I know it’s been awhile since I’ve been able to post anything but I have been very busy with my new job since the beginning of April. Thankfully though I was able to get away for a few days to attend the Train Collectors Association Eastern Division Spring 2016 York Train Meet, the Comic-Con of the toy train world.
For those of you that don’t know York is a twice annual event that has been going on since 1969 at the York, PA fairgrounds. It has become something of an institution with 12,000 people attending each show and the only reason I’m part of the TCA is so I can go to it. That’s right York is a members only event but you can attend as a guest once and then join the TCA for $50 which has some nice benefits.
There are many halls at York but most everything you’ll want can be found in the Orange Hall which is the largest. Here you will find all the major manufacturers Lionel, MTH, Atlas O, Williams by Bachmann, 3rd Rail, all of the big dealers like Charles Ro, TrainWorld, Mr. Muffin’s, and many more. You will also find all of the major accessory and detail makers like Korber, Scenic Express, JT’s Mega-Steam, etc.
So what did I do at York? Well first off I headed to Lionel’s display to see the new scale Reading T1 model. Lionel traveled to Cleveland, OH, home to the Midwest Railway Preservation Society which is currently restoring a real Reading T1 #2100 to service with the American Steam Railroad Association, to get the real measurements to make the new model. The big announcement in my opinion though was the introduction of the LionScale Product Line. If you though Weaver Models were gone forever put a aside those fears because all of their USA based tooling is now owned by Lionel! Lionel will continue Weaver’s proud tradition of creating scale model rolling stock onsite at their headquarters in Concord, NC. This will undoubtedly fill a need for affordable, mass produced, multi-numbered, scale rolling stock which modelers have been craving more of. I for one am very excited about this as for many years I worked on many projects with Weaver creating custom runs of cars for the Nickel Plate Road, Wheeling & Lake Erie, and Union Pacific.
Remember how I was featured on #HumansforLionel? Lionel wants more people to send in your toy train stories so shoot them an email and a photo of you with your trains and you could be the next feature on their social media accounts!
Next I headed to JT’s Mega-Steam where a picked up two bottles of scented smoke fluid gingerbread and hot chocolate. What’s nice about Mega-Steam is that it does not linger in the air for a long time. It dissipates quickly and they have over 100 different scents to choose from. At the amazing Scenic Express booth I picked up some neat stick on grass tufts to use in between the tracks and yards for some added realism. Personally I would like to have a whole room full of a little of everything from Scenic Express adjacent to the train room so I never run out of supplies.
At Korber Models I picked up something that I have been wanting for a long time, a background building for the Upper Level. Specifically the#707 O Scale Background Grocery Building. This will be the first of many kits that I plan on buying from Korber and I will begin putting it together shortly.
I picked up the last signed copy of the new 3rd Edition of the DCS Companion from the O-Gauge Railroading Publishing Company. If you have MTH trains this book is an essential resource as it contains everything you ever need know about the MTH Digital Command System and Proto-Sound.
I purchased some Lionel t-shirts for fun as I realized that I did not already own one. Then I passed by 3rd Rail where I spotted their Rio Grande 2-8-8-2 and told them the story of how my Great Uncle was friends with the famed railroad artist Howard Fogg and commissioned a painting of a similar looking Rio Grande 3700 series Challenger back in the day.
Finally I checked out Mr. Muffin’s display, introduced myself, and said that I will have to visit his store sometime in the future.