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

A forum for teen railroad enthusiasts

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Post by gearhead426 » Wed Jun 14, 2006 2:25 pm

when a child is born, take it from its mother, and isolate it from pop culture(most of wich is just stupid--i should know i see it first hand in skool every day) and for several hours a day, place it infront of a large Tv and show it railfan videos. when this child is old enough, give it model trains. this childs only contact with the outside world wil be to be fed, go to school in special hour long classes about trains and the very basic things it needs to survive. a foster parent(railfan obviously)would take the child railfanning every day, and the child will know everything about trains by adolescence. if we do this with one out of every 50 children born in the US, then more people will be into railroads.
i wish i was brought up this way.


Post by stevo » Wed Jun 14, 2006 5:11 pm

ok, i wasn't that extreme.

i stayed with my real parents...they took me for walks along the railroad tracks, we rode the subways in boston and new york, we got model not quite as extreme as what you were saying.

and then, most importantly, is the part when i got my liscence.

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Post by NS212 » Thu Oct 05, 2006 7:26 pm

I know I'm a little off on the post but my dad really got me into trains when I was about 3 years old. We lived next to the Norfolk Southern Hagerstown District in Luray, VA and I remember watchin those monster coal trains going north with pushers on the rear and I thought that was the coolest thing ever. The sound was amazing. Ever sense I was hooked. Now I live in Front Royal, VA near Riverton Jct. and I occasionaly railfan. I wasn't soo much into them back in 8th/9th grade but when I heard my dad was going to start working for Norfolk Southern as a conductor trainee thats when my interest got sparked up again. I'm 18 now and soon am going to be a conductor trainee out of Shenandoah, VA. Just waiting for a call with my start date. I've never been so happy in my life! :-D



Post by toberborgan » Sat Nov 11, 2006 1:03 pm

nobody in.
Last edited by toberborgan on Sun Jun 22, 2008 7:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by silverliner266 » Fri Nov 17, 2006 8:50 pm

I think that it is genetic, me my dad, grand father, and great grand father all rail fans, model trains real trains that kind of stuff, so I got exposed early and often.
Philadelphia "America's Next Great City."

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Post by 35dtmrs92 » Sun Feb 04, 2007 2:06 pm

When I lived in New York City, the N train was our one lifeline to get into Manhattan. Also, I lived within sight of the famous Hell Gate Viaduct through Astoria.


Post by starwardude » Sat Apr 21, 2007 9:25 pm

Eh, probably when my parents gave me that train set when I was ~4-5 Y.O.A. for Christmas. Awhile (1-2 yrs.) later we went to the Naugatuck RR (RMNE) and the Valley RR museum. At that time I liked trains because they were big machines. Later I became more interested in the history behind them. The latter evolved to my current interest in railroads.


Post by harryguy082589 » Sat Apr 21, 2007 9:51 pm

When I was 17 I lived in northern nj and didn't have a car,but and somehow I got enrolled in a half day course on the Upper West Side. My mom couldn't say no to taking a course but assumed she'd need to pay someone to drive me to the city, I said she was nuts- half of my city commutes to NYC by bus. She agreed, and said to the NYC I should taxi uptown, but when I got there I saw some signs to the subway and it was raining out I thought I stay out of the rain and explore.... turned out all I needed was one stop on the 2 or 3 subway lines.

From there I spent the summer exploring the rail and bus systems of NY,NJ, Amtrak, learned about, and now I hope to be an Urban Planner when I grow up.

That summer in New York introduced me to theater, art, and mass transit - all of which my life and what I do with it. All because I found mass transit and it allowed me to get around.
Last edited by harryguy082589 on Wed May 23, 2007 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by chrsjrcj » Mon May 14, 2007 7:55 pm

I always liked trains. I rode Tri-Rail when I was 3, rode Amtrak at 4 and been ridding for about every year since. I take an annual trip on Amtrak durring the Spring time but I am hoping it will become a more common thing.

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Post by green_elite_cab » Wed Aug 08, 2007 6:05 pm

I was just trying to find something to do with my time. I always liked looking at the trains in the display cases, so sometime around the end of the 7th grade, i was like, Why not? I started buying O scale, but it quickly became to expensive, so i switched of HO since, and i haven't looked back.
Elite Juice Jack Modeler.


Post by stevo » Wed Aug 08, 2007 7:06 pm

between my dad's O scale collection, cheap HO trains make good gifts for yung'uns, there's a rail line at the end of my street, and my grandparents live next the the mainline of the LIRR...i became a railfan!

Joe Fox
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Post by Joe Fox » Thu Aug 09, 2007 7:55 am

I used to watch railfan videos with my dad when I was a kid. Now I am a firemen on the W, W, & F Ry. How great is that. I all ways used to admire those steam engines, and now I get to maintain a fire on a 1904 Vulcan engine. A little dream, or video, can go a long ways.


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Post by Conrail1990 » Thu Aug 09, 2007 9:35 am

I'll say.
The master of the Penns Grove Secondary!

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Post by Lucius Ameri » Tue Aug 21, 2007 12:46 pm

I got into trains when I got my first G scale train set when I was 3. I just loved the big locomotives. I was a train lover from that time to about the 4th grade. Other stuff moved in and it wasn't until that fateful summer day after leaving 6th grade that when I rode the NYCTA A train & looked out the front window for the first time in a while that I remembered how I loved trains with the greatest passion. Now I'm a serious railfanner and it's never going to leave. Actually, my mom has some old cameras which use film & today she's going to show me how they work so I can go down to the Empire Connection which is a few blocks away and shoot some Amtrak. Later I'll maybe check out the MNRR scene. That's what's great about living in northern Manhattan, Amtrak & MNRR are blocks away!
Last call for Train 49 - Lake Shore Limited to Chicago with stops at --- Albany, Schnectady, Syracuse, Buffalo, Erie, Cleveland, Toledo, and intermediate stations.

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Post by Murjax » Tue Aug 21, 2007 6:09 pm

[quote="dmk092"]I don't live near any tracks, and noone in my family is quite as 'hardcore' as I am. [\quote]You're kind of like me in that way. Most of my family aren't really that interested in trains (except for some of my immediate family but I am still the most interested in it). Here's the story. I took my first train ride back in 2004 from JAX-NYP and then MNRR onto Fairfield,CT. I enjoyed it a lot but I didn't really get into it until 2005 when we started taking lots of trips that year. In those trips I really noticed the system of commuter rails a lot and I was really impressed on how these systems run (particularly from WAS and north) and that's how I got started. Lately I have been more focused and interested on the commuter rails in Connecticut. How I started focusing more on Connecticut was when I went to Old Saybrook back in April and for the first time in my life I stood within 2 feet of an Acela Express racing by me. It was then and there that I realized that this is my lot in life. The railroads. I have now started taking rail videos when I get the chance (you can find them at youtube and my profile username is murjax just as it is here). Now I really think the source of my love of rails starts way back when I was 3. That's when my family moved to Florida. Now why I believe that's a part of why I like rails is that I think it made me appriciate the trains more (because we don't have much of anything as far as trains go down here). If I had lived in Connecticut (where I came from) instead, then I don't think I would appriciate trains as much because they would be nothing more than a normal part of life. I want to move back up there in the future and pursue my railroad dreams. :)

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