Thursday, August 2, 2007

Huberts: They're not LBF

People have been talking about Huberts Model Railroad Mfg Corp ( a bit now, and I wanted to weigh in on the topic.

They're NOT LBF

Ok, with that said, here's the deal. LBF/McKean Models/WTF has been around for a long time in a number of incarnations. Each new name meant a new, well, I don't know what, but a new name, and I think a new way to avoid dealing with old problems. From my understanding, it wasn't the most financially solid, or savvy company around, and given the tough nature of the Model Train Biz, it never did that well. Each incarnation started out strong, but as time progressed, the business didn't, and it would fail.

Given this past yo-yo act, it's not surprising that many people (both consumers and retailers) are not apt to trust them. However, I've spoken with the guys from Huberts at the Timonium MD Show and they've been very clear that they purchased the tooling from LBF, but not the business, meaning that the people behind LBF, it's debts and its assets are NOT under their control.

I wish these guys the best. They have a good solid product (not quite as detailed as modern Atlas or Athearn stuff though) and a lineup of stuff not otherwise available. I wish their price point was somewhat lower, since $20 cars are a little out of my range, but I hope that these prices help them get off the ground and offer more good stuff.


frank-huberts-son said...

Hi everyone this is Matthew Hubert the owners son. At first i thought that this was bad but then i was wrong, but now I must agree with what you have said and if you have any questions email me and I will ask him personally!!!...

Graham Line said...

Matthew: Any word on re-releasing any of the woodchip cars. At a show a couple years ago, one of your reps said the tooling needed some work.

MickyF said...

Huberts Model Trains won't be around much longer. Frank owes a lot of people a lot of money - over $300,000. He is bouncing checks at all of he train shows he attends. He had ripped off a lot of people and has taken money for projects and hasn't delivered a thing. His never returns calls to his creditors and his vmail is always full. I'm sure he learned these tricks from LBF/McKean/Front Range. A lot of people are hunting Frank down. Matthew, are you in on this with him? Or is this news to you?

Anonymous said...

Yes I placed a order with Frank personally over the phone. So naturally I provided all my CC. info waited but did'nt receive any products. Sent an E-Mail to no avail. So I forgot about it. Then 3 months later several unexplained charges were on my charge card.Now I'am not accusing anyone of wrong doin. But this was the only person who had access to my info. Strange huh?

Anonymous said...

This guy has done this many times before. I don't trust him. I worked for a Hobby store for 10 years and watched this go on. It's a shame we have people like this in our hobby. I feel bad for Hubert's. I was hopng they would make a go of it. It seems they ended up another victim. Sorry.

Anonymous said...

The last I heard is that Frank 'forgot' to pay his people and 'forgot' to pay his taxes. His websites are gone. He seems like a con man all the way around. If this is true, he needs to do several years of jail time.

Anonymous said...

Hi all I also want to make it very clear also. Frank Hubert came in to LBF to help with some money flow but what really happen was that Mr Hurbert did help with getting money but that is where thing got out of hand. What Mr Hurbert did was to closed LBF one morning and fired every one that worked for LBF and hired new people to run the Roseburg Plant. But what got me was the fact that no one was paid there wages. Mr Hurbert did pay some of the bills that needed to be paid. Mr hurbert had no right to lockout everyone and take over LBF. All the tooling and tell every one he paid for the die's tools when he did not own any of it. As for Fred Becker the owner of LBF, This have been a stran that has couse a stroke as well as a hartattacks. Mr Becker is still making cars but there for people that is looking small runs.
He is doing better and is doing what he turly loves to do. I some of you out there, thinks Mr Becker is or was just as bad. But what Mr hubert did was just darn right low and should be sent to jail for taking over some ones Life and love. I sat down with Mr Becker and I have not seen him so sad. He tried to hold back the tears. but I could tell he was very upset over every thing. Today Mr Becker is in so much det that he has to scrap down deep to pay all the loans he had to get to pay for what Mr Hurbert left him to pay, and there is a lot of stuff he is paying for and does not have. So if Frank Hurbert has been put in jail, he is getting what he deserves. So if you all out there that would like to help, LBF is selling car's on E-bay Chris in Oregon

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The Auction Floor said...

In regard to the Hubert Train Inventory, LBF, E & C, etc is being auctioned off as a result of a Lien Sale. His inventory, parts, other brands such as Athearn, Walthers, Kato and more to be sold as well as part of his inventory. The auction site is online only and can be found at