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Model Railroading
  

We Share Your Passion For Collecting!

We’re not just your average every day Train store...
We know about trains...

Not everyone on our staff is a train expert, but they’re never more than a few feet away from one. We staff in house train experts because we know that nothing beats talking to the guy who just knows all the answers. We’ve also cataloged descriptions, pricing history, and photographs for over 250,000 items. We like to think of it as our own “little” (150+ Gigabyte) digital train expert.

We know how to fix trains...
We know it’s all in details...

Trains are your hobby, and we wouldn’t dare take the fun away. We understand how important all the little things are, so we strive to provide as much detail as we can. We use detailed item descriptions, high resolution photos, and industry standard TCA grading. It’s a lot of work, but it’s worth it to make sure you’re never disappointed by something that wasn’t quite what you expected.

TCA Grading Standards
The following Condition and Grading Standards apply to all toy train and related accessory items. The items that are being evaluated may or may not include the original box. Boxes and other paper are subject to a separate set of grading and condition standards. Standards for all toy train related accessory items apply to the visual appearance of the item and do not consider the operating functionality of the equipment.

Condition and Grading Standards are subjective, at best, and are intended to act as a guide. It is important and logical that wishful thinking not be allowed to influence the choice of grade.
- Item Standards
C-10
Mint - Brand New: All original; unused and unblemished.
C-9
Factory New - Brand New: all original; unused; may evidence factory rubs and the slightest evidence of handling, shipping and having been test run at the factory.
C-8
Like New - Complete all original: no rust, no missing parts; may show effects of being on display and/or age; may have been run.
C-7
Excellent - All original: minute scratches and paint nicks; no rust and no missing parts; no distortion of component parts.
C-6
Very Good - Minor scratches and paint nicks, minor spots of surface rust, free of dents. May have minor parts replaced.
C-5
Good - Sign of play wear: scratches and minor paint loss. Small dents, minor surface rust. Evidence of heavy use
C-4
Fair - Scratched, moderate paint loss, dented missing parts, surface rust. Evidence of heavy use.
C-3
Poor - Requires major body repair: Heavily scratched, major rust and missing parts. Restoration candidate.
C-2
Restoration required.
C-1
Junk - parts value only.
- Restored / Refinished Item Standards
R-5 Professional Grade - Restored in all aspects of finish and detail as when manufactured: Finished in correct type of paint, color, texture and gloss. All wiring exactly matches the original. All trim in correct finish or plating. Virtually identical to the original. No surface imperfections in the metal work. No wear or evidence of use present. Authentic in all aspects.
R-4 Very Good - Restored to a general high standard: However, noticeable differences exist particularly with respect to the color, finish, and texture of paint when compared to an original piece.
R-3 Good - A restored piece that has signs of play wear with minor dents and scratches.
R-2 Fair - A non-professional restoration: Color, texture and finish clearly different from the original. Other items, such as non-authentic wiring are also evident.
R-1 Poor - A poorly constructed restoration in all respects: May be a candidate for restoration. Includes dents or rust pitting under the finish.
- Paper/Box Grading Standards
P-10 Good—Sign of play wear: scratches and minor paint loss. Small dents, minor surface rust. Evidence of heavy use
P-9 Complete and all original and unused. May have merchant additions such as store stamps, price tags et al. Boxes must have inner liner/s, if appropriate.
P-8 LIKE NEW Complete and all original. Evidence of light use and aging, additional notations since leaving publisher or manufacturer. Contents of box may be missing.
P-7 EXCELLENT Complete and all original. Handling indentations, minute edge wear, small creases.
P-6 VERY GOOD Complete and all original. Minor abrasions, creases and/or folds. Small tears, slight color changes, minor soiling. Box may have inner liner/s missing.
P-5 GOOD Items show substantial wear. Moderate abrasions, creases and/or folds; moderate tears and losses. Moderate color changes, staples may be rusty or replaced. May have been repaired with archival tissue and adhesive.
P-4 FAIR Heavy damage but generally legible. May or may not have been repaired. Paper may be brittle. Boxes may have inner fl aps missing.
P-3 POOR Incomplete, may be very brittle, signifi cant deterioration. Extensive amateur repairs. (Scotch Tape ® or equivalent).
Source: TCA Members - Standards [http://www.tcamembers.org/standards/index.htm]


We stand behind our words...

Our new items carry a 100% satisfaction guarantee, while our used (collectible) items carry a listing accuracy guarantee. Just let us know of an issue within 30 days of receiving your item and we'll walk you through the available options. Depending on the situation we can arrange for a return and refund, provide a credit, or arrange for our repair staff to fix your item.

Quality, Integrity, and Accountability are at the base of our core values. We first strive to do it right, and when we don’t, we make it right. We stand behind and guarantee the accuracy of our listings. Put simply that means you’ll get what you thought you would get, and it will work the way you thought it would work. Our listings clearly state whether or not an item works, if we said it does and it doesn’t, we’ll make it right. If we said an engine was black, and it's really blue, we'll make it right.

The subjective nature of grading means we can’t always guarantee that our C-7 will perfectly match your C-7, but we promise to be consistent in how we grade and to provide you with enough detail in the descriptions and photographs to make your own call.

We buy trains too...

Trains don’t grow on trees; we get most of our collections from collectors like you. If you’re interested in selling your collection, or know someone who is (we pay finders fees), let us know.

We run on passionate people...

It takes a lot of expertise to keep this place on track. In exchange for people bringing their own passions to help us be our best, we overlook that they’re not all train folk. These are a few of the people who keep us running, and do their best every day to share your passion for collecting.

  • Scott – Chief Engineer
  • Milinda – The Office Mom (Also the bosses wife)
  • Carlie – Train Buyer
  • Stephanie – General Manager
  • Monica – Accounting
  • Billy – Marketing and Technology
  • Cindy – Inventory Lead
  • Adam – Repair Lead
  • Kristen – Shipping Lead
We owe everything to you...

It’s easy to say thank you, it’s much harder to be thankful. We know that there’d be no reason to do all the things we do if it wasn’t for our old customers, our new customers, and our soon to be customers. So far all of you, and all you allow us to do, we are very sincerely thankful.