HOW OLD ARE YOU MODEL RAILROADERS?

Ashpit Nov 9, 2019

  1. Ashpit

    Ashpit TrainBoard Member

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    I have concerns similar to all activities now-a-days that the younger generation is not getting involved in the Hobby of Model Railroading! I doubt that there will be very many participants in answering this question; however, the question may give give some indication of what is happening, even with a small number of answers!

    Similar to Hunting, sailing, golfing building and flying R/C model airplanes and other activities/hobbies that my generation was heavily involved with, the younger generations may not be following in our foot steps which could mean the eventual end to such activities!

    So, how old are YOU, and maybe give a short history of what you have been involved with over the years.
     
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  2. Ashpit

    Ashpit TrainBoard Member

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    Oh, I am going on 70 years old. I have been involved in Hunting, sailing and building flying R/C airplanes as well as simply building plastic and wood models, since I was 5-6 years old.
     
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  3. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

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  4. halfpint33

    halfpint33 TrainBoard Member

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    51 yrs young. Had an n scale layout 20 yrs ago but sold all of it cause well family comes first. Been an armchair model railroader ever since. My grandson is 6 and I plan on starting a small layout with him soon. As far as other activities been hunting and fishing my whole life. Also build an occasional model semi and do woodworking as my main hobby.
     
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  5. rray

    rray Staff Member

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    I've had 6 layouts over the past 50 years starting with an HO 4'x8', 4 N Scale and modular layouts, and Z Scale modules. I'll be 60 in a few days, so you could say I spent a lifetime in the model trains hobby, although I have also spent that lifetime into boating, fishing, camping, computers, and cars. There is a season for all, and October through February are what I call Model Railroading Season, and model railroading goes hand in hand with computers. :D
     
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  6. Carl Sowell

    Carl Sowell TrainBoard Supporter

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    I am 79-1/4 years old. I feel every day in my hands and feet and basically all joints. I built my 1st HO layout when I was 8 all by myself and have never stopped, although I have come to N scale. My wife says "why don't you switch to G scale around the KOI pond". No thanks.

    I have two boys that were into HO 40 years ago but no interest now. I have 3 grandsons, 14, 16, & 20. The oldest is a US Marine and has never had an interest in model anything. However, he always asks me about how my trains are going. The other 2 operated my n scale layout when they were 6 & 8 but have since lost all interest. All they know is computers (not all bad) and iPads and such. You know Minecraft but that is probably old stuff now. Obviously I am not up to speed on that crap.

    So, will any of my 5 boys ever have an interest in and support modeling? I do not think so and that is the sad part for the hobby and probably all hobbies. Our technologies have, in my mind, ruined the thinking capability, imagination possibilities, and such of our children and it is evident in many young folks today. I am not saying all but many have trouble thinking on their feet. You have seen some cashier at a retail store struggle with giving correct change even after the cash register/computer told them how much to give. Sad situation.

    I have done the water skiing, R/C airplanes, camping, all those other things but I have always come back to model railroading. I am afraid it is a dying hobby along with other work with your imagination and hands to creat something.

    Carl
     
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  7. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

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  8. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

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    There are a lot of young people modeling in N Scale on Facebook and YouTube
     
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  9. r_i_straw

    r_i_straw Staff Member

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    For about 15 years I hosted a model railroad camp at the local railroad museum. We built and decorated T-Trak modules that they took home. I hope I planted some seeds that will bloom in the years to come.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  10. Carolina Northern

    Carolina Northern TrainBoard Member

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    71 here. My first model railroad was a hand me down Marx set at 4 when my brother got an American Flyer set for Christmas.
    Been at it except for a detour to slots in my teens and the time I was in Vietnam and Korea in the Air Force. Saw my first N during a TDY in Germany and stayed with that until I had to give up the small stuff due to illness last year.
    Now slowly building a final HO layout. Truly a lifetime hobby.
    Went to a train show today, so life is good.

    Don
     
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  11. noob express

    noob express TrainBoard Member

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    I am just shy of 33 years old (next month) and I have always been interested in model railroading. I have spent the last 2-3 years watching videos and thinking about getting into it but never did until about 3 months ago. I went all in and started my first N scale layout. It’s an amazing outlet for stress and to tune out the world. I have been in the navy for 14 years and have four little ones who all love trains. We will see where that goes when they get older but for now I will cherish the time I get with them building the track [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  12. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

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    Great start, love your scenery.
     
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  13. Doorgunnerjgs

    Doorgunnerjgs TrainBoard Member

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    I'm 76 years old, been into trains since I was about 4 when my dad bought me(?) an American Flyer NYC Hudson in S gauge. Got into HO at about the age of 15 and other than a brief affair with N gauge at about 27, have stayed with it on and off over the years.

    None of my family is interested other than to say, "Oh, how nice!" once in awhile. Lord knows what will happen when I die. I still have the American Flyer, N gauge stuff, and more HO than I could ever run, plus an On30 or a G gauge to run under the Christmas tree.
     
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  14. RailMix

    RailMix TrainBoard Member

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    I am 65 and have been model railroading off and on since receiving my cousin's hand-me-down Lionel at the age of six. From there, the story is somewhat familiar- Switched to HO around age 12, then lost interest during high school while I learned to play guitar, joined a band, learned to wrench on cars and developed an interest in machining that led to a lifelong occupation as a machinist, process engineer and instructor. I also participated in hunting, camping, football and other activities.

    Eventually, I found my way back to model railroading and have done modeling off and on since. I still think that this pattern will repeat itself if a seed is planted with young people. We are entering a very exciting time in the hobby with not only the use of computers to control layouts and signal systems, but also the expanding roles of CAD and 3D printing- enhancing the use of computer technology by producing a tangible three dimensional result. Young folks need to be exposed to the challenge and satisfaction inherent in this facet of the hobby.

    This thread is outstanding and deserves a thorough look if you haven't been following it. The excellent design work done by Mr. Trainiac on this project is a perfect example of the possibilities (and satisfaction) inherent in this application of technology:

    https://www.trainboard.com/highball...enter-flat-ho-3d-print-sl-sf-at-sf-cr.125910/

    If we are going to keep attracting young people to the hobby, the future of model railroading lies in the application of technology to the hobby.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2019
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  15. r_i_straw

    r_i_straw Staff Member

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    By the time I came along some 67 years ago, my dad and two older brothers had accumulated a large collection of Marx 027 rolling stock and track. Some of my earliest memories are of the holiday season when the trains would take over the house from December to early January and then all disappear until the next year. If I did not get my fix then, it was a long wait. When I was about ten years old, one of my older brothers must have sensed my distress as he built me a small Lone Star Lectric 000 (early N scale) layout that I could keep deployed and run year round. By the time I was in high school I had build a full blown N scale layout but that got stored when college came around. Fast forward to marriage, kids and looking for a distraction to pass the time in the evenings after the young folks was off to bed. Unpacked the N scale and started looking at the new stuff that had come out. Got involved with NTRAK and helping my dad with his new HO layout.
     
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  16. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member

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    58 years for me. Since I can remember I was fascinated with trains. I am the only one in my generation so afflicted. I do have a great nephew that seems to be showing signs of the burn. He lives far away from me, and an active main line RR, but he starts to vibrate when a train is present..
    My Grandpa took me for a ride when I was just 6-7 on an old GP7, he was a QA&P (SL-SF) engineer in Quanah TX. That ride ruined me for a lifetime of the fascination and interest of trains. I am here to report that time has not diminished any of this.
    It took me till I was 30 years old to get hired out and another 10 years to get into engine service, but I have enjoyed every minute.
    I am currently off injured (not RR related) but still as I write this, I hear a hotshot manifest going east about 1500' behind our house and wish I was on it.
    My Grandpa never recommended me to work for the RR. He hired out pre WWII and then had a WWII era engine service date (steam), retired in 1975, so he ran engines from 2-10-0's to SD45's.. What a career right? How can you not like that, he has been gone for almost 34 years, I still miss him, think about him every day and admire his service era and record. Sometimes when I was working, when it was 3 or 4 AM, I think he was with me in the cab, I know how crazy that sounds, but I somehow felt it, prolly cause I just want it to be. Many years ago about this time of year, there was a teddy bear that was assigned to the engine we were on, coming west out of Denver headed to the west coast, there was a thick notebook along with this teddy bear that asked every crew on that engine to write a short story about the crew, the train, train makeup, destination and describe the on duty times, locations and some general trip info. I remember how cool it was to read how much these crews put into that little spiral note book, and how every crew said they would see that teddy was safe and would be OK. Made me proud of the people I work with.
    That was prolly 20 years ago, I sure hope teddy made it back home again.
     
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  17. rhensley_anderson

    rhensley_anderson TrainBoard Supporter

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    80. I received a Marx train about 5 and received more Marx until 15. Long break until I married in 1970. Wife had kids. I deicided to build a 4x8 HO for them. It lasted a year. Next kids got a 4 x 6. It lasted a year. Opened a hobby shop. Closed due to health. Realized it was my hobby. Been at it since 1983 with a layout at home and 7 in various scales at the History Center. Been busy.
    Hoo Haa!
     
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  18. Ashpit

    Ashpit TrainBoard Member

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    (Per halfpint 33) 51 yrs young. Had an n scale layout 20 yrs ago but sold all of it cause well family comes first. Been an armchair model railroader ever since. My grandson is 6 and I plan on starting a small layout with him soon. As far as other activities been hunting and fishing my whole life. Also build an occasional model semi and do woodworking as my main hobby.

    My hobbies always fit right into my family duties. While my two boys where growing up, I was involved in building and flying R/C Model Airplanes. As well as owning my own business, being a Rotarian, going to church, mowing the grass (close to an acre) Plus the flying field that the R/C club flew from, Coaching little league and the other myriad things involved in being a father, i was always able to find time enough for my hobbies. I guess I was of the opinion that my "Sanity" always came first and my hobbies kept me sane!

    My layout was started in 1988 and has been around for 31 years. Although lately I have considered tearing it down and starting over in Sn3 or On30 as I am much more interested in narrow gauge now.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 10, 2019
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  19. Rip Track

    Rip Track TrainBoard Member

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    58 (today!) I started out with my father's Marklin equipment, usually set up during Christmas on a 4x8 table. When I was around 10 we built a more permanent layout in the attic. I built another in my teens before I began doing the usual teen things. I got back into the hobby in my mid 30s, building a another Marklin layout in my basement. Then I took a break for almost 10 years, building and flying RC planes. I came back, dabbling in N scale, and now currently working on a HO layout, trying to loosely model 1920s-30s B&O. That's it in a nutshell.
     
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  20. BNSF FAN

    BNSF FAN TrainBoard Supporter

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    Just 55 but act like I'm 25 and feel like i'm 85 :D
     
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