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    Default Hello

    Just joined the forum and will be reading a lot i'm sure. In the process of gathering all the information about building n scale layout with Kato Uni-Track and all their components for a successful layout.
    On the subject of rolling stock I have a question on which manufactures make the better quality units and also would like to know the best couplers you all use. Thank you! Any information you share will be greatly appreciated

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    Couplers come in two basic varieties - Rapido couplers still used outside North America and now only found here on older stuff, and knuckle type couplers that look more or less like the real thing. The latter are much preferred. There are several varieties, and Micro Trains couplers (or a close knockoff) are probably the most popular and common. I also like Acumates (made by Atlas). Most knuckle type couplers will couple with each other.

    Who makes the best rolling stock is a reasonable question... but also a can of worms. It is subjective, opinion based, and get a little "Ford vs Chevy" sometimes. Here's one opinion: Intermountain, Fox Valley, and BLMA (which was bought by Atlas a while back) make some very nice stuff, and I'm sure I'm forgetting somebody. Micro Trains makes good stuff. Atlas ranges from very good (especially the new runs of what were BLMA models) to OK (their "Trainman" line is lower priced, and not as detailed). Athern makes some nice tank cars. I wouldn't hesitate to buy any of the above if it was the type of car and paint scheme I was looking for. Bachmann... some of it's OK. My idea of very good, good, and OK probably varies from the next guy's. Although you can sometimes find bargains, in general you get what you pay for and the nicer, more detailed stuff is going to be more expensive.

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    You can't go wrong with Micro Trains. I like some of the detailing that Athearn is doing as well as Atlas's Master Line are nice. So think about what's important to you and the type of cars you want. You will find what's right for you. The bottom line is you get for what you pay at retail cost. There are some bargains to be found at Train shows, Ebay, on line stores, here, etc.
    "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn." -- Benjamin Franklin

    Mario

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    I particularly like Bluford Shops rolling stock, although it's made in China, as well as Micro-Trains, made right here in the good ol' USA. We're enjoying a Golden Age in N scale regarding our choices for high-quality locomotives and rolling stock. Many manufacturers.

    In comparison, back in the 1970s, MT was the only company offering quality ready-to-run freight cars, even though there were other players in the market (Atlas, Bachmann, Rapido, Trix, Con-Cor), while Trix and Con-Cor were offering just the handful of locomotives in N scale that ran smoothly.

    When Atlas and Kato teamed up in the early 1980s, the revolution (or evolution) began!

    N scale has come a long way!

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    I second Micro Train (MT) Rolling Stock and MT Trucks and Couplers.
    Cheers Tony

    "Knowing what to do is one thing ... being able to do it is another"
    "It is easy to criticize ... a lot harder when you have to justify it"

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    If you want magnetic uncoupling, Microtrains couplers are the most reliable. But search for the "slinky" issue with them.

    For locos you can't go wrong with Kato.

    Lots of good rolling stock out there, just be aware that the finer the detail the more delicate the car. You can find good buys on eBay. Typical newbie mistake is to buy cars from all eras because they are interesting and find out later that half of them are out of place. For example don't get stock cars or box cars with running boards on the roof if you are modeling modern railroads.

    Your best source of info is @Spookshow's website: http://www.spookshow.net/trainstuff.html

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    Welcome aboard and read as much as you can in the old and new threads. ASK ASK ASK questions when they arise and you can't find an answer. There's usually someone here who will know something.

    I second the above comments about cars.

    And remember rule number one, It is your railroad! Run what you want, and how you enjoy it!
    Northern Pacific and Black Hills RR in N, of course!!
    Aian, CEO, COO, Engineer, Gopher and everything else!

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    Quote Originally Posted by badlandnp View Post
    And remember rule number one, It is your railroad! Run what you want, and how you enjoy it!
    Got it in one ...

    I believe there are two fundamental types of modelers - those who are 100%prototypical and won't have anything that doesn't comply with a particular era or road name; and, those of us who model fictional (whatever we want) layouts with little or no compliance to an era or a road name. If you can, you should think about BOTH options and perhaps decide on one or the other. Neither are wrong and neither are right - they are a personal prerogative, don't be misled into believing either is right or either is wrong.

    Once you have decided which way you will go, then you can make better, and more informed, decisions about what you will run on your layout
    Cheers Tony

    "Knowing what to do is one thing ... being able to do it is another"
    "It is easy to criticize ... a lot harder when you have to justify it"

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    Quote Originally Posted by wombat457 View Post
    those who are 100%prototypical and won't have anything that doesn't comply with a particular era or road name; and, those of us who model fictional (whatever we want) layouts with little or no compliance to an era or a road name.
    There's a third way forward, Tony. Not all who model a specific prototype do so with 100 percent fastidiousness. It's known as proto-freelancing.

    For example, the Southern never had a Slate Fork Branch and never ran SD-9s on mine runs on the Appalachia Division. But otherwise I still model the Southern as closely as practical.
    Last edited by Paul Schmidt; 27th Mar 2020 at 08:45 AM. Reason: Added a smiley so I wouldn't so preachy!

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    @Paul Schmidt

    The best of both worlds and an option I did forget, thanks. The point I was trying to "discreetly" make was running different types of engines and rolling stock on your layout isn't a "newbie mistake", it's an option and a personal choice.
    Cheers Tony

    "Knowing what to do is one thing ... being able to do it is another"
    "It is easy to criticize ... a lot harder when you have to justify it"

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    First welcome to the group and model railroading.
    Couplers I use what ever comes on the stock unless it is Rapido couplers. Then I will change to Acumates (made by Atlas).
    Most of my rolling stock is made by Atlas.
    I go to train shows and pick up rolling stock. Some time if you check the goodwill store you might get lucky and find some n-scale stuff.
    If you have a local model railroad club, join it even if its not n-scale. What ever you learn can be adapted to n-scale.

    Above all it's your railroad. Do as you like. Just have fun!!!!!

    Bill1952
    Keep those trains rolling.

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    WELCOME TO THE HOBBY.
    There are a bunch of Companies producing a bunch of cars. It all depends on what you are looking for and like. Just get into the HOBBY any way you like. Some guys want to build a layout, then build the rolling stock[engines, cars etc], then go to scenery.
    Building the layout is your choice.
    MICRO TRAINS LINE[N-Scale] and KADEE[HO Scale] are USA made, have a reputation for QUALITY and have been around for awhile. KATO, is a Japanese based Company, building some impressive items, American & International Prototypes engines, cars, track and structures. The engines run like watches. Atlas Model RR Co. makes all different scales and is based in New Jersey. Athearn is a long time manufacturer of all different scales. Sort of new to N-Scale, but makes some fine products. There are many smaller companies that also make N-Scale goodies. Check various Magazines, feeBay and your LOCAL HOBBY SHOP to see what is available.
    While you are at your LHS, see if there is a LOCAL Model Rail Road Club around your area. Meet new people, learn things, and ASK QUESTIONS. You are NOT a stranger, to us, just a FRIEND, we haven't met yet. There is also a world-wide Model Rail Roading Club: The NATIONAL MODEL RAILROAD ASSOCIATION: https://www.nmra.org/ [shameless plug] can open your eyes to the BEST in Model Railroading.
    For good quality engine reviews, go to SPOOKSHOW: http://www.spookshow.net/trainstuff.html This is NOT some Magazine review service, just a guy trying to get the word out on what's good and not so good. Honest reviews and referrals.

    REMEMBER: It is YOUR layout, do what you want to do.

    MODEL RAILROADING IS FUN

    'Nuff Said
    DIESELS ?!?!?! We Don't Need NO Stinkin' DIESELS!!!

    THE INDIANA RAILWAY--100% STEAM POWERED in 2020

    MARK


    Suppose you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.
    - Mark Twain,

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    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Schmidt View Post
    I particularly like Bluford Shops rolling stock, although it's made in China, as well as Micro-Trains, made right here in the good ol' USA. We're enjoying a Golden Age in N scale regarding our choices for high-quality locomotives and rolling stock. Many manufacturers.

    In comparison, back in the 1970s, MT was the only company offering quality ready-to-run freight cars, even though there were other players in the market (Atlas, Bachmann, Rapido, Trix, Con-Cor), while Trix and Con-Cor were offering just the handful of locomotives in N scale that ran smoothly.


    When Atlas and Kato teamed up in the early 1980s, the revolution (or evolution) began!

    N scale has come a long way!
    So true Paul. Thanks for the trip down memory lane. Hey don't for get Lima and Rivarossi.
    "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn." -- Benjamin Franklin

    Mario

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