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Getting Kids Interested in Model Trains

Sharon is hoping for helpful getting started advice from those in the know:

“Hi my son who is 12 is trying to start his own OO set. We are both complete novices so would appreciate any help!!! He has got a starter set with a small Great Western engine with a 12 AC controller. He has been given an old Evening Star steam train which have been told works! However not on our track. When reading websites is it something to do with it being DC?? Any help much appreciated. Thanks.”

Help for anyone getting started in model railroading – Beginners Blueprint to Model Trains

6 Responses to Getting Kids Interested in Model Trains

  • Kevin Chingsays:

    Hi Sharon
    I run the class at our model rilroad club here in Canterbury New Zealand and we start kids off at 9 years to 14 years. We have both boys and girls. Olivia a 13 year old started with us first and she is a great modeler but needed guidance. All kids must ome with their parents or an adult that they are comfortable with. We started with a track plan and then got them to transfer the layout to the base board. the kids do all the work and i am there only to guide them along. I taught them to solder wires etc and set up the power supply we have wired the layout for DCC but at present we run old DC and old Locos. the club pays for the materials but the kids have to do their own fundraising. We started this clas in February this year and we are up to scenery and getting it ready to go the the local railroad show in October. so I would suggest that you find a club in your area and get them to teach your son. Hope this helps.

  • phil johnsonsays:

    Are there any clubs in your area? Our club accepts “Jr.” members. Some do and some don’t. Those that do usually have rules and criteria that must be met.

  • Tim Tatesays:

    Looks like you’re asking about the DC which the old loco is related and why it will not run on your AC power pack.
    To run the DC loco you need DC power, like what’s in a battery or a Power pack that puts out DC electricity. You need one that put outs more amperage than they use for HO trains, so stay away from a HO power packs.

  • Dick Lobachsays:

    In 1976 I started a Model Railroad Explorer Post, its for youth from 14-20 yrs.old and we are still around but its hard to keep youth interested. Each member builds their own 2 x 4 Ft. module that concert to each other with the post owning the ends. We are still hanging own since then, Check with your local Scouting office for onfo to start a Explorer Post or Venture Crew

  • Gene Hatfieldsays:

    Our club also has JR members. One thing we do is let visiting Kids run the trains on are DCC HO layout. This helps get their interest up. We have had as young as 5 running the DCC throttle.
    This is with the hope that the Kids will pressure the parents into model railroading some day.

  • Anthony Germagliottisays:

    You could run dc loco on an ac track just by adding a diode in series on one side of the motor lead
    I am a 3 rail guy and lionel is ac but I run my dc lionel with a bridge rectifier the only thing to watch
    for wen installing a diode is when you put it on the track and it runs in the wrong direction just reverse the diode and it will run in the right direction also do not put a dc engine on a ac track because all you will get is a hum out of the engine and you will damage the dc motor.if I can help you further just email me .

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