In 1924 Atlas Tool Company was founded by Stephan Schaffan Sr. His son, Stephan Schaffan Jr., didn’t have the same passion for tools as he did, enjoying to spend more time with his model airplanes. Working for his father didn’t make as much money for his taste and he often harassed the owner of the hobby shop he frequented about possible ways to make a little extra money. Finally tired of being harassed the owner gave him some model railway parts and told him if he wanted to make money to improve upon it. He did and Atlas Model Trains was born.
Back in the early decades of the 1900s model trains were difficult to assemble. Owners that enjoyed this craft had to build everything from scratch. They would then have to go through the difficult process of assembling them. Stephan Jr. took improved on this design by making what he called a “switch kit.” Jr. the found a way to fashion the rail to a fiber track making it the first rail joiner to be easy to join and created pre-assembled tracks and turnouts. Jr. and his family quickly outgrew the basement in which he started. So he and his father opened a factory. Atlas trains became the first mass produced model trains. They went on to be the reason many people got into model railroading.
Today Atlas rains are still among the leaders in model railroads. They specialize in the selling of HO, O and N scale trains. The family still runs the company, with Stephan’s daughter at the helm. They now offer customers a wide variety of track options.
Atlas is known for their innovative True-Track that is designed for their HO scale tracks. This track is snapped into a grey base. It gives the hobbyist an advantage. Unlike the majority of tracks the True-Track doesn’t have to be secured, the roadbed base doesn’t have to be secured to the table or bench for the train to run properly. If you don’t want to put the track on the base you don’t have to. The track is so versatile that you can attach it directly to the bench top. The True-Track is available in their HO and N scales.
Atlas trains are among the leaders in track manufacturing, with their innovative Snap-Track, Custom-Line turnouts, and Super-Flex tracks.
Their HO scale comes in two heights of track. The HO 83 is .083 inches high, while their HO 100 is .100 inches in height. Their N scale also comes in two codes, the code 55 and code 80.
If you are still new to model railroading they can help you figure out what your railway should look like. The offer several different layout books that can help you.
Those that are the true do-it-yourselfers can enjoy their expertise on wiring. Atlas also offers hobbyist a how-to book on electronics. Their step-by step books make electronics easy for you to do it all. It is complete with diagrams to help you on your way.
Atlas model trains have everything for you to make your model railroad. Not only are they manufacturing trains and tracks for their railroads. They also offer a wide variety of structures and accessories. The structures available include everything from buildings to animals and people.
They are also home different clubs for railway enthusiasts. Their Golden Spike Membership has many different levels. These clubs are pay to join clubs and the different levels include different perks. Some have free cars while others have not just cars that can only be received by joining but access to areas that others can’t enter. These clubs are available only on their “O” site and the free cars that can be received by joining the higher club entrances are O scale only.
With its long history of innovation, it’s little wonder that Atlas trains is considered to be the leader of the pack when it comes to model railroading.