Would you like to meet the Family, they all work here?
Feedback From our EBay Customers
"Excellent Item! Great Honest Service."
– Johnny I
"AS a Retired NYCTA Employee, I can say that this is beautiful, and ACCURATELY CRAFTED!"
"Commendable Craftsmanship, top quality product."
"I thought I was getting off the #7 at Shea, oops...Citifield. Great Stuff"
In 1999 we had a hobby shop and sold mainly O Scale and HO Trains, among others. We were a small store, so we had most of our products displayed on train shelves. We had All types of engines and cars including subway trains made by MTH at the time. Our displays seemed rather boring like most hobby shops. We did not have enough room to have a layout setup, so we had it set up one around the wall near the ceiling, so everyone could see it.
After looking at the store set up for about three months, I was trying to figure how to make it look good, I had used a large mountainous and sky backdrop going around the store that seemed OK. I really wasn't to happy with the way it looked, it just didn't seem right.
We had just received our first subway set and was setting it up, and I thought to myself, "Wow these look great, now only if I could make it look more realistic, they would look even better." So, I started looking around for subway stations and other types of scenery to make our displays look better. I really had no luck in finding anything. One day, when i was going through a catalog that I had received from my distributor, and I saw the new subway cars in a picture and noticed it was placed inside a tunnel. The wheels started turning at that point, and I thought to myself, I can make my own subway station and display on the shelf as a backdrop with the cars.
So I went to work on the first one and boy it really looked sharp on the shelf with the new cars. So I started to make all different kinds of backdrops for the subway trains and all the others. Now mind you, when I thought of this idea, I had only thought of this to use in my store to display my trains. I had made stations for the subways, stations for passenger lines, and finally started to make freight stations as well.
A customer who has frequently visited our store had noticed all the new changes that we have made since his last visit. He started asking where did we get these from and that he would like to one for is display as well. So I made one for him. Soon after people who came in started asking about them more and more, till one day a new customer came in, he seen the backdrops and was very impressed by them and said that he would take 4 of them.
I actually gave him the 4 for nothing as I had done with other customers, but from that point on I decided that I was going to start selling them as well. So full throttle ahead! I started making more sophisticated ones, more detailed and more realistic than the first ones I had made.
Growing up as a child and teenager, I had spent a good 75% of my time riding around the NYC Subways. Going from one line to another, making friends with Motormen and Conductors all over. All these friends I had made on the subways, had taken me along with them to places that no one ever gets to see, they had shown me many things about the subway, a couple of the motorman that I was really close to, had even let me drive the train. (of course there was no passengers, it was done during turnarounds, nobody around to see me when I took the throttle)
This is how I have learned so much about the NYC Subway System, and how I can make these great backdrops.
Meet the team...
This is a family business where everyone has their own job to do. My son, Christian and I, do all of the artwork currently. My other son Michael Jr. is currently learning how to use both HTML and Drawing programs, so he will have the ability to draw as well as maintain the website with me. He will learn these skills right here from me. My wife and daughter take care of shipping, marketing and accounting.
Copyright 2015. Michael Marinelli. All Rights Reserved.