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As you choose a hobby, model railroading is a great way to combine technical skills with creativity. The model train world includes many different options for you to choose from. There are train scale and track gauge decisions to suit each individual person.
Train scale is the initial decision you’ll need to make. Your main options include G, O, HO, and N for most people. The N scale model trains are the smallest and G scale model trains are the largest.
Your choices depend on how you want to plan out your overall track layout and scenery in the space available. If you like to focus on fancy scenery, which would make it fine to have a smaller train scale and just focus on the setting in which the train runs.
The most interesting thing about model train scenery is that you can make it as realistic as you want. Many people found that as children they had a desire to control and drive a model train which actually translated into their adult lives.
There are some people who have dedicated entire rooms in their home to hosting a model train and it’s scenery.
You can include winding rivers, realistic trees, cityscapes, and any number of other pieces of scenery. The size of the train will determine exactly how detailed your scenery can become however. And, this is something that you will need to take into account when you are selecting your scale.
People getting into model trains need to keep two main numbers in mind. The first is the model train scale itself, which tells you what fraction of a real train that your railroad is going to be. Track gauge is the other number. It measures the distance between the rails. For a reasonable sized train, o scale may be one to consider, as it is large enough to allow for realism in the details. With more limited space for your hobby you may want to look into the popular HO model train scale.
These days, HO model trains (half of an O scale) are well liked because of their middle size characteristics. At the same time, other people enjoy N scale model trains because of their ability to allow for more detailed scenery layouts. Overall, the smaller train size, the more scenery you can spend your time creating.
One exciting feature of the smaller N and Z scale model trains is that you can set up multiple levels of scenery in your layout. The modern digital command control, or DCC, allows you to arrange a very realistic route for your trains. Sometimes, though, it can be a bit harder to arrange for DCC for smaller scale trains. Since Z scale is truly tiny, it can be hard to arrange for the digital command control routing of your trains. Just something to consider again as you choose your model train scale.
You might be able to create your own DCC board for it if you are adept with electronics, but it would be very difficult otherwise. Model train supplies are available from many good hobby stores and online sources to help out. Make sure you investigate all of your options.
There are a great number of model railroad trains out there that you can use with your scenery with some large enough to take up entire rooms. One important tip is to make sure to put more interesting curves and turns into your track layout. A plain circular track can lead to boredom after a while.
The largest type of train, G scale model trains, is built for a natural outdoor garden setting. The choice is yours and given enough time you will most certainly find the right model railroad trains!
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