back again after 30+ years! is a free Model Railroad Discussion Forum and photo gallery. We cover all scales and sizes of model railroads. Whether you're a master model railroader or just getting started, you'll find something of interest here.


New Member
Hello Everyone!

I was a model railroader in high school, and had to stop for College and my USAF service. Well, I'm back now and I am AMAZED at the technological advancements since I left! DCC blows me away.

I just got my first loco. Athearn Genesis GP15-1 in MOPAC colors. I am looking to build a MOPAC/MKT rail across the state of Missouri.

It is good to be back, folks! :D



Active Member
Welcome back to the hobby.

Looking forward to seeing what you come up with your layout plan. Make sure you post up plenty of pics, we love that here.

Love your username LOL.

Burlington Bob

Well-Known Member
Welcome to the Forums and back to model railroading! I know what you mean about the changes..........I was gone for a little over twenty years and couldn't believe how much things had changed, mostly for the better.

Check out Model Railroad Hobbyist It's a FREE magazine put out once a month on the web and it has some good articles and tips.......well worth reading.

Sounds like you have an interesting layout planned. What era are you planning and are you going to use DCC? Like Motley said, we like pictures.


New Member
Thank you all very much!

I am planning on using DCC but I haven't decided yet on sound effects. I have heard that they can be irritating if you are not used to them. I really liked hearing it at the local hobby shop though!

I am planning on a 1960's to 1970's layout. St. Charles, to Columbia, then branching down to Sedalia, Clinton (with the little towns in between) and ending up in Springfield. I have lots of folks that live in these areas and it will be nice to have an abridged form of areas that they will be able to hopefully recognize!

It is awesome to be back! Model Railroading really gets the creative juices flowing. I can spend hours just dreaming of how I want things to be!

My limiting factors? In order to keep peace in the family, my wonderful wife says that it must stay in a spare bedroom that is approximately 10x10. The good news is that it is ALL mine to do with as I please!

Thanks again!



Lazy Daydreamer
Welcome back!
I am planning on a 1960's to 1970's layout. ...
Thats a great era for a diesel lover like myself, when 1st Generation locos ruled, but 2nd Generation locos started becoming common. I'm modeling a time slice between 1969 and 1972.


Hi TMF, I'm a big fan of around the room shelf railroads. You can put a lot of railroad on a 12" deep shelf and have fairly broad curves in the corners. The corners also lend themselves to industrial sidings. Wether it is on a shelf fastened to the wall or on free standing tables with custom leg height you can set it up exactly for your desire. Use a bridge or lift out bridge for doorways. This will give you the center of the room for chairs, tables, and if the railroad is high enough, space under for more furniture or storage. All places on the railroad will be an easy reach.

Iron Man

WOW a 30 year absence,i thought mine was long at 6yrs. I am a nobie hear as well, but welcome. if you haven't tried dcc and you think its great now just hearing about it, just wait until you do. it will blow you away being able to have say 2 trains running around by themselves while you switch a yard or an industrie, the possibilities are endless.

cheers ironman


New Member
Wow - a whole room to yourself and inside as well. I had a very minor overspray 30 years ago and was banned for life, at least I can go out to my shed and not worry this time round. I'm just getting back into it after retireing and have gone with DCC as trying to figure out wiring for DC is like asking me to do knitting. You will love the ease and control DCC gives you, and wiring is a breeze.


Well-Known Member
Howdy, TMF. Thanks for your "blue suit" service! I've had a couple of 20+ year hiatus between my teen years, college, USAF, etc. Yes, DCC is great, though the costs of stuff nowadays (and not just in model railroading) is a shocker. Have fun!


New Member
DCC is like WOW expensive!!! I am basically gleaning the used Ebay for things that I can cobble together to make a working start up set. I have been gone for a while due to my daughter getting married so i should have some stuff to show here pretty soon! I really want to try my hand at scratchbuilding and animation (movement) of scenes...

D&J RailRoad

Professor of HO
Welcome back. Dump the idea of brass track and go for the code 83 nickle silver. Use flex track instead of the 9" section stuff. A 10 x 10 room shouldn't need any additional power that what a basic command station provides. MB Klien is one of the better on-line dealers for stuff you want to buy.

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
DCC is like WOW expensive!!!
It is all a matter of perspective. I say DCC is dirt cheap. I started the command control thing in 1979 with CTC-16. Decoders cost over $50 each, the command system which I had to solder together myself was like $600. No idea what that would be in equivalent today dollars. Plus the decoders were the size or Rhode Island. There were only 16 channels. The decoders got so hot they could melt down Athearn F unit bodies. etc etc.

So when one can get a NCE dual cab or Digitraxx Zephyr for around $150 and tiny cool running decoders with 4 functions for under $15. Where there can be 4096 channels numbered 0-9999. I say good deal for cheap cheap cheap......

I buy stuff from ChooChooAreUs an eBay store. If he doesn't have what you want listed just write them a note and ask.
Last edited by a moderator:
G'day Ken...Just read your post and curious on your opinion of SD40-2 , 45s favourite locos I think...Were they classified 1st , 2nd or maybe later generation ones . My guess would be 2nd... I like all the new stuff , don't get me wrong , but the older locos with the front hoods looked great..Cheers Rod..

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