Category Archives: Original Ad Saturdays

Replica Models, Inc.

Original ad from the June, 1972 Railroad Modeler magazine…

Used to drool over these ads when I saw them in all kinds of modeling magazines back in the late 60s/early 70s.  What kid wouldn’t have wanted an impressive looking–with full working action–model of a German Schmeisser submachinegun or a Thompson Model 1921? Having wondered if the company survived thru the years, I found they had changed hands and became Collector’s Armory, Ltd.  From their site…

About Collectors Armoury

In 1968, Replica Models, Inc. was founded as a mail order company designed to provide collectors with a new and innovative product: Non- firing Replica Guns. Replica Models was the first to offer these quality replica guns in the United States.

In 1972, a sister company, Unique Imports, Inc., was established to furnish military collectors with a wide range of original and high quality military collectibles. In 1980 Replica Models, Inc. and Unique Imports, Inc. merged to form Collector’s Armoury.

Non-firing replica guns are still a large part of our business today, though our product line has grown to include historic reproductions from the Middle Ages through the 20th Century. From Medieval swords and armour to Old West Pistols and modern replica firearms, Collector’s Armoury remains dedicated to providing collectors, history buffs, theatrical groups, and TV and movie producers with high quality, historic reproductions.

Collector’s Armoury has served hundreds of thousands of customers worldwide for nearly 40 years. We supply the U.S. Government, Armed Forces, and Law Enforcement communities with products used as training aids. Our products are available on-line, via catalog, or in any of the hundreds of hobby and antique shops, specialty stores, and decorator and gift shops that carry our products nation-wide.

Toll Free: (800) 336-4572 Monday through Friday between 8.30AM and 5.00PM EASTERN TIME.

Email: sales@collectorsarmoury.com

Address: 442 Westridge Parkway, Building 100, McDonough, GA 30253

While my desire for a model submachinegun has gone the way of GI Joe and Evil Knievel, that is a rather boss looking M1849 Dragoon pistol tugging at my inner Josey Wales…

“1001 Model Railroading Ideas” magazine, winter 1969…

My very first scale electric train set came to me on Christmas Day 1970. It was the Bachmann F9 diesel set pictured at the top of this ad in PRR green…

As for the magazine, I had never heard of it before I picked up a lot of about 1200 hobby magazines. It had a short, ignoble life in the late ’60s/early ’70s, filled with ads for both model trains, supplies, plastic model kits and…ummmm…facial hair pieces. Yeah, facial hair pieces… A Van Dyke?  Really, dude?

American Train & Track Corp. HO scale Plymouth diesel…March 1968…

…finally identified, won in a friendly bet with a hobby shop owner, $5 if it didn’t run, $10 if it did.

I won…

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The company only lasted about 10 years and is most well known for its model of the Alco Century 415, later picked up by Life-Like. It used mechanism parts and truck sideframes from the AHM RS2 locomotives.

Athearn HO scale 4-6-2 Heavy Pacific, introductory ad 1959…

Back in the 50s and 60s, the running joke in the industry went something like this:

Salesman“Look boss, our model of the Onion Specific 460 Grobnick we announced earlier this year has proven very popular with modelers over the last six months.”

CEO“That’s great…I guess we’ll have to actually design and manufacture one now…”

In Athearn’s case, they did in fact make them but, their mechanism proved so unreliable, that they went though a complete redesign that took almost two years to complete, delaying this model until 1961…

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Word is that several of these early Hi-F drives did escape the factory, though no one has ever seen one. In the world of HO, it would truly be worthy of the words “rare” and “highly prized”.