After-market parts, including warranty pieces, are generally delivered to the KATO USA warehouse two to four months after the release of the model. Thus, if a model is released in January, it may be as early as March or as late as May before parts are available.
ALL of the parts for a particular model are produced at once, at the onset of the model production. The pieces required for the assembly of the models are taken from this full lot of individual components. Once the models are assembled and shipped (and ultimately released to the market), factory personnel then turn their attention to the remaining supply of each part. The loose pieces are put into small bags, a package header attached and finally boxed by item for transport. Depending on the number of individual items and quantity of each item, this packaging process usually takes 1-3 months. The parts are then loaded onto a container for transport by ocean freighter and rail transport for eventual delivery to our facility, usually 3-4 weeks after leaving the factory. This packaging and transport time adds up to two to four months lag behind the models. This also means that if a part goes out of stock, we will not likely get it back in to stock again until we do another production run of that particular model.
We thank you for your cooperation and understanding, as well as your support of KATO Precision Railroad Models.