Introduction to Model Trains

Model trains have brought happiness to people for over many decades. These are people of all ages, whether they are retirees who enjoy collecting model trains as a favorite pastime or young children who receive model trains as Christmas presents or birthday gifts.

So what exactly are model trains? They are just trains that have been reduced in scale, and are like miniature versions of the real thing. Model trains have come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. They can be stationary, with no moveable parts, or they can be powered through steam engines, electrical batteries or even clockworks. They can be made of materials such as wood or metals such as tin, lead and brass, or even a mixture of all these materials. Model trains can be sold individually, or they can be accompanies by rail sets, which would include accessories like rail tracks, a wide array of locomotives and rolling stock that would complement your railway empire, add diversity to it and allow it to keep on expanding.

If you are thinking about becoming a collector of model trains, then the first step that you will have to take is to familiarize yourself with all the technical jargon and terms involved in the niche of rail transport modeling. Some of such terms include gauges, scales, couplers and connectors, etc. You need to learn to differentiate between the terms gauges and scales because a layman would often use these terms interchangeably. While scales are the ratio or proportion of the original version at which the model is made, gauge is the length or distance between the rail tracks. Popular scales are O scale, HO scale, Z scale, TT scale etc. Some of the narrow gauge measurements include Sn3, and Nn3. Couplers are used to connect two or more locomotives to each other, which are otherwise not compatible.

Remember that becoming knowledgably in this area is very important before making a purchase, because this hobby is often very expensive and you can be ripped off by a model train seller if you can’t pick out what a bad deal is. Complete rail sets along with landscaping their layouts, such as the Wild West side, or country farm scenery would be best suited to a retiree who has got plenty of money on his hands and is looking for some relaxation, rather than viewing these model trains as an investment. These buildings and structures can be bought in the form of ready to assemble kits. All in all, not only do model trains allow you to recapture the glitzy and glamorous memories reminiscent of the rail road era, it also allows them to see the engineering techniques employed like seen in the movie, ‘The Great Gatsby.’