Author Topic: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?  (Read 1276 times)

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OldEastRR

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Rather than hijack the reefer thread, since it seems to be going off on a new direction, I started this and begin with:
If having different paint schemes on an old item is a way to increase sales, then why doesn't Kato make a four-pack set of BL 10-6s for MoPac Eagle scheme, N&W in Pennsy colors and PRR 10-6 in UP colors? Somewhat slightly foobie on the MP, but they did this with UP cars, issuing variation sets for pool railroads.
What about a four-pack (or even two-pack) of B70ms? These cars ran on a huge number of Pennsy trains before and during the streamline era. Think somebody would buy a pack of these rather than buy one BL set for each B70m he needed? All four RPOs in Pennsy colors, different numbers. Sorta late, but they could include the paint  scheme  actually used on the BL's RPO.
These aren't big expensive new tooling items, no obscure paint schemes, no one-offs. Selling these would probably help sell more BL sets, as the variation add-ons could let us model other trains by mixing the sets.
Why don't they do this? Why did Kato do ad infinitum add-on sets for the UP? I suspect that somebody at Kato in mid-management or higher is a keen UP fan who relentlessly finds ways to get UP variations made for sale. I also assume that there is no such person for the PRR there.
And if you wanted to go into fantasy speculation, why not a set of P85s? Switch those in and out for various BL sets and another range of modelable prototypes are possible. And don't say there already is a P85 out. Only a Kato car looks, runs and lights up the way other Kato cars do. No offense to CCS cars, but uniformity of car construction is important for some, at least in passenger trains. Maybe Kato spoiled me with its complete train sets.


peteski

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #1 on: April 16, 2014, 12:04:56 AM »
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Kato does things they own unique way. While Kato USA does provide recommendations to the mothership in Japan, I've been told that the final (and sometimes illogical to the modelers) decisions are made by Kato Japan.
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OldEastRR

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #2 on: April 16, 2014, 12:31:25 AM »
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Doesn't explain why so much UP-themed stuff has been produced. It just isn't a whim.

peteski

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2014, 02:22:10 AM »
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Doesn't explain why so much UP-themed stuff has been produced. It just isn't a whim.

I didn't say that they do things on a whim. But Kato Japan marches to their own beat. Maybe Mr. Kato does like UP.   :D  What appears to Kato's western road bias has been discussed on many forums.
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MichaelWinicki

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2014, 09:31:10 AM »
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I can understand Kato's desire to keep producing UP stuff... Beyond its national popularity it's still in operation as opposed to the PRR which has been gone what? 46 years.  That's going to have an affect on who decides what gets made. 

Scottl

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2014, 09:46:04 AM »
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Kato covers a wide variety of interests, especially when you consider their international range of models.  Why do they get pulled out of the hat for PRR? 

I would look to Atlas who are the dominant player in the regionals from that era.

soo

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #6 on: April 16, 2014, 09:46:31 AM »
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Who knows why manufactures do what they do. I personally am tired of the east coast bias.

wyatt

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2014, 10:15:24 AM »
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Working for a manufacturer I can tell you that we look at previous sales results and use them as a basis for future project decisions. We also incorporate customer input (as a whole, not specific requests so much) and market research (aka: see what others are doing that might affect a product release of ours) In general; you get a good sense of what sells and what doesn't. Oddly enough, it's often the road names and/or schemes that you are sure will sell that disappoint you.....
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Scottl

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #8 on: April 16, 2014, 10:21:27 AM »
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A very helpful "3000th" post!

lock4244

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2014, 10:24:43 AM »
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I would look to Atlas who are the dominant player in the regionals from that era.

Oh man, the SPF's are gonna be all over that... regional? PRR? Hahahahahaha  :D
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Scottl

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #10 on: April 16, 2014, 10:29:37 AM »
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 :lol:  If it ain't national, it's regional.  I'm qualified to say that.   :)

Scott Lupia

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #11 on: April 16, 2014, 10:40:09 AM »
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There are gobs of railroads untouched by Kato.  Pennsy has had its own set and new locomotive tooled by Kato as well as E's, PA's and other diesels.  Pennsy has been very well represented by Kato and other manufacturers.  I am sure you have already contacted Kato in pursuit of the answer and the Railwire is now where you have turned to in search of others opinions about this issue.  When Kato responds to you please let us all know how they explain their anti-PRR bias.  I am so curious.

Scott Lupia
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bman

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #12 on: April 16, 2014, 11:11:31 AM »
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I have no idea.  I can make all kinds of guesses.  They'd probably be wrong.  As mentioned before, we've been down this road.  The good folks at Kato would be the ones to ask.  I'm sure they have a reason.  And since they are still seemingly a profitable company, it must be working.

bbussey

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #13 on: April 16, 2014, 11:13:17 AM »
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... If having different paint schemes on an old item is a way to increase sales, then why doesn't Kato make a four-pack set of BL 10-6s for MoPac Eagle scheme, N&W in Pennsy colors and PRR 10-6 in UP colors? Somewhat slightly foobie on the MP, but they did this with UP cars, issuing variation sets for pool railroads. ...

Come on now.  First, you hit Atlas over not offering a new FGE-specific plug-door boxcar when they still have a viable 40' plug door boxcar and are in the middle of the PS-1 boxcar rollout.  Now, you're questioning why Kato won't do more Pennsy products, when we just discussed in another thread that the Broadway Limited sales were less robust than other passenger consists that they've released.  On top of that, they've released the esoteric GG-1 (a unit that ran on only a small portion of the Pennsy empire), have kept releasing it in assorted schemes, and have re-run those schemes to keep them constantly in stock — a 20th-century practice that is now the exception rather than the norm.  They've also repurposed some of the passenger cars in post-Pennsy schemes to give the 1970s modelers some joy, as well as issue the E8 in multiple Pennsy schemes and with Pennsy-specific details.  Why the grief?

You absolutely can't complain about a misconceived lack of Pennsy products.  For a road that's been extinct for nearly half a century, there is a ton of prototypically-correct Pennsy product available in N — from Trainman-level quality all the way up to highly-detailed models.  Motive power, rolling stock, and structures.  The hardest part of modeling Pennsy in N is deciding which sliver of the empire to model.  Procuring prototypically-accurate Pennsy equipment in N scale is not a problem.

And regarding your "Pennsy equipment decorated for other roads" statement, Centralia has released accurate models of Pennsy sleepers decorated in the liveries of other roads.

I like Pennsy, a lot.  Pennsy and New Haven were practically sister-roads in southwest Connecticut and in Queens NY.  But to hint that there is a derth of Pennsy equipment in N, or that manufacturers are neglecting the road — particularly when there are Pennsy-specific models released nearly every year, including this one — is ridiculous.
« Last Edit: April 16, 2014, 11:22:52 AM by bbussey »
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Denver Road Doug

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Re: Split off from R50b thread: Why doesn't Kato make more PRR stuff?
« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2014, 11:16:22 AM »
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:lol:  If it ain't national, it's regional.  I'm qualified to say that.   :)

Is regional larger or smaller than "third tier"?   :trollface: 8)
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