Tom Baker wrote
Another issue is that fewer and fewer scale modelers are building cars.
I don't know if that's true or not. Some RPM'ers have never really been into
actual modeling, and others crank out stuff like there's no tomorrow. But on
Facebook and at train shows in the past few years I've run into many model
railroaders who are really into detailing RTR stuff -- and there are quite
a few people now making a living selling realistically weathered -- albeit
mostly modern -- freight cars. But outside of STMFC, MFCL, etc I rarely ever
run into someone who's really into freight cars like we are. There are 2 or
3 people at my train club (out of 50+ members) who I consider to be real
RPM'ers when it comes to actual -trains- and only 1 person (besides myself)
in the Free-Mo group I belong to who is really into RPM modeling. I need to
go to Naperville, Collinsville and Cocoa Beach to recharge the RPM batteries,
because I just don't encounter it locally.
There's a guy I see on Facebook -- Gary Christensen -- whose weathering and
modeling is so spectacular (rolling stock, diesels, track, structures) that
when you first see them you think it's a prototype photo. Yet as far as I
can tell, every single one of his train models is RTR (with added details).
And -- he's not even 30 years old yet!
Model Railroading isn't going downhill, IMO -- it's just becoming more and
more diverse, and perhaps more fragmented. There's 50x as much "product"
out there than when I was a kid -- Somebody is supporting it all!