Written by Nathan Wertheimer
If your looking for into a new hobby than check out model train railroading. This is a great hobby that usually gets handed down from generation to the next generation. At Christmas time some people have a train set going around the tree. Plus, this hobby lets one start off small and get very large.
Most people are wondering how did I get into this hobby. I first got started in this hobby when I was a child by going to a retail toy store and buying my first Lionel Train set. My dad had a train set growing up as a kid. I wanted to same fun experience too. Once I got home, I could not wait to assemble it and start playing with it. If your looking to buy your first train set, I recommend buying a name brand box set. This will give you a chance to see where you want to expand your train collection for the future. Over time I have added many pieces to my train collection.
The Lionel Train collection got too big and I wanted to down size to the HO train format. That is when I started going to model trains shows to purchase good used train cars and engines for my set. No one should break the bank in this hobby. I set aside some money each year to purchase some new or used pieces I need. You can do the same thing.
At some point, you will want to make your own permanent train layout. The best deals are on used and new model trains at your local area model train show. Some HO boxcars can be purchased from $1-$10. Most HO diesel engines can be bought for $10-$200. Once you go to one train show you’ll be hooked and be a repeat attendee.
Once you have purchased your train set. The next stage is making your own train layout. Before starting any project do some research. For my train layout, I got a sheet of plywood at the local home improvement store and placed it on my kitchen table, which is sits today. I never use my kitchen table so I found a better use for it. With the sheet of plywood I re-enforced the sheet of wood with small wooden stakes to better support it.
Once you have a plain plywood sheet. Think about how you want the surface to be. I suggest placing down either green or brown exterior rug attached on top of the sheet of plywood.
The next step is to place your tracks on the rug surface. Don’t glue or nail down just yet. Then you’ll want to come up with a grid for your city of town. Keep in mind you’ll want to have room for buildings, trees, plants, and etc. Think about city planning by mapping everything out. No one wants to start over.
After your train tracks are layout, think about making or buying some trees and plants. During Christmas time is the best time to purchase some Cobblestone Corners Mini Village Trees from the Dollar Tree for just a buck. These package of trees go very fast when they stock the store shelves.
Another idea is to recycle food containers and bottles. Think outside the box. One can use plastic beverage caps as tree planters. Just spray paint the inside and outside of the cap with either gray or brown. Then add some rocks or sand and add one tree. It is that simple.
Your town needs some roads. Buy some new black sandpaper and glue it down to some foam board. Next task to do is make some yellow dividing marks for the roadway, stop marks, and other marks too. There are other alternative methods to making your own roads too.
When buying many locomotives and train cars, keep them organized in plastic or in cardboard boxes. This will help them from getting damaged and scratched. If you decide to do nothing one will get scratches and dust on the locomotives and train cars. They are worth more if you keep them in good condition.
Good luck with building your own model train set. There are more articles on building model train layouts online. It is recommended to take your time. Rome was not built in a day and neither will your train set. If you like this article, then like it on our Otownfun WordPress account. Also, join to be one of our followers at otownfun on WordPress. For more great events, places, and articles, please visit us out at http://www.otownfun.com .
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Source of information: First hand experience