April Fools on the Collector—6464 Archives; Once again, for the first time ever a repeat performance for the third time
By Bob Mintz
The most notorious duplicate from two consecutive catalogs would have to be the infamous Girl’s Set in both the 1957 and 1958 catalogs. Because of excess inventory due to poor sales, the set was shown again in the following year.
Although I do not claim to have each and every example of a 6464 boxcar from the Postwar period, I do have one type of every numerical issue, to say the least.
I had always dreamed about the archives and prototypes, the ones that were a one or none of a kind. Thanks to Lionel LLC, those dreams became a reality, and then, with each consecutive catalog issue, a nightmare.
Okay, so do to backlogged shipping and/or inventory overages, the forth, to the best of my counting ability, Archive Series boxcar were shown in the 2003 Volume 1 catalog and again in the 2003 Volume 2. This was kind of a given and understandable inclusion.
But upon opening the latest Lionel catalog for 2004 Volume 1, I was again hit with #39242 Archives 6464 boxcar 3-pack.
The most confusing part though, was that this set was labeled #1, while the “NEW” set, #39253 was labeled #2.
Occasionally, Lionel would bring out the same looking piece, but give it a totally different SKU number.
Not in this case though.
Our #1 should, in my opinion, be labeled #4 and the one claiming to be #2 should be #5.
Catalogs should be informative and transparent, but in this case, one can get a migraine from doing something that should be enjoyable.
I suppose that this just adds to the collecting mystique…or not.
And while on the topic of prototypes…
“THE GNU EM TEA ACHE KAT A LOG” When one hears about a new catalog, I have to give MTH credit, for they have gotten theirs on-line in record time. As much fun as reviewing one through the WEB, I much prefer to make my purchases while reviewing the actual hard copy, not that either version is actually what the end product will look like. I did find one thing kind of fun on the Web version, though. Look at item 30-75148, a PS-2 discharge hopper car, and tell me just what the heck “AGRICUTURE” is! I think that this word is a combination of agriculture, cut, and manure. Ah, maybe a new type of compost action car!