Novelty boxcars

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by Meiriongwril, Mar 4, 2006.

  1. Meiriongwril

    Meiriongwril Member

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    Are there other N-scalers out there who, like me, wonder who buys the novelty boxcars issued by some companies? You know the ones - those with the logos of States, Provinces, Universities, the Military, emblazoned across them.

    They're not prototypical, so who would wnat a train load of states running along rather than a trainload of prototypical (or at least reasonably prototypical) cars? Is it just the patriotic thing that we Europeans don't quite get?
  2. Delamaize

    Delamaize Member

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    It is more of a collectors thing rather than a running thing. Most people who buy those kinds of rolling stock don't run them, usually they are displayed. but like any rule their is exceptions.

    Myself I like the prototypical stuff ;)
  3. johnny b

    johnny b Member

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    Like you I don't really understand the bid deal with the collectable cars . It must be a collecter thing and I doubt that these cars are really used much. I do know that they are very popular and my local hobbie store sells out of them rathher quickly.
  4. brakie

    brakie Active Member

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    Like you I would not want these "foobies" on my layout..I did buy the HO Ohio and Kentucky U-Haul trucks and might buy the Ohio and Kentucky boxcars for display.A friend of mine has a HO John Deere train complete with 6 flat cars with tractors and combines,3 JD boxcars,3 smooth side CSX baggage cars and C&O observation..He calls this his JD "Promotional Train"..The catch? He has 2 JD F7s that his wife got him and he needed a valid excuse to run them on his modern CSX layout.IMHO what he did sounds believable.:D
    Now as far as the fantasy cars I have no problem with them since it helps the manufacturer make money that he can invest in other prototypical engines and cars.:thumb:
  5. screwysquirrel

    screwysquirrel Member

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    Maybe I'm crazy.

    I do occassionally run the fantasy boxcars (like my 'Bazooka Bubble Gum' car), just to see if people notice
  6. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

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    When I was in N scale, I did buy the Model Railroader Magazine's 60th anniversary cars. My mother gave me a car that was decorated for Plymouth Rock in Massachusettes. I never ran them, and I don't have them anymore.
    In Ho I have the MDC Washington Redskins car from their Super Bowl Winners Series. Its only on display.
    I am looking for Ahtearn's USPS Connecticut car right now. Probably the only other "commerative" car I want.
    Even those NASCAR drivers trains, offered by the Danbury Mint, don't excite me.
  7. coachC

    coachC Member

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  8. umtrr-author

    umtrr-author Member

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    When I belonged to an N-Trak club and ran my own trains on it, the "brand name" cars got the most attention.

    These were mostly Micro-Trains billboard reefers, mostly their regular run releases but with a few special runs and a few decaling jobs done by me. This is well before their Special Editions (Pepsi, Smokey, etc.)

    The MTL Special Editions series is, quite frankly, their attempt to expand the market. If someone gets interested in the hobby via a Smokey Bear or States of the Union series, so much the better. And yes, there is collector appeal also, as there is an unknown number (but I think a shrinking number) of people who must own one of everything (aka the "Half-Noah" philosophy).
  9. Sunburn

    Sunburn Member

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    The biggest market, I would imagine, is people buying for their kids. What kid with a train wouldn't love some of those cars? I had a passel of beer cars when I was younger. Not that my Mom loved them, but my Dad got a great deal on them. Miller, Michelob, Olympia and another I forget.:)
  10. brakie

    brakie Active Member

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    Its not only for the kids but,for collectors of all ages..JD,Coke,NFL,MLB,Nascar,old fishing lures,old rods and reels,beer bottles,old fashion radios,clocks etc has a large collectors market..
  11. HPRL

    HPRL Member

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    Well, I am one of those collectors. I am collecting the MTL State of the Union stuff. It is like those collecting State Quarters. I even built my own display shadow box to house my collection. I am also collecting the Lionel Bank Box Cars - O Scale. However, I only purchase those as the bank car fills up with change. My layout is N Scale but I do not run any of my collecting cars. However, my O Scale bank cars do sit on a track and Has a Steam Loco w/Tender.

    That's my 2 cents worth -- :D
  12. ddavidv

    ddavidv Member

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    Odd. I see these special edition cars (states, mostly) languishing on the hobby shop shelves around here.
    I'm not a fan of them, but the Happy Birthday and Smokey Bear ones seem to be a hit with the kids when we set up public displays. Not something we would run at a show with only 'serious' hobbyists though.
    At $10-$15 a pop for cars, I can't afford enough real ones, much less spend money buying 'collectible' cars. :rolleyes: