NEWS AND UPDATES
16th Year Online!
Did you know that Blue Ridge Hobbies has had an
online presence for 16 years!
That's right! We have been offering discounted model
railroad and other hobby items via our online website
since April 2005 making this week the start of our 16th
There have been many many challenges with the
downturn in the economy that started in 2008,
manufacturer factory closings that started in 2010 in
which that manufacturers have still not fully recovered
in my opinion, our best sales years in 2011 and
2012, growing from a 1,200sf retail store to 5,000sf
then shrinking to 2,400sf when we could not get enough
product to fill the big store and now the current store
with only 600sf of retail space since we still can not
get enough product to fill a larger store!
The bottom in sales happen in 2015. Each year
since 2015 overall sales have increased but have
recovered to the 2011-2012 levels. Another factory
closing 2 years ago caught several manufacturers again
and those companies still have not recovered from that
So, in my opinion, the state of the hobby industry is
weak at best. Despite this, BRH has continued to offer
great prices and customer service from our database of
over 147,000 items. Unfortunately, only about 37,000
items are available on any given day to sell to you! No
changes to that situation at this time.
98% of BRH overall sales come from the online orders.
The retail store that opened in 2007, still exists, but
is not what we envisioned to have 16 years into the BRH
And the Covid-19 situation is effecting both in the
retail store and online sales. I think the Covid 19
situation and the world wide shut down of businesses and
that effect on incomes has slowed sales down even more
then in 2008 with the financial crises.
At this point BRH sales in March where down 19.7%
year to year but so far in April we are ahead compared
Not sure if this trend will hold through. 2019 vs 2020
first quarter shows a 15.5% decrease in sales. Again the
Covid 19 situation seems to be reeking havoc with sales
and product availability.
So far, BRH is still operating everyday but I feel a
government shutdown is coming here in South Carolina.
However, it is my intent to keep shipping on line orders
as long as the wholesalers and manufacturers keep
shipping and Fedex and the USPS keep delivering!
I have no plans to close at this point since sales and
product availability in 2015 where worse then the
current situation. So keep on ordering and I will keep
on shipping items at discount prices to you everyday.
Thanks for the support
over the last 16 years!
We celebrating our 16th Anniversary with a huge sale.
ALL IN STOCK ITEMS ARE ON SALE!
CLICK ON THE SALE LOGO TO VIEW THE SALE INFORMATION!
COVID-19 Operation Updates
As of this email our wholesalers are still shipping
product to BRH to fill your orders! So BRH will be
shipping as long as we receive product and Fedex and the
USPS deliver and pickup from BRH, you will get your
Friday, Woodland Scenics announced it is closing
operations there until further notice. This means
that the wholesalers will only have to work with stock
on hand until that runs out!
So think ahead and order today for future short term and
long term projects you may have just in case!
Upcoming Pre Orders
April 20: Rapido Preorders
May 31: Walthers Preorders
WalthersProto HO 50' CC&F Bulkhead Flatcars Now
Used all over the continent since the
late 1970s, 50' Canadian
Car and Foundry Bulkhead Flatcars are
favorites for hauling lumber from sawmills to building
supply businesses. These highly- detailed cars feature
applied separate details like grab irons, metal wheels
and ProtoMax(TM) metal knuckle couplers. Make sure to
the SceneMaster(TM) Pulpwood or Wrapped
Lumber Loads as well.
Order these popular cars now!
TO ORDER CC&F Flatcars:
TO ORDER CC&F Flatcar Loads:
New WalthersMainline Arrivals Keep
Freight Trains Growing On HO Layouts
If your looking
for 1960s-2000s era freight cars you will
love the new 57' Mechanical Reefer. Based on cars built
by Pacific Car and Foundry (PC&F) for Pacific Fruit
Express and several railroads from 1967 to 1968, these
colorful cars were regularly seen in
trains hauling perishables into the early
2000s. They go with the Cornerstone(R) Modern
Cold Storage Warehouse #933-4069 and
similar structures. Cars are available in four road
numbers per road name. For many of you looking for
additions to grow your grain train consists 60'
NSC 5150 Cubic Foot 3-Bay Covered Hoppers
are all the rage! The first release of these popular
cars was an instant sell-out and
this release is well on the way to
selling out, with many schemes and road numbers in very
short supply. With detailed injection-molded
bodies, fine molded details that hold up to handling
during operation, metal wheels, ProtoMAX metal knuckle
and great decoration, modelers love
WalthersMainline freight cars. Order these new arrivals
now for best selection!
Two New Cornerstone(R) Kits Arrive for HO
and N Scale Modelers
With many of you busily working on your
model railroads, these two new kits will give them more
projects to keep you busy. The new HO Scale Modern Short
Span Concrete Railroad Bridge is perfect for layouts set
from the 1960s to the present. It's designed for easy
construction and installation in new orexisting
scenes and includes parts for four individual spans.
Modelers can lengthen it by combining multiple kits. The
latest N Scale arrival is the Modern Shopping Center I,
a perfect addition to 1980s and later commercial scenes.
The kit features
three storefronts in one modern brick
building and includes signs for a variety of businesses.
These kits are shipping now and
they're selling fast, so order now!
TO ORDER WALTHERS CORNERSTONE
Kato Sound and DCC N Scale Locomotives
Rolling to Stores Now!
Several Kato N Scale locomotives equipped
with DCC only or with sound and DCC are now shipping to
dealers. Models include EMD E8s for the Broadway Limited
sets as well as BNSF SD70ACe diesels.
TO ORDER KATO LOCOMOTIVES
Lunde Studios Delivers Two New HO Kits
Perfect for those of you who want a
variety of structures in your city scenes, two new resin
kits from Lunde Studios are based on typical brick
commercial buildings. Sacco's Department Store is an
Edwardian brick building with decorative cornices and
triple windows designed for placement on a street
corner. Vic's Variety is a center-block brick storefront
structure styled somewhere between Victorian and
Edwardian eras. Both are ideal for scenesfrom the steam
era to the present. They're in stock, so order now!
TO ORDER LUNDE STRUCTURES
Miller Engineering Announces Rosie the
Riveter Animated Neon Billboards
During WWII "We Can Do It" posters
featuring Rosie the Riveter
were everywhere. Now this iconic image is
available as an animated neon sign in several sizes for
N through O Scales. These easy-to-assemble sign kits
include everything necessary for
you to add them to your layout.
TO ORDER MILLER
"We Can Do It"
Our Competition Is
As of this update it seems that due to the
Covid-19 Pandemic, our main online competition in New
York Trainland / Trainworld, MB Klein / Model Train
Stuff in Baltimore, Charles Ro in Boston, and
Caboose / Caboose Hobbies in Denver also regionally
Train Master Models and Legacy Station in Atlanta,
Little Choo Choo Shop in Spencer and Factory Direct
Trains In Asheville to name a few, are now closed because of shelter in
place orders by each state.
BRH is still operating with both in store sales and
shipping of each each day. So your orders will be filled
as long as stock at the warehouses and in the retail
store are still available.
If you plan on visiting the retail store, please call
ahead as I am adjusting the retail store hours as needed
due to product delivery delays by Fedex.
LAST 4 DAYS - DEAL OF THE MONTH!
ALL IN STOCK WALTHERS
MAINLINE LOCOMOTIVES ARE ON SALE UNTIL 03/31/20!
DEEP DISCOUNTS ON THESE GREAT LOCOMOTIVES!
COVID-19 Operation Updates
Due to the very disjointed delivery schedule of
shipments coming in from Fedex, BRH will be adjusting
its retail store schedule. While the plan is to still be
open Wednesday, Thursday and Friday's from 10am to 2pm,
we will have to change this schedule on a daily basis to
adjust to the current shipment receiving days. These
changes will occur on a daily basis. For example,
yesterday there was no delivery. The Friday delivery
will occur on Monday which is normally a closed
day for BRH but I will be there to receive and process
your shipments as quickly as possible.
With that said, it is suggested that you call the retail
store first before coming to the store to make sure I
will be there so you do not waste a trip!
Over the last 2 weeks we have had a total of 5 customers
in the retail store which is okay. The websites online
sales have been strong so the lack of customers coming
to the store is a good thing under the current
Now let me update you all on the latest info from the
manufacturers and wholesalers.
I have been receiving calls and emails about advance
reservations that are due within the next 60 days. All I
can tell you is that per the wholesalers we work with
everything is still on track. But I feel that these due
dates will pass due to the delays in shipments coming in
from China and the Far East and Europe. Please be
patient, these order should be filled ASAP since, as of
this update, our two main wholesalers are open and
operating with full warehouse staffing and they will be
awaiting the product.
Early next week I will be receiving a large quantity
advance reservations and back orders of products, mostly
locomotives, from Atlas, Walthers, Rapido and
As always, I process the current orders first then sort
and ship the back order / advance reservations. So
please be patient.
Lionel announced Friday their corporate office will
close but the warehouse will continue to ship.
No changes at Walthers (Milwaukee Warehouse) our main
wholesaler or Emery (Easton Warehouse) at this time as
the are still shipping as of this update.
COVID-19 Operation Updates
As of 9am EDT today Fedex
Due to the crucial role we play in moving
supply chains and delivering critical relief, FedEx is
considered an essential business and may continue to
operate under state of emergency and shelter in place
orders recently issued in the U.S.
We have been and will continue to operate
to and from impacted areas as local conditions and
According the Walthers, our main wholesaler:
As of right now, we are doing our best to
operate ‘business as usual’ - from a safe distance from
each other, of course. We have closed our local
Showroom*, we are no longer accepting outside visitors,
we have some team members working from home, we are
adjusting processes that may require physical proximity,
and we have transitioned most of our in person meetings
to conference or web calls. The team is staying home if
they are not feeling well and where applicable,
navigating a new world of homeschooling their children.
We will keep you posted on our operations
over here .....
While we are working at close to ‘normal’
speed over here, we are aware of shipping delays. Please
be patient with us and with each other as we do our best
to get you what you need to stay occupied during this
Bowser states: By order of the Governor of the state of
Pennsylvania; All non essential non life support
business has been ordered closed. Our offices will be
closed until further notice.
Kato states: We have received notice today that starting
on 3/21/2020 and ending on 4/7/2020, the state of
Illinois will be implementing a “Stay at Home” policy
for all nonessential businesses.
Unfortunately this means that Kato USA will be unstaffed
for the duration of this period.
Emery Distributors, our secondary warehouse, has
taken at step back: It looks like I jumped the gun on
announcing our closing (Thursday). Upon further review
of the information provided by governor Wolf warehouses
of miscellaneous durable goods can stay open. Based on
this we will remain open but most likely with reduced
I apologize for yesterday's misleading e-mail. I will
keep updating you as things evolve.
Also, the State of New Jersey also has a shelter in
place order now which should effect Atlas and MRC but we
have not received any world from them at this point.
As for BRH operations as of this email, I am operating
as normally as I can. As long as Fedex, the USPS and UPS
delivers and pickup from BRH, I will continue to
operate. The retail store will still be open per the
normal schedule. However, this week, we only had a total
of 4 customers come to the retail store to pickup or
place orders. Most orders are still online which is as
it should be. Please call ahead before making a trip to
the store just to make sure nothing has changed in that
Some orders a about a day or two behind in processing
due to inbound shipping delays with some orders split in
route to BRH and arriving on separate days currently.
Pre Order Deadlines
March 30: Rapido Preorders
March 31: Marklin Preorders
March 31: Walthers Preorders
April 20: Rapido Preorders
COVID-19 Operational Update
As of 8pm we just received this information from our
Easton PA Warehouse.
Today the governor ordered all non life sustaining
business to close their physical location as of 8:00 PM
3/19/20. Enforcement begins at 8:00 PM on 3/20/20
While you can still order items from this warehouse
location orders received after 6am today, Thursday
03/19/20 will not ship to us until further notice.
Our main wholesaler, Walthers is operating normally as
of this email.
Fedex and USPS are operating normally at this point
though a bit slower.
Order processing is still happening and are shipping to
our customers with very minor delays!
Looking forward to an order from you!