Model Train Collection Sells for $38K

NORTH LIMA, Ohio – The Lionel model train collection of the late Ronald Rapp has a new home. Or, to be more precise, 117 of them.

Although he has not looked at the inventory page-by-page yet, Basinger noted that some of the 532 bidders came from as far as Florida, North Carolina, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Virginia. 

“It was a great auction and it did exactly what we expected it to do,” Basinger said. “Many of these rarer items [brought in] top dollar. … Some of these items that were new in the box that hadn’t been played with. That’s what the collectors really want.” 

The full 2,500-piece collection ended up selling for a total of $38,550 and the highest amount that one buyer bought was $4,900, according to Basinger. 

Bidding for Rapp’s train collection ended Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. There is nothing left over from the auction, Basinger said. The highest selling item was the LGB circus train set, which sold for $1,200 plus a 13% buyers premium, he said. The set included 16 pieces that were new and still in the box, he said. Some of the smaller pieces from the collection still brought in $285, he said. 

Across the collection’s three viewings, more than 100 catalogs were given out, Basinger said. People will start picking up their items Thursday. 

The model trains are currently being grouped for pick up, and for out-of-town buyers, Basinger is going to wait and see if they want them shipped or if someone is picking their items up for them, he said. 

“That’s part of our job now. We have to make sure that everybody gets what they paid for,” Basinger said. 

Basinger believes that Rapp would be happy about the turnout of the auction, he said. Rapp loved to play with trains and now they will be going to others who will still have the same joy, he said. 

“I have one fellow who bought a set for his grandson, so that’s what trains are about,” Basinger said. “Having fun, and being an engineer and riding on the railroad.” 

Copyright 2024 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.