This page lists announcements related to company-level information, such as new companies that have been formed, existing companies that are closing-up shop, ownership transfers of companies, or any other such information.
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NorthWest Short Line has launched their new web site. They do have categories set up for S-scale items, but currently the web inventory doesn't list any products. We presume that is because they simply haven't gotten around to fully populating their web site's database.
Doug Peck, of Port Lines Hobby Supply, announces that they have the 90-degree smokestack insert for SIT boiler shells in stock. Their smoke wick threading tool is back in stock, and it has been improved.
They have in stock:
- Divco Milk Truck decals from N.E. Prototypes (Hood's Milk; Carnation Milk; Borden's Milk; White Bros. Milk; Brookside Milk; Sealtest Milk; Whiting's Milk)
- banta modelworks' "The Warehouse" kit.
- Lionel tank cars.
- Lionel autocarriers.
- Lionel coil-covered gondolas.
- Lionel U33c locomotives.
- book: "Gilbert American Flyer Factory Memos to All Service Station Technicians".
- book: "Gilbert American Flyer Steam Locomotives Photographic Directory".
- book: "Gilbert American Flyer Steam Locomotive Exploded Views and Parts Listings".
- book: "Gilbert American Flyer Diesel Locomotive Exploded Views and Parts Listings".
- book: "Gilbert American Flyer Locomotives Developed But Never Produced".
- book: "Gilbert's American Flyer Products Directory".
In March 2019, the owner of NorthWest Short Line announced that because of his wife's passing, he was no longer able to run the company, and that the company would permanently close its doors in August 2019. Last-minute orders flooded in, and the company will fulfill all of those orders, although they are currently back-logged.
However, they made this announcement just now:
"NorthWest Short Line is pleased to announce that the entire line has been acquired by an NWSL employee, effective September 3rd, 2019. All existing back-orders will be filled, and NWSL will be open to new orders as soon as the new web site is rolled out; the primary web site nwsl.com will carry forward as the primary contact point. The line is expected to carry forward largely unchanged although the company will no longer offer phone support. NWSL will be headquartered in Kila, Montana, located near Kalispell, and the new address is PO Box 219, Kila, MT 59920. e-mail contact is through the web site."
As posted on their web site, Rusty Stumps Scale Models is closing on October 31, 2019. Hopefully their product line will be taken over by another company, because they have some nice S-scale detailing parts. The owners have been scaling back for some time now, and they already sold the structure kit product line in the past year or so. So, if you want any of the items they carry, now is the time.
Port Lines Hobby Supply announces that they are now producing 3D-printed replacement parts for AF equipment:
- Baldwin front platform and steps
- Baldwin rear cab panel.
- Franklin-Washington boiler front
- large gear for the Cow-On-Track.
The company is now accepting pre-orders for anything in the Lionel 2019 catalog #2.
The company has in stock the Twin Whistle Sign Company's new three-story NYC Fire Engine House #252, and a Hose Tower kit.
Portland Locomotive Works is considering a new project for Sn3. Owner Gary Kohler is proposing these ideas, but is open to others as well:
- the goose shed
- more MOW equipment
- three-car set for rotary OM
- kitchen car
If you are interested in any of these or have other ideas, contact Gary Kohler at email@example.com or 330-719-0264.
Australian company Hollywood Foundry has decided to close up shop permanently. They used to make the BullAnt and other motor mechanisms.
Dave's Twacks & Twains is moving to another town in California, and expects a disruption of processing orders until September 2019.
Doug Peck, of Port Lines Hobby Supply, states that he is still taking pre-orders for the American Models 4-6-2 locomotives with Vanderbilt tenders. American Models reported to him that they have encountered a production problem, which delayed the release of the new engines until sometime later this summer. They indicated that if you pre-order now, you can specify your preferred road number on your locomotive!
Port Lines has in stock the new LC springs. These were only used by Gilbert on the aluminum passenger cars, but they can be installed on any LCs to prevent them from uncoupling. They now also have the #751 Log Loader solenoid plungers in stock. Also, the red chimneys for the AF Baggage Smasher and Suburban Station are available again.
The company's single-axle quartering tool is back in stock.
The MTH straight tracks (10" and 15") are now in stock again.
The #5 Fox Valley Models turnouts are also back in stock.
The company has several new AF-related books in stock.
Doug requested that any custom repair work be mailed to the company after mid-August, as there are few, if any, people available to do the work until then.
John Agnew, owner of Railmaster Exports, announced that he no longer has enough parts to sell the NW2 and SW7 switcher locomotive kits. Because their molds are getting old and they have been slow-sellers, he will not re-run them again. The other locomotive kits are still in stock.
CatzPaw announces that they have consolidated their two web sites (their own and their Shapeways shop) into one, cohesive place to shop for their products.
They also announced that NMRA and NASG members will be able to receive a 10% discount for any of their products. Contact them to receive your discount code!
Their catalog of just S-scale products is now 29 pages long! Again, see their new web site for all the products. They are nicely organized and easy to browse.
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In general hobby news, Lionel reports that 2018 was their best year in the past decade (so the hobby isn't dying). They also announced that they now have the exclusive rights to produce the products that the former company Model Power used to carry (only applies to N-, HO-, and O-scale).
For S-scale, they announced that they are working on passenger cars that should be in the next catalog. They have resolved the issue around the lower-production numbers that passenger cars have.
by MTH Electric Trains
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In general news, MTH announced that the licensing of their tinplate line with the Lionel name on it has come to an end. They plan on continuing their own tinplate product line, though.
For S-scale, they announced that they are working on a new catalog. They are going to come out with the SW9 switcher engine, and some more F3 engines. Also, more freight cars will be in the new catalog. The reality is that O-scale is 80% of their market, HO-scale is 10%, and tinplate, S, and G make up the remaining 10%. So, they consider S-scale to be a niche market, so they will put their efforts into S to match. The only way to fix that is to have more people start modeling in S-scale.
Owner and founder of Aztec, John Claudino, has decided it is time to retire. There is no word as to this being the end of his product line, which includes an S-scale track cleaning car, or if it is up for sale. The web site seems to indicate that he has already sold off his machining equipment.
In 2014 Commercial Scale Models bought the structure kits product line from banta modelworks, specifically the kits that used to be sold under the name "Building & Structure Co." Their web site has been dead for over two weeks (meaning they didn't pay their annual bill). Through the grapevine, we learned that Commercial Scale Models did indeed close, and that Bill Banta is working on getting the structures back to banta modelworks, and hopes to have them added to his web site soon.
Since NWSL will no longer sell the Stanton Drive wholesale, but direct-to-customer only, Jim King, of Smoky Mountain Model Works, will no longer offer them as part of his switcher kits. The instructions of his kits will simply refer to the product ID that you need to order from NWSL.
Scenery Unlimited announces that they have received all of their final Shinohara track parts. Contact them if you are looking for any of the standard- or narrow-gauge track components.
They have received their order from Grandt Line, so you can order those, too.
They have a sale going on of 80-foot AM passenger cars for $69.95 each, or a set of three for $199.95.
Port Lines Hobby Supply reports that they are having problems getting e-mail from customers who use any of the following: aol, optonline, embarqmail, mymts.net, and wowway. If you have not received an reply and you use one of these services, please contact Dave via phone or via a different e-mail account.
For the time-being, Port Lines Hobby Supply can no longer offer the service of chrome-plating plastic shells, due to their main supplier closing up shop.
Port Lines Hobby Supply reports that they have the Lionel AF GP7 and Baldwin diesels in stock. They also have the Southern waffle-sided box car, the Wabash caboose, and the Showcase Aquarium action car in stock.
Port Lines Hobby Supply received a large AF and Lionel consignment of freight cars and engines.
They have the 12" plastic ladder in stock for the #773 Oil Derrick.
Fox Valley Models turnouts should arrive mid-February 2019.
They now have a collection of new and used parts for the Del-Aire and EZ-Aire turnout control systems.
Port Lines Hobby Supply is accepting orders for the new American Models 4-6-2 Pacific with the Vanderbilt tender (several configurations available).
June 30, 2018: A new company has formed called "The San Juan Model Company", which is a merger of the following companies and their product lines:
- Grandt Line Products
- San Juan Car Co.
- San Juan Decals
- American Limited Models
- The Leadville Shops.
The "Grandt Line" name has officially been retired. A new product catalog is planned to be released this Fall. The new company is owned by Doug Junda and Bob Stears, and will be based in Denver, Colorado. They are currently in the process of physically moving the equipment, tooling, and inventory from the various locations to their new location. They ask everyone to please be patient. It is their intent to keep all products in the various companies' product lines. Update: they have created their new web site, so visit the link to see what they are planning. Update #2: Doug Junda reports that as of January 2019 the San Juan Decals are all in production again. The San Juan Car Co. kits are starting to be in production again. The old Grandt Line S-scale parts are back on the shelves again. The rest of the parts and the machinery are still in the process of being moved. They have moved four 28-foot trailers to Colorado, with three more needing to be done. Check their web site for what is available.
Dave's Twacks & Twains has posted a PDF file online listing their inventory of parts, decals, paints, etc. Click on the link to view/download it.
Doug Peck, of Port Lines Hobby Supply, announced that he has expanded the number of Xuron tools he carries. He has pliers, cutters, and wire strippers in stock.
They have in stock the smoke-in-tender brass exit tubes.
Also in stock is a complete replenishment of Arttista S-scale figures.
The fourth edition of Tom Barker's "S-gauge Repair & Operating Guide" is now available for sale at Port Lines. Also in stock is the "2019 Greenberg Pocket Guide".
The company has in stock the "Steam Drive-Wheel 2-piece Compression Tool". Used with a good vise, or a press, the wheel is fully assembled, with the hub at the proper depth to prevent shorts.
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