Model Railroad Train Production – A Lengthy and Exacting Process

The process involved from the design to the production of a model railroad train replica is lengthy. From inception to the material list for parts requires approximately five to seven months, and that is only if everything goes smoothly.

After the engineers have checked the outcome of their designs to be sure they were made per specification and the material choices for each part are confirmed, the purchase orders are ready for release. The companies who submitted bids for the materials are notified, and usually the low bidder receives the award of the contract.

Preparing the artwork can take as much as three months. This is based on how many colors schemes will be used. For instance, the locomotives and cars may come in different colors or have different colored lettering. Some of this work may take place while awaiting the delivery of the parts.

Most of the materials will arrive within two months, but the motor usually takes three. Every single component has to be in hand before production starts on any train. With all the buildup to reach the manufacturing stage, the actual production time for a particular model may only be a few days.

If a particular train model is successful, the production line might restart again during the same year, owing to supply and demand. Most models will run in production twice per year; if they are extremely popular, they may run three or four times. Successful model train manufacturers are the ones who can build a quality product even with a lapse of several months in between production runs.

The time lapse between the initial approval to make a train and the actual production stage ranges between 1 to 1-1/2 years. All the design and preproduction costs are absorbed before the first train “rolls” off the line.

The initial sale of a new train line is usually the most successful, and the following releases drop off about 80{429ab47ec6edc388b6294e86ae75f304ecbd477a894283ff02535d40af3f3097}. This makes the pre-sell of the first run critical to the company as well as generating enough cash to invest in new model development. Successful and timely advertising is crucial for any model train builder.

The preproduction costs for a single model train can exceed the cost of a new home, so it is foolish for any company to have a great many models in the design phase at one time. Careful planning and timing on the development end is as important to a company as the quality of the final product.

Many things go into that little box your model railroad train comes in. Some of the designs are similar from one train to the next, and that helps some on the preproduction time, but there are still many hours spent by many people just to produce your single model.

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