Christmas Train Video

Below is a great video on YouTube that shows a wide range of different Christmas Train sets.

I’m really impressed with the use of snow in these and the size of some of the tracks. 

The lighting on some of them is also really impressive - has got me thinking about some new projects to work on!

Check it out below.


O Scale Model Trains

O scale model trains were originally created around 1900 by the German manfacturer Marklin and are commonly used as toy trains. 

By the 1930s, O scale trains were far and away the most popular in the US and this remained the case for another three decades. 

This is in contrast to Europe where demand for the scale declined prior to the second world war primarily due to the range of smaller scales available on the market. 

O scale model trains were most in demand when model trains were still thought of as toys - that is, when trains were built primarily for children with emphasis on them being durable and offering value for money. 

The focus at this time was not on detail and realistic recreation of trains, but this became increasingly important over the next few decades. 

O gauge trains are still popular in the US - particularly among those who are interested in running trains as opposed to other elements of model railroading. 

Many enthusiasts also particularly enjoy collecting O scale model trains

The situation in the UK is quite different from this - enthusiasts who are primarily interested in detail and in creating perfect models of trains seem to be most attracted to this scale. 

The OO scale tends to be more popular for those interested simply in running trains as opposed to recreating their precise detail.

This is mainly because of its lower costs and the fact that there are so many of these model trains available on the market. 

BRIO Model Trains

BRIO is a company that specializes in producing creating wooden toys and are probably best known for their wooden toy trains which they have been selling in Europe since the late 1950s. 

Most of the wooden toy trains that BRIO produce are not motorised in any way and are therefore suitable for younger children. 

BRIO has the license in several parts of Europe for Thomas the Tank Engine which is a particularly profitable brand. 

There are also a number of other companies that produce products that are comptabile with the BRIO product range.

Due to the high quality wood used to create the toy trains they are often more expensive than the majority of other products on the market. 

However, there is no question that they are truly quality trains, and well worth spending the extra cash on!

Below are some examples of popular BRIO trains currently on the market:

BRIO My First Railway 15-pc. Set
BRIO Mighty Red Locomotive
Brio Railway City Rescue Set

Lima Model Trains

Lima model trains were a brand of model trains that were developed in Italy from the early 1950s until 2004 when company stopped trading. 

During its prime, Lima trains were an extremely popular brand that retailed at quite a reasonable price. They developed OO and N gauge trains for the UK, as well as more precise and detailed N and HO models for numerous other countries around Europe. 

Such models were also available in the United States and in Australia in addition to a small variety of O scale trains that they also produced. 

Lima has quite a recent history - it started in the mid 1940s where it produced a variety of different toys such trains, boats and cars. In the early 1950s it started producing a budget product range that had quite a basic design. 

Lima gradually added more detail to these models and a decade later were providing higher quality products to several different nations including Belgium, France, Netherlands, and Germany. 

Following this, Lima’s success continued and less than a decade later they were one of the biggest train model producers in the world shipping off toy model trains to large markets in Britain, Australia, South Africa, and the USA.

The early 1980s saw Lima move to more detailed and higher quality markets introducing a number o their own enhanced modeling mechanisms. 

Unfortunately, however, due to increased competition Lima struggled to continue with the success it had in previous decades, and in 2004 ceased trading.

Whilst Lima model trains are no longer being manufactured, they are still popular models for collectors and railroad enthusiasts. 

G Gauge Trains

G gauge trains are popular because of their large size and durable nature which has resulted in them often being used in outdoor train tracks. As a consequence, G scale train tracks are commonly referred to as “garden railways”.

The name originates from the German translation of “Big” (gross) and many enthusiasts mistakenly think that the “G” refers to “Garden” scale which is actually not tree. 

This common misconception is driven by the media who often use this term to refer to G scale trains. 

LGB and a variety of other manufacturers of G gauge trains produce trains tracks that are made of brass and can therefore remain outside without serious risk of them becoming damaged. 

Tracks are also manufactured in aluminum which is not as costly as the brass tracks, but still effective in outdoor conditions. 

Below are some examples of G Gauge Trains available on the market today (might make a great Christmas present…):

Lionel Polar Express Train Set - G-Gauge

Lionel G-Gauge Snowflake Express Train Set

Lionel Trains Holiday Express G-Gauge Train Set

OO Model Trains

OO model trains are far and away the most popular toy trains in the UK. This scale was created by Bing in the early 1920s and ran on a track of 16.5mm scaled at 4mm to each foot. 

The first models of British trains were launched soon after this and were initially driven through clockwork, although were replaced by electric trains a year later. 

In the late 1930s Hornby produced a brand new range of OO models and this cemented the OO scale’s position as the most popular scale in the UK. 

In the US, Lionel Corporation did produce a range of OO models in the late 1930s - however, they lacked appeal and did not prove popular with enthusiasts ultimately resulting in them being dropped from the market in 1942.

The popularity of the OO scale in the UK is a strange phenomenon - it can potentially be attributed to the availability of “ready-to-go” starter packs. 

Hornby Railways and Bachmann Branchline dominate the field here, but there are also other distributors of “ready-to-go” starter packs such as Peco, ViTrains, and Dapol.

Except for the N scale, the majority of other scales do not have the wide range of ready-to-go products available on the market. 

This is perhaps what puts off UK enthusiasts from the other scales and keeps them attracted to OO model trains

Hornby Toy Trains

Hornby Railways is the main brand of toy trains in the UK. The company was initially founded by Frank Hornby in 1901 when he patented a Meccano toy that he had developed. 

Then, in 1920, Hornby developed a clockwork train - the first of its kind! This was followed by Hornby releasing their first OO gauge train in 1938. 

In the mid sixties Hornby were eventually bought out by some of their competitors - however, the 1980s saw Hornby Railways become independent again and the release of some great products.

The current Hornby toy trains come in two different product lines - namely, Skaledale and Lyddle End. 

Skaledale is essentially a number of different buildings accessories for OO gauge tracks.  In particular, this range contains items such as shops, houses, train platforms, street accessories, and many more. 

Lyddle End is a newer range of track accessories based on N scale model railways. The buildings and accessories in this set recreate a fictional place called “Lyddle End” which is supposedly located “somewhere” in the UK.

Click here to see the range of products that are sold by Hornby Railways. 

Thomas Train YouTube

Here are some great personal videos that people have posted onto YouTube showing the most classic model train of all time - Thomas The Tank Engine.

Check them out.

Electric Toy Trains Post Review

This week in review

Here are a couple interesting blog posts on electric toy trains that I’ve found - check them out:

  • Electric Toy Trains A Family Experience - Electric Toy Trains-A Family Experience. Your family has been straining their brains, trying to come up with a hobby that all of you can enjoy. Something that will bring you closer. After some debate and allot of bad ideas you and the …

  • The History of Toy Electric Trains - Not only do electric toy trains provide allot of fun for the entire family, they have a history that is almost as rich as the one shared by the real railroads. The very first toy trains first appeared on the market in the 1860’s. …

N-scale model railroad

My model railroad. Rolling stock deliberately represents different eras of German railroad history.

Duration : 0:3:44

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