Yes, we have no bananas. But we have boxcars and locomotives!
Rapido Newsletter Vol. 95 
©2017 Rapido Trains Inc.
Dear Rapido Customer,

Welcome to the latest edition of Rapido News! Wow - I can't believe we've written 95 of these things since June 2006. I wonder if anyone still has them all? For the 100th issue, we'll have a wild party. 
In this issue: 
NP Boxcar Rapido
These only took us two years....
Hand-painted pre-production samples shown.
HO Scale Northern Pacific Boxcar - Relaunch!

Transition-era model railroaders have been short changed lately by all the focus on modern freight cars by the mainstream manufacturers. Never fear - Rapido has got your back! Here's a gorgeous model of a transition-era freight car that is sorely needed - the Northern Pacific 10,000-Series Boxcar!

In 2015 we ventured into uncharted waters with our first 100% accurate Northern Pacific prototype. With the help of the NPRHA (Northern Pacific Railway Historical Association), we designed the first ever ready-to-run model of NP's ubiquitous double-sheathed 10,000-series boxcars. These cars could be found on freight trains all over North America from the 1920s to the 1960s.

Then we cut the tooling. And that's when our troubles began.
NP Rapido Reject
The first sample was rejected in 2016.
The first samples had all sorts of problems. The grooves between the boards were too big and the end details were too chunky. But those weren't the biggest issue. We discovered that the cars were resheathed around the time of the Second World War. That meant that our NP Boxcar, with its 82 boards per side, would be inaccurate for the vast majority of model railroaders who model the transition era and want these cars on their layouts.

So... it was time to make some changes! The first thing we did was retool the sides. (We still need to tweak the doors.) The next step was to replace the coupler cut lever and other end hardware with wire and etched metal parts where possible. This really improved the ends. Have a look:
Northern Pacific Boxcar
Now that's a LOT better!
Hand-painted pre-production sample.
Our NP Boxcars feature either K-brakes or AB brakes, depending on the paint scheme.
freight car K brake
K brakes on the early schemes.
Hand-painted pre-production sample.
freight car ab brakes
AB brakes on the later schemes.
Hand-painted pre-production sample.
Our NP Boxcar is available in the following paint schemes:
  • NP Pre-War    
  • NP 36" Monad (Red Ends)    
  • NP 36" Monad (Black Ends)    
  • NP "Main Street..."
  • NP Company Service
  • Undecorated

The MSRP is $49.95. They are available as four-packs with different numbers or as single cars with a random number from the four-pack. Popular schemes have two different four-packs available.


The order deadline is April 30th. Delivery is later in 2018. You can see these in person in the east at the Springfield Show in West Springfield, MA, in January and in the west at the Rocky Mountain Train Show in Denver in March.


Click here for more information or to order direct. Don't wait until the last minute - we don't make inventory!  

Easy-Peasy Lighting
Comparison of our HO scale Easy-Peasy Lighting:
102003 - Battery powered, full size
102013 - Battery powered, "shorty"
102033 - Track powered
New Track-Powered "Easy-Peasy" Lighting

Our "Easy-Peasy" battery-powered passenger car lighting has been a staple of the hobby for over a decade. We've sold well over 100,000 sets! We recently redesigned them to have surface-mount LEDs and warm white lighting. All of our lighting sets are in stock. (New to "Easy-Peasy"? Click here for HO scale and click here for N scale info.)

For the first time, we're offering track-powered "Easy-Peasy" lighting. It works in DC and DCC and has solder pads at both ends for flexibility. Like our other "Easy-Peasy" kits, you turn the lighting on and off by waving the Rapido Lighter over the roof of your passenger car above the reed switch.

To install the track-powered Easy-Peasy lighting, just wire the lighting PCB to your truck pickups and you're done. You can even use these for lighting platform shelters and other buildings, and you will never need to change another battery again! Click here for more info.

The price is $15.95 per set and the item number is 102033. Our factory put these in our standard Easy-Peasy packaging so that means they, um... come with batteries. Give the batteries to your O scale friends to use as hockey pucks.
41-BNO-11 Truck
41-BNO-11 Truck with electrical pickups
Want to upgrade your Super Continental Line passenger cars to track-powered lighting? We also offer 41-BNO-11 trucks as used on most of the Super Continental Line cars with electrical pickups already installed! The wheelsets feature needlepoint axles in phosphor bronze sheet bearings, so these trucks are even more free-wheeling than our originals.

The price is still $14.95 a pair and the product number is 102001. Click here for info.

If you want to order trucks and lighting in bulk, please contact your dealer or get in touch directly.
3D rendering of our new HO scale Santa Fe RDC DC-192
HO Scale Santa Fe RDCs In Tooling

Our new HO scale Santa Fe RDC set has been a home run. So far, Santa Fe accounts for half of ALL of our second run RDC sales. Thank you to everyone who has ordered one of these unique sets. This is our first 100% accurate Santa Fe model and it's great to see the support from ATSF modelers, many of whom have never ordered a Rapido product before. Please spread the word, as we're sure there are thousands of ATSF guys that we haven't reached yet.
Santa Fe Rapido
A gorgeous photo of ATSF DC-191 and DC-192 in action!
Photo by William A. Gibson Sr. (Bill), courtesy of William A. Gibson Jr. (Art).
Our Santa Fe RDC set features the revised end tooling, all new sides and interior arrangement for DC-192, the intake vent covers, working Gyralites on the end doors, new pilots, steps, etc. This ain't a warbonnet paint job on a stock RDC model.
The rear of DC-192 features a diaphragm and lacks a pilot, just like the prototype.
We're not just doing the Santa Fe set. We're also doing the RDC-2 and RDC-3 in a variety of paint schemes. (And some more RDC-1s!)

Scroll down to see them all!
Rapido RDC
Rapido RDC
Rapido RDC
Rapido RDC
Rapido RDC
Rapido RDC
For the three of you still reading, you'll be pleased to know that we are also tooling a bunch of new prototype-specific details, such as Alaska Railroad strobe lights and horns, Northern Pacific stainless steel logo panels and plows, blanked windows for Great Northern, a snack bar for VIA Rail Canada, etc.

The MSRP is still $225 (DC/Silent) and $325 (DC/DCC/Sound). There will be a price increase before the next production run so make sure you order yours today. We also make stainless steel, unlettered versions.

Full information about our new run of RDCs can be found here. Please remember the order deadline: February 9th!
N scale GMD1
Here's our new 1100-series GMD-1 in the most popular paint scheme.
Pre-production sample shown. 
More N scale GMD-1s!

Orders are starting to come in for the 1100-series GMD-1s that we announced in our last newsletter, so today I took a picture of one on Mike's Samuel Ridge layout. Man he was a good modeller. See if you can spot the moose in the photo. Click here for more information about the CN 1100-series GMD-1.

Here's an amazing photo of THREE 1100-series GMD-1 locomotives hauling... three freight cars and a van! This is just begging to be modelled! You can get the engines from us and the van from Prairie Shadows. Beauty!
1100 GMD1
If anyone ever says you have too many engines on your layout, show them this photo.
Picture taken in Winnipeg in 1994, courtesy John Eull.
In addition, we are pleased to announce the Southern Railway of British Columbia GMD-1. This model will be an exclusive for PWRS.
Southern Railway of British Columbia GMD-1
Photo courtesy Mark Forseille.
Click here to reserve your N scale SRY GMD-1 from PWRS.

Click here for more information about the Rapido N scale GMD-1.

Click here to watch an episode of The New Adventures of Pinocchio.
Rapido Dash 8-40CM
The latest arrivals from the Rapido factory...
Factory and Delivery Updates

After several slow months, the floodgates have finally opened! Lots of shipments arriving or en route.

Just arrived:
  • HO scale FA-2 - second shipment (in stores)
  • HO scale Dash 8 - first shipment (in stores)
  • HO scale Dash 8 - second shipment (shipping now)
Model TTC Bus
Production model of our New Look Bus. Beauty, eh?
Coming soon:
Here are some factory photos: 
Rapido Bus
It's a TTC bus garage in HO scale!
Rapido LRC Factory
Painting the first "Lifesaver" CN hopper car that ISN'T a foobie!  
This scheme has been produced many times by manufacturers on the longer 4550 hoppers.
In real life it only appeared on our shorter 3800 hopper.
SW1200RS shells are in the printing room!
At the factory these days, everyone is wearing a sweater or a jacket. There is no heat in southern China even though it gets down to about 12 degrees Celsius in December and January. Like the common British attitude towards air conditioning, the Chinese attitude is "why should we spend so much money to install heating for only a few weeks? Just wear a sweater!" Even classy hotels don't have heat. And I'm spending the first two weeks of December there. Joy. I haven't yet figured out how to type with my gloves on...

(Of course, I lived in the UK during the three hottest summers on record and I didn't have air conditioning. Vinyl chairs had to be avoided at all costs!)
Mike Loyst
Mike's Busy Office-Cave
Introducing Mike Loyst

We'd like to introduce you to our newest full-time employee, Mike "Lotus" Loyst. I call him "Lotus" because I can't pronounce Loyst. Just "aks" him. The nickname has gone "nucular" with the "upmost" speed. He can't "ecscape" it. I'll stop...

Mike started with Rapido in the summer and has only been fired seven times since then, usually for drooling over GEVOs instead of 1950s roadswitchers. He has been model railroading for most of his (very young) life, and he is a well-known personality in the modelling scene around the sprawling metropolis of Barrie, Ontario.

Mike is multi-talented - he built our VIA Rail "Canada 150" online shopping cart from the ground up and it worked (almost) flawlessly. He is responsible for all customer warranty repairs and is taking over even more duties as he gets used to our "seat of the pants" business model.

Mike is the third Mike to work at Rapido, and the second Rapido Mike to be an N scale modeller. It is now official company policy only to hire people named Dan or Mike.
Radiator Grille
Sure - why don't we give this to you?
So You Want Our Drawings?

Would it ever occur to you to contact Apple and say, "I really like your computers but I can't afford one. Can you please send me your designs so I can make one myself?" Or how about contacting Ford and saying, "I'm making a copy of your Flex in Minecraft - can you please send me your 3D blueprints?"

I'm guessing you answered "no" to both of those. That is why we've been quite perplexed by the number of people contacting us lately and asking us for our model designs. Sometimes they want to create a copy in a video game. Sometimes they want to build their own in another scale. Sometimes they want to build their own in the same scale!
Drawing F40
Or how about this?
We're guessing that most of the people asking for our confidential proprietary information are younger modellers, but of course there is no way to be sure. We just can't imagine someone who has spent 30 or 40 years in the workforce asking for this kind of stuff. 

Our R&D budget is more than $400,000 per year. That's what it costs to pay all of the engineers in Canada, the United States and China to design our model trains. It involves spending hundreds of hours taking measurements and poring over photos; tracking down long-lost blueprints; commissioning 3D scans and transcribing the data; communicating back and forth with our team in China; building mockups to test functionality; experimenting to develop neat ideas like Easy-Peasy lighting and the APT-E close coupling and tilt system; etc.
Rapido Truck
What about this?
So, unfortunately we can't give you our drawings. If you are a young person wanting our drawings and you genuinely didn't know what is involved in designing a model train, have no worries. If this is what you are passionate about, you have a whole lifetime ahead of you to become proficient at designing stuff, and maybe you will work for Rapido one day designing trains for everyone!

If you are an older person who should know better, you are more than welcome to buy one of our models and make your own drawings from it! And think - when you are done your drawings, you have a really nice model train to play with! I hope that didn't come across as too sardonic.

TTC Hillcrest
TTC Duncan Shop employees get a kick out of the Rapido Bus!
Rapido Bus Meets Toronto Bus!

Rapido is very much part of a community of rail and transit enthusiasts. That's why it's so wonderful when we break down the barriers between the fans and the people who maintain and operate the real things.
Rapido Bus TTC
I got to wear the uniform and everything!
Well, it's a 1970s uniform...
Dan, Dan, Jordan, Josh and I took the Rapido Bus to visit the Toronto Transit Commission's Duncan Shop in their massive Hillcrest maintenance facility. There we met the people who maintain and rebuild the real buses, and most remembered working on the TTC fishbowls. They were only retired six years ago!
Riding the Rapido Bus
Taking some of the guys for a spin!
This was a wonderful opportunity to introduce the hobby of model building and collecting to the guys who deal with the real thing every day. It also taught some of the younger workers about what it's like to ride in one of these old buses. The TTC is restoring two of their own New Looks, but neither of them is running yet. Kudos to Grant Huston at the TTC for organizing this.

Here is one of the New Look buses that the Duncan Shop staff is restoring in their spare time. It's going to be gorgeous!
TTC 2252
TTC New Look 2252
In 1993 I visited Hillcrest because I wanted to buy an old TTC New Look, paint it maroon and cream, and drive it across the country. (We finally did this in 2016 - click here to watch the video!) I have to admit, driving our Rapido Bus to Hillcrest was literally a dream come true. When I was a kid I would often dream about driving TTC buses, usually without permission! This was real life, and we even got permission!
TTC Hillcrest
That guy at the wheel? That's me! Woo-hoo!
On that wonderfully positive note, I will bid you adieu. I will be in touch in about a month with a brand-new (as opposed to slightly-new) HO scale locomotive announcement. Another brand-new HO scale locomotive will be announced in January once we sort out a license agreement with the operator. We have a new N scale locomotive to announce as well but we're not ready with samples yet for that. Expect it in the new year.

Thanks to the one of you who is still reading (my Uncle Michael, probably) and I look forward to speaking with you soon!

All the best,


Jason Shron
Rapido Trains Inc.

P.S. I've really caught the bus bug bad... Here is the latest drawing of our new British double decker bus, and I am the project manager for this so it's my baby. It's the most detailed small scale double decker bus model ever made. It goes into tooling in January. More info here.
Rapido Birmingham Bus
Our first 1:76 scale model bus - gorgeous!
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