"Model Railroad Track Plans -- Setting Up Your Model Train"
by Dave P


Whether you have loved the model train hobby for quite some time, or brand spanking new, the first step to setting up your model railroad is designing a theme.

There are a lot of really awesome themes to choose from when setting up your model train. Some things to condsider when deciding on a theme are:

Season..... What time of year do you want your layout to depict. Obviously you have spring, summer, winter or fall.

Location....Time to consider what location you want for your train. You could choose to have your train go through the appalachian or rocky moutains, through the plains of nebraksa or kansas, or even a specific route from one city or station to another.

Trains...... You may decide to run a specific train line. Like Union Pacific, Norfolk Southern, Santa Fe, Chesapeake & Ohio, CSX or Amtrak for example. Pay attention to the location here. If you want an authentic layout, be sure to match your train line up with the actual route it ran, and during the time frame that particular line operated in.

Time Period...... Choose a time frame when making your model railroad track plans. Are you more partial to steam or diesel locomotives? Or perhaps both! The steam engines ran mostly pre 1950 and then the diesel locomotives took over. You could even decide on the transition period (late 1940's to early 1950's) and have both, a diesel and steam locomotive.

Other things to consider when deciding on your model railroad track plans, are the type of train you want to go with. When you're setting up your model train there are plenty of options there as well.

For instance, is your train gonna carry passengers or freight? And if you are gonna have a freight train, then what kind of freight will it be hauling.

Freight Train Cars..... Your train could haul logs or coal, or have refrigerator cars, tank cars, regular box cars and so on. There are a lot to choose from. Take your time and get a good idea of how you want your train to turn out.

Passenger Trains..... If it's a passenger train you want, you will surely find everything you need. From the 1860 Northern Pacific railroad wooden combine car, to a super sleek Amtrak Superliner coach car. If you include passenger cars with your train, unlike the freight cars they tend to be longer in length. With there longer length, they are better suited for track layouts that don't have tight turns.

There is a lot to think about when putting together your model railroad track plans. Take your time and have fun setting up your model train. Go with the things that appeal to you the most. By giving consideration to these options first, you'll end up with a much more realistic looking train set.

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Dave P

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