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I bought a Bachmann starter train, to go under the Christmas tree. I have wanted to get into model trains, but it all seems so over whelming. I would like to build a ping pong table size layout 5x9. I would like to be able to run multiple trains at the same time across the whole layout. What is the best place to start? Websites… books… shows…? Any advise would be helpful.
 

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It's going to take a little time to get that together so you'll want to browse thru the websites, pick up a magazine or two and take it slow. It's easy to spend a lot of money all at once and end up with what we oldtimers call a "Plywood Pacific Railroad"---a large pile of track, equipment and wood gathering dust in the corner of a garage or basement.

Set up your loop of track, buy a simple kit or two, get a good locomotive like an Atlas or Athearn and a good power pack like an MDC, get to learning how things work before you start slinging plaster and plunking down 4 bennies for a Digitrax DCC system.

Welcome to the hobby and feel free to pm me with any questions.
 

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I bought a Bachmann starter train, to go under the Christmas tree. I have wanted to get into model trains, but it all seems so over whelming. I would like to build a ping pong table size layout 5x9. I would like to be able to run multiple trains at the same time across the whole layout. What is the best place to start? Websites… books… shows…? Any advise would be helpful.
i had the same problem,

I bought a bachmann digital commander set. it costed 340 dollars australian.

it comes with track, 2 locos, 3 carrages, a controller,instructions and stuff.

i put it on a pingpong table, got more track, made more hills and now its finished. its not overwhelming, its easy. follow this link to a useful website

http://www.hobbylinc.com/htm/bac/bac00501.htm

Hvae fun and GOOD LUCK!!
 

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Starting and DCC

Set up your loop of track, buy a simple kit or two, get a good locomotive like an Atlas or Athearn and a good power pack like an MDC, get to learning how things work before you start slinging plaster and plunking down 4 bennies for a Digitrax DCC system.

I'd just add a couple of qualifiers to that: My Digitrax Zephyr, which is
perfectly fine for operating *at least* two engines, only cost me $169.00.
Don't know what that might be in Australian money. And it seems to me
that, these days, a "good locomotive" by definition would be DCC ready,
i.e., have the decoders built in. In fact, with all due respect, I'd follow
the advice of the folks at the train store I went to get started, "If you are
just starting up, you might as well start with DCC. It's all going there
eventually."

eagle37
 

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i just entered the hobby myself.its was my sons first christmas so my father in law gave me his attic dwellers.im assuming this is what crack is like.i did two 4x8 plywood layouts and ebay has been nice enough to send me 6 locomotives,one of which i like.j class norfolk and western.what a treasure.as for the layout,i am going to read everything i can because this years wood had the track taken off and thrown away.i learned alot of lessons.ive already started my new layout.
 
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