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Classic Toy Trains

Classic Toy Trains

December 2020

CLASSIC TOY TRAINS BRINGS YOU O AND S GAUGE FOR THE OPERATOR AND COLLECTOR. SEE THE NEWEST TRAINS FROM LIONEL, MTH, ATLAS O AND OTHERS; LEARN ABOUT TRACK PLANNING, WIRING AND LAYOUT CONSTRUCTION; IDENTIFY AND REPAIR OLD LIONEL AND AMERICAN FLYER TRAINS; AND VISIT THE MOST INSPIRING TOY TRAIN LAYOUTS EVER BUILT.

Pays:
United States
Langue:
English
Éditeur:
Kalmbach Publishing Co. - Magazines
Fréquence:
Monthly
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3 min.
photo album your pictures

JIM STEED’S O GAUGE LAYOUT How many of the numerous holiday gifts you received as a child do you still have? How many of them do you even remember? O gauge enthusiast Jim Steed has no trouble answering either question, not when he continues to operate the Lionel trains presented to him back in the 1950s. A star on his layout (featured in the February 2011 issue of Classic Toy Trains) remains this no. 2344 New York Central F3 A-A combination, shown in a winter scene at home in Blairsville, Ga. MOSS FAMILY’S O GAUGE LAYOUT The colorful and entertaining O gauge model railroad Peter and Beverley Moss always put together for their family to enjoy at the Christmas season seems to demand more planning each year. In addition to tunnels, buildings, and…

3 min.
memories of christmas past

To say the novel coronavirus has made preparation for the holiday season quite different this year would be an understatement! Here’s my best recommendation: Let’s grab a mental aspirin to relieve our headaches and turn our attention to the Christmas seasons of the 1950s. Our memories will cure the frustration, uneasiness, and real anxiety caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. I think back to the Christmas holidays in my hometown in western Pennsylvania as they were in the 1950s when, as in many small towns, the downtown areas served as the focal point of every holiday. Everything anybody needed was available downtown. Banks, the public library, and many different offices were centrally located there. My favorites were the five-and-dime store, the sporting goods stores, and the soda shops. I remember all the parades…

7 min.
christmas classic

I had owned Allied Model Trains since 1975, first in West Los Angeles and then in the Union Station store I built in nearby Culver City. By 1995, we had been a dealer of Department 56 porcelain structures for three years, making a major commitment to the brand. Our sales of those products kept growing, as did the market for exclusive, limited-edition products. We at Allied wanted a part of it. I came up with the idea to have Lionel LLC produce a series of exclusive O gauge freight cars licensed by Department 56 with artwork celebrating its line. Besides the six pieces of unique rolling stock eventually made and marketed, we offered a die-cast metal steam engine and tender to pull the colorful cars. In doing so, we and Lionel…

8 min.
holiday wonders on a compact modular layout

Christmas has been a time of delight and meaning for Leon and Joan Miller since they wed almost 50 years ago. The holidays provide ample opportunities to spend time with their daughter, Jennifer; son, Michael; and their seven grandchildren. No matter their age, everyone loves watching as many as four Lionel or Marx trains run on the modular Christmas layout Leon has built. What has become a wonderful holiday tradition for the Miller family dates back only to the 1980s. Until then, the demands of Leon’s job forced him to postpone getting back to the hobby. But ever since, he has enjoyed building modular three-rail displays filled with winter scenery. What Leon has created offers inspiration and lessons for other enthusiasts, regardless of their years of experience and level of comfort with…

5 min.
lionel’s first postwar promotionals

Marketing for Lionel during the first years of the post-World War II era brought challenges to the country’s preeminent manufacturer of miniature electric trains. Most of all, advertising and sales executives at the firm aimed to present to a public eager for toy trains a wide assortment of outfits. They wanted to offer sets for every level of hobby experience and budget. Individuals and families with lots of dollars to spend should find something. So also should those whose income was more modest. To accomplish those merchandising goals and to satisfy the demands of notable retail accounts during the decade or so preceding World War II, Lionel had occasionally created outfits whose contents were unlike the sets included in its annual cataloged line. The differences generally amounted to the assortment of passenger…

5 min.
family love affair with a prewar set

Somewhere in the Midwest, a 4-year-old boy plays almost every day with a toy train – not a new one but an antique from 1937. As astonishing, the same Lionel O-27 freight kept the youngster’s great-grandfather amused and smiling when it was brought home from a store in Milwaukee and given to him on Christmas morning 83 years ago. In between, the train had entertained the two intervening generations of sons and grandsons in the extended family of Charles and Virginia Ziegler. Let’s share another heart-warming tale of families and electric trains so similar to those presented in the latest special-interest publication from Classic Toy Trains. Iconic photo Much of what 87-year-old Chuck Ziegler has to say about receiving a train on Christmas of 1937 can be gleaned from studying the picture taken…