Are you a model railroader?

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by lester perry, Aug 12, 2008.


Just what kind of a model railroader are you? (select all that apply to you)

  1. I have an operable layout:

    32 vote(s)
  2. I am building a layout, but it's not yet operable:

    28 vote(s)
  3. I operate on a club layout

    10 vote(s)
  4. I operate on a modular layout

    8 vote(s)
  5. I'm strictly an armchair modeller

    6 vote(s)
  6. I collect trains, but don't operate them

    7 vote(s)
  7. I'm kind of in between, my layout is part operational, part in progress

    28 vote(s)
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. nebeltex

    nebeltex Member

    i pull out my trains at christmas and run them under the tree. they are safely tucked away by super-bowl sunday at the!
  2. FiatFan

    FiatFan Member

    Les here's a sample of my ELMOS (Extremely Lazy Manual Operating System).


    Each car has an index card listing the possible destinations for the car. A paper clip marks the current location and the destination is the next industry on the list. To operate I grab a handful of cards and random and move each to its next destination. When those are completed, I grab another handful. Very simple and easy for visitors (mostly non-railroad enthusiasts) to understand. The key to the system is the first two words of the name.

    I learned this method from an issue of Model Railroader back in the '60s. (I learned a lot of things in the '60s but that's a whole separate topic.:eek:sign1

  3. lester perry

    lester perry Active Member

    I tried that system and found that the paper clips were a problem when holding say 15 cards. so I did away with the clip
  4. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    If you had those cards plastic laminated, you could use a marking pen to circle the current location of the car. When the car then makes a move, wipe off the marking and make a new marking. Essentially each card would be like a mini white board.
  5. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    My layout is definitely operable but is about 80-90% finished (I'm still finishing some scenery), so I voted for the first choice.

    I hope it's never actually "finished" as I want to keep tweaking it, adding more detail, changing a few things every now and then, etc. I even recently added a small siding where I had not originally planned one.
  6. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

    A person who is truly lucky is one whose vocation and avocation are the same.
  7. CNWman

    CNWman CNW Fan

    I thought it was a law of nature that a model railroa is never truly finished?sign1:p
  8. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    You're right -- it wouldn't be any fun if it was finished! :mrgreen:
  9. lester perry

    lester perry Active Member

    I don't see finished on the list, I see operable. I agree a Model RR is never finished. My RR has been what most people would call finished for a couple of years now but I still work on it. I believe the term improvement is what should be used.
  10. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    Thanks, Les. That's almost the situation with my layout. "Improvement" is a good word, as in "refining," etc. Rob
  11. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Isn't it a law that if a model railroad is ever "finished", the modeler must immediately tear it down and start over?
  12. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    This sounds feasible and logical to me. However, whenever I mention such things to my wife, she rolls her eyes and gives me an "are-you-crazy" look ... :eek::confused:
  13. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

    Probably because that rules doesn't seem to apply when wives "finish" redecorating the entire house...but they would like it to.

    Don't start anything that everybody will end up paying for! :mrgreen:
  14. Dave Harris

    Dave Harris Member

    Wonder where I would fit in your scheme of things -- no place in your poll for a guy like me.
    I had one pretty complete layout years ago -- then we needed the room for my youngest son so the train went.

    I have continued to build many models over the rears, mostly scratch built . Several buildings , all of them ended up on somebodys layout --I gave them away.
    I was part of the S.N.O.B.S. ( a non club club in LV ) together we builtr the Toole Springs & Western -- featured in MRC a couple of times -- I don't remember that we operated it much , might set a train up & let it run around a while as we worked on something.
    One time we had some visitors from out of town who wanted to "operate" -- they tried running 4 trains at once on a single main dogbone -- what a disaster -- we vowed to never let that happen again.
    The SNOBS were not really "operators" we just liked to build things .

    I have continued to build things , brass locos, kitbash --so layout or not "I think?" I'm a Model Railoader --- perhaps not.
  15. foulrift

    foulrift Bob

    I am building a 2'x8' HO switching layout. The track is down but I have to put things on hold for a while then I can start next phase-soldering and running feeder wires.Bob
  16. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    I'm interested in this size/type of layout because it would not take up much space -- it could be nicely positioned against a wall and not stick out too far. Plus, it could be conveniently built on a sheet of 2x8 insulation board -- is that what you're using? It would be light-weight and be easily carried or stored.

    I recently tried to make a small Inglenook switching layout (about 1x4) but it was so small and limited, I was bored in no time. I also missed the continuous run element, which I enjoy on my "almost-finished" 4x6 layout.

  17. foulrift

    foulrift Bob

    Rob-the framework is made from 1x4's and the top is 9/16 plywood sanded smooth on one side.I got it at Lowes and it actually came in 2'x4' pieces.The complete bench work is actually not all that heavy and is fairly easy to handle-Bob
  18. RobertInOntario

    RobertInOntario Active Member

    Thanks, Bob. It sounds like its quite portable and solid. I look forward to following your project as it develops. Rob
  19. foulrift

    foulrift Bob

    Thanks Rob-Even though construction has basically halted I am planning on posting some shots later this week or weekend showing the completed track work and the approx location of the structures. I will probably post them on the HO forum. Talk to you later-Bob
  20. GeorgeHO

    GeorgeHO Member

    I have two switching modules, one with trackwork complete, one almost complete. They currently are not being used while I reorganize my basement and get it rewired.
    I help out with a modular club, and work with 3 traditional fixed layout clubs (5 layouts). My involvement varies greatly on an as needed basis. I have more than enough rolling stock to equip any one of the layouts I am involved with.
    I collect (HO) trains that I expect to eventually run (B&O, C&O, Ma&Pa, WM), bypassing some that I really like (SP Daylight, cab-forwards, Milwaukee),

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