Getting Rid of Your Old Trains

The Garden State Model Railway Club, Inc. receives numerous calls and e-mails for advice in "finding a good home" for no longer needed/wanted/used memorabilia and model railroad equipment. This may include sections of track, locomotives, rolling stock, an entire layout, books, magazines, etc. Please consider the following recommendations if you are looking assistance:

  1. eBay cannot be beat for maximum value. It will take considerable time and effort, but you will be able to establish reasonable values and receive appropriate compensation for the collection and your effort. Take good pictures of each item and be as specific as possible with your listings as hobbyists are typically looking for a specific item and will use the pictures to determine its condition. Consider searching for the same items before listing and also listing multiple items in a lot, such as a group of freight cars, a set of locomotives, or one complete year of a magazine.
  2. Special dealers may be interested in purchasing your entire collection for a lump sum. They can be found using your favorite internet search engine. Expect to get "pennies on the dollar" if you choose this approach, but remember that the dealer is doing most of the work, appraising and potentially picking up your items, listing them on eBay, transporting them back and forth to railroad themed flea markets, etc. At the very least, a simple phone discussion with a dealer can give you a good sense of the value of your collection.
  3. The GSMRRClub is willing to accept donations of most railroad items. The Club is NOT a qualifying charity under federal tax codes. If the items are HO scale, the Club may be able to use them on the layout. Books and magazines not in the Club's library may be added to the collection. The Club may decide to auction off items to its members with the proceeds going toward other projects. Lesser value items may be put out at an open house for visitors to take. Unfortunately anything that cannot be used will most likely be discarded.

We hope the above provides some help and guidance in your time of liquidation. Please feel free to e-mail us if you have any questions.

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