Re: State of the RPM hobby (was Pre-orders, pro or con)

Andy Harman

At 03:30 PM 3/24/2012 -0400, you wrote:

Anyway, it just underscored to me how rare RPM'ing really is. The great
majority of people really do just want to have fun with the hobby
I've been prototype modeling for 38 years, and actively RPMing (as in going to RPM meets and talking and fraternizing etc) for 17 years, and just about every minute of it has been fun. I enjoy researching and building a model and watching it come to life more than anything else, because that's what I mostly do. Not that I don't enjoy operating, but TBQH I'd rather be a railfan on a layout than an engineer, especially if the emphasis on prototypical operation has turned it into a job - complete with paperwork. I appreciate the effort required to do so, and it's obvious why many layouts are operated prototypically with OOB and freelanced and generally inappropriate rolling stock - there isn't enough human lifespan to do both well. Yes, there are examples, but they are either highly focused clubs that have maintained a long term mission, or they are home layouts that have been built with substantial discipline - lest I fail to give credit to the owner of this list who has done both - and did it a while ago I might add.

But for the most part those of us who want a large operating layout where 8, 10, 12 or more operators can be kept busy doing real-world jobs, don't have time to build the kind of models you see at RPM meets, or at least not enough of them to fully occupy that large layout. And guys like me who sit around building models when we're not on the computer are ... well... at age 54 looking at a basement that still isn't ready for benchwork to go up, 8.5 years after buying this house. I get closer every day and I'm making progress now that I'm not either in, or on my way to/from a doctor or hospital for a while now, but I have to think about my life and say, what if it never happens? What if my layout doesn't ever get off the ground? I'll still be satisfied with what I've done in the hobby.


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