Keep or Sell?

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by Del Monte, Jan 31, 2005.

  1. Del Monte

    Del Monte New Member

    My problem is that all but three of the 30+ pieces of rolling stock are old Tyco and Bachmann from my childhood and certainly will not go with my plans of a prototypical look. Should I list them on Ebay and take the money and spend it on some better freight cars or should I keep them? If I keep them, can they be converted to Kadee couplers? I've been told by a seasoned dealer it's difficult for truck mounted couplers to work right after they have had Kadee's installed. Is he right or is he trying to make a sale. This next question is a toughy. How do you determine what kind of freight cars to have on your layout? Is it based on geometry (location or era of your layout), or is it simply a matter of picking and choosing what's on sale? Looking through Walthers you can drop a pile of cash on cars and buying the wrong type or kind would suck if your working for a "right" look. I'd like to think there is an easy of way picking what belongs on your layout. Any tips? Thanks.

  2. CalFlash

    CalFlash Member

    A chain is only as strong as the weakest link. Old low end rolling stock and structures will limit your modeling. I would recommend getting rid of them if you can and spend your time and money on something finer and better detailed. Choice depends on what you plan to protray and the era. IMHO the P2K rolling stock (and similiar level kits from others) are a boon to the hobby. Great detail and fidelity all included with little or no modification required. Lots of parts but straightforeward assembly.
  3. Will_annand

    Will_annand Active Member

    Must be the Scotsman in me, I would not get rid of them, I would change the trucks and couplers to Kadee, several in our model railway club have donw this and they work fine.

    Apply lots of paint and weatheringing to take away the "toy train" look. Somewhere there are pictures of one Gauger who took N Scale Bachmann train set rolling stock (can't get anymore toy-like than that, weathered and re-trucked them into passible models.

    As to what type of rolling stock, that depend on era and location, only if you are being prototypical. What it really depends on is the industry on the layout.
  4. XavierJ123

    XavierJ123 Member

    After reading "Playing with Trains," I am in agreement with the author. There are two schools of thought: prototype layouts versus "whatever your heart desires." I am in favor of the later and if prototype is what your heart desires, they go for it. As far as the old Bachman, I would keep them for now. If you find you just can't use them in the future, then sell them on eBay and buy something nicer.
  5. Fred_M

    Fred_M Guest

    Keep them for the sentimental value, they are only worth a buck or two on ebay if you even get bids. Your dealer is correct, kinda. Kadee makes a talgo adapter which allows kadees to be put into talgo trucks (it's a little plastic clip thingy). But there is no way to install the centering spring when doing so. So then the couples flop around in the pockets. What were they thinking, LOL? Anyway, use the kadee talgo adapter and Bachmann EZmateII short centered couplers instead of the kadee couplers. The EZmat II (don't use the regular EZmate!) have a built in centering spring and they work very well with the talgo adapter in talgo trucks, almost as good as body mounted couplers. The II's have the coil latch spring instead of that horrible whisker and stay latched. I have 30+ of them old cars running talgos this way and they couple up and work great. Fred
  6. CalFlash

    CalFlash Member

    I know it's a personal choice but there is more than the $ involved. Time considerations are valid too and to me time spent on old stuff (that you'd probably get rid of eventually) is time wasted. There is no need to rush to build a giant fleet at once. Pick a quality level you're comfortable with and build at you're own pace.
  7. Roger Hensley

    Roger Hensley Member

  8. SAL Comet

    SAL Comet Member

    Ha Del, I used the EZMates to convert some of my old tyco, but I didn't used the converter thingy. I didn't know there was such a thingy. All I did was make a little shim to go under the coupler to keep it from saging in the front. They are working fine with the new stuff. I also have a couple cars with one new and one old on it , so I can still use the unconverted cars. It didn't take long after the first one, but I don't mind wasting my time on such things. :p
  9. Fred_M

    Fred_M Guest

    Talgo Adapter....

    BTW, you don't need the special tool, your fingers will work fine. And as always Walthers don't list the quanity per package! I think its 20 per package for $3.20 list. Fred
  10. spitfire

    spitfire Active Member

    I was just reading Tony Koester's book on operations and he had a great suggestion. First, he said don't be too proud to run out of the box rolling stock. It will give you what you need to get started. You can upgrade gradually and as you do, you can make your old rolling stock available to someone who is just starting in the hobby. Whether you sell it or give it away is up to you. I really liked his idea - the way not-so-great rolling stock becomes something that is handed down from one modeller to another.

  11. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I have run a bunch of old cheap toy rolling stock over the years, and it works fine. I would not change the trucks, just use the "tool" to hone out the side frames and install new wheel sets. I then cut off the coupler pockets from the talgo trucks and body mount Kaddee couplers in Kaddee coupler boxes. A bit of weathering and they will look fine.
  12. Fred_M

    Fred_M Guest

    That sounds great, in theory. I tried to give somebody some atlas undertable switch machines once. All's they had to do was PM me their address and I would of sent them to them, for free. They sounded real interested in chat, but they never PMed me their address. I guess they couldn't believe that I would give them something for free, or maybe they just didn't trust me enough to give me their address? Either way it upset me and made me feel like an idiot for trying to be nice and I felt really down on the giving and trading thing. Took me a while to get over that and give away and/or trade something with another modeler again. So if you try to give something away and the first person don't follow through don't worry. There are lots of modelers who you can trust and buy, trade, and sell to. If you have a bad deal don't feel bad about all the modeling community. There are bad apples in every group. I now trade, buy, sell, and give away to several modelers and enjoy it throughly. One of my coaling towers has even appeared in a magazine on a friend's layout. It can be rewarding and make you feel good if you choose the right people to play with. Have a nice day Fred
  13. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

  14. santafewillie

    santafewillie Member

    Ditto what Russ said, cut off the couplers and body-mount some KD's. Most of the ones I converted didn't even need styrene shims. Sentimental value only...they were given to me by my late mom. A quick spray of dullcote and a little weathering also goes a long way.
  15. Del Monte

    Del Monte New Member

    Thanks to you all for the advise. Roger I appreciate the link. That is a big help. Fred if I'd known you had some under the table switches from Atlas, I would taken them in a heartbeat. I've got six, I'm gonna need four more. English's here I come. (my local dealer)

  16. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Val,I agree with TK..He is quite correct..I am not above buying use cars..I have also given away a few cars to new modelers and one locomotive to help a jr member at the club to have a better locomotive then his train set Bachmann GP40 .No big deal..I just wanted to help the kid out.
  17. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    The old "toy train" rolling stock can be upgraded, kitbashed, or kept for sentimental value. The best use, however, is to use these cars to practice painting, and weathering, or use as "first blood" for a kitbash. If you make a mistake.....oh well. It isn't an expensive new kit, and the learning experience also includes the occasional failure.
  18. hocaboose

    hocaboose New Member

    I've been in the same position and in my humble opinion if the pieces have some sentimental value put them in a display cabinet, otherwise dump or try to sell them. The effort you will need to put in on them is probably better served building better models. Talgo truck couplers are no great shakes, and generally the wheel sets on the toy stuff are cruddy.

    Sorry to be the harbinger of bad news,

  19. kchronister

    kchronister Member

    I went through this exact issue myself. Had boxes of old "toy" trains when I re-entered the hobby.

    If they were worth much of anything (they're not, of course) it might be different. I decided I did NOT want to use them, and got new stuff. But I kept the old stuff tucked away in a couple boxes.

    Flash forward. My little brother at age 13 (22 years younger, second marriage, different father) has decided he wants to do model trains. Suddenly those boxes of brass rail and switches, tyco cars, bachmann engines, etc. look like a gold mine. He can get a great start with my hand-me-downs, and if he sticks with it (a big question with him, he's rather hobby-of-the-week at this age), we'll talk about upgrading him to better stuff.

    A long way of saying set them aside rather than selling them for peanuts. Maybe some you'll weather and find a use for as outlined above. Maybe some will go to the younger generation. Maybe they'll just sit in a box... but you never know.
  20. Del Monte

    Del Monte New Member

    I like your advice sumpter250. The thought of trashing a newly purchased piece of rolling stock because of weathering it wrong, makes these older pieces suddenly have a purpose.


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