How do young people get "into trains" these days?

A forum for teen railroad enthusiasts

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Post by AmtrakFan » Wed Aug 11, 2004 5:53 pm

Ok I got into them when I was 15 to 18 Months we really don't know when. Long Time ago we have a Negihobor who had a Model RR Set a long time ago also he Worked for Amtrak. So I use to play a lot with their Kids so I would go see it alot also My dad was a liked Trains somewhat when he was a Kid. Also have hundreds of Rail Photos and working on a Model RR Layout.


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how come...

Post by RCH022 » Thu Nov 11, 2004 3:31 pm

well of course when i was really little i was into trains like most other young boys... but i came about them again around age 12 and ever since i saw that freight train go by at 50 mph blowing its horn it was soo amazing and well... fascinating that makes me love trains so much.


Post by TerryC » Fri Nov 12, 2004 9:56 pm

My mother told me about the Reading (her dad worked on it) as a union leader and a clerk near Philadelphia. Later I heard that Big Blue absorbed it. After that it only seemed fair to repsect the Reading's property's new owner. I learned then that Norfolk Southern in turn absorbed Conrail.

Keep asking keep learning Still missing in action 11-12-04

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Post by MBTA F40PH-2C 1050 » Sat Nov 13, 2004 7:57 am

i just showed up at the local train station every day for this one specific train, eventually after a while, i finally got to talk to the engineer and i was asked when i would ride the train. I went to Boston the week after that and met the engineer and I was let up into the cab for the ride home

and we have been friends since then :-D

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Post by sullivan1985 » Tue Nov 30, 2004 10:01 pm

It's all because my yard looks over a railroad (NJT Bergen Line) and my grandmother was crazy about them too...

I guess its in my blood...


Post by MBTA1 » Mon Dec 13, 2004 5:53 pm

When my parents got divorced we moved back into Boston. From my bedroom window on Fenwood Road I could see the E-Heath Street Line. I have loved trains ever since

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Post by jogden » Thu Mar 10, 2005 3:50 pm

I was brought up on it. My dad had trains when he was a kid, but then he got more into ships. When the United States stopped shipping everything, and it went on foreign ships, he got back into trains. That was around the same time I was born. Also, our house is about 1000 feet from a railroad track. It is the line that used to link Boston and Montreal. It is less active now though, and has been reduced to a single track. There is a coal train about every other day that brings coal to a power plant a few towns away. When I was little, my dad would take me on walks around the neighborhood, and we would often see the trains going by. He always told me to wave to the engineer, and the last car. I guess that is where the seed was planted. Aslo, my dad still has some of the model trains from when he was a kid.

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Post by texman » Thu Mar 10, 2005 5:59 pm

I've been into trains ever since I was about 2 years old. I don't why, but I always had a facination with them even though I live nowere near an active line. Maybe it has something to do with a past life? :P
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Post by The RailMan » Fri Mar 11, 2005 11:50 am

I have a fascination of pretty much anything with wheels. I'm also "mechanically inclined" (I do my own car repairs). Anything from a Metro-North M1 to a BMW M3 (I know, its a cheesy comparison :P ) I'm into it.
It's also a family thing. We have two engineers in the family (Metro-North and the LIRR) But my great grandfather used to run the trolleys back in the day (I just know he did it in NY somewhere, I don't have any details) But I find that as my friends and I get older, my friends get somewhat more interested in railfanning. I even got one of them to come with me to the Croton-Harmon Open house this past October, so quite possibly, if they get into the hobby more, I very well could have been an influence.


Post by stevo » Fri Mar 11, 2005 8:37 pm

i've grown up with railroads all my life......Guilford runs by the end of my street, and the locomotives had a big G on them, and so before i knew they were Guilford, i called them the big G......again, when i was young, we would ride the T a lot and we would take the Lowell train into boston, and so we always called that the purple fact i still do sometimes......the LIRR runs by my grandparent's house, and at Mineola was when i started my first and weirdest collection-(at least i think it was there)-my timetable collection, i probably picked one up wondering what it was...i was born in 1991 and this is a 1992 timetable, so i was pretty the end of our street, when i was a baby, they ripped out the ties and put in new ones with one of those gadgets that rides the rails, and i watched that...


Post by CuyahogaValleySR » Tue Mar 15, 2005 7:50 pm

Honestly, I don't know. I've loved trains ever since I was a toddler, with "Thomas the Train" videos, and I could even remember getting excited when the gates came down at major crossings. While drivers in other cars swore under their breaths, there I was, a toddler getting amused.

However, after my first airplane ride, I got into airplanes, to get all the way up to my Private Pilot Certificate. But on a recent train ride on the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad, my intrest in trains was sparked again, and I am "beating myself down" into the books as I did with airplanes, so that I can literally know everything there is to know about trains.

So with me, all I can say is maybe, big, heavy methods of transportation other than the usual (cars & trucks) intrest me, even before I could fully read, write, and speak (when I was a toddler).



Post by gitrplaya5u » Sun Mar 20, 2005 8:35 pm

i was just born with it. my grandpa was a big train enthusiast with a two-room o-gauge layout in his house. ive got tracks a bloack away with a crossing i go over twice a day. in my early childhood my grandpa built me a small ho scale layout on a table. so i gess a lot of it was family and also location.


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Post by metman499 » Sun Mar 20, 2005 9:44 pm

I was indoctrinated into from a young age. My father had been taking train pictures since the early 1960's. He also has an extensive Lionel collection. As a youth if I wasn't running trains, I was looking at his pictures, or since he used to work in the city, we would ride into Newark and then ride the trolley. After that I had been raised with a camera in my hands, taking pictures wherever he did, from the NYS&W locos in Cranford and Kenilworth to just about anywhere now. All the camera work has sure paid off, I now work as the photo editor for my college's newspaper. My whole school search was predicated on being near active railroads. It was through that and this board that I was fortunate enought to have been able to run a C-420 for a few hundred feet on the DL. After that I don't think anything will be able to get trains out of my system.
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Post by pgengler » Sat Mar 26, 2005 8:42 pm

I'm a little out of my teens now (turning 22 next month), but I've had an on-again, off-again interest in trains through most of my life.
I don't have any memory of it, but I was born in Edison, NJ, and the house we lived in (for about a year and a half) had a backyard that was near the NEC tracks. I'm told I was fascinated by the trains that would go by (and how I wish I were still there, just for the view).
At some point, my dad and I got a little bit of HO scale model rail stuff. I don't remember ever having seen it set up, but from time to time, I would remember that we had it and want to set it up (but withot anywhere to do it; I actually just found the stuff up in our attic, and I intend to bring it with me whenever I move out on my own).
Another thing that probably helped was that I have an uncle who, for the longest time, didn't have a car, and would always take the train from New York whenever he came to visit, and I would usually ride along with my dad to pick him up from the train station at Trenton (which has a nice view of the tracks from the station building).

Reading through the other posts here, my experience seems a little different, in that my family was never really a "railroad family;" other than the short trips to Trenton to pick up my uncle, and a rare family trip into Manhattan on the train, the only other encounter with trains I can remember involved my neighbor (who used to watch over me, my brothers, and his niece, who would spend a lot of time next door to us). He used to take us out for walks, and one day we happened upon some active tracks (that I assume was the Conrail Bordentown Secondary, since it's the only thing I can find on a map that would make sense), and one day, as we were walking along the tracks, a freight passed by.
The only other distinct rail memory I have (up until recently) was when my dad and I were taking the train into New York to see a tennis championship. It was the day after the Amtrak derailment at Portal Draw, and it was announced on our train that we would have to get off at Newark and take the PATH to the city. As it turned out, our train was the first allowed between Newark and New York, so I remember seeing the cleanup work out the side window.

Then I went off to college in Hoboken, and recently (within the last year or so), I've taken a much stronger interest in trains (though I've ridden them a lot, between school and home, and between school and work for a summer). I regret that I missed the last "Try Transit" festival in Hoboken, but I've been out lately taking pictures and notes of what I see around the Hoboken terminal/yard areas.
Phil Gengler

Overheard in NY Penn: "All aboard! Get on the train if you're coming with us!"

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Post by hioo1 » Sun Mar 27, 2005 11:08 pm

I was brainwashed from day one, as my father says. I was born in Longbranch in sight of the railroad station, and had my first toy train at the age of 2 weeks (a "flying scottsman" HO set around the christmas tree). Supposidly, I layed there for hours just watching it chug round and round and round and round and round...well you get the idea. So, I was brainwashed :-D

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