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History of Micro-Trains: The "Standard by Choice" of Model Railroaders Around the World!

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Eventually used to market their patented and revolutionary Magne-Matic® HO-Scale knuckle coupler system, the firm that would later be called Kadee® Quality Products initially sold the model train turnouts manufactured by twin brothers Clarence "Keith" Edwards (February 10, 1921 - July 26, 2012) and Lawrence "Dale" Edwards Sr. (February 10, 1921 - September 19, 2014).

Clarence Keith Edwards                 Lawrence Dale Edwards Sr.

 Image Courtesy of Micro-Trains® Line Co.                             Image Courtesy of Kadee® Quality Products

Both functional and realistic looking, the brothers' delayed-action Magne-Matic® HO-Scale couplers soon became the gold standard for model railroad coupling operations.

The Kadee® moniker was derived from the first letters of the brothers middle names.

Having successfully developed and begun manufacturing an N-Scale (which was a relatively new scale in the 1960s) version of their now legendary Magne-Matic® knuckle coupler system by the late 1960s, the gradual addition of trucks, underframes, and wheels culminated in the brothers introduction of their first Micro-Trains® freight car in November 1972.

Quoting a paragraph of text that was printed on the underside of a paper insert label from an early 1980s model release, Kadee Micro-Trains are the finest model railroad cars available.  Every car has the craftsmanship and detail you expect from the Kadee name.  Available with your choice of either Rapido-type couplers or the famous delayed-action Magne-Matic® couplers, the "Standard by choice" of model railroaders around the world., notwithstanding having the only functional N-Scale coupler system, even the earliest production Micro-Trains® rolling-stock had characteristics that no other manufacturers' product had, or in many cases, still do not have.

Along with the exquisitely cast brake-wheels and stirrup steps that were found on all Kadee® Micro-Trains® freight cars, thin and finely detailed injection molded plastic roofwalks and innovatively designed operating hopper bay doors, sliding boxcar doors, sliding stock car doors, and roof hatches were added features that were simply not found on competitive models.

In 1990, following thirty-five years of steady growth in Medford, Oregon, Kadee® Quality Products was physically divided into two separate business entities.

Kadee® (Dale's portion of the enterprise) continues to produce HO-Scale freight cars and HO through G Scale accessories from its White City, Oregon location.

Until shortly before his passing, Dale remained involved with Kadee® business operations.

Micro-Trains Line Plant April 29, 2014

Image Courtesy of Micro-Trains® Line Co.

 Newly incorporated in October 1990 as Micro-Trains® Line Co. (Keith's portion of the business), Z, Nn3, and N Scale products continued to be produced at the Medford plant until the firm was subsequently relocated in 1993 to its present location, a purpose-built 33,000 square foot plant in Talent, Oregon.

Micro-Trains Line 70060 Third Anniversary Mechanical Reefer Car MTL 1993

After retiring in 2000, Keith and his wife Coral sold their interest in Micro-Trains® Line to their immediate family in 2001.

Micro-Trains Line NSC 02-70 Keith & Coral Edwards K & CE The Retirement Route 50' Boxcar 2002

Given how much offshoring has occurred in recent decades, it is worthy to note that to the present day, the majority of the Micro-Trains® Line products continue to be manufactured in the United States.

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