N-Scale DB: Surpasses 26K Mark --

Published: 2016-09-30 - By: Jenna
Last updated on: 2021-01-06
visibility: Public
Rise to the occasion. Help your fellow man. Be optimistic. Work hard.

The Little Blue Engine espouses these values in the children’s classic: The Little Engine That Could retold by Watty Piper (1930). TroveStar takes these values (originally part of a sermon by Reverend Charles S. Wing) to heart and we embrace the Little Blue Engine’s mantra: “I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.”

The Little Blue Engine uses good old hard work and a positive attitude to tackle a daunting task: Pull a broken-down train up the mountain so it can deliver toys, food and candy to the little boys and girls in the Valley. We at TroveStar have also adopted the “can do” mentality and undertaken a challenging and important goal: Create a searchable database of all n-scale model train items (created since the introduction of this scale in the 1960s) and provide a cost-free way for collectors and modelers to readily access and share information with each other.

Although our “mountain” so to speak is quite high (there are thousands upon thousands of n-scale items), we continue to move full steam ahead and are proud to report that thus far we’ve reached and surpassed the 26K mark! At last count, the N Scale Model Trains Database features more than 26,300 items. For each item, say a Micro-Trains Steel 51' 3.75" Mechanical Ribbed Side Reefer/Pacific Fruit Express, we provide sought-after information, such as reference data (e.g., manufacturer, road name, road number, release date, pricing, etc.), product images, body style information, prototype information and company history. We also share data on an item's e-bay availability / pricing. Stay tuned for an upcoming blog on this helpful TroveStar functionality.

Similar to the Little Blue Engine (a switcher train / shunter used for short-distance hauling who has never been over the mountain), we have never created this kind of comprehensive, large-scale searchable database before. However, we have experience accessing and manipulating data (the founder, George Michaels is an expert in databases). Based on this experience and sheer determination, the n-scale database currently includes 5,700+ engines, 18,700+ rolling stock, 30 structures and 10 accessories, representing more than 65 manufacturers spanning AHM, Athearn, Atlas and Walthers, Wheels of Time and YesterYear Models.

Not unlike the “not very big” Little Blue Engine, we are a small operation and rely on the hard work of a handful of Contributors to help populate the database. Thus far, Contributors from all across the country (California, Florida and Rhode Island) to across the world (France) have added close to 10,000 items to the database. To show our Contributors how much we appreciate their time and effort, we send them (no shipping charges) free engines and rolling stock from our Rewards program.

We constantly add more items to the database, which features both recent releases, such as 400+ September 2016 products from brands like Bowser, CMX Products, Kato, Oxford Diecast, Rapido Trains, ScaleTrains.com, Showcase Miniatures, and Trainworx and lists older items, such as complete lists of the 1967 (including major variations) and 1969 (including major variations) Atlas Rolling Stock Catalogs.

Like the Little Blue Engine, every day we tug and pull and slowly continue to build a comprehensive n-scale database. With each milestone, we too say: “I thought I could. I thought I could. I thought I could.”