Model Train Stuff

C J Evans By C J Evans, 6th Jan 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Transport>Trains

A look at a passion of mine, model railroads ( train sets ) and model train stuff - big boy's toys!


Most men of a certain age won't really want to admit they have an interest in model train stuff and I'm no different. Model train stuff is actually big business and a very popular hobby with many people across the world. First things first you are going to have to pick the scale of train set you are looking to start your adventure with. The scale basically means the size ( or scale ) of the model train stuff you are going to collect.


Your choice of scale will have a big impact on the type of railroad you'll be able to build in the available space so choose wisely. In the next section I will cover the most popular of train scales.

There is no scale that can be termed the top scale - all of them have different advantages:

- TT Scale
- HO / OO Scale
- S Scale
- O / O27 Scale
- G / No. 1 Scales
- "Standard Gauge"
- Narrow Gauges
- Z Scale
- N Scale.

Out of all these the HO / 00 scale will always be the most popular and most widely used worldwide. The 00 scale is a version of the HO scale used in the United Kingdom.

Power source and railway company

Another factor often overlooked when it comes to model train stuff is the specific railroad you are going to want to follow ( especially if you are collecting in America ). You can either go for a modern day rail company like Union Pacific or you can go for a smaller traditional company that has been taken over by a more modern 'big boy'.

A train set that you have purchased from a superstore or hobby shop will always come with a transformer ( powerpack ). This type of transformer is slowly going out of fashion if I'm honest and the more serious of collectors are starting to use computer/digital controllers. These type of controllers are called DCC which stands for Digital Command Control.

Big mistakes

The biggest mistake I see when it comes to the more newbie of scale train enthusiasts is the idea of 'curve radius'. Curve Radius is essential to the amount of space you have spare to create your train set. For example, the most popular HO scale's Curve radius is listed as being from 15-22ins, no more or no less. Please take the time to find this out first and measure out your protracted train run on a large blank bit of plywood.

I hope this article on model train stuff has been helpful to you - good luck with your model train experience.

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