem cheap to them. They think nothing of popping 15 to 20 bucks for the latest shriek on CD* and that's a very nice freight car cost.
* and these become the latest "pull" material in very short time!
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Okay you guys. You have too much time on your hands. The inflation calculator is about 9% low as in the US the increase in housing is not included along with some other factors. How much does the CEO of Kalmbach or Walthers make a year?? If they make more than 300,000 including expenses they are stealing from the hobbiest. I know alot of people won't agree, but I will never go to Disney land or purchase anything Disney. Mike Isner made 500,000,000 as CEO for Disney. No one is worth that. No one. Walt would be turning in his grave. Walt made Disney as an escape for people, a fun park. NOT a multi billion dollar corporation that has only one thing to do, make huge profits. If you can afford to spend 500.00 on something that is really only worth 250.00, have at er. I have more interests in life and I will find the best price I can. I live in Canada and I can purchase my modelling supplies from the US for half of what I can at the local hobby store. That includes exchange, taxes, duty, and shipping. I don't even have to leave the house. I would love to support the local hobby store, but I have to eat too. I would love to support Model Railroader, but the articles usually have nothing to do with what I am doing at the time or need info on. Besides I bought my first copy for 1.75 in 1982 or there abouts. It's 9.00 now. How many of you can honestly say your wages have quadrupled since 1982. I mean doing the same thing, same trade, same postion etc.? I have said enough and sorry if I offended anyone. But I think this conversation should end and people should get on with their lives. Doing things that make them happy. If the MR industry wants to put themselves in the higher bracket, so be it. They are the ones that loose out. I can find something else to make me happy when the time comes....... Jon Miller wrote:

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dunrobin wrote:

Are you running Microsoft Windows?
--
It's turtles, all the way down

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Big Rich... it would help to back up your claim of "doubling prices as soon as a product line is bought" with some proof.
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You and I may not like it, but if the products are still being sold, it is the will of the marketplace. If the doubled prices result in no or minimal sales, then either the manufacturer will lower prices or stop production if the economics don't support it.
Cheers, Bill S,
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Yah i know...
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I would, most definately. You will gain more customers by giving away information than any sales pitch will ever get. I live in a small community and I have expertise in many things. I have given away free information, labour and when asked advice. I have had it returned to me ten fold. If ever I need anything, and I mean just about anything, all I need to do is ask.
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For those just getting into the conversation the above reply was in response to what Charles K. had to say.
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If you posted part of his post in your response we would have known...
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