Selecting what to model

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by ddavidv, Oct 27, 2003.

  1. ddavidv

    ddavidv Member

    I'm just purchasing track, and in the planning stages of my first N layout. Before I buy any rolling stock or locos, I want to select what era, locale and road name to model. I've sort of been using Ebay to gauge (no pun intended) what is available, and wanted to run some thoughts by the collective wisdom here.

    I live in south central PA, so could easily model the PRR, Penn Central, Reading or Conrail that served my area up until recently. I didn't want to go with a 'modern' road as I'd like to model the past vs. the present. I also thought it may be more fun to model something I'm not as familiar with, but within a similiar region. I sort of selected either the B&O or Western Maryland as a potential road, but I'm not seeing much available for WM and a lot of the B&O stuff is from the "Chessie" period. I'd rather stay in the 40s-60s era. Am I going to limit myself too much by picking a small road like the WM? I won't be into doing custom painting/decaling for quite some time, if ever. How did you decide, and if you picked an 'unpopular' route, how did you deal with it?
  2. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

    When I started the HOn3 Sag Harbor Shipbuilding & Drydock, I was also working on some CNW bilevel commuter cars, and needed decals for both. I did up the art work, and had Rail Graphics (1183 N. Lancaster Circle, South Elgin, Il. 60177/ do the decals for me. They were a little expensive, but the quality is excellent. They reproduced my art work perfectly!(see: scratchin' and bashin': HOn3 projects) I used one of the sets on the new 3' gauge 2-8-2.
    The Pennsy aquired six of the N&W 2-8-8-2, Y3s in 1943. The 2-8-8-2 is available in N scale, as is the Bachmann Spectrum 2-8-0, which the WM had.
    Your local hobby shop could help you find the equipment you would need, as well as the materials to build the layout.
  3. MCL_RDG

    MCL_RDG Member

    Well, there's...

    ...the crux of it in a nutbag. There's a recent MR editorial describing who models what and why. I won't repeat. I'll just offer my experience.

    I grew up along the Reading's Norristown Branch going thru Manayunk (Phila.) not too far from the canal and so, enamored with the canal "dinky" that used to cross the Schyukill River. Heavy electric MU ops and RDG Push-Pulls going to Reading Terminal and, you could watch mile long RDG trains across the river. I also lived a while near the "corridor" and watched Pennsy Gs (and Es) having their way with freight and passenger trains. Not to mention the Metro and Turboliners that used to blow thru at 125 per. I'm still pondering how to model (read as finance) the GG-1 mail train I used to love watch blur by- just RPO and baggage cars.

    I don't know how- but my RR (to be) "will" have the RDG, Penn, PC and MCL all heavily repersented in both passenger and freight ops. I even have a FA-2 A-B-B-A B&O set to add a splash of foreign road color among the regional stuff that will be frequenting the rails.

    I'm planning a "familiar" scenic treatment using what's available. There's enough generic material (buildings,etc.) to represent what I'm after. There will be allusions to the scenes from my memories (enough to make me happy).

    Good luck with your choice.


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