Limited edition or special edition – what’s the difference?
Our products are normally described as being a ‘limited’ or
‘special’ edition but what’s the difference between the two?
A LIMITED EDITION is pretty much what it says. The model is strictly limited to a pre-defined production quantity and each item is provided with a signed and numbered certificate of authenticity that indicates the final quantity manufactured. In our case this is usually 1,000 pieces although, in the past, we have undertaken runs as low as 500 especially when we were dealing with Lima in the late-1990s. After the product is delivered, the printing plates and paint masks are destroyed and the manufacturer undertakes never to resurrect the production line. RAIL EXCLUSIVE automatically allocates the same certificate number to each customer if they purchase successive limited editions.
SPECIAL EDITIONS are different in that they can refer to any size production run and do not have a numbered certificate. Typically, these can be as low as 500, where it would be difficult to offer existing certificate numbers or as high as 2,400 which isn’t exactly a ‘restricted’ number! Again agreement is made with the manufacturer that similar models will not be offered for a fixed period, normally two years. Running numbers will never be duplicated. Current RAIL EXCLUSIVE policy is to provide a ‘made-to-order’ service whereby the number of models produced exactly, or very closely matches, customer pre-orders. These orders act as guarantees in obtaining such items but latecomers may be unlucky, as their interest would not have been recorded at the time the products were made.
In both cases it is recommended that you place your order as early as possible to avoid possible disappointment. We’ve had to turn away quite a few potential customers for older models, prompting them to scour auction sites or purchase from other specialist collectors and end up paying highly inflated prices. Unlike some other retailers, items do tend to sell out extremely quickly thanks to our loyal customer base. You just have to look at our past products pages; all items listed thereon being no longer available despite some dating from only Spring 2010.