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Varney Kits

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Varney Kits
Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, December 1, 2001 8:23 PM
I recently bought an old Varney HO Box Car Kit with real steel sides and sprung trucks. Kit number 350. New Haven. The kit looked old, but was in mint condition. Any idea how old something like this might be? When did Varney stop making these? Any info would be appreciated. Thanks
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, December 1, 2001 11:40 PM
I believe the metal Varney kits were made until the mid to late 1950's. Varney switched to plastic kits which later became TMI (Train Miniatures of Illinois I think). I think some of "Walthers Train Line" freight cars still use some of the old Varney plastic kit dies. I don't know if the metal and plastic car production overlapped to any great extent. Wish I could be more specific on dates, but that's the best I can do. Ron H.
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Posted by thirdrail1 on Sunday, December 2, 2001 9:33 AM
Ron is right, Varney quit making the steel kits (I still have 2 reefers) in the mid-1950's, so you kit is close to a half century old. When Varney ceased production in the mid-1960's, Life-Like (not TMI) acquired the plastic car dies and shipped them to Hong Kong, where they used them to produce toylike ready-to-run cars until the dies wore out.
"The public be ***ed, it's the Pennsylvania Railroad I'm competing with." - W.K.Vanderbilt
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Posted by thirdrail1 on Sunday, December 2, 2001 9:34 AM
Ron is right, Varney quit making the steel kits (I still have 2 reefers) in the mid-1950's, so your kit is close to a half century old. When Varney ceased production in the mid-1960's, Life-Like (not TMI) acquired the plastic car dies and shipped them to Hong Kong, where they used them to produce toylike ready-to-run cars until the dies wore out.
"The public be ***ed, it's the Pennsylvania Railroad I'm competing with." - W.K.Vanderbilt
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Posted by BRAKIE on Sunday, December 2, 2001 10:08 AM
Gregg:Didn't TMI take over the old true scale car kits? I keep thinking that they release the old true scale camp (work) cars some time in the mid 60s.That varney box car may go back to the early 50s as I recall seeing them on my dad's frist H.O. layout after he change from O scale to H.O.around 53.

Larry

SSRy

Conductor

“Shut one’s eyes tight or open one’s arms wide, either way, one’s a fool.” Flemeth-the witch of the Wilds.
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Posted by thirdrail1 on Sunday, December 2, 2001 12:18 PM
I think you're right about the work train cars, as I recall Walthers offering them as well as the TMI reefers and X29 type boxcars. By that time I was in N scale and was not as interested in what was new in HO. Walthers sure took over enough old lines like Ulrich and I guess just made the stuff until the molds wore out.
"The public be ***ed, it's the Pennsylvania Railroad I'm competing with." - W.K.Vanderbilt
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, December 2, 2001 3:07 PM
Gregg - Thanks for the info. What is the value of a kit like this?
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, December 2, 2001 3:07 PM
Ron - Thanks
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Posted by thirdrail1 on Sunday, December 2, 2001 6:53 PM
I don't think it has any great collector value. Varney was one of the largest manufacturers of HO scale after World War II and I believe Bowser still has the stamping dies to make these kits. Athearn made steel stamped kits, too, and I'm not sure if Lee English (Bowser) has the Athearn dies, the Varney dies, or both. He has stamped the kits out of brass, not steel, on occasion.
"The public be ***ed, it's the Pennsylvania Railroad I'm competing with." - W.K.Vanderbilt
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, December 3, 2001 8:31 PM
Thanks again for the info

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