Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

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Backshophoss
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Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by Backshophoss » Tue Jul 31, 2018 12:59 am

Anybody having preordered models from Bowser may be in for a LONG WAIT, Bowser's contract factory in China has CLOSED,reasons unknown!!

Not sure if this is a repeat of what happened to Athearn years ago,or due to the current tariff issues.

Only time will tell if this will affect other factories in China for Bachmann,Rapido,and other model RR suppliers.
Last edited by John_Perkowski on Wed Aug 01, 2018 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Some political language cleanup, per a report.
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scottychaos
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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by scottychaos » Tue Jul 31, 2018 6:39 am

Intermountain is also impacted by this same factory closing:

https://www.intermountain-railway.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Backshophoss
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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by Backshophoss » Tue Jul 31, 2018 7:31 pm

Atlas also effected,used same factory! :( :( :(

Add on Fox Valley,Bulford Shops,Trainworx,Exactarail,and Wheels of Time. :( :(
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glennk419
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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by glennk419 » Mon Aug 06, 2018 10:41 am

Not good news at all, especially with the holiday season quickly approaching.

Glad that I got my latest batch of Atlas items.
Glenn

CNJ999
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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by CNJ999 » Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:48 am

If I recall correctly, the model train industry was already down to only two major factories manufacturing all our trains. One supplied Bachmann exclusively IIRC, while the other handled most other sellers like Atlas, Boswer, Intermountain, etc. Many of us will recall what happened when Atlas lost its track supplier several years back and the hobby when all but trackless for the better part of a year! I worry that the trade difficulties between us and China are going to have an even bigger impact on the hobby this time around in addition to this factory loss. There really is very little to be gained, or lost, on model trains economically, but if increased across the board tariffs are imposed, watch out.

CNJ999

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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by umtrr-author » Sun Aug 19, 2018 10:14 am

Some commentary on this from long time member of the model railroad community, Jim Conway (Con-Cor):

https://www.con-cor.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

There have been apparently vicious rumors that Micro-Trains was going to "shut down" because of this, however the only product impacted is their N Scale FT locomotive chassis and they have enough of those for a while. Their rolling stock in N and Z is still made in the USA.
George in Rochester NY
The Unofficial Micro-Trains Release Report (among other things)

Backshophoss
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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by Backshophoss » Sun Aug 19, 2018 3:29 pm

At least 1 UK supplier has been affected,Dapol,they make the track cleaner/vacuum car in HO/OO for Atlas.
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Engineer Spike
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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by Engineer Spike » Fri Sep 21, 2018 8:56 pm

This is a big joke. Athearn couldn’t wait for Irv to drop dead to ship their production overseas. Maybe the industry should bring production to this country. I’m sure that there are plenty of die makers, and injection molding plants left in the US and Canada.

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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by umtrr-author » Mon Sep 24, 2018 7:27 pm

Jason Shron of Rapido Trains has addressed the idea of bringing production back to the US (or Canada). His take: He'd be happy to do it as long as you're happy to pay lots more for model trains.
George in Rochester NY
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Engineer Spike
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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by Engineer Spike » Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:30 am

I think the main issue is that people aren’t willing to spend the time to detail engines anymore. Irv Athearn kept his costs down by selling a quality shell and chassis. The real labor intensive part of the manufacturing process is adding the details. The end customer was put in the position of deciding whether or not to detail the model. The aftermarket parts companies like Detail Associats, and Details West were there to supply the parts. Beside the labor of adding the parts, the modern manufacturer can’t just do a million of the same thing. Modelers now expect the model to be correct for the prototype. Railroad A used such-and-such type of plows, and Leslie horns. B uses a different style plow, but uses Nathan horns. Each change costs money.

I think that you can see how Athearn kept the costs low. He also made such a high volume, that it was efficient to make a few thousand SD40-2s, then they would go on hiatus, and GP38-2 was produced en mass. Even the details included were installed by the end purchaser. Nobody can produce what is now expected, pay a living wage, and still sell at a reasonable price. This is why China is so attractive. They can pay a dollar a day, with no lunch or potty break.

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Re: Bowsers Chinese Factory Closed

Post by glennk419 » Thu Jan 24, 2019 11:50 am

Latest update from Atlas received in an email today:

Atlas Rolling Stock and Locomotive Production Update

January 23, 2019

Dear Atlas Insider,

Atlas was notified early July 2018 that a primary rolling stock and locomotive supplier would be closing its factory doors. Atlas immediately sent company representatives to the supplier to begin the transfer of Atlas molds and drawings and to plan production for materials in process. We are pleased to announce that all Atlas molds and recent supplier drawings have been transferred to an Atlas centralized warehouse where molds are being distributed to select suppliers and returned to the central warehouse upon production run completion.

In addition, Atlas was able to organize the production of all open purchase orders and they have been scheduled for completion throughout 2019. The most recent container has been shipped and is due to arrive at Atlas’ main warehouse in February. A list of these items will be posted next week. Keep checking the updated Atlas A-Z production schedule (found on the Atlas website) and the Atlas Blog for updates.

In the meantime, Atlas continues to work with both proven past suppliers as well as a select group of new suppliers to meet the growing demand of Atlas customers for high quality Atlas prototypical products. Atlas will be producing a wide variety of new and established model railroad products in all major scales throughout 2019. Stay tuned for more great news and product announcements from Atlas--including new tooling for two HO freight cars. Springfield Show announcements are available on the Atlas website as of Saturday AM.

As always, thank you for your support and interest in Atlas products and services.

Sincerely,

Paul Graf, CEO
Atlas Model Railroad Co. Inc
Atlas Model Railroad Co. Inc
Glenn

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