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  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, November 6, 2001 11:44 PM
Hello, I desperately need someone's help! My mom and I really want to get my boys a train for Xmas. My brother had a really cool one when I was little (mid 70's) and we'd like one like that. It wasnt babyish and it had metal tracks.. it was darn cool. I have NO CLUE what scale, what guage anything. We're not rich but we dont want a cheap POS either. Can someone direct me to a good starter set? My boys are 8 and 9, and mature enough to take care of it. Please email me with any info ( because I might not find my way back here! Thanks so much in advance!
  • Member since
    January 2001
  • From: US
  • 440 posts
Posted by Algonquin on Wednesday, November 7, 2001 7:49 AM
Hi Cheryl.

You can checkout the Lionel website ( The site has the current catalogs with pictures and descriptions of each set. I would recommend reviewing these catalogs to first see if this was the scale of train you remember. Then if you have further questions or would like additional information relative to these sets, come back and post additional questions. We can address questions in more detail after we narrow down the type of set you are looking for.

I look forward to hearing back from you soon.

Tim Pignatari

A penny saved is a penny earned. But every once in a while it is good to treat yourself to a gum ball.

  • Member since
    April 2003
  • 305,205 posts
Posted by Anonymous on Wednesday, November 7, 2001 2:40 PM
Check out in the search box type model trains. At this auction site there is always earlier train sets still new in the box. Watch the prices for while to see what they usually sell for. Some of the old sets have quality equipment. Stay away from the new sets unless the money is spent to buy one of the quality sets. A good train set will cost over one hundred dollars. Another way is to buy everything by piece and if your picky,you`ll wind up with a great train set. In most train sets you don`t get much track anyway,unless you like circles and the circle isn`t that big at that. Online I`ve seen some great deals on earlier sets and is another good place to buy your railroad in pieces. I used to buy train sets after Christmas at major stores because they were dirt cheap,and you definitely get what you pay for.I wound up using rolling stock and engine from sets to practice weathering with paint. Guess they were good for something. There are trains for every price range and like I said before,you usually get what you pay for. There are many I can`t afford,at least thats what my wife tells me. Brass trains are out of reach of most modelers,or maybe they`re single and own brass.Rivarossi makes a fine product but can be pricy,Athearn Genesis is cheaper,but I think they`re great,Athearn puts out some good ones and is cheaper than it`s Genesis line,Bachman also makes some good stuff and can be pricey for some of their really cool stuff. I would suggest that you go to a hobby shop that carries model trains and find the size you would prefer. Remember the bigger the train the more room you need to build a layout. If you can,buy quality equipment which will last many years and will give you more reliable operation. Most yougsters who get interested in model railroading do start with one of those new inexpensive sets and later will want better stuff,which is great to find out if the youngster is really serious about the hobby. But if you want to have a train set to hand down,and is actually a piece of art(take a look at some with detailed piping,fans,brakes,bells,etc. Keep watching this site to read and learn about some of the products available. If you find something you might like to purchase,toss it up on the discussion board to get advice. Guaranteed you`ll get plenty! Model railroaders love talking about their hobby. Also watch ebay and you might get something you can`t still buy and is still new for a reasonable price. Hope I didn`t scare you away from the hobby because it`s a lot of fun and can be a great outlet for the strange things going on in this new world. Start small and add as you go if you don`t have a pocket full of money. It`s taken me over forty years to aquire some good stuff and I started with American Flyer when young but switched to ho scale after catching that bug,("I want some good stuff"). Model Railroader magazine would be another way you can go to learn more about the whole hobby even though I give them a hard time occasionally. Kalmbach books cover wiring to scenery and everything else related to the hobby,which is the publisher of Model Railroading. There are train meets and shows moving all over the US and is like going to a swap meet with train setups and this is another way to learn more about the hobby. Great Model Train Show is a good one that is everywhere at one time or another and Greenberg Train Show which is in the eastern part of US only. Many clubs nationwide also have meets to get together. At these events there are plenty of new and used products and plenty of people to answer questions. Model Railroader also advertises when these events are near you. I could go on and on,but I won`t. You`ll love the hobby! Whew my six hurts! Gerald
  • Member since
    October 2001
  • From: OH
  • 17,574 posts
Posted by BRAKIE on Wednesday, November 7, 2001 3:16 PM
Cheryl:Gerald gave you some sound advice there.But,I will stress one thing.Go to a hobby shop and look at all of the trains,take your sons with you and see what their reaction will be on certain scales(size of the trains)then go from there.That way you will have an idea of what your sons like.



Summerset Ry.

"Stay Alert, Don't get hurt  Safety First!"

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