Wednesday, October 28, 2009
What Makes a Model Railroad Great?
The 2009 issue of Great Model Railroads is out. The layouts in it are truly great.
I really like this annual issue; I've been buying it since it first came out. But every time it comes out, it makes me wonder: What makes a model railroad great?
Looking at the magazine, you'd come up with different reasons: Size, detail, prototype fidelity, scenery. All would be correct, plus some more I haven't thought of.
But in my mind, the one simple thing that makes a model railroad great is that it gets built at all.
This is no small feat. Along with room and money, building a layout takes time, skill, energy and discipline. The last item is often not appreciated as much as it should be; if you're going to make a model railroad, you have to get out of the armchair. That can sometimes be very hard to do.
The fact is this: Building a layout isn't easy. Maybe that's why so few model railroaders seem to be able to do it.
To me, it doesn't matter how big the layout is, or how good the scenery looks, or how well it runs. The mere fact that someone actually took the time to make it makes it great in my books.