3 Collectibles provided us with high quality, realistic, and detailed
limited edition collectibles. Since 1997, they were committed to
replicating fire fighting and emergency vehicles.
For me, this is a very sad day. Like many of you, I’ve worked with Code 3
Collectibles for many years and have assisted on a number of projects.
www.FireEngines.net has always been a big supporter.
In the early years, many of us remember the great folks who provided us
with these models, Scott Schellhase, Arnie Rubin, Jewell Morson, and
fellow collector Orlando Ramos. We also remember Code 3 Collector Days that
were organized by all these great folks. Fellow collector, Glenn Morson, takes us back to Code 3 Collectibles Day in 2004.
We could always count on Glenn to supply us with the "scoop" of what was
happening at Code 3.
Scott Schellhase and Arnie Rubin
Code 3 Day 2003
In January of 2008, I
received an email from Scott. He wrote the following:
"One thing I think Code 3 is best at is not being afraid of change.
While the emergency die cast collector market is not huge by any means
Code 3 has definitely been the pioneer in many aspects from detail,
distribution methods, communication with the customer. In the 10 years we
have been in business there have been moments where we were forced to
either change or die. We are at that crossroads again."
These words are as true
today as they were then. Unfortunately, they have reached their final crossroads.
Other than a nasty economy,
I refuse to do a post mortem on what happened, it just happened.
However, we can rejoice in the fact collectors were supplied with great
looking models and were able to work with great people for 14 years.
Thank you for the memories
From Rich Krom:
I had the pleasure to work
with Scott, and knew how close this line was to him. He started the line
when he was hired by Arnie Rubin, and Scott knew all the products and what
could be done with them by memory. Sadly, the economy today really does
not have room for "business as usual". You have to constantly seek out new
ways to expand on tooling use and look at new construction methods, and
new mediums for the line in order to stay competitive. The hobby industry,
especially diecast is changing every day, and as I have mentioned time and
time again, there are a few companies that are not going to survive this
downturned economy. I will miss the Code 3 line. It was what brought most
of us together. We still have other avenues to seek, and there are always
going to be the events. I wish the folks at Code 3 well, and hope that one
day they may return the line to us with some fresh and exciting new ideas
and products. Rich
From Mike Quinn
I remember thinking to
myself the first time I saw a Code 3 ad back in 1997 that finally someone
was going to produce an affordable, detailed, and reasonably sized replica
of modern fire apparatus. I know I am not the only one who was amazed when
that first series of Los Angeles City FD Seagraves was released, with the
yellow Engine 51 being the one that we all sought after the most. My how
times changed, and as good as these first models were, little did we know
what Code 3 had in store for us. These first models look so primitive
compared to the Marauder II engines released in the last few months.
Even though I was new to the internet, I joined the Code 3 Forum when it
first began, and was assigned member number 96. Yes, one of the "coveted"
two digit member numbers. I actively participated in that forum, and
because of the camaraderie there I decided to make the 3,000 mile trip out
to Sherman Oaks for what turned out to be the last company-hosted C3 Day.
It was at this event that close friendships were born with Rich Krom, Mike
Bober, Andy Pyott, and Mike Adams. Orlando Ramos put on one heck of an
event, with stops at the famous Emergency! station in Carson and a ride on
the new LAFD fireboat "The Warner Lawrence" being the undisputed
highlights of this trip. I was nervous about going because I did not know
anyone and was not sure what to expect, but it turned out this was one of
the best decisions I have ever made because of the close relationships
that have evolved in the years since this trip.
Rich and I stayed in close contact and became instant friends. When John
Dunkel arrived in 2007, Rich asked to have me added as a consultant on the
Spartan engine project with himself and Larry Lorrance. And as they say,
the rest is history. The Spartan project was unfortunately scrapped, but
my legal expertise was needed to convince the Norfolk Naval Air Station
that Code 3 should be allowed to produce a model of one of their Oshkosh
T-3000 crash trucks. I was honored to be asked, and after several phone
calls to different people in various civilian and military positions with
the air station, the project was approved. This also represented the first
time I worked on reviewing a model from start to finish.
Over the past two years my involvement as a consultant evolved, and I was
extremely fortunate to have three of my suggestions make it to production
in 2010...the Hartford, Carson City, and Chino Valley engines. Three more
were slated for release in 2011, but with the decision to end production
made it means that the Marlboro, Bristol, and LA County ladders will not
Code 3 has been an extremely important part of my collecting history. The
company did not just produce great models, but also fostered a sense of
community among the collecting ranks. Circumstances change, but I for one
will always reflect on the positives that have occurred in my life because
of Code 3 and their involvement in our hobby.
Code 3 Collectible Day 2003