Where to buy Lionel trains in St. Louis

If you want to know where to buy Lionel trains in St. Louis, you have a lot of choices. It’s more than possible to make a day of train shopping in St. Louis.

I’ve never seen a comprehensive list of shops, so I made my own. If you know of any place I missed, I apologize. Please leave a comment and I will add it.

Sixty years ago, you wouldn’t have needed anyone to tell you where to find Lionel trains in St. Louis. It’s a little harder now.

Andy’s Toys (7146 Villanova Plaza, St. Louis MO 63123). Andy’s is a vintage toy shop, so it doesn’t specialize in Lionel, but occasionally he has some vintage Lionel in stock. He also almost always has a good selection of vintage diecast vehicles to outfit a vintage layout.

Checkered Flag Hobby Country (3847 Lemay Ferry Rd., St. Louis MO 63125). Checkered Flag is more of an R/C store but has some model trains, including a small (and dwindling) supply of recent production Lionel.

Electric Train Outlet (9517 Page Ave., St. Louis MO 63132). Don’t be fooled by the “outlet” name, this isn’t a closeout store. Electric Train Outlet has a large selection of modern production Lionel, as well as a reasonable selection of vintage Lionel. The store also carries some other makes of O gauge trains.

Mark Twain Hobby Center (2793 W Clay St., St. Charles MO 63301). Mark Twain is another full-line hobby shop, but it carries a reasonable selection of trains, including some new-production Lionel.

Menard’s (various locations). Yes, this home improvement chain sells trains. Menard’s carries a few Lionel train sets, some buildings, and its own house brand of track and O gauge train cars. Of course, it’s also a good place to buy lumber, wire, and other necessities for your layout.

Rodney’s Trains (9622 Gravois Rd., St. Louis MO 63123). Rodney’s has a good selection of new Lionel and an even better selection of vintage Lionel, including postwar and prewar, even the old, large Standard Gauge trains. The owner collects prewar Lionel trains so his selection of prewar is extensive. Rodney’s also has the best selection of American Flyer and Marx trains in St. Louis.

Schaefer’s (11659 Gravois Rd., St. Louis MO 63126). Schaefer’s is a full-line hobby shop. Its founder was a huge R/C plane enthusiast but Schaefer’s train section is reasonable. Recently Schaefer’s started dealing in vintage Lionel in addition to new.

Switch Stand (9120 Lackland Rd., St. Louis MO 63114). Switch Stand has a good selection of modern Lionel and other makes of 3-rail O gauge trains. For newer Lionel trains, this is one of the better stores to visit.

Train Town (9832 Manchester, St. Louis MO 63119). Train Town specializes in trains, as its name suggests. The owner is a noted postwar Lionel collector, so the store has a large selection of postwar Lionel trains, though it isn’t devoid of prewar trains either.

Planning a circuit

It’s possible to start at one end of St. Louis and work your way north or south and catch most of these stores. Start at Checkered Flag and work your way north to Schaefer’s, then Rodney’s, then Andy’s, north to Train Town, then to Switch Stand and Electric Train Outlet, then north to Mark Twain Hobby Center. Or you can start north and work your way south. Keep in mind if you try to visit all of the stores in a single day, you’ll only be able to spend about 30 minutes in each one. On average, the stores are about 20 minutes from each other.

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