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Are Dublo (and Wrenn) prices declining?


GreenDiesel

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I don't have "solid data" to back this up, but I have a hunch that prices for Dublo locos and rolling stock (maybe even Wrenn products) may be declining. I realize that prices for vintage collectable do change over the years. For example, I think that the prices of Mecanno Dinky Toys have come down in recent years. This is because the Internet has practically created a large supply of Dinky Toys -- they're no longer as rare or hard-to-find as they were in the early-90s, etc. Also, peoples' interests and "needs" do change over the years, so what was hot in (say) the 1990s may no longer be in high demand today.

 

I wonder if something similar is gradually happening with Hornby Dublo model railway items? When I first starting buying and collecting HD locos and rolling stock (I do collect to a point but always run them on my layout) about 5-7 years ago, I could pay as high as $45 for a super-detailed coach. Now, it seems you can buy the same coach (if you're patient and look for them) for less than half that price.

 

Please note that prices may be slightly different here in Canada where there are fewer HD items. Also, I realize that great deals can be always found on eBay -- but I'm referring more to prices that one might pay at model train shows or flea markets here.

 

Thanks.

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From sitting in the auction room watching the bidders for these ranges I got the impression a couple of years ago that prices had dropped noticeably but last year they seemed to go back up again. However condition and completeness are all and top notch in both respects still seems to command good prices; the last sale I was at the Wrenn prices seemed to have zoomed up again. And like many other collectables a lot depends on stuff coming into the market as folk age or decide they need the money (there's a fair bit of the latter about at the moment it seems).

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From sitting in the auction room watching the bidders for these ranges I got the impression a couple of years ago that prices had dropped noticeably but last year they seemed to go back up again. However condition and completeness are all and top notch in both respects still seems to command good prices; the last sale I was at the Wrenn prices seemed to have zoomed up again. And like many other collectables a lot depends on stuff coming into the market as folk age or decide they need the money (there's a fair bit of the latter about at the moment it seems).

 

Thanks -- I wondered about that as well. The other interesting thing is that the HD products are still holding up as they age. Even the 2-rail items are over 50 years old. There are even prewar 3-rail HD locos still going strong.

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I would imagine that demographics will play a part. As the number of people who remember these models declines, the demand for them will also fall.

 

Graham

It doesn't seem to work like that judging by auction buyers (although admittedly some of them are 'trade') - the biggest influence seems to be the ability to pay, a question of having enough disposable cash. Now - and I've noticed this in other areas of auction buying - the normally 'wealthiest' group tend to be older folk who've cleared their mortgage and got rid of their offs[ring and thus tend to have a reasonable disposable income which they can spend on hobbies. Net result many buyers seem to be 'old' but there are younger ones around with the cash and some of them don't seem to be afraid to spend it on hobbies or collecting.

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Surely the quality and accuraccy of modern rtr will have an influence on this? I could see the point of buying an expensive HD/Wrenn model (like my 08) when the only rtr was the dreadful ex-Tri-ang thing but we now have the two big players producing good models at low prices. The same applies to many other prototypes.

 

There is also just so much other stuff available to tempt buyers nowadays

 

Ed

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Surely the quality and accuraccy of modern rtr will have an influence on this? I could see the point of buying an expensive HD/Wrenn model (like my 08) when the only rtr was the dreadful ex-Tri-ang thing but we now have the two big players producing good models at low prices. The same applies to many other prototypes.

There is also just so much other stuff available to tempt buyers nowadays

Ed

 

That's a good point -- I'm sure that's part of it. However, for some strange reason, no matter how good the new products get, I keep coming back to HD and Triang. Must be the "retro"/collector part of me!

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There's a lot of noise that has to be filtered out, arising from competition when an item of genuine rarity or truly original condition surfaces, but the general trend has been a steady decline in prices. The only items I buy are the few 'useful' wagons; last year I got a couple of very good unboxed H-D for £3 each by a casual comparison to the current Bach Presflo. Not so very long ago you had to be prepared for a long discussion to get anywhere near that sort of realistic price. A reducing population of enthusiasts, fairly free supply of most items and - I think crucially - beyond the simple fact that the last decade or so of product introductions comfortably outdistances the old, the emergence of what I have heard folk identifying as future model railway collectables.

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I would say prices are holding up quite well.

 

A couple of examples

 

True this basket case is 0 gauge, but she sold for what I'd consider reasonable money for a good one (the other stuff isn't worth much in any case)

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/200844999009?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649

 

and this one sold well too (especially considering the tender is post-war)

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Hornby-DUBLO-EDL1-VALANCED-LNER-SIR-NIGEL-GRESLEY-IN-VG-BOXED-CONDITION-/290806631327?_trksid=p2047675.l2557&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&nma=true&si=lIzRvIVDrOVZFCttQslhlfNa8jc%3D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc

 

There is some cheaper stuff around, but then griffons do enjoy sniffing out bargains.

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Surely the quality and accuraccy of modern rtr will have an influence on this? I could see the point of buying an expensive HD/Wrenn model (like my 08) when the only rtr was the dreadful ex-Tri-ang thing but we now have the two big players producing good models at low prices. The same applies to many other prototypes.

There is also just so much other stuff available to tempt buyers nowadays

Ed

I think know there are a few folk out there who like to run HD layouts but the bulk of HD buyers and all but a few Wrenn buyers seem to me to be collectors (or dealers looking to sell to collectors) so modern r-t-r hasn't had too much impact. I can't really see many folk paying several hundred quid for a Wrenn loco and then running it although someone probably does.

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I was talking to our local HD supplier today. He feels that the collecting market has gone very soft and that only rare items in top condition with a box will get good prices. He said that seems to be happening in the Lionel and American collecting game too.

 

Since I expect to run my stock, this may be good news.

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If this is not regarded as advertising, look at recent auction results such as Lacey Scott or Vectis and you can see how the trend is going down imho. However for crazy values look at Ebay eg the Foster replica V2 with bent front footplate, at a snip in excess of £720.00!

 

The individual parts don't seem to be going down at all - just try buying a Dublo 3 rail pickup. I bought quite a few of these in the not too distant past less than £5, but they go for a lot more now.

 

As to the Foster' might have been' V2 (I reckon a Dublo V2 would have sold better than their diesels - I for one stopped buying Dublo when they stopped making steam locos*) these were made in a very limited number at a cost of several hundred pounds back in the eighties and probably the price realised only just makes up for inflation. Like the Wrenn, these were bought to be gloated over displayed rather than run.

 

*Apart from the overpriced and rather poor 'West Country'. Hornby's sixties 'ringfield mania' resulted it this and the expensively retooled Castle and 8F having cabs full of motor - unacceptable even to my young eyes.

 

Some interesting items found here researching the V2 http://www.vectis.co.uk/Page/ViewAuctionLots.aspx?AuctionId=44&DayNo=1&Section=663&Sub=1

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I would imagine that demographics will play a part. As the number of people who remember these models declines, the demand for them will also fall.

 

Graham

As one of the older members of society I have to agree with this view.

 

When I came back to the Hobby a few years back I still had a couple of 'mint' Wrenn items and I splashed out and bought a Duchess to add to them. However the Dublo / Wrenn models were really very crude compared to the new offerings available from Bachmann and Hornby - all at around the same price. So why bother with Hornby Dublo?

 

I do trade on eBay and I would also say there is less money around this year than this time last year. A few exceptional items still command high prices. However the price for run of the mill and what I would describe as used / second hand items I would say has declined.

 

I did have a little foray shall we say on Vectis and was surprised at the prices, especially considering the buyer's premium. I had a particular item in mind and this was acquired for a more realistic price off eBay. As others have said, just requires patience.

 

Ray

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I have a mixture of brand-new as well as older Dublo and Triang locos in my collection, all of which I use. For some reason, I enjoy collecting and running the older locos. I don't mind paying $50 to about $100 for a good quality Dublo loco, which I will then use. I would never paying several hundred for a collectors' item in any case.

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I think that where you are does have an impact. Now Gutzold are no more, prices in Germany are still normal but on Ebay US they are notably now expensive and UK prices seem to be on the up too.

Over this past year, i feel the price of a Triang 0-6-0 has risen by around £10-15 and coaches are rising too on Ebay UK whilst HD has gone down.

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