Rick Tonet covers one of the earliest lines of ready-to-run HO-scale plastic model trains with his cover story article “HObbyline Morrisville’s Best-Kept Secret” in HO Collector‘s 2nd Quarter 2022 edition. From its beginnings as a craftsman-level collection of metal and wood kits produced by John A. English under his own name to the rebranding as HObbyline and move to entry-level train set offerings in the mid-1950s, you’ll see examples of models produced and reproductions of pages from vintage HObbyline catalogs in this article.
In addition, a listing of all known HObbyline train sets is included in this article. This marks the first appearance for John A. English and HObbyline in the pages of HO Collector quarterly. Don’t miss this informative feature on this frequently overlooked, but very important part of HO’s history.
This issue of HO Collector also includes a look at mid-1970s American Car & Foundry boxcars produced by Athearn for the freight car builder in “Identification Station,” brand-new Athearn Genesis FP45s decorated for BNSF, SPSF, and Western Pacific appear in “Future Collectibles,” Bachmann’s planned “Touch-N-Go System” train sets are covered in “Trains That Never Arrived,” an N.J. Custom Brass Nickel Plate Road dynamometer car is featured in “Brass From The Past,” and a mid-1950s Fleischmann catalog promoting the line’s “Sentinel Series” train sets is on view in “Catalog Connoisseur.” Tony Lucio presents TYCO Billboard Hoppers of the late 1970s, while Tony Cook has a look at an early 1960s Rivarossi roundhouse kit and Bachmann’s Touch-N-Go GP40 diesel locomotive.