Fact checking Kato rumor

gcav17 Feb 10, 2014

  1. Dave

    Dave Permanently dispatched

    I wish Kato would re-release the Mikado in about a dozen roadnames with all detail parts applied AND re-stock parts for the Mikado. Their Mikado has been known as one of the best, if not the best, steamer in N-Scale. And, as others have mentioned, why not make the 4-8-4's? They must know something we don't but they are making new steam for the Japanese market.
  2. OMG!Trains

    OMG!Trains TrainBoard Member

    The US has twice the population of Japan.

    The model railroading community in Japan is 4-5 times the size of the US community.
  3. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 HOn30 & N Scales Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Japan is a much more rail conscious society.
  4. Traindork

    Traindork TrainBoard Member

    Kato could quit the US market and I wouldn't care. They're releasing the Japanese E7 in April, along with the Imperial train!
    They already get enough of my money with their Shinkansen.
  5. gcav17

    gcav17 TrainBoard Member

    It surprise me how much more Japan and its kids love model trains. Our society here has the same tech type society. And we cant match their sales or even surpass it?

    Sent from my Commando
  6. jdcolombo

    jdcolombo TrainBoard Member

    People in Japan depend on trains for everyday intercity transportation. They are familiar with them for that reason, and respect the speed/efficiency, particularly for engineering marvels like the Shinkansen.

    Here in the U.S. trains are simply not part of the everyday transportation psyche. Sure, folks in Chicago and New York ride trains to work, but most (in Chicago anyway) drive. The subway or the EL are trains, but they aren't - no one thinks of them in the same way as we think of intercity transportation, which in the U.S. is air/car. For the vast majority of the population, Amtrak doesn't exist.

    Our passenger transportation system is a disaster. Europe understands that short haul is car; medium haul is train; and long-haul is air. Their trains go to airports; you can hop on a train in Frankfort's airport and get to anywhere in Germany; the Italians would never think of flying from Rome to Florence - you take a train.

    There was a time in our history where a Chicago-NYC train on the Pennsy or NYC ran on a 13-hour schedule. Today, Amtrak runs Chicago-NYC on a 20-hour schedule. This is hardly progress.

    No wonder the Japanese are more interested in trains.

    John C.
  7. gcav17

    gcav17 TrainBoard Member

    Here! Here! Three drinks for Columbo!!!

    Sent from my Commando
  8. Ike the BN Freak

    Ike the BN Freak TrainBoard Member

  9. WPZephyrFan

    WPZephyrFan TrainBoard Member

    I hear ya, Brother! Also, I have two Kato Japanese steam locos, a C62 4-6-4 and a D51 2-8-2. Both run like Swiss watches. I would love more American steamers from Kato. They'd be beauties!
  10. mmagliaro

    mmagliaro TrainBoard Member

    I highly doubt they will rerun the Mikado. You may recall that a few years
    back, they blew out thousands of complete Mikado mechanisms, including drivers, motor, frame, and all the
    rods and valve gear, for only $20 each. It was a kitbasher's delight (and I was delighted).
    But the reason was that they were parting out thousands of Mikados that they felt they simply couldn't sell.

    As a company, one has to produce models you know will be profitable and meet your highest market demand.
    The Mikado is obviously way down there on that list if they parted all those engines out.

    I suppose they could retool it to make it DCC ready, with all details attached, and traction tire preinstalled -
    all things that the American market grouses about with the Mikado. But what's in it for them? Not much.
  11. gcav17

    gcav17 TrainBoard Member

    How long did those parts last? If they sold fast, then they are missing out. But then again. Since we are always gonna be a limited market, maybe this is all for naught...... :(

    Sent from my Commando
  12. nightmare0331

    nightmare0331 TrainBoard Member

    That's not quite right...

    There weren't thousands blown out. maybe a couple hundred mechanisms and other various bits from cannabalized units which were originally raided to supply replacement tender trucks and detail parts. It's not that the Mikados didn't sell...it's that they were unsalable as complete units. The last run of CB&Q and undec units didn't really move at rocket speed either, although once DCC started getting installed under the Kobo program the last ones moved pretty well.


  13. Dave

    Dave Permanently dispatched

    I believe the last run of Mikados were only the two CB&Q units with the detail parts installed. Also, I am fairly sure the only DCC installed Mikado that Kato produced was the really high dollar one ($450 +/-) with the firebox light and the DCC controlled rear coupler. I vaguely remember them selling those mechanism pieces cheap but I think that was before the last run of Mikados was done.

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