Tri-ang Railroads in the USA
August 1962 :
The attempted re-launch of the Tri-ang Railways system in the USA
Why will your customers buy Tri-ang ?
August 1962 appears to be the key date when Lines Bros. Inc. aggressively attempted to re-launch the Tri-ang HO Gauge Railroads and HO Gauge Minic Motorways integrated systems, as well as the TT Gauge Table Top Model Railroads, onto the unsuspecting US market.
Why August? Well, sales of model railways across the pond tend to be seasonal and 60-70% of annual sales to the public would reasonably be expected to be made in the period leading up to Christmas.
Note the aggressive marketing slogans.
On this leaflet we are treated to
‘This is not just a toy!’,
‘You will not find Tri-ang sets price-butchered on the drug store counter’,
‘You can make a reasonable profit when you carry and push Tri-ang merchandise’,
‘Tri-ang Minic Motorways are not price footballed’ and
‘This is your way to answer the competition of the discount house and drug store’.
And, the following promotional leaflets continue in the same theme...
Please click on any picture to view a larger image
Tri-ang HO Gauge Railways
You can make a decent profit on these Tri-ang HO Railroads
To support this re-launch retail outlets were targeted.
An 8th Edition Tri-ang Railways Catalogue, a Tri-ang HO Gauge Railways Trade Price List And Order Form (Aug. 1962), note the ‘HO Gauge’, and a single-sided promotional leaflet were provided; no doubt accompanied by an eager salesman promising 40% discount off the retail price!
The intention was to promote both British prototype and American prototype (Transcontinental) ranges but there were serious issues relating to compatibility with existing systems already in use in the US, as was also the case in Canada.
In reality, the models were nothing like HO scale, they were far too large, and
true-to-life accuracy of the models was poor, making them look more like toys than the scale models which the American market was demanding; just stand a Tri-ang ‘Davy Crockett’ alongside its American true-to-scale HO equivalent and the differences scream at you!
This, together with non-realistic liveries and coupling incompatibility did not bode well for the future.