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I just received a copy of an official announcement via a friend in EU who is associated with model railway distribution - The final confirmation of details of the takeover of Fleischmann by the same company that rescued Roco - talked about for a while but awaiting approval, it will acording to the announcement definately proceed now(Modelleisenbahn Holding GmbH of Austria).

The announcement put much of the blame for problems on the insistence of FL on doing their own thing with digital and not working with industry standards, and also cited the lack of investment in truly new models over recent years.... I wonder if this means that FLM digital will disappear? Personally I think the possible demise of FLM digital no bad thing, as it always seemed silly to reinvent the wheel, but if so I'm sorry for those who invested heavily in it...

Not much more info other than the announcement made a point that the FL factory in Germany will certainly close as part of this arrangement. No idea whether this means that FL and Roco may be made in the same place, or that it will become yet another "Eastern brand" with Chinese production.

Both a shame and a blessing I think - a shame because its one of the more influential brands with a proud history and a blessing in that if the new owners turn them round as solidly as they have Roco, then there will be exciting and positive things to come... as Roco and FL in one set of "well managed & cashed up hands" will be a powerful combination!

Richard
 

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Sad,

Being an owner of a dozen or more Fleischmann loko's and numerous rolling stock I just would like to put in a couple of words.

They simply had it coming. Most probably due to the stubornness of the Fleischmann family insisting:

1) on not seeing and oversleeping on the recent developements in the digital world, insisting on NEM 651 while everybody else uses NEM 652 in HO!
2) on not seeing the developements in motor technology, and as one German collegue rightfully puts it; insisting on those dinosaur motors,
3) on old models
4) on their price strategy

Hope this closure means another opening at least under the Roco roof.

Baykal
 

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QUOTE (Richard Johnson @ 5 May 2008, 22:56) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>The announcement put much of the blame for problems on the insistence of FL on doing their own thing with digital and not working with industry standards, and also cited the lack of investment in truly new models over recent years.... I wonder if this means that FLM digital will disappear? Personally I think the possible demise of FLM digital no bad thing, as it always seemed silly to reinvent the wheel, but if so I'm sorry for those who invested heavily in it...
Richard

I have to admit the six pin socket put me off buying Fleischmann locos. More trouble than its worth. The other thing is that they heavily focus on the black and red steam locos with little production of epoch 1 models other than limited runs. They do some nice stuff though.

There seems to be a trend of German family run businesses going bust and being taken over by modern management. I think this can only be for the better. Roco has come back well.
 

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So what happened to all the money made when the wall came down in Berlin , and FL turned production totally over to train sets for East Germany? These were selling like the proverbial hot cakes. I went around europe as at the time i was waiting for a new motor for a fl loco and it took 10 months to arrive and burnt out in 30 mins?
 

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QUOTE (f2paul @ 6 May 2008, 08:48) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>i was waiting for a new motor for a fl loco and it took 10 months to arrive and burnt out in 30 mins?
As a FLM dealer we have never had to wait that long for any spare parts - where/how did you order it ?
 

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In the end it was the original order through The Signal Box that turned up. However for more mundane spares brushes , traction tyres i have not had a problem obtaining them . As i have only one FL loco now (A HO shunter used as a private livery on 00 then it`s not likely to be a future problem. All the Ho and Piccolo went in a great part exchange.
 

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I would back up Brian's comment, Fleischmann have always been very quick to supply spares - I suspect dealer issues here. Fleischmann supply their dealers with comprehensive manuals for HO and N and update these when they release new items. I just hope that when the dust finally settles Marklin and Trix can once again start to offer similar support to UKers.

60134
 

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I have read all your comments with interest, having just returned to the hobby and invested in FL. What does the future hold?
 

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I think this can only be of benefit to the hobby and the industry as a whole. If Fleischmann improve as Roco have it can only be good news.

Regards
 

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QUOTE (f2paul @ 6 May 2008, 08:48) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>So what happened to all the money made when the wall came down in Berlin , and FL turned production totally over to train sets for East Germany? These were selling like the proverbial hot cakes.

Fleischamm sells/sold well in (former) East Germany? Now THAT is amazing news.


This having been said, I have only very recently become a huge Fleischmann fan. The newer models - the class 95 in particular - offer a blend of detail and value rarely found elsewhere.
 

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Personally I found the 6-pin decoder socket a pain & also the fact that the space left in the chassis for a decoder "encouraged" you to fit a Fleischmann one.

One thing I think that were a little unfairly critised for was continuing with FMZ - FMZ has been around for a very long time & many people have a lot of resourses tied up in it, so, to their credit FLM continued to support it (you cannot say the same for Marklin digital). FLM have not abandoned old technology - for example if you want to expand your early FLM block or automatic train controls the modules are still available, indeed all the locomotives to the present day still have the contact treadle fitted.

Yes, a little old fashioned but I hope that they will flourish under the new ownership.
 

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Hi John,

AFAIK (& I stand corrected if wrong) the earlier (original) digital system is no longer supported - that's what a number of Marklin users have told me.
 

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Hi Brian,

While it is true Marklin no longer produce the hardware the DCC formats (Motorolla I & II) are still supported (you have to love backward compatability) and AFAIK it is only NRMA specific units that dont support Motorolla, let alone MFX.

FMZ was a strange set up, Fleischmann sold it, Intellibox had a controller for it, but I am pretty sure that was the extent of its penetration. It is a shame that it did not have greater penetration, but that is probably due to the european specialists (ESU, Zimo, Viessman etc) going the NMRA and (somewhat tounge in cheek) the Marklin way.

Fleischmann make some great stuff, especially if you are a pre WWII modeler. There was more K.P.E.V. stock in the early days of the DRG than any other landerhahn. As a epoch 2b modeller, I have a bit of Fleischmann equipment, and it is great. Not as stunning as my Brawa stock, but still very good.

My fear with the take over is not so much that Fleischmann may disappear but more that they will lose the Prussian focus and then for the likes of me a huge void will develop.

I may have to transgress to the dark side and move my focus to Epoch III or IV.

John
 

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Hi John,

That explains it then - The FLM Twin-Centre supports FMZ, DCC & Selectrix & AFAIK can operate in multi-protocol modes - don't know about the new Intellebox though. FMZ was pretty advanced for it's day - maybe FLM kept it for themselves, as probably the other model (as opposed to system) manufactures kept their own systems with the result that DCC from Lenz emerged the leader ?

FLM do make some great stuff, although if you are modelling the later epoch's many people do not like the "shortie" coaches. I know the older 3-pole motors are considered "too old" but, especially if you are DCC a decent decoder & some time to set up they can be made to run very well indeed.

At least you have more choice - if you model SNCB you have, to a certain extent take what is available although I'm glad to say the situation is constantly improving.
 

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It would be nice to think that availability of the "rolling road" wagons would become a bit easier. We always keep an eye out for them when we're on the Continent but haven't snagged any yet.

David
 

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QUOTE (dwb @ 7 May 2008, 18:57) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>It would be nice to think that availability of the "rolling road" wagons would become a bit easier. We always keep an eye out for them when we're on the Continent but haven't snagged any yet.

David

I had a set of those a few years ago but regretfully sold them & now I'm looking for another set !
 

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QUOTE (Brian Considine @ 8 May 2008, 00:34) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>I had a set of those a few years ago but regretfully sold them & now I'm looking for another set !

Are you serious? I've got both the DB and SSB variants in N gauge and know of two shops who hold stock of the HO models. Let me know if you want the address.
 

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QUOTE (simonj @ 11 May 2008, 03:31) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>Are you serious? I've got both the DB and SSB variants in N gauge and know of two shops who hold stock of the HO models. Let me know if you want the address.

Yes, I am, in HO so the address would be useful - thanks for the help.
 
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