Classic Toy Trains Magazine Staff


By Angela Cotey | October 19, 2020

| Last updated on September 6, 2023

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Rene Schweitzer

Rene Schweitzer, Editor

Rene has worked on and off for CTT since 1995, but rejoined the staff of Classic Toy Trains in May of 2014 as Production Editor.

Now as CTT’s editor, she will work closely with Senior Editor Roger Carp in selecting, editing, and preparing all content for both the print magazine and She enjoys working with contributors to find the best toy train content–so if you have a story idea, please send her an email.

She currently lives in Waukesha with her husband (who is a huge toy train enthusiast who belongs to the local 3-rail club) and three cats. There’s a former CTT project layout in their basement with a Halloween theme, and plenty of O gauge items throughout their house.

In her spare time, she enjoys a variety of hobbies including reading, watching movies, gardening, rubber stamping, machine embroidery, and bicycling.


Roger Carp
Roger Carp

Roger Carp, Senior Editor

Roger Carp has been associated with Classic Toy Trains since its second issue came out in the Spring of 1988. He has also supervised the development of many of its special issues, including All-Star Electric Trains of the 1950s, More All-Star Electric Trains, and Lionel, the Golden Years.

The history of toy trains in America fascinates Roger, especially the development and promotion of prewar and postwar Lionel and postwar American Flyer. To advance his understanding of that history, he has conducted interviews with many former Lionel and Gilbert employees and written four books on the history of Lionel as well as special-interest publications on Lionel’s showroom in New York City and its different accessories. Roger regularly travels around the United States, photographing O and S gauge layouts for articles in CTT.

Roger collects postwar Lionel trains and accessories, Mini-Craft stations and newsstands, and Authenticast figures, all for the O gauge layout that he dreams of building.

24 thoughts on “Staff

  1. Congratulations Rene on becoming editor.
    I will renew my subscription. I posted on a survey that I thought CTT was too focused on hi-rail large layout. The material on small layout is a rerun of older articles. I have a 10′ by 12′ room for my layout. There are items in the room. My partially finished layout is 4′ by 8′. It has been partially finished for two years. I am on a budget as I am retired. I hope you can do a new project for 4×8 layout. I plan to add DCS explorer. Lionel shot themselves in the foot by discontinuing the Can 1L base. What do you use for all the TMCC locomotives that do not have Blue Tooth. Most of rolling stock, operating accessories, and locomotives are post war.
    I would like to see a comparison of the Lionchief 2.0 using a phone and app to Railking and DCS Explorer and phone app using steam and diesel from both lines

  2. I would just like to say that the article by Pete Riddle is great, not what I want, but great to see small layouts. My only suggestion would be is to put the transformer and other controls to the other corner closer to the manual switches, would make life a lot easier.

  3. Can’t access the current issue,after a few pages it goes back to the start. Why am I paying for digital if I can’t get it? Older issues seem to load just fine. And like many have said why to we have to pay more for things we used to get free before this thing. I was just told I have already posted something like this, so I am doing it again,smarten up guys and listen to your longtime subscribers.

  4. Can’t access the current issue,after a few pages it goes back to the start. Why am I paying for digital if I can’t get it? Older issues seem to load just fine. And like many have said why to we have to pay more for things we used to get free before this thing.

  5. not a unlimited sub. cannot see any viedos or anything else did before why am I paying for this . will stop as member if I have to pay more there are other mags. out there

  6. When following instruction, it takes me to a page where my only choices are to purchase a single issue or subscribe for a year. I selected the annual choice

  7. I subscribed to CTT on 10-21-21 and tried to log in to review current and previous issues of the digital magazine. Paying for a magazine that I can not review is very disappointing and likely illegal. Below are the relevant information from the confirmation you sent me back in October.
    Order Summary
    Account No.: 91102100818
    Name: Norman Oldfield
    Edition Type: Digital
    Amount Paid: $39.95

    I sent a message the other day and have yet to hear back from you. Very disappointing!
    You should have my email address associated with the account number. I don’t see a need to post my email or physical address in this public area.

  8. I have a new 1 yr subscription to CTT. I want to purchase back issues from March 2021 until now. Please tell me how I can accomplish this. This is my 4th request.
    Leon Bernard
    1283 New Britain Avenue
    West Hartford, CT 06110

  9. I signed up for the all digital plan for CTT and the webpage lets me login, but when I go to read any issue, current or past, it won’t load the magazine and fails when it goes to reload the page. I signed up October 21st 2021. Who is the right person to contact to resolve this problem? Thanks.

  10. I read with great interest Bill Clark’s article in the November 2021 issue of CTT. As I am also a post-war fan and building my own Lionel Post-War type layout, I found Bill’s outlook on this part of our great hobby refreshing. Like Bill, I have minimal scenery, but plenty of action via Lionel and American Flyer operating accessories. Thank you Bill and the editors of CTT for including this informative and entertaining piece.

  11. I have an American Flyer water tower I would like to find out more about. Can you point me in the right direction. I have searched online but seem to have come up empty.

    Thank You
    Eric Schrowang

  12. I have not been able to access the digital special issue (best layouts & store displays) I purchased some years ago on your archive site. Zineo still has it but I can’t download. Also the last issue Zineo has is Mar/2021. How can I access my special issue on your website? Thanks. Bruce Bollenbach

  13. I’ve been a subscriber to Classic Toy Trains Magazine since it came out in 1988.
    My first issue was your issue number 2. I’ve always looked forward to your e-mails and videos in my inbox on my computer. Then you “improved” with this thing. Thanks for nothing. I get less then ever before and the price to join is way too high. Today I get an e-mail from “Classic Toy Trains Magazine” with Bobs Train Box the first item shown. I was so pleased since I never would miss one of Bobs productions and haven’t been able to watch one since you changed over. I clicked on it AND I signed in and get the all too familiar Free 30 day trial page. Don’t know whos idea this was but as a 30 plus year subscriber I want to say I am NOT PLEASED, and that is an understatement. I do want to give credit to you for offering past issues online. That is a nice plus when I need to look something up but this is very frustrating and aggravating thing to do to us after all these years. Not Happy About This At All.

    1. Angelo, I feel exactly the same as you! I have had a subscription for over 25 years straight. Since this started, we subscribers have been SCREWED out of a number of perks we had in the past. Also thinking of canceling my subscription too.

  14. I have to echo the comments regarding loosing functionality promised when the “new” was created. I don’t want to spend another $80+ a year to have access to what I was supposed to receive for subscribing to the magazine. I don’t see enough substance in the on-line material to warrant that price tag. I’m seriously considering not renewing, and I have been a subscriber for a very long time (I believe over 20 years).

  15. New to magazine.
    I need to get information /articles on the old postwar ZW transformers to help decide which variation to buy. I understand you have past articles on these.
    How do I access them. I am a member of CTT.
    Please help

  16. I am another unhappy customer! My subscription was supposed to include access to the “Classic Toy Trains” website articles. It seems to now require an additional membership to view the articles of all your train related magazines. This is like Cable TV; 250 channels of which I might watch 10. This is why I do not have Cable TV and why I will not renew my membership.

    Steve Gammon
    Acct#: 39292812269

  17. I have to agree with some of the other people who have made comments about taking away some of our privileges and now charging us for them, very greedy on your part. I have been a subscriber for 10 yrs I think this will be my last year.

    But here is a more serious problem, your website is a disgrace, having been in IT management for 40 yrs whoever designed it or maintains it, if he or she is an employee they should be fired. If you paid an outside firm to design it you should get your money back.

    The server times out. 504 Gateway Time-out
    If you try to download the May issue it won’t unzip properly on a Mac laptop.
    I went to read a article and it says I have used my 8 articles for the month and I only tried to read one.
    The whole design is convoluted and a lot harder to find information.

    Very very disappointing.

  18. Perhaps Roger may answer this one. I have Lionel Prewar 251E loco that runs but the E unit doesn’t work. I have become a prewar collector and enjoy different facets of the hobby, including repairs. I’d like to rewire this loco (the original insulation on the wires is shot after 90 years!) myself and rebuild the E unit. I mentioned this on the Lionel FB page I belong to and some self-proclaimed expert came along and said either he should fix it or my “tinkering” will ruin it. I asked for suggestions of a Lionel repair manual and he stated that only he has the qualifications and E units are easy to mess up. To me, this response seems slanted. Do you agree that I should not even attempt to rebuild the E-unit (even with instructions) and send it to a professional? If you do agree, can you share a couple of reputable rebuilders of Lionel Prewar equipment?

  19. I have a classic toy train membership that is good till Nov. 2023 and I am not able to access any of the product reviews, how to, greatest find and etc. I could access all of this before took over. I am extremely upset over this and want to know how this happened. It this is not resolved, I will cancel the rest of my subscription that is good till nov. 2023. This is not a way for you to treat a member who has been there for over 20 years. Sincerely yours, Amy Palermo

  20. New topic…
    Why can’t I now access Bob’s Train Box without becoming an Unlimited Member? I use to be able to before the new site change. I logged in and no go. I know your company wants more money out of customers, but cutting my subscription benefits is only going to make ME upset! If anything, I can always drop 2 or 3 of the subscriptions I now have.
    Sincerely, Frank Moody

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