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How can I get started in live steam?
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   How can I get started in live steam?
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   Author  Topic: How can I get started in live steam?  (Read 2128 times)
R/Cpullerdude
Chaser
Posts: 63
Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #20 on: Dec 21st, 2006, 11:11pm »
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Thanks for the quick reply.  I just took a closer look at the caboose building thread and that is amazing.  Some of the most impressive modeling I've seen.  
 
I was actually refering to Goose #7.  All I'd seen of it was a model in one of my mags.
 
Thanks, and happy holidays.


« Last Edit: Dec 21st, 2006, 11:12pm by R/Cpullerdude » Logged

moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #21 on: Jun 5th, 2007, 7:24pm »
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hi all,
 
in recent days, we've had another thread start on the subject that deals with getting into the live steam hobby and acquistion of equipment.  for sometime now, this thread has langished on page 2 of this live steam board.  well, just shoot me, but i think it is important enough at this juncture to make it a 'sticky' thread for our newcomers to trip over on the first go.
 
so...if you've questions to ask about the hobby, the comraderie, the equipment, or what have you, start here!
 
okay bruce, hit me with the wet noodle for not having done this from the beginning!


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pockets
Historian
Posts: 1224
Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #22 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 10:37am »
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Moosey,
SWMBO bought me 1-1/4 acres of reasonably flat ground . What do I do next?  
 
Greg B.


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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #23 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:17pm »
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How much for a basic engine?
 
« on: Jun 3rd, 2007, 7:57pm »  
 
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How much can you find a basic and running live steam engine for sale.  I am talking about a ride on engine.  
Thanks Brian  
 
 
 
 
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #24 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:20pm »
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Re: How much for a basic engine?
 
« Reply #1 on: Jun 3rd, 2007, 8:53pm »  
 
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I would say that you should be looking at discoverlivesteam.com  and its http://www.discoverlivesteam.com/A-forsalepages.htm page.    
 
Also keep your eye on the club sites.  Many clubs like illionis live steamers, largo central rr, and some others have a for sale page.    
 
But to answer your question in a easy basic sense-  
You have two ways to go-  
1.  Kit, Homemade, Almost complete, only plans-  Depending on the locomotive size, how far complete and the company, changes the price.  You can pick up some locomotive kits, for anywhere between $2,000 to $15,000.  You have the choice, like many of us here, Bruce, Ray, Me, Bobby, of building your own from scratch, or plans.  I myself drew my own plans for my GE44 on CADD.  But Ray, Bruce, and them got plans for real ones or scaled ones and are building/ have built directly from them.  
2.  Already done, Ready to Run-  These locomotives can range from prices like 19,000 (1.5" pacific) to low as a couple thousand to as high as $45,000.  I would check with places like Discoverlivesteam.com   Ebay.com    Littleengines.com  
 
I am just another newbie...  Listen to the pro's  
 
 
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Dean
7.5" GE 44 TONNER
 
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #25 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:23pm »
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Re: How much for a basic engine?
 
« Reply #3 on: Jun 3rd, 2007, 11:31pm »  
 
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   Brian,  
 
   You have received some very good advice. But I can see this getting very redundant in terminology. Your request of "how much for a basic engine" is a very wide open question. Almost too wide open. As has been stated, there are great variables in this end of our hobby. And only you can make the decision on where you want to "land" in the hobby.  
 
   Take care,  
 
   Bruce  
 
 
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #26 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:25pm »
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: How much for a basic engine?
 
« Reply #4 on: Jun 4th, 2007, 7:16am »  
 
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Some thing like a 0-4-0.  The same gauge as your atlantic erieatlantic.  I dont want anythig real complicated or fancy.  
Thanks Brian  
 
 
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #27 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:27pm »
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Re: How much for a basic engine?
 
« Reply #5 on: Jun 4th, 2007, 1:06pm »  
 
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hi brian,  
 
what bruce is trying to point you to is to pick a specific model...which you've almost done.  next, steve is right to point you to a live steam club, but more importantly, a mentor.  someone to teach and guide you in the ways of machines, machine tools, and fundimentals of steam operation.  it's too easy to say i want 'that' engine.   it's also too easy to climb onto someone elses engine, pull the throttle, and then call yourself a live steamer, there's just more to it than that.  yes, i'm with you on bruce's erie-atlantic(i want to learn to run it too!), but it didn't get to be the neatest running engine around overnight.  bruce has worked damned hard to make it so.  he will tell you himself of his journey into steam.  it didn't happen overnight and yes, he did have some wonderful mentors.  as i'm learning, so shall i share.  that has been bruce's, mine, pockets, and many other live steamer's motto.  i'm on a journey myself, couple more electrics then it's steam exclusively.  it doesn't matter what age you start, just start!  
 
learning the ways of steam means starting from the very beginning of the machine itself.  you have to know how it works, to make sure it functions properly.  the short answer is, find a mentor, stick with them, and get dirty!  
 
oh! btw, keep us posted!  
 
moose the caboose  
 
 
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #28 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:31pm »
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Re: How much for a basic engine?
 
« Reply #6 on: Jun 4th, 2007, 5:46pm »  
 
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I dont know if there are any live steam clubs around Youngstown Ohio.  I am only 18 so money is a limiting factor.  
Thanks Brian  
 
 
 
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #29 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:33pm »
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Brian, check out http://www.discoverlivesteam.com/A-clubs.htm and find Ohio.  Depending on where you are located, there are five clubs in Ohio plus additional private tracks.  Like has been reitteriated before, become familiar with live steamers, their maintenance, operation, and then consider purchasing or building an engine.  It makes life much easier in the long run.  The experience will be more rewarding if you build your own engine.  
 
When you become more involved in the live steam hobby, many mentors will give pointers when you start to construct an engine.  They have usually done it and/or seen it and usually have the best way in doing things.  
 
Hope all this info helps.  
 
Steve L.  
 
 
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #30 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:42pm »
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Re: How much for a basic engine?
 
« Reply #9 on: Jun 5th, 2007, 9:53am »  
 
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Hey Brian…I’m certain that the information provided here may seem somewhat daunting but you should listen to what these people have to say. They know what they are talking about and have years of valuable experience.  
 
There is an option that you may wish to consider as an intermediate step that can get you involved in live steam quickly and at an affordable price. The link to the product is shown below.  
 
http://www.accucraft.com/Sub-Cs-LiveSteam.htm  
 
These models are butane fired live steam and run on G scale track. I like to one with the tender. There is a lot of inexpensive G scale equipment that you could pull behind this engine. Products by Bachman and AristoCraft come to mind.  
 
Also see the link below from the live steam subject on the forum.  
 
http://forums.railfan.net/forums.cgi?board=LiveSteam;action=display;num=1146234572  
 
Good luck with your adventure into live steam and above all have fun…Tom  
 
 
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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #31 on: Jun 6th, 2007, 8:50pm »
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hi all,
 
pockets:  Build ye' terrier, build!
 
moose!
 
 


« Last Edit: Jun 6th, 2007, 9:02pm by moose_the_caboose » Logged

BM_133
Former Member
Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #32 on: Jun 27th, 2008, 4:50pm »
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A good way to get a locomotive is to look for a used one. They are cheaper or if you know some one with a machine shop they can help with parts. Maybe the guys at the club can help too.

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Jib228
Chaser
Posts: 65
Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #33 on: Jun 5th, 2009, 10:34pm »
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You could do like what I am trying to do.
 
I help out at a 2 rail O scale display. Our chef dispatcher, thats what I call him as he, another guy, and my self all know how to run the computer but he dose 99% of it. Any who, he has 1.5 scale stuff at his house. I have been talking with him and may one day this summer go to his place and run some of his stuff with the few other guys form the display.
 
Now I am not saying mooch off a friend, but find some one willing to let you run there stuff and teach you. And maybe help you get started in building or buying a locomotive.
 
We are both in the same boat, we both want to get into live steam, but cash is tight, and we are both young...ish....you are...


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ErieAtlantic7597
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #34 on: Jun 5th, 2009, 11:30pm »
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   Jib228,
 
   I do believe if you re-read the posts here and in the other opening threads to this very special live steam forum, you will have about as much information that one needs to get yourself into the live steam hobby.
 
   What I like to advise after being a live steamer for just short of forty years, is to avoid the blow hards. And there are many in this hobby, unfortuneately. The people that are very impressed with themselves are good to stay away from.  
 
   Like my friend George T. (moose the caboose) likes to say, find a well meaning mentor to help you in your quest to get into the live steam hobby.
Find a guy who has equipment that runs well and often. But is'nt arrogant about his accomplishments. When you find this person, learn all you can from him by listening and not talking. Ask intelligent questions, of course.
And then let him answer your questions. You just might be amazed at what you will find out about the live steam hobby.
 
   Bruce,
   erieatlantic7597 (one of your moderators)


« Last Edit: Jun 5th, 2009, 11:32pm by ErieAtlantic7597 » Logged
Jib228
Chaser
Posts: 65
Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #35 on: Jun 5th, 2009, 11:58pm »
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ErieAtlantic, I understand that there is tones of information, maybe enough on these forums that I could build my own stuff. (Thinking back to reading some of Moose the caboose's building topics.)
 
Our dispatcher at the display I help out at is a nice cool guy. A tad crazy, but thats what makes him a fun guy to run trains with. I have been talking to him and have head a few of his tricks for mowing the grass next to his track, keeping his water pumps working, and how he got started in to railroading.
 
I have always hung out with people who know what I dont, so I can learn form them, as I like to learn.
 
I am new to the railfan forums, and I am still reading lots of the topics. If it wasn't for the fact that I only have $6 in my pocket, $2 in coins, I would have started some thing.


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moose_the_caboose
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Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #36 on: Jun 13th, 2009, 12:36pm »
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hi all,
 
jib228:  almost missed your initial post!  sorry about that!  what bruce is telling you is correct.  find a mentor close to you and give as much time to them as they allow.  railroads aren't built in a day, so you can't learn to build one in a day.  the finished work that you see bruce, myself, pockets, fender, steamheaton and the rest of the guys do, has quite literally taken years to learn how to accomplish.  the knowledge that we've gained and are trying to pass on, covers many different disciplines and a lot of practice to master.   don't try to build your masterpiece as so many others have tried without having built steppingstone models first.  mentor guidance is that important!  without proper guidance, your failure is more than 98% assured.  if you fail, you'll leave the hobby.  that's why we do our best to help you succeed.
 
you've been successful in your first steps in the hobby, you contacted us.  for your second set of steps, contact and join a reputable live steam railroad near you.  it maybe a private club, or even one running in a public park.  from them, you are going to learn railcar physics (how things stay on the tracks), railroad physical plant (building and maintaining the track , buildings, water systems, etc.).  in short, you are going to learn what a railroad is...no matter the size.  
 
you mentioned your lack of cash...our hobby IS expensive, if you want it to be.  many years ago, in one of our live steam publications (live steam & outdoor railroading), i read of a gentleman who built a steamer for $2.78.  that's about $50 in todays money.  how did he do it?  he scrounged all the raw materials.  he saw what many of us see today in scrap piles...live steam gold!  he was also very experienced and knew what he could use.  and i'll say this, don't build cheap, but build with frugality.  what does that mean?  spend money where it's needed...especially where safety is concerned.   do build what your time, talents, skills, and understanding allow.  NEVER EVER BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS!  AND DON'T BE A WEEKEND WARRIOR as far as railroading is concerned!  if a railcar or locomotive takes you more time than you planned, it just takes more time...period!  if in fact that you find that doing trackwork is your forte, learn to do it well and you will be welcome at any track you wish to visit.  good trackmen are that hard to find.  bruce is one of those guys...he does it all, but trackwork...good trackwork is his passion.  an okay trackman may work on the entire railroad in a day.  a good trackman may spend the entire day on just 10 feet of that line...when he's (or she) done, it will feel like riding on glass.  no bump, no grind, no wahoo, just silky-smooth glass!
 
so what's the most important thing you could do for yourself?  get a good education in life, in railroading, in building, and being a hardworker within a team.  the bcrr threads are a good examples of great teamwork and great friendships, but certainly not the only ones.  there are many great railroads out there.  learn to do what's right and learn to do it because it's needed, not because you were asked to.   you are going to learn many things that will help you in life, just as life will help you with your hobby.
 
you mentioned  the moose threads, i'm flattered, but also want you to watch some of the other threads.  if you find a live steam club near you, you'll no doubt find that they have a locomotive or two that you can learn to operate.  what many of the clubs don't have are display cars.  building railcars is a less expensive option to learn how and why things stay on the rails...or don't.  that's why bruce told you to find someone who's equipment stays on the track...they've learned lessons that others slept through.  for example, on a railroad that gets hundreds of hours of running time by forty or more pieces of equipment and only one piece routinely derails, is it the trackwork?  probably not!  but we all too often hear the complaint that the track is bad from people who don't do trackwork or build railcars.  these are chequebook modelers.  i know i ramble on, but sometimes...
 
welcome to the railfan live steam threads!
 
moose to my friends...and george to swmbo!
 
 
 
on Jun 5th, 2009, 11:58pm, Jib228 wrote:       (Click here for original message)
ErieAtlantic, I understand that there is tones of information, maybe enough on these forums that I could build my own stuff. (Thinking back to reading some of Moose the caboose's building topics.)
 
Our dispatcher at the display I help out at is a nice cool guy. A tad crazy, but thats what makes him a fun guy to run trains with. I have been talking to him and have head a few of his tricks for mowing the grass next to his track, keeping his water pumps working, and how he got started in to railroading.
 
I have always hung out with people who know what I dont, so I can learn form them, as I like to learn.
 
I am new to the railfan forums, and I am still reading lots of the topics. If it wasn't for the fact that I only have $6 in my pocket, $2 in coins, I would have started some thing.



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Jib228
Chaser
Posts: 65
Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #37 on: Jun 13th, 2009, 4:58pm »
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Thanks Moose.
 
Like you said, find a mentor, I do have a friend from the 2 rail O scale display I help out at who dose build 1.5" scale. And I have chatted whit him about how is stuff runs. There is a old live steam article, I want to say form some time in the 80's, where Don or as we call him Randy is featured for building a gondola in 1.5" scale.  
 
The problem I see is that I live in Michigan, and its hard for some one my age and education to get even a job at Taco Bell. I am 20 and out of high school for about a year now. I have been model railroading for almost 15 years, but its only been in HO. But I have all ways wanted to build bigger stuff.
 
I have looked on Discover Live Steam.com, but I dont think there are any clubs, other then the Grate Lakes Live steamers in Royal Oak as they are near where I live. I think its only a 30 min drive, if the traffic is good. (Quick, to Google Maps!)
 
Now you say that I should find some thing I am good at. And start a club that way. I am good with my hands and building stuff. I have used big power tools and got A's in shop class, one of the few class's I did really good in next to computer class's. And in shop class we did build compressed air motors much like a steam engine. But they had the drive rod on one wheel, and the riming rod on another linked by an axle. I have laid down track at Chi Town, the O scale display, and it has work just fine, all 8" of it. The track there is hand laid, and I have help spike some down, and was put in charge of replacing a much used crossover. And I have wired up 2 of my HO switches to run off of a 9v battery as my controller dose not have a accessory plug for them.
In other words, I am a good all around worker.
 
Moose, I have been reading yours as they have lots of replies, and I am starting to read up some of the others topics. Its just that I cant sit and read a computer screen all day. In fact I got up and waled around at least 20 times typing this. Sit and read a book, that I can do.
 
I do look foreword to reading more form every one.
 
I do though have one question, how did I go form the HO forums, to the live steam forums?


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If this inst on the HO boards, then some one threw the wrong turnout on me.
railrunner
TRAINing
Posts: 9
Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #38 on: Jun 6th, 2010, 10:23pm »
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i need a free live steam k-28 drgw 473 bumblebee

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jonathan f cordova
pockets
Historian
Posts: 1224
Re: How can I get started in live steam?
 
« Reply #39 on: Jun 6th, 2010, 10:40pm »
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I would STRONGLY suggest that you get in line. I'm 473rd in line and you're behind me. I'd have to paint mine, though, they look like a flange wheeled school bus.
 
Greg B.


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