The "RLM Original" Line

Roger Malinowski has been invaluable to me as I work my way from  'not knowing much' about producing model kits, to growing credibility. The 9 kits that I purchased in 2011 from Banta Modelworks are now branded "RLM Original" out of respect to his original work. All the kits are proportioned to 1:64, S scale. All of the kits appeared as SCD kits in 'O' scale over a period of years.

What comes next!

The two shots above are the original 'S' scale pilot model for Village Groceries which was never produced in 'S' scale. At the time the cut files were based 100% on the 'O' scale version. Changes have been made to the 2005 files and the revised 2012 version will have a number of key improvements over the earlier version pictured.

The most noticeable change will be the front overhang- something that makes the model capable now of having a vehicle under the awning. It will extend further out to provide greater depth and the pump island (not shown) will be partially shielded.

Don Tichy of The Tichy Train Group has confirmed he is ready to produce an 'S' scale version of a 'new' old style fuel pump (we had been talking about a 40s-50s style pump like the Tokheim 39 but I haven't seen what he has created)- which will be included in the kit, maybe even a pair. In the last week the cut files have been modified again- this time to take injection molded styrene windows from Tichy. They will come with pre-cut glazing too.

I am hoping this kit will be met with interest by the 'S' scale modeling community- I have decided on the production run- 20 to 25 initially- but I imagine a greater demand over time. I think this is a perfectly brilliant example of what makes 'S' scale so wonderful.

Where can I get kits?

Direct:
As kits become available the best way to buy them is direct through me- the manufacturer. At present I have no plans to sell through retail stores because there is little room for retailer margin and kit volumes are going to be low. Transactions are by email or phone and payment by mail or PayPal (which also supports credit cards).

At the moment shipping is from one of two locations: Toronto, Ontario or Phoenix, Maryland, mainly depending on destination. Eventually the idea is to warehouse US destined kits in the US with John Weigel (http://www.peterbororr.com). This arrangement reduces shipping cost and delay. John currently has "The Shed". Later this year his inventory will expand, hopefully, with the introduction of several new kits.

Shows:
Model train shows are the next best place. For 2013 I will be attending one show only- my favorite show to be frank- The Fine Scale Model Railroader EXPO 2013 (www.modelrailroadexpo.com), this year it is in Pittsfield, Mass. The traditional annual show for many is the National Narrow Gauge Convention but it is on the west coast a second year in a row in 2013. I will wait until it is a bit closer before returning.

Other:
Occasionally a DCSM kit will appear where you mightn't expect them. eBay comes to mind of course, but small vendor tables at local shows are another. I have already had a pleasant surprise with a purchaser in the UK who bought a kit in England. I will always do what I can to support the purchaser wherever they got the kit. But with small quantity production replacement bits may not always be available. Of course I will do my best to help.

Country of origin declaration:
As I reside in Canada DCSM is a Canadian enterprise, but the kits are made mostly in the United States of America. How come? Well, that is where the work is done, by and large: design by RLM in Pennsylvania; the plywood is from Finland but sourced in Massachusetts; laser cutting by BMW in Vermont. The packaging is from Uline  Canada, but they source stuff in Asia. I do my own plaster casting using genuine Hydrocal© from Canadian Gypsum, but they are owned by the US parent. So, finally, "country of origin" makes little sense in a global economy.  Caveat:the high quality sheet and strip wood is Mt. Albert Scale Lumber of Stoney Creek, Ontario (Canada, eh!), but Linden trees grow here and the US so who knows where your wood grew up?


BTW: "The Shed" is $55.00 + $6.00 shipping. The cost of Village Groceries, Grandview, Light Industrial and Laundry have yet to be determined.

Checks must be made payable to me personally and mailed  to:

 

Doug Currie         

136 Bingham Ave.

Toronto ON         

M4E 3R3             

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The "Perect Scale"?

At a recent national narrow gauge gathering I jokingly intoned the phrase "the perfect scale" and Charlie Getz, who overheard it, repeated it aloud as we both peered at a great looking 'S' scale diorama. Of course, the only perfect scale is the one you model. As a former 'N' scale devotee I thought 'N' was best- then. Now, ‘S’ scale seems perfect. It offers the significant advantage of being a 'bigger' scale like 'O' but without the mass. That said, ‘S’ scale struggles to attract manufacturers to its niche segment, and there are precious few stores that offer any product labeled 1:64.

Frankly, becoming an ‘S’ scale manufacturer was a function of timing and what seemed a good idea at the time. The kit designer whom I admire greatly is Roger Malinowski and he issued these 'S' scale versions of his 'O' scale products for several years-no longer though-and they were sold under the Banta Modelworks banner. Bill Banta decided to sell that line in 2010 and I became the buyer and a manufacturer in one step.

Being an 'S' scale manufacturer doesn't limit the possibility that other scales will be offered in the future. In the meantime I have a whole product line to release and I model in Maine Sn2 so I am very committed to 'S' scale. (I also have a very strong sense of just how outstanding Sn3 is as well). Of course, I would really like to be of service to the standard gauge 'S' community as well.

 

Hello and Welcome!

Greeting and welcome to the DC Scale Models' web site. My name is Doug Currie, and this site is intended as my primary way to keep you up on progress at DCSM and it has been a while since I have done that. My apologies for the long silence.

The planned releases are structure kits that originated with Stoney Creek Designs (Roger Malinowski) and were for a time sold through Banta Modelworks. . The kit offerings are 1:64 scale- or, 'S' scale. Originally these kits mirrored the O scale kits offered by SCD and found their way to many quality layouts and the pages of The Gazette. Believing there was still a market for these kits, DC Scale Models purchased the rights, CAD files and masters (plus the few remaining dusty pilot models there were) late in 2010. The first kit reached market at the NNGC in 2011.

So what is the point is re-marketing products that have already been sold through and presumably all demand met already? Good question. Here is my response:

This is not a re-selling exercise as such. It is an upgrading and re-branding (now the "RLM Original" line) of kits that received modest exposure in the first place, to a small and independent S scale market. Over the years the kit 'industry' has seen changes in techniques and materials so there is room for improvement in the kits. Moreover, 2 of the designs never made it to market: Village Grocery (the 2013 release) and Acme Dynamite. Last and most important, Roger is still involved and he has made CAD changes stating "I would never do it that way today".


Yes, there are challenges. The S scale market is precariously small and its adherents are not loudly clamoring for new product. My guess is that S scale fans would be more audible and demanding were more attention paid to them by manufacturers and the modeling press. DCSM is my stake-hold in that belief. There is no doubt however, in general, S scale is vastly underrated and under-subscribed given its possibilities. Only 37% larger than HO, it offers the same detailing opportunity as O scale.

Read more: Hello and Welcome!