Can Someone Update me on the Horizon / Walthers News

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by lars, Jul 19, 2005.

  1. lars

    lars New Member

    I have been out of the loop for a while but have come back to see some interesting stuff happen. From what I can gather Horizon Hobbies purchased Athearn and Walthers purchases LifeLike.

    What is the real result of this? Can I get Athearn stuff through Walthers? Can I still get Atlas and Kato through Walthers? Has there been a major change in quality and price of Athearn and LifeLike products after the buyout? How does this affect things at my local hobby shop?

    Thanks for the help.
  2. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Well,Horizon bought Athearn and MDC/Roundhouse..Walthers bought Life
    Like.And just for more information Bowser bought Stewart.
    Now before Horizon bought Athearn Athearn bought RPP.
    The end result of the Athearn and MDC/Roundhouse by Horizon has been good so far as Athearn is turning out new or revised products on a monthly bases.As of now Walthers is no longer a Athearn or MDC/roundhouse distributor.Some hobby shops no longer carry Athearn and MDC because they did not wish to join Horizon or perhaps in some cases could not afford Horizon's monthly order agreement.
    Now when one speaks of Athearn one needs to know far more then before you see we now have Athearn:

    Blue Box and MDC kits

    Athearn/BB/MDC RTR cars and engines.The new RTR Blue Box engines have improved scale plastic hand rails and the new hex drive shaft.

    Athearn RTR .These are the newer locomotives and cars such as the CF7,SD50,SD60,SD45-2,SD38,SD40,the newer GP35 etc. Some of these engines are the improved and highly detailed RPP shells.The newer RTR cars are the 5344,5347,combo door boxcars and etc.

    Athearn/Genesis..This is Athearn's top of the line locomotives similar to Atlas,Kato and P2K in detail and operation.
    As far as the Walthers buyout of Life Like its just to early to tell.

    Atlas and Kato is carried by Walthers and Horizon.
  3. ausien

    ausien Active Member

    OK, that takes care of the HO lines, what about the likelyhood of, better "N"scale loco`s, LL was just getting there act together with there N scale mech`s my much loved GP20`s, are great, smooth in opperation, and pull well. I hope this will continue with other model runs... any news on this????.....have a good one..steve
  4. tillsbury

    tillsbury Member

    As Larry correctly states, it's waaay too early to tell. Of course we all on here want more great N-scale locos, steam or diesel, and we very much hope that LL might make that leap under Walthers...

    Although there are many naysayers, we can still hope... But even if one was a pessimist and saw LL dying the death, the optimists amongst us would say that that might be a good thing -- removing the cheapest of the cheap might create an opportunity for new manufacturers to smell an opening in the N-market and surprise us even now...
  5. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Steve,What I am about to say is full speculation on my part on how I see Walthers/LL deal.
    Now we have heard of some of the problems LL had with their engines these problems range from crack gears,slop in the drivers of the 0-8-0 and 0-6-0 and some of he inaccuracies in the details of the P2K line including the GP38-2 short hood being to short and the trucks on the SD50/60s being to thick.We see how the last production run of the N scale GP20 raised in price.
    Now,I suspect Walther's will exploit LL N scale line including the train set line in order to go head to head with Athearn's MDC line of N scale cars and engines.However,IF Walthers does not improve the LL car then that race is lost to Athearn/ MDC. IMHO the Walthers line of cars isn't all that great compared to the Atlas and MDC line of freight cars.I will not use the high end line of N scale cars such as Red Caboose,IM,MT,etc for this comparison.
    Now Walthers is facing a very heavy hitter in the world of N scale.And that heavy hitter is none other then Atlas.Sorry,I don't really count Kato has a heavy hitter but,a minor player due to the simple fact that Atlas and MDC has more to products to offer.Still Kato is a force to be reckoned with even with their low line of products.
    As far as locomotives..IF Walthers plays their card right and don't try to cut corners in order to regain the capital paid for LL they should introduce a line of locomotives with drives based on the GP20 drive..IF Walthers will do that then there only real competitor will be Atlas as compatible locomotives since Athearn seems to be struggling perfecting a N scale drive.
    So,again its much to early to tell..
    And again this is full speculation on my part on how I see Walthers/LL deal.

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