Dear Rapido Customer,
Here's a quick update on what's been happening at Rapido.
In this issue of Rapido News:
Surprise new product:
CN Club/Lake cars arriving THIS MONTH
OK - we've never done this before. But there is a first time for everything.
CN's modern image "Lake" and "Club" series HO scale Club Galley cars are en route now and will be in stock on December 19th. We've only made 48 of each number, so get them while you can. And the price is still only $69.95. Contact your dealer ASAP or click here to order direct. Product numbers and car names can be found here.
So why did we go this route and actually (shock! horror!) make inventory? We had planned to hold off on doing the noodle cars until a second run of Lake/Club/Green passenger cars, but because of the economy and the overabundance of passenger cars on the market right now it looks like a second run is many years off. So we decided to take the plunge and make them with the first run so that CN noodle fans (like me!) won't miss out. We've only made 48 of each number, and we will definitely sell out, so please contact your dealer or place your order direct ASAP.
The Rapido name was introduced by CN in 1965, and it quickly became synonymous with fast schedules, fine service and an exceptional dedication to the passenger. CN refurbished five of its Lake-series parlour cars into new Club Cars, featuring 2+1 seating and drinks served at your seat. At least three of these cars had a distinctive RAPIDO in bold Helvetica lettering emblazoned on the side.
In 1971 the cars were modified again with the expansion of the drinks cabinet into a full galley, the seating capacity reduced to 38, and the seats themselves given a modern refit with fold-down tray tables for at-seat dining. And Club Deluxe service was born, with full-course, hot meals delivered to your seat. In their day, the Club cars represented the pinnacle of day travel in Canada. Our model is 100% accurate for the post-1971 Club rebuild and about 95% accurate for the 1965 Lake rebuild.
I have a real personal connection to these cars, as I remember riding them in the 1980s and 1990s. In fact, I love the Mork from Ork seats so much that they followed me to work and to my house. I have five in total. For me, train seats are like coat hangers. You put two in the closet and go on vacation and by the time you get home they have overrun the place!
You can order the Club and Lake cars from your dealer or direct from us by clicking here. But hurry! They won't last long!
The following HO scale products have arrived recently and are in stores now:
The following HO scale products are arriving this month:
As every railfan knows, the tone of a train horn (or any other sound, for that matter) changes as it comes towards you and then passes you. That's called the Doppler Effect. Clever decoder manufacturers have found really nifty ways to recreate this in the decoder using advanced sound engineering and computer gizmo jiggery pokery. Seeing as my personal computer is still a Commodore 64, that wasn't really in the cards. So we recorded a train approaching a crossing and stuck the recording onto the decoder (with white glue). When you hit F12 on your DCC controller your CP or CN FP9A will play the long-long-short-loooooong of a passing train.
You can see this in action by clicking on the photo above or by clicking here.
China Report and Blog
Bill is currently in China ensuring that nothing goes wrong with the production of our FP9A and The Canadian. While there is he keeping us up to date with our brand-new Blog. This is a proper blog and you can actually leave comments. So far exactly one comment has been left - by me, and that doesn't count. So please have a look and leave a comment as this will let Bill know he has more than one person reading his ramblings. And I only read them because I have to. Please click here to read the blog.
Speaking of the FP9A and The Canadian, at this point we're on track to have the first shipment leave the factory by the end of February, arriving here by the end of March. So we're just a few short months away!
Getting Out into the Community
I was talking with Peter Howey a few weeks ago. Peter owns Just Train Crazy, a gem of a store not too far from Niagara Falls. I said to him, "Peter - I just realized my cross-Canada tour entirely missed the Niagara region!" His response was: "No, really? We never noticed!" The irony was dripping out of the receiver of my phone so thick I could build a bridge out of it.
Seeing as I had now finally clued in, Peter very generously arranged for Dan and me to come give a presentation at his club, The South Pelham & Northern Superior. Last night we met over 30 Niagara region modellers and we saw a really fine model railroad while we were at it! I'm quite certain it's the first model railroad I have ever seen that shares its space with chickens. I'm not kidding. It took The Canadian about 15 minutes to traverse the mainline. It is quite an amazing club, and they've only been working on it for two years. The photos were kindly provided by Mark Michener.
Before visiting the chicken coop, Dan and I had the honour of visiting Stan Conron's gorgeous N scale layout and running some very nice looking passenger cars along the line. Thanks, Stan!
Dan and I have been running around like headless chickens the last few weeks designing our new freight engine and getting ready to deliver the FP9s and Canadians, and it was a nice break to be able to relax with fellow modellers and actually run some trains. It reminds us why we got into this business in the first place.
No matter how busy you are with work, with meetings, with chores, and with whatever else is thrown your way, try and make some time to meet with your fellow model railroaders - at clubs, at local shows, or even just at the hobby shop. Chatting with guys who are dealing with exact same issues as you can be invigorating and it just feels good.
Right now I am in the process of trying to get a minor variance on my property because the City of Vaughan won't allow my garage to be turned into a layout room unless I have 10 feet between my house and the side property line, which I don't. All of the administrative hoops and hurdles (and fees) have really got me down. Chatting with other modellers who have faced similar problems and overcome them certainly lifted my spirits.
Anyway, I hope to have a freight-centric newsletter out right around Christmas, but if I don't talk to you by then, please have a safe, happy and healthy Christmas and New Year!
All the best,
Rapido Trains Inc.
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