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joeyaz2012

New Member
Hello,

I haven't even started yet, living in an apartment but will be moving into a House in September so i will have some room to start. I am still limited on space due to constraints from the wife. Initially I am going to start on a 4x8 with plenty of isle space around the table. I am slightly torn between HO and N Scales due to the space i will be able to use, I do wear glasses and it can be a challenge to see smaller items and details so I was thinking HO would be best for that and more detai in the models. With that said and I am sure like with most beginners I have huge plans in my mind so was also tossing around the idea of N scale so I could do more. There will be a 24x24 Shed that all of this will move to in the semi distant future 5ish years. So the intro to me part, im former Marine and Ramy now work Rideshare full time and have lots of spare time on my hands. Married with 7 Adult kids so no little hands around to destroy things lol. Suggestions welcome.
 

Bruette

Well-Known Member
Welcome aboard!

Thank you for your service.

Don't worry, 5 years will go by fast and you will learn so much in the time. I can't make any suggestions about scale, it's a personal choice. You might even switch in the next 5 years.

HO has the most variety available, N is space efficient, but I like O :)

Enjoy your trains and I hope you share your hobby with us.
 

migalyto

Well-Known Member
Welcome to the group Joey!

Both scales have tremendous possibilities. I Did N scale for many years before making the switch to Ho a couple of years ago. With the space you have now, N scale sounds like a perfect choice. Though with a dedicated area of that size, a large Ho layout would be possible. What era you looking at modeling?
 

joeyaz2012

New Member
Welcome to the group Joey!

Both scales have tremendous possibilities. I Did N scale for many years before making the switch to Ho a couple of years ago. With the space you have now, N scale sounds like a perfect choice. Though with a dedicated area of that size, a large Ho layout would be possible. What era you looking at modeling?
Old west Steam, 80s to 90s Diesel and Modern Diesel. Starting with Old west Monument Valley/Desert Southwest.
 

montanan

Whiskey Merchant
You do have options in both scales. I guess it would depend on what you like. If you like to run trains and ling trains, N scale would be the best, but if you enjoy switching like I do, HO scale would be a good choice. I had an N scale layout with 11 scale miles of main line 30 some years ago, but at the time N scale locomotives were crude compared to what is available today so everything was torn out and an HO scale layout was built.

Now that my eyesight has aged some, I really appreciate the larger scale. At my club (HO scale) there is a small N scale layout. I can't believe that I was working with such a small scale,
 

GeeTee

Active Member
Old west Steam, 80s to 90s Diesel and Modern Diesel. Starting with Old west Monument Valley/Desert Southwest.
Well that narrows it down , for steam I would go , either HO or HOn3 . You just have to pick which RR Souther Pacififc , Santa Fe , D&RG in HO or D&RG/RGS in HOn3. There are others but those are the main ones. Of course there is always free lance .

One thing to remember , most railroads avoided the Desert Southwest as much as possible , they went where they knew they could get water , or north around the Great Salt Lake and over Donner Pass. Steam engines need water , lots of water. Only two railroads crossed the Desert Southwest the SP and SF. Everybody else went north .
 

MHinLA

Well-Known Member
Only thing I can add is, look into 'open-grid' benchwork and 'cookie cutter' sub-roadbed before settling for the flat 4x8 thing..The advantage of open grid V flat board is enormous. You can see and learn how-to in this forum, YouTube, books, mags..Once you've gotten the hang of it, it affords a way more realistic MRR.
 
also sort of strapped for space now, so my suggestion is start with something that can be the nucleus of a larger set up later. I agree that N is too small for aging eyes...so maybe start thinking about what you will do when you have the bigger space, and make this a part of that later.

dad was a Marine, so I grew up in that world. Thanks for your service as well!!! Much respect!
 

Bruette

Well-Known Member
Joey, I've had train set since 1974, but I really caught train fever in late 2012. It can be a steep learning curve for us beginners.

Considering you are a beginner, like I was. I recommend you start with a ready to run train (RTR) set. At least while you start with your 4'X8' layout. You can always switch over later. It's an inexpensive way to get your feet wet. A good set will come with everything you need. Furthermore Id start with a diesel set just because of the low prices of some of those sets.
1590538456713.png

That RTR HO set above even comes with a rudimentary DCC system two DCC equipped locomotive and everything you need to be up and running in under an hour. https://www.amazon.com/Bachmann-Tra...hmann+dcc+commander+set&qid=1590538388&sr=8-2
1590538846296.png

This CSX RTR set is a complete N scale DC set. You can have that up and running in minutes. https://www.amazon.com/Bachmann-Tra...achmann+csx+n+scale+set&qid=1590538671&sr=8-1

They would be a great way to get started. Even if you do switch over later, look at it as a low cost, hands-on beginners course in model railroading. You can get both sets for a little over $400.

You can make them both fit on your 4'x8' layout. Hands-on experience with them both would help you decide which way to go, HO or N. Sell them on eBay when you are done and get some or most of your money back.

I have both of those sets, they both run good. Like I said I focus on Lionel O, but I find DCC fascinating and I needed a track to run my N scale trains. RTR sets are an inexpensive way to start.
 
also, I am about 2 years out from getting a house as well, and my plan right now is to start getting some of the stock and scenery, and do stuff like that now...the painting; detailing. Get it so that when the space opens up, the little stuff is already done.
 

joeyaz2012

New Member
also, I am about 2 years out from getting a house as well, and my plan right now is to start getting some of the stock and scenery, and do stuff like that now...the painting; detailing. Get it so that when the space opens up, the little stuff is already done.
Yes I am doing the same thing starting with tools and scenery materials but I cant get too much due to space in the moving truck as well.
 

Iron Horseman

Well-Known Member
The amount of N-scale equipment for old west steam is very limited. And as far as I know the stuff that is available (Bachmann) doesn't run the greatest. Don't know how big an issue that is.
Oh, I need to add that this assessment of how well the Bachmann runs is only for their N-scale old west 4-4-0. They make other equipment that runs just fine. I have many Bachmann loco's in my fleet.
 

Patrick

Well-Known Member
Greetings Joey,

Not much I can add to what the others have posted. I have a 10 year old grandson whom we setup a N-scale layout for and then I have my HO which is 9 years and some storage time in the making. My preference with my bigger hands and bad eyesight (I also wear glasses) is the HO. With adult kids come future grand kids....
 

CambriaArea51

Well-Known Member
Welcome, my suggestion if your undecided is go to a few train shows and look at layouts.(if that ever becomes a possibility again) You could also see if there's any local clubs. A great way to get info and get started in the hobbie.
 




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