83 Tip Challenge

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83 Tip Challenge
Posted by phrankenstign on Tuesday, August 29, 2017 5:48 PM

Back in June EIS2 started a thread entitled "CTT July 2017, 75 Tips?" where he stated,

"The July, 2017 CTT touts "75 Tips!" on the front cover in very large letters, but there is no page number shown.  The index doesnt show 75 Tips either.  So where are they?

Earl"

The reply from Bob Keller was, "Carl (the boss) counted every tip in the magazine and there were 75 throughout the issue.Big Smile"

Earl.....as I'm sure many of us.....thought it was a joke answer.  However Bob and Rene both replied it wasn't.

 

KRM, Dave45681 and Hap stated their displeasure for the answer, and I agree with them.  I was hoping the practice would stop.  However the latest issue states "83 TIPS INSIDE THIS ISSUE".  It's true there are many magazines out there with covers touting "Top Five", "Top Ten", "Top Twenty", et cetera.  However the difference is they actually DO include those lists in order where they can be easily found.

 

I went through the October issue (Vol. 30 No. 7), but I couldn't find all 83.  I only found 22.

I didn't count anything in ads nor in reviews.  I can't imagine anything in an ad should have been counted, because it doesn't make sense to view every single item as a tip.

"You can add that item to your collection/layout/display."

"SAVE UP TO 43% - BEST DEAL $106.95"

How would item reviews have tips?

"MTH modeled a new Alco"

"It has a draw-bar pull of..."

"The paint work is the best"

Can statements like those be considered tips?  I don't think so.

 

Anyway.....here are the tips I found:

01. Page 06 - Use 20-gauge black insulted wire to "twist-tie" the track snugly to the roadbed.  Lowers noise level.
02. Page 16 - Use the top row for the outside rail.
03. Page 16 - Use the bottom row for four blocks.
04. Page 16 - Use WD-40 on a cotton swab to clean wheels and pickup rollers.
05. Page 16 - Use very fine sandpaper to scratch up the sides and tops of springs for better electrical contact.
06. Page 16 - Obtain brass screws, nuts, and fiber washers to create variable volt terminal post in transformer.
07. Page 20 - 584 good condition value.
08. Page 20 - 584 excellent condition value.
09. Page 21 - 582 good condition value.
10. Page 21 - 582 excellent condition value.
11. Page 22 - 587 good condition value.
12. Page 22 - 587 excellent condition value.
11. Page 22 - 588 good condition value.
12. Page 22 - 588 excellent condition value.
13. Page 25 - Twain's best-known characters can be used to personalize a model railroad with a specific locale and era.
14. Page 27 - Replace an older E-unit with a modern component.
15. Page 28 - A scrap piece of wood provides suitable support for the circuit board of the replacement E-unit.
16. Page 28 - Keep the board from touching any part of the metal chasis to prevent a short circuit.
17. Page 29 - Parts and tools list needed to replace E-unit.
18. Page 43 - "The best teacher when making scenery is the process of trail (sic) and error".
19. Page 54 - Project number one.
20. Page 54 - Project number two.
21. Page 66 - An inexpensive way to display your trains are IKEA bookcases.
22. Page 66 - Use 1/2" thick Styrofoam sections cut to fit on the shelves inside.

 

What 61 tips did I miss?

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Posted by Banks on Tuesday, August 29, 2017 6:14 PM

I agree 100% What really frustrates me is Magazine content gets thinner while they keep producing high  $$$$ "SPECIAL" issues. If they spread those articles through the year I'd feel much better about renewing my subscription.

Banks, Proud member of the OTTS  TCA 12-67310

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Posted by V8Vega on Wednesday, August 30, 2017 10:10 AM

I remember how overjoyed I was when I first read that CTT was coming out. Before that Model Railroader had a couple of three rail layouts a year and O scale magazine was mostly 2 rail scale with a few toy trains articles, that was it! There was no internet yet.

Dennis  San Fernando Valley CA.  Joined August 2009

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Posted by phrankenstign on Wednesday, August 30, 2017 11:31 AM

Overall, I've been very satisfied over the years with the content.  That's why I've got every issue since the first in 1987.  I don't like this practice of stating there are a number of tips without listing them.  It seems a bit dishonest to me, since I was unable to even come close to finding them all.  I took on the 83 Tip Challenge, but I failed miserably.  I'm hoping CTT members can tell me where the rest of them are.  That will restore my faith in the magazine.  I'm usually fairly observant and good with details.  Perhaps I'm losing my attention to detail in my old age of nearly 58.

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Posted by teledoc on Friday, September 01, 2017 4:06 PM

There are certain "outright" tips, sparingly throughout the magazine.  The large number apparently comes into play, from all the minutiae contained in the various "Layouts", within each issue.  How can a reader expect to count those items as a TIP.  I personally do not have a layout, or intend to have one any time soon. I merely skim over the 'every detail' of the posted layouts, but I enjoy the photos, and envy those who have their layouts published.  BUT come on now, and point out the "83" tips. Just my $.02!!

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Posted by phrankenstign on Saturday, September 09, 2017 2:50 AM

Since nobody else has taken up the challenge, I'd like to officially request from the staff at Classic Toy Trains to list all 83 tips.

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Posted by cheapclassics on Sunday, September 10, 2017 8:56 PM

Good evening all,

Fill disclosure.  I am not on the CTT staff.  I did write the article on the IKEA shelves, but I have no idea how many tips CTT counted from said article.  As I re-read it, here is what I think might have been counted.

1 - Using the original box could be the storage unit.

2 - Display cases can be used, but are expensive.

3 - Glass doors are a good option for the bookcases.

4 - Assembly is easy, but wall anchoring is essential and sometimes hard to do.

5 - The Styrofoam shelf liners.

6 - Suggesting shelving sizes for different types of trains.

7 - Shopping at IKEA can give a person ideas on shelving.

I do not know if this is the "official" count or not, and I do not presume to speak for CTT, but this total is an example of what could be behind the thought process.  I hope everyone has a good day.

Keep on training,

Mike C. from Indiana

KRM
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Posted by KRM on Monday, September 11, 2017 2:45 PM

phrankenstign

Since nobody else has taken up the challenge, I'd like to officially request from the staff at Classic Toy Trains to list all 83 tips.

 

 

Laugh

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Kev, From The North Bluff Above Marseilles IL. Whistling

 

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Posted by Frank54 on Tuesday, September 12, 2017 10:12 AM

phrankenstign

What 61 tips did I miss?

I don't know it counts as 61, but the most important tip related to this hobby, at least in my opinion, is to enjoy it.

I'm pretty confident the excellent editorial staff isn't going to say "83", when there are only 22.

Think of all of the layout progress not made by devoting time to trying to make a point not amounting to a hill of beans.

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Posted by Penny Trains on Tuesday, September 12, 2017 6:15 PM

It all comes down to whether or not you trust the magazine staff.  I do.

A waking Lithium Flower just about to bloom

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Posted by KRM on Tuesday, September 12, 2017 6:58 PM

 Huh?

Thinking about it all,,,I don’t really care about the tips.
And I would expect someone who has been featured in the magazine to defend CTT.
As for the rest of us, we just pay the CTT bills.

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Posted by Penny Trains on Wednesday, September 13, 2017 7:13 PM

KRM

 Huh?

Thinking about it all,,,I don’t really care about the tips.
And I would expect someone who has been featured in the magazine to defend CTT.
As for the rest of us, we just pay the CTT bills.
 

I assure you having a feature article written about my layouts affords me no special privileges from Kalmbach publishing.  My subscription to CTT costs me the same amount as every other subscriber's does.

I defend the magazine staff because I trust them and appreciate the work they do.

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Posted by phrankenstign on Thursday, September 14, 2017 1:48 AM

Perhaps I read too fast, and I'm glossing over many of the tips without recognizing them for what they are.

If the CTT staff identify those tips I've been missing, it may help me discern more helpful tips in the future than I have been able to detect in the past.

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Posted by phrankenstign on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 3:56 AM

So.......

 

Will the CTT staff please list all 83 tips in the issue?

 

Thanks in advance!

KRM
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Posted by KRM on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 6:56 PM

phrankenstign

So.......

 

Will the CTT staff please list all 83 tips in the issue?

 

Thanks in advance!

 

 

Laugh

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Kev, From The North Bluff Above Marseilles IL. Whistling

 

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Posted by phrankenstign on Thursday, October 12, 2017 3:08 AM

I'd like to reiterate.

 

Will the CTT staff please list the 83 tips?

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Posted by phrankenstign on Saturday, October 21, 2017 8:50 PM

I'm disappointed.

The staff has ignored my request.  Why?

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Posted by Banks on Monday, October 23, 2017 6:28 AM

They are either embarresed or to busy writing special issues

Banks, Proud member of the OTTS  TCA 12-67310

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Posted by phrankenstign on Monday, October 23, 2017 4:15 PM

Banks
They are either embarresed or to busy writing special issues

If they are embarassed because there aren't 83 tips, the best thing to do is to come clean and apologize.

If they are busy writing special issues, hopefully they give accurate counts of anything they state on the cover.

 

I've been a loyal reader since 1993, and I even bought all of the back issues.  I have every issue from 1987-now.

Thoughout all those years, I've trusted the staff.

Now?  Hmmmm......

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Posted by Dave45681 on Wednesday, November 01, 2017 4:23 AM

phrankenstign

If they are embarassed because there aren't 83 tips, the best thing to do is to come clean and apologize..................................

Thoughout all those years, I've trusted the staff.

Now?  Hmmmm......

 

And the "tips" teases are back... sigh.  I thought November's issue was a good sign that this BS was over, but I guess not.

"75 Tips and Ideas" on December cover.  (Looks like a nice issue otherwise - the 30 years of memorabe photos seems like a decent trip down memory lane)

-Dave
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Posted by Frank54 on Thursday, November 02, 2017 8:32 AM

If this is really. so upsetting, cancel your subscription and get a new hobby. 

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Posted by palallin on Thursday, November 02, 2017 8:51 AM

Let me first say that the Tip Count means nothing to me--I think these kinds of teasers on magazine covers are silly.  However, I agree with Banks' sentiment:

Banks

What really frustrates me is Magazine content gets thinner while they keep producing high  $$$$ "SPECIAL" issues. If they spread those articles through the year I'd feel much better about renewing my subscription.  

I do not know the econimics of the magazine publishing business, and maybe these specials are necessary to keep CTT afloat, but I really wish they just put the material in the magazine.  Same goes for "Web Extras":  except for videos, keep the material in the magazine.  Don't make me go to the website to find it.

I offer these thoughts as constructive criticism, not complaints, from the perspective of someone who has been aboard since the outset (and still has every issue) as well as someone who has been published in CTT.  I am an avid supporter and regular subscriber and only want the best for the magazine.

 

Steve Allen

Frisco, MoPac, and T&P near Rolla, MO

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Posted by phrankenstign on Thursday, November 02, 2017 7:46 PM

CTT Staff:  How about listing the 83 Tips for the first issue I asked about and the 75 Tips listed for the December issue?

 

Obviously, someone's counting them, since the numbers are recorded on the cover.  So.....let's see your lists!

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Posted by Frank54 on Thursday, November 02, 2017 8:00 PM

Bob: You've deleted threads for less. Kill this off already.

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Posted by phrankenstign on Thursday, November 02, 2017 8:18 PM

Frank54
Bob: You've deleted threads for less. Kill this off already.

If you don't like my thread, don't read it.  I don't ask (let alone tell) Bob to delete your threads (or anybody else's for that matter).

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Posted by Papa_D on Friday, November 03, 2017 8:27 AM

 

The definition of “a tip” related to information is rather broad covering a wide spectrum on nuances. If I use the definition “a piece of information that provides an advantage”, then it is in the eyes of the beholder (aka reader) what constitutes a “tip”. Since CTT is a specialty magazine, all information contained within may be a “tip” to one person but not another. The newer one is to the hobby, the more “tips” contained with the pages of each issue. I can remember how excited I was the first time I looked through a CTT issue and all the “tips” I saw. As an example, the first time I saw the ad for LED’s that can be used on a layout it was a “tip” for me. Wow, I found a source for water tank blinking red LEDs just the right size, and low current draw white and off-white LEDs for my buildings.  So let’s take a deep breath, have fun, enjoy the hobby and our monthly (almost) issue of CTT, “tip” counts and all.

 

Papa D

 

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Posted by Dave45681 on Friday, November 03, 2017 5:54 PM
  1. Trains run well on metal track
  2. They run even better if you also use a transformer
  3. ...and more so if you hook wire between the transformer and the track
  4. And best if you increase the throttle after observing tips 1-3
  5. ........

etc.

 

-Dave
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Posted by Dave45681 on Friday, November 03, 2017 6:14 PM

Frank54

If this is really. so upsetting, cancel your subscription and get a new hobby. 

 

We all have our things we dislike.  Apparently yours is intolerance for those who believe a misleading headline is not a favored regular feature of one of their favorite train magazines.

For phrankenstign and myself it's the misleading headlines.

For Banks and palallin, it's the special issue thing, which I do not personally have a problem with (bought the most recent one and had Roger sign it), but I respect their right to have an opinion on it and post it here.

I'm sure CTT greatly appreciates you suggesting several 20 year + subscribers cancel their subscriptions due to your distaste for the dialog happening in this thread.  That would fix it all for you I guess.

-Dave
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Posted by KRM on Friday, November 03, 2017 6:42 PM

With you Dave,

Frank 54 is a regular who get pages and pages of praise in CTT over many years and does nice work so ,,,yeah he is on the defense like their other favorites barking here, they have that do all the work for them and all they have to do is post what they are sent. My problem is they, CTT seem lazy on finding new and deferent layouts to feature. The few are not the only.

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Posted by Frank54 on Friday, November 03, 2017 7:14 PM

KRM
My problem is they, CTT seem lazy on finding new and deferent layouts to feature. The few are not the only.

Welp, to call guys like Roger or Carl lazy when it comes to the hobby they have embraced for decades is quite a statement. yes, I know these guys, and I know the competition too.The CTT Staff is in it because they love the hobby and Roger in particular is probably one of the foremost authorities on the hobby. I'm guessing none of these guys is getting rich on this career. Call it cheerleading if you like, but to call these guys misleading or lazy is just silly.

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