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Author Topic: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?  (Read 1065 times)

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Offline thetigers123

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #15 on: December 31, 2016, 03:48:12 pm »
You guys are great and i already have enough stuff to be reading up on now over the new year  :thankyousign:

Offline Nick

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #16 on: December 31, 2016, 03:59:56 pm »
As im a total noob i was wondering if they are any books that i could purchase that tells me everything i need to know about starting out?
Im needing help in purchasing a baseboard, deciding on track, layout, electrics, scenery, what locos buildings etc to buy, even down to what tools i need to purchase. Ive even seen people use carriages and trains to test the layout before fixing it down so do i need to buy those first?
Thanks for reading.
I never found one particular "Bible". Lots of books attempt the task, but most of them are better in some areas than others. If you have a decent model shop or bookshop nearby, so much the better, otherwise visit a show that has booksellers where you can browse and choose a book (or, more likely, books) whose style and level suits you. All things being equal, I would tend toward a modern book that used modern materials and techniques than an old classic.

Magazines - several have quite decent practical sections. There were a couple of nice articles in the November and December issues of British Railway Modelling which followed the building of a box-sized N gauge layout by Phil Parker at TINGS, which necessarily takes you right through the process from baseboard to a simple working scenic layout. Back issues are available.

Which leads on to....SIZE. Yes, it does matter.  :D If you are a complete noob, don't under-estimate the amount of time, effort, commitment and expense that is necessary to complete a model railway. And, very roughly, they go up as the square of the size of the layout, because you model an area, not a length.

When I first started on an N gauge layout, I picked up a plan that I liked from a book, tweaked it a bit, and launched off. It was 6' x 4' and it never came close to completion. Tried again, a bit smaller, and met the same fate. The first layout that got even close to being completed was a simple "shunting puzzle" layout with a small hill and a little tunnel to a fiddle yard, and a few Ratio buildings. From memory, it was about 4'x9"! Yes, 9 inches... But building that covered all the basic techniques for something better, while keeping the cost and the time more or less under control.

Yes, plenty of people build much bigger things, but if you've never done this before, are you sure you'll be one of them?

IMHO, unquestionably the best source of information and advice on N Gauge modelling is this forum. A friendlier and more helpful bunch of people would be hard to find. When you get stuck, ask away...
« Last Edit: December 31, 2016, 04:01:41 pm by Nick »
Nick

The perfect is the enemy of the good - Voltaire

Offline Mito

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #17 on: December 31, 2016, 09:01:28 pm »
Excellent advice above. Remember this is a hobby to enjoy and have fun with and ....... well, have fun. :claphappy:
You know you're getting older when your mind makes commitments your body can't meet.

Offline thetigers123

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #18 on: January 01, 2017, 01:11:50 am »
Thanks for the feedback guys much appreciated and happy new year  :beers:

Offline keithbythe sea

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #19 on: January 06, 2017, 04:20:53 pm »
Hi and welcome, and enjoy!

I have a really old book (1977) - Scenic Railway Modelling by Michael Andrss which I find really useful. Some of it is rather outdated now but it covers all of the basics really well. You may be able to get a copy from the local library, I suspect that it is out of print.

I would agree with the previous post that for anything electrical start with brian-lambert.co.uk - I had no idea what I was doing with DCC, just followed the web site and up and running first time - amazing.

My layout is of similar size to your planned one, have a look if you are interested.

Offline thetigers123

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #20 on: January 06, 2017, 04:27:23 pm »
I will do thanks for the info too

Offline EtchedPixels

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #21 on: January 06, 2017, 05:50:58 pm »
C J Freezer is another name to look for. A lot of libraries and charity shops seem to have model railway books often ancient, but not a lot has changed 8)

Alan
"Knowledge has no value or use for the solitary owner: to be enjoyed it must be communicated" -- Charles Pratt, 1st Earl Camden

Offline Nick

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #22 on: January 07, 2017, 11:37:09 am »
There was a book by Michael Andress called "The Complete Guide to Model Railways", which was a compilation of several smaller books of which "Scenic Modelling" was one.

I have a number of Cyril Freezer books and they cover the ground well, but they should come with a printed warning on the cover: "The track plans in this book can damage your sanity!"

For some reason, the blessed Cyril's plans frequently didn't fit in the space he said they would. From memory, he played fast and loose with curve radii and didn't use standard geometry points. If you like one of his plans, fire up some software such as AnyRail, and see if you can actually use off the shelf track to fit it into your space. I've spent many a happy hour with Peco paper templates  and a voodoo doll of CF... Thank heavens for track design software nowadays.

It was a very odd thing to happen, because he churned out plans by the ton for books and for Railway Modeller. But I've seen other people comment over the issue, so it's not just me. You'd think somebody with have told the Great Man.
Nick

The perfect is the enemy of the good - Voltaire

Offline Newportnobby

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Re: Total Beginner, any "bibles" out there?
« Reply #23 on: January 07, 2017, 01:23:47 pm »
I have that Michael Andress book :D

I have a number of Cyril Freezer books and they cover the ground well, but they should come with a printed warning on the cover: "The track plans in this book can damage your sanity!"
 

I completely agree and have mentioned this in my piece in the Knowledge Bank. I believe he scaled down plans from 00 incorrectly. I have the 'Railway Modeller book of N gauge track plans' by dear old CJ and don't think a single one would fit the baseboard size he suggests :no:

 

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