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OT - Any model train geeks here?


RABid

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I'm sort of like Sheldon, love trains, don't have a real setup. Just a MTH Christmas train that will soon be unboxed and around the tree. Oh, and a bunch of scattered engines and cars that I have collected over the years with no focus on a goal.

 

There used to be a lot of the real thing in my area but since the coal recession they have all but disappeared. CSX finally shut down the local repair yard and moved most people to Florida.

 

Anyway, I'm doing a lot of research and plan to start a system. Trying to decide between DCC or MTH proprietary DCS and also choose my main brand for engines and controllers. Pretty sure that I am going HO DCC.

 

Any model railroad buffs here? If so, what do you use?

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I don't know what any of those acronyms are, except CSX. I don't even know what that stands for, but I know what it is.

 

When I was a kid, I had a ton of HO stuff. I had plans for a full layout but never got that far.

"I'm so crazy, I don't know this is impossible! Hoo hoo!" - Daffy Duck

 

"The good news is that once you start piano you never have to worry about getting laid again. More time to practice!" - MOI

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I have some HO I'm collecting but no layout at the moment. Planning a small switching layout for my office/studio. I'd go DCC over MTH's system....much more universal, and MTH's locomotives will also run on DCC.

www.wjwcreative.com

www.linkedin.com/in/wjwilcox

 

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As a kid me and my younger brother got into N scale. It was a lot of fun. My kid is 6 this year, I've been thinking about getting into an HO size holiday set. My brother has migrated to vintage Lionel.

Yamaha CP88, Roland VR-700, Crumar Mojo, rebuilt 1910 Chickering 5'2", Fender Rhodes MKI 88k, Casio PX-560

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A guy I work with says there are a bunch of Lionel cars and stuff from the early 60s in his Dad's attic that have never been out of the boxes. His dad was an insurance agent and a client who owned a hobby shop used to give them to him. I guess the kids weren't allowed to play with them. He should get an inventory and see what they're worth.

aka âmisterdregsâ

 

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Trains were in my Dad's blood, and his kids have it in their blood too.

 

Dad had a big HO layout. As kids we modeled HO on an 8x4 foot table. Our small layout was gone before we graduated when we discovered live music gigs.

 

My nephew got into modeling, and he & my brother want to build a larger layout using my Dad's models which were really nice. Dad modeled the PRR.

 

I never got back into modeling since high school. My music hobby consumes enough time and $$$ that there wouldn't be any leftover for other hobbies.

 

But we all enjoy reading railroad history. Dad is not far from leaving this world and my brother & I will be sharing his large collection of railroad history books between us.

 

I owe my engineering career to model trains and to Dad. Dad taught me how to fix them on the bench and I figured out how to make them run better. Today my benchwork is directed to vintage synths.

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I've been playing with Lionel O Gauge since my dad built our first Christmas layout in the early 60's.

 

My layouts today run all kinds of equipment from our original trains from the 60's up through the very modern stuff being made today.

 

I am slowly working on a new 15x20 foot layout. No pics yet

 

Here's couple pics of some of my stuff.

 

A Dealer display type I made from a few years back

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/922/9PEQvy.jpg

 

C.1996 Diesels pulling my dad's 1965 passenger cars

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/924/pJ04Ws.jpg

 

 

A small sampling of my postwar and modern operating accessories

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/924/uvJGzf.jpg

 

 

Caught the highball

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/923/xSC8i1.jpg

 

 

It's 1950 and Diesel is overtaking Steam programs on the rails.

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/924/dh35My.jpg

 

 

1996 Lionel Santa Fe F3 Diesel and 1960 Lionel NYC Hudson Steam loco.

http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/923/TcSr78.jpg

David

Gig Rig:Roland Fantom-08| Yamaha MODX+ 6 | MacBook Pro 14" M1| Mainstage

 

 

 

 

 

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I've been interested in model trains since I was a kid. My dad built an HO layout for me when I was 5 years old, with 2 track loops and scenery on a 4x8 foot board. More recently my son and I have worked on N scale layouts, and there is a layout sitting dormant in the garage now. N scale engines and rolling stock are much better now than they were in the 1970s.
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In The Netherlands the two main brands were Märklin and Fleischmann, both German. My dad (like his dad before him) was a Märklin fundamentalist and naturally I adopted the same mindset. We had a fair bit of stuff up in the attic, complete with remote controlled switches, signals etc. (All H0, btw)

 

Much of the stuff had been originally purchased by my grandfather, and when we moved my uncle claimed ownership. He now has a large and complex setup in his basement. Really intricate stuff, and he has automated a lot of it, too.

 

https://www.maerklin.de/en/

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My first electric train set was a hand-me-down from an older cousin. It was an American Flyer steam engine with coal tender. It came with a talking station that announced departure destinations. The sound was from a small phonograph record inside. My next set was a new American Flyer diesel from which I still have the engine. Later I got a Tyco HO train set that I combined with Aurora HO slot cars and Kenner Girder and Panel set which allowed me to make HO scale bridges and buildings. I was a big fan of A.C. Gilbert products since he was born in my hometown where the A.C. Gilbert Discovery Village is now located. I also had an Erector set, Chemistry set, and Space Telescope all made by Gilbert.

 

http://www.rfgco.com/galleries/326.jpg

 

http://thegilbertgallery.org/Accessory%20Gallery/accessories_operating3_files/755-Talking-Station.jpg

 

3966649486_209fababc2_b.jpg

 

tyco-ho-train-shifter-ii-santa-fe_1_17df95b7a7c854fee2a3f7c0659ba4c2.jpgc20abc85dc850e78d019a43844037e30.jpg

 

http://client-cdn.crystalcommerce.com/photo/elsewherecomics/file/7209d6246bfe5c258385fc0ed338a5ab/large/$(KGrHqFHJBME8e7!7tz2BPIiTs(LFQ~~60_3.jpg

http://www.toysofchildhoodpast.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/Screen-Shot-2015-05-15-at-4.07.23-PM.png

http://www.bbemuseum.com/museum/images/chemistry_set.jpg

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_BCg7Ox9nmno/Rg2P_jrgnZI/AAAAAAAAAEE/iqDxwwDMss4/s320/gilbert+and+jellyorum.jpg

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A guy I work with says there are a bunch of Lionel cars and stuff from the early 60s in his Dad's attic that have never been out of the boxes....

 

Lionel engines and rolling stock from the classic Lionel era (1950s thru the early 1960s) were packaged in heavy cardboard boxes which had some orange colors on the outside, and a very distinct appearance. If the *boxes* are in good shape, it significantly raises the collectable value.

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I've always believed there is a connection between musicians and the hobby of model railroading. I don't know if its the creative part of our brains or what. Theres something about actually building something that you planned and control. Sort of like arranging a tune and playing it your way.

Since my gigging schedule has dried up ( seems to be harder to book things the older you get but thats a discussion for another thread ) and being retired, I decided to delve back into a hobby I always enjoyed. Lionel stuff every Xmas as a kid as with everyone my generation, then on to HO. Working full time and gigging a lot took my time so that HO phase got sold. Long break with Motorcycles taking over as the main hobby.

Now with the time, money, and space I've started an HO DCC layout and still find it a relaxing creative hobby. Many facets to it besides watching a train chase its tail around a loop under a Xmas Tree.

Rod Stewart has been featured in two issues of Model Railroader magazine. The whole third floor of his mansion is a gigantic HO railroad and he has two assistants to help him work on it. He travels with road cases full of projects to work on in his hotel rooms between sound checks and his show.

Frank Sinatra also had a hugh Lionel setup in an atrium built onto his home.

My private teacher when I was a kid was a great keyboardist and could of easily made a living off of music but choose the security of being an engineer on the Pennsylvainia RR. Did the NY to Washington express run every weekday and played Piano /Hammond weekends. He had an HO setup in his finished attic.

Another musician Bruce Williams used to play Hammond in restaurants. He built what was the largest model railroad in the world in Flemington NJ called Northlandz. Laid all the track including 1,200 swithces by hand. He plays a restored pipe organ there.

One more was another great local NJ guy Jimmy Catalano. Great solo musician with a monster keyboard setup built around a B3 with 4 / 31H leslies. When the restaurant he was playing in burned down ( wink, wink ) with all his equipment he quit the business and filled his backyard with LGB trains.

Kids today are more drawn to electronics but the hobby is still going strong.

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Kids today are more drawn to electronics but the hobby is still going strong.

 

My Dad had a business selling photos of vintage trains from his collection of 20,000+ negatives he acquired over the years. He also sold clothing and model trains. I used to help him when he took the business to train shows and I can confirm that kids still do have a strong interest in trains and in models. I still go to train shows to browse and this is still true.

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I had a fairly elaborate Märklin set, with scenery -- and an aerial tramway to the top of a "mountain." It has been packed away for years, and every once in awhile, I entertain the idea of resurrecting it and being a 9-year-old kid again.

_______________________________________________

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I've always believed there is a connection between musicians and the hobby of model railroading. I don't know if its the creative part of our brains or what. Theres something about actually building something that you planned and control. Sort of like arranging a tune and playing it your way.

Since my gigging schedule has dried up ( seems to be harder to book things the older you get but thats a discussion for another thread ) and being retired, I decided to delve back into a hobby I always enjoyed. Lionel stuff every Xmas as a kid as with everyone my generation, then on to HO. Working full time and gigging a lot took my time so that HO phase got sold. Long break with Motorcycles taking over as the main hobby.

Now with the time, money, and space I've started an HO DCC layout and still find it a relaxing creative hobby. Many facets to it besides watching a train chase its tail around a loop under a Xmas Tree.

Rod Stewart has been featured in two issues of Model Railroader magazine. The whole third floor of his mansion is a gigantic HO railroad and he has two assistants to help him work on it. He travels with road cases full of projects to work on in his hotel rooms between sound checks and his show.

Frank Sinatra also had a hugh Lionel setup in an atrium built onto his home.

My private teacher when I was a kid was a great keyboardist and could of easily made a living off of music but choose the security of being an engineer on the Pennsylvainia RR. Did the NY to Washington express run every weekday and played Piano /Hammond weekends. He had an HO setup in his finished attic.

Another musician Bruce Williams used to play Hammond in restaurants. He built what was the largest model railroad in the world in Flemington NJ called Northlandz. Laid all the track including 1,200 swithces by hand. He plays a restored pipe organ there.

One more was another great local NJ guy Jimmy Catalano. Great solo musician with a monster keyboard setup built around a B3 with 4 / 31H leslies. When the restaurant he was playing in burned down ( wink, wink ) with all his equipment he quit the business and filled his backyard with LGB trains.

Kids today are more drawn to electronics but the hobby is still going strong.

 

Was that "The Pub" in Clifton, or "The Seven Sisters" in South Amboy?

 

I took lessons from a contemporary of his, Vic Romano.....they used to have dueling contests at the Hammond Organ store in Totowa, which was where I bought my B from a salesman named Gene Laurent.

 

Jake

1967 B-3 w/(2) 122's, Nord C1w/Leslie 2101 top, Nord PedalKeys 27, Nord Electro 4D, IK B3X, QSC K12.2, Yamaha reface YC+CS+CP

 

"It needs a Hammond"

 

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This topic has inspired me to build an HO set; I wanted to badly about 15 years ago, but I also wanted to get back playing and wouldn't have time for both.

 

My son-in-law is an engineer with CSX (out of Clifton Forge Va) so it'd better just not buy any Norfolk Southern rolling stock for a while. ha ha

 

 

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Was that "The Pub" in Clifton, or "The Seven Sisters" in South Amboy?

I took lessons from a contemporary of his, Vic Romano.....they used to have dueling contests at the Hammond Organ store in Totowa, which was where I bought my B from a salesman named Gene Laurent.

Jake

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Hey Jake

The place that burned was the Seven Arches ( maybe also known as the Seven Sisters ) in Perth Amboy. The owner Eddie Mason was a real character. Right before the fire we stopped into his other restaurant in Sea Bright and there was the X77 that used to be in the front room in Perth Amboy. Also lots of cases of liquor from there.

Suspicious--- NAH! I think Jimmy was kind of tired of the whole scene by then.

We used to use the same tech to fix our Hammonds. Bill Renyolds was the guy and he did some amazing custom updates for me on my rig. Jimmy wanted to cut down his 31Hs so he and Bill dragged them out into the parking lot where he was playing and took a circular saw to them and added some trim around the cut lines. Fun times.

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I have a whack of Lionel N scale trains that my father started collecting in the fifties. The tables, tunnels and bridges take up 1/4 of the basement. If I was starting out I would go HO, or smaller.

 

Michael,

 

I think you meant "O" scale - The first "N" gauge trains I ever saw stateside were a re-branded Marklin set sold as "Postage Stamp Trains" under the Aurora banner.

 

Lionel was "O" and headquartered not 30 miles away from here in Hillside, NJ.

 

Jake

1967 B-3 w/(2) 122's, Nord C1w/Leslie 2101 top, Nord PedalKeys 27, Nord Electro 4D, IK B3X, QSC K12.2, Yamaha reface YC+CS+CP

 

"It needs a Hammond"

 

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I have a whack of Lionel N scale trains that my father started collecting in the fifties. The tables, tunnels and bridges take up 1/4 of the basement. If I was starting out I would go HO, or smaller.

 

Michael,

 

I think you meant "O" scale - The first "N" gauge trains I ever saw stateside were a re-branded Marklin set sold as "Postage Stamp Trains" under the Aurora banner.

 

Lionel was "O" and headquartered not 30 miles away from here in Hillside, NJ.

 

Jake

 

You are correct.

 

Lionel had "O" and "OO" and Standard Gauge prior to WWII.

 

Afterwards it was just "O" and Standard Gauge for awhile.

 

Lionel did introduce their HO line from the mid 50's till about 1962, then reintroduced it in the mid to late 70's for a couple years.

 

A.C. Gilbert (American Flyer) was the "S" gauge in the early days.

 

After A.C. Gilbert folded, Lionel purchased the rights to Am. Flyer.

 

Lionel is current located in Concord, N.C. If you're near check out their open house when they have it. Lots of cool stuff.

 

Currently Lionel offers O and S (under the Am. Flyer name).

They also have "some" G gauge read-to-run inexpensive sets.

 

Finally, they offer a new Polar Express set in HO that can be run by Lionchief remote, direct transformer, or DCC (the HO standard).

 

 

Yeah I am a serious geek. I only play a rockstar on weekends

:freak:

 

 

David

Gig Rig:Roland Fantom-08| Yamaha MODX+ 6 | MacBook Pro 14" M1| Mainstage

 

 

 

 

 

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Oh you gotta be kidding me! I was just browsing my model railroad forums a couple minutes ago and then saw this, lol!

 

I have a 4x8' N scale model railroad layout, DCC-powered (Digitrax), modern-era Union Pacific (keyboard/music connection: I store all my keyboard and guitar cases and my bass rig underneath my layout :)).

 

Have been doing N scale for the past 11 years. Before that I was in HO scale for over 20, since I was around 10 years old, having gone through a few layouts. I got turned off to HO scale due to having 18" radius curves on my layout, which was too tight to run the longer rolling stock I wanted. When I switched to N scale, 18" radius is considered pretty wide, so I never looked back.

 

Here's a video of an intermodal train running through a night scene on my layout:

 

[video:youtube]

 

And here's an Amtrak train running through my layout (an N scale depiction of Amtrak's Coast Starlight):

 

[video:youtube]

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...I have a 4x8' N scale model railroad layout, DCC-powered (Digitrax), ...

 

Nice! I have some N scale but always have trouble keeping it on the track. It started with the Bachmann Spectrum Acela set. DCC and EZ track.

This post edited for speling.
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I have a whack of Lionel N scale trains that my father started collecting in the fifties. The tables, tunnels and bridges take up 1/4 of the basement. If I was starting out I would go HO, or smaller.

 

Michael,

 

I think you meant "O" scale - The first "N" gauge trains I ever saw stateside were a re-branded Marklin set sold as "Postage Stamp Trains" under the Aurora banner.

 

Lionel was "O" and headquartered not 30 miles away from here in Hillside, NJ.

 

Jake

Yes I stand corrected! The big ones at any rate! :laugh:
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...I have a 4x8' N scale model railroad layout, DCC-powered (Digitrax), ...

 

Nice! I have some N scale but always have trouble keeping it on the track. It started with the Bachmann Spectrum Acela set. DCC and EZ track.

 

I think your problem is the same that I had in HO scale -- the track you're using likely has curves that are too tight for your trains. Especially the Acela set, which requires broad curves over 18" or so. Try Kato Unitrack, which has the wider curves. It's a little more expensive than EZ Track but much more reliable.

 

Since my layout is permanent, I use Atlas or Micro Engineering Code 55 flex-track on cork or foam roadbed, which has a more realistic appearance.

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