This is a general outline of what the model railroad hobby is and what it entails. In an attempt not to discourage new beginners to this ever-growing pastime, this article will not be too technical yet designed to catch your interest. The chief thing that any model train enthusiast should know is about scale and gauge.
Scale refers to the actual size of the railroad engine, cars, and accessories. They can be little enough to easily fit on an office desktop, or large enough for a garden railway. The scale is also referred to in letter form. For instance, ‘G’ scale train models are 1:24 scale, which means it’s just 1/24th the size of an actual train.
These are frequently found with train hobbyists who lay out their model trains in a backyard setting, such as interwoven throughout gardens, and other landscaping. The ‘Z’ scale is a mere 1:220, meaning it’s two-hundred and twenty times smaller than an actual railroad. As mentioned previously, this size is perfect for a desktop layout, but it’s so little in size that they are tricky to work with, and aren’t in wide use.
The next part regarding model railroads is the gauge. Although this is frequently confused with scale by many beginners, it is NOT the same as scale, and mixing up the two will certainly irritate experienced railroad hobbyists. What gauge measures is the distance between the train track rails. For instance, if you have a nine gauge railroad track, this means that there are 9 millimetres of space between the inside of the rails. In this case, the larger the gauge, the larger the space.
Now despite the fact that this may seem a little confusing, do not worry. HO scale is 1:87, and is ideal for lots of new beginners, as well as many other enthusiasts. it is little enough to fit well with lots of various layouts, yet big enough for the average individual to handle, and they show well. This is the most commonly used scale in the model railroad world not only because of its versatility but also because parts and accessories are easy to obtain.
This brings us to layouts and accessories. Having model railroads would be very boring if all it entailed was a train engine moving along a track. That’s why a model train can include numerous various train cars, passenger cars, hoppers, and tank containers, just to name a few. Then there are all the layout accessories, trestles, miniature people and vehicles, as well as buildings and scenery.
The potential is really only limited to your imagination. You can even construct your own landscaping ideas, with artificial plants torn apart for trees, shrubs, and other plants. You could even use old cleaned out tin cans, painted, for things such as grain silos, or oil refinery tanks.
There are a lot of basic sets a beginner can buy, with all things to start your hobby. You can find many of these on websites, or you could also start at your local hobby shop. A retailer can not only offer a lot of various ideas but can also answer lots of if not all of your questions. Hopefully, you will want to know more information about model railroads, and you can find numerous example layouts online for creative ideas.