Re: AP article on model railroading today...
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Our club here in Houston is helping sponsor a model railroad club at a local middle school. The kids are building modules and learning how to do things. We include them on our layout tour and support their annual train show.
At our train show, you can purchase all the blue box and equivalent cars with Kadees that you want for $5. With the deaths of owners of large railroads, the local market is saturated with quality equipment and the only way to sell it is to sell it cheap. So if you don’t require the latest greatest, there is a very large supply of affordable equipment available.
J. Stephen Sandifer
From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io <main@RealSTMFC.groups.io> On Behalf Of Douglas Harding
Sent: Sunday, February 7, 2021 4:31 PM
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] AP article on model railroading today...
Lets rethink this for a moment. Walthers has brand new Accurail boxcars on sale for $12.98. Not everyone starts out with super detailed RTR $50 cars. In fact almost no one does. As a married grad student, I started with a Bachmann train set, followed by a bunch of Tyco train set cars and Athearn kits. Today I still purchase Accurail kits. Why? Because they are cheap and durable, which is great for building a fleet for operations.
I have people younger than me asking for advice on how to get started with track, engines, cars, etc. No they don’t have lots of money, but with judicious purchasing at swap meets and hobby shops that deal with used items anyone can get a good start. With some guidance from someone “who has been there” and who knows what is good and what is not, a new person can stretch those dollars. And let us not forget the large number of “estates” that are starting to show up on the market. One hobby shop I frequent has been purchasing estates and has used track, engines and cars at prices that a beginner can afford. Later that hobby shop will sell new items to that same repeat customer.
It is up to each of us experienced modelers to share our expertise and mentor those who are interested. When was the last time you showed someone how to assemble an Athearn or Accurail boxcar? The grab irons and brake detail can wait for later, after you have showed them how to drill holes in plastic and wood.
Whistling past the graveyard (literally). Any hobby with an average age of 68 is in trouble and with models of freight cars costing $40-$50 a pop there is no pulling in teenagers or young adults.
From: main@RealSTMFC.groups.io [mailto:main@RealSTMFC.groups.io] On Behalf Of Bob Chaparro via groups.io
A positive message from a Southern California railroad hobby shop owner:
And a story about Walthers: