The reason I love this hobby!

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by Travellar, May 6, 2007.

  1. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    Okay, so there's more than one reason to love this hobby, and quite a few not to. But for me, the biggest reason to love it is that I can draw a huge amount of satisfaction from solving even minor technical problems. Which means that a well running layout doubles that satisfaction with a confirmation of my ability to have overcome it's challenges.

    After that, I'd have to say the simple act of building things gives me joy, but once I get a couple of pics of my current set up posted, you'll see there's hardly any scenery present at all. (yet)

    Of course, having those problems arise which give me the opportunity to solve them tend to be more a reason not to love this hobby, as they interfere with my well running layout.

    (I'll post some pics soon.)
  2. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    Good points. And add to that the enormous variety of activities involved, and you have a hobby to last a lifetime.

    Looking forward to your photos.
  3. cidchase

    cidchase Active Member

    but we don't talk about that...
  4. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    The photos took a while, as I had to scrounge up a pair of double-A batteries for my camera.
    And from the other end, just over and to one side of the coaling tower...

    As you can see, it's still a bit sparse out there, and I've made a lot of mistakes along the way. for example, the sheets of plywood were a bad choice for top surface. JUust thinking about that however, I've devised a solution. I'll put strips of plastercloth over each visible seam, then paint over that with waterputty, (my usual top surface), paint, flock, and I'll be done!

    Incidently, that large white patch is where I just layed down a new strip of plaster cloth to re-cover a hole I had to cut over one of my tunnels. One of the links of flex track underneath had grown a kink from a poor job building it the first time.
  5. bigsteel

    bigsteel Call me Mr.Tinkertrain

    looks good,and it looks like it has real potential :thumb: keep'um comin man--josh
  6. Nomad

    Nomad Active Member

    You have a good start there. I like those tunnels. And as the old saying goes "Don't sweat the small stuff".

  7. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    If you take pleasure in solving problems realted to the hobby then you are most definately hooked! :) It sounds like you've found the way to maintain a good ratio between fun and aggrevation!
  8. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    well, It's taken me about two and a half years to get to this point, mostly due to several long hiatusses caused by the aggrevation. However, since all of my track, and all of my locomotives are now running, I'm suddenly on the "Fun" side of the curve.

    And I forgot to mention the joy of modeling. Most people go through their lives without any attention to the finer details around them. We cling to those details! Driving into town to pick up more water putty reminded me of that, as I looked out into a field off the highway. Sometimes, it's even possible to miss things like weeds! Later on, I'll add a few areas of speckles of bright yellow paint, and there will be dandelions in my fields!

    If you doubt my last comment, answer this question:
    Most tree bark appears __________.
    a) Brown
    b) Tan
    c) Gray The trees around here are!
    d) Green

    *scroll over for answer!* :)
  9. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    One thing I've never really cared much for on my layout has been the far end in the top picture. The double mainline takes a 90' turn, goes about three feet, then does another 90' turn, allowing that toylike looping appearance. At the far end of the layout, it isn't much of a problem, since one track is completely hidden by tunnel, and the other one follows a hillside ridge.

    I've had an idea since I started that this would look okay once I bury it in a more urban area, as the buildings would break up the image enough to loose that 'loopy' appearance. But a comment in another thread got me thinking, maybe I can add a lake to the inside of that loop instead.
  10. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    Okay, there's now a large, screened over hole in my layout, and several white bands where I've put plastercloth and waterputty over the old plywood seams. In other words, it currently looks pretty bad, but I should be able to do most of the neccisary work by this weekend.

    Unfortunately, in my zeal to try and put my new lake right up near the tracks for more impressive appearences, I've placed it so close I'll probrably have to re-lay a section of my mainline, and a section of my ballon loop. Even worse, it's the inner, or primary mainline that wiull need to be re-layed, which will pretty much shut down all operations untill I finish. :(
  11. berraf

    berraf Member

    Travellar, I do agree with you :)
    Modeling gives great opportunities to solve common problems and solving a problem gives great joy.
    And I do like the project you are up to. It seems like a layout with great potential.
  12. MadHatter

    MadHatter Charging at full tilt.

    One reason I love this hobby is because it entails using other hobbies:

    Photography, reading, driving around, meeting up with friends, T.V./Movies, kit building and even P.C. games.

    The best for me is going to take shots of the prototype- sometimes you get a cab ride- the last cab ride I had was in one of our 6E1's and the driver was quite a cowboy!
  13. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    You forgot woodworking, miniture painting, electronics, drafting, scetching, surveying, tinkering, and fending off rabid flamingos!
  14. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    well, the lake is progressing... or was, untill I ran out of plaster cloth.

    Meanwhile, about six feet of track had to be isolated, clipped, and rather brutally ripped from my layout. The good news is, I had the foresight to pick up more flextrack to re-lay the lines. The bad news is, well, I'm not looking forwards to trying to do the flextrack soldering on curves thing again. That was the biggest pain the first time around!
  15. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    And my railroad is back together again... mostly.

    All the rail has been re-laid, and most of the problems I was expecting I've already worked through. On the downside, I now seem to be having gremlins attacking the entirety of my layout, and there are problems developing quite far away from any recent work.

    Incidently, although it seemed a good idea at the time, spray adhesive does NOT do a very sufficient job of holding flock or static grass in place. Looks like I'll have to break out the jug-o-glue and a paintbrush again.
  16. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

    I feel your pain. I have about twenty feet of flex track that I have to replace.
    Since my layout is in the attic, it kinda warped, twisted, bent, folded, spindled and mutilated.
    All cause I soldered it in a corner. could solder it before you lay it down. That is probably the easiest method.
  17. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    Not really practical here. I'm relaying previously existing track sections, and soldering them to track that's already in place. Unfortunately, the joints are on curves, which is never a good thing.
  18. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    Well, all of my track is back up and running properly again! (except that odd spot up the hill, near the trainstation...) That said, I've begun to fill the lake with water, and even built a couple of gravel roads! Now I know why I've never bothered to add too many buildings, it's a largely rural layout I've got! :)

    Unfortunately, I made the lake a bit too deep, so it's going to take an excessive amount of plastic to fill it in with 'water'. Worse still, the resin I'm using gives off some pretty nasty fumes, so I'll have to add the water in the morning so they can dissipate while I'm at work.

    The road went down easy, thanks to so much advise I've read here and elsewhere. I used a greenie-weenie to scrub the static grass away from where I wanted to run it, decided 1" wide was good enough, and scetched it with a pencil. Then I poured the old white glue into a plastic cup, and grabbed the big paintbrush. Once I'd painted the glue on the roadbed, poured on the ballast, let sit, and grab the vacuum with a fabric-softener sheet in the line.

    Oh, then I had to make a stop sign.
  19. MadHatter

    MadHatter Charging at full tilt.

    Hey-Hey, that's looking good!

    What's a "greenie-weenie"?

    If I may, just one suggestion, perhaps make your gravel look "dirtier" (weathered), once again just a suggestion.
  20. Travellar

    Travellar Member

    It's on my to-do list. I was just pleased enough that I had to get some pics up as it was. To dirty up the road, I think I'll just use a watered down inkwash. That should also help make it look less coarse.

    Greenie-weenie is a fairly generic term for nylon scrubbing pads. (the plastic version of steel wool)

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