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Author Topic: Model Railroader - April 2007  (Read 8053 times)
Dr EMD

Founded 1922 as Electro-Motive Engineering Company


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« on: February 21, 2007, 07:30:03 PM »

I received my April 2007 Model Railroader (as well as April 07 Trains) today - 21 Feb 07. This is the earliest I have ever received of any monthly railroad magazine (6 weeks before cover date, and on the 21st of the month). By this time 30 years ago, I would expect March 77 issue to hit hobby shop by the 21 of Feb.

As I looked over this April 2007 edition, a short news item called "Trackplan for Life" got my attention. For those who read MR, what do you think of the story Wink?   
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Electro-Motive Historical Research
(Never employed by EMD at any time)

r0bert


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« Reply #1 on: February 21, 2007, 08:43:40 PM »

I hope you're not refering to the annual April fools item!, because I REALLY hate when somebody spoils things by telling me how a movie ends before I've seen it!!
If that's the case, then just KEEP QUITE!!!
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Dr EMD

Founded 1922 as Electro-Motive Engineering Company


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« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2007, 10:27:17 PM »

I won't spoil it. Cool
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Electro-Motive Historical Research
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ben_not_benny

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« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2007, 11:54:05 PM »

There's one last year about a near-perfect DCC system. I think what you're talking about should be something simular.
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SteamGene

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« Reply #4 on: February 22, 2007, 09:53:06 AM »

I think my favorite was the "rails to trails" layout of several years ago.
Gene
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Chief Brass Hat
Virginia Tidewater and Piedmont Railroad
"Only coal fired steam locomotives"
r0bert


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« Reply #5 on: February 22, 2007, 01:24:03 PM »

I think my favorite was the "rails to trails" layout of several years ago.
Gene
and don.t forget the "zero G" train, the 1:1 scale model review, London's Tube layout, or my all-time favorite, the alien engineer in the cab of the loco on the cover photo!!!
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SteamGene

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« Reply #6 on: February 24, 2007, 08:15:29 AM »

Wife: Isuppose you're going to get one of those next.
Me:  Look at the issue date, dear. 
Gene
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Chief Brass Hat
Virginia Tidewater and Piedmont Railroad
"Only coal fired steam locomotives"
John in Santa Cruz

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« Reply #7 on: February 24, 2007, 03:32:04 PM »

   The annual April Fools item in this particular issue has the distinction
of being the highlight of what I feel to be the all-time worst issue of
that publication. What a yawner.

-John
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Atlantic Central

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« Reply #8 on: February 24, 2007, 09:39:53 PM »

John,

I stayed out of this until now, but I have to lend you my support.

Model Railroader is not the publication it once was, that is for sure, and only 114 pages in April. They seem lost, not knowing what to cover or how to cover it. and I think they have run off a number of contributors and scarred away future ones with their requirements for articles and their snobby views about the hobby.

I have considered writing an article from time to time. If I ever get around to it, I will submitt it to RMC, not MR.

I am not much for April Fools jokes, but this was by far their worst. Or maybe my old fashioned values are just so out of touch I don't get it. But that's OK, I am very happy not getting it and reading RMC and other publications more than MR.

Sheldon
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glennk28

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« Reply #9 on: February 24, 2007, 09:53:17 PM »

I liked the item in one of the first "April Fool" issues MR did--back in the 1950's--The author found a way of eliminating all the supporting columns in his basement by pressurizing the space to hold the house up.   Drawbacks included having to wear "hard hat" diving suits and certain tenk cars collapsing under pressure.

Ya gotta be able to laugh once in a while. 
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Paul M.

T&P Railway in the 1950s


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« Reply #10 on: February 25, 2007, 01:44:00 PM »

The "trackplan for life" article was good. Grin
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John in Santa Cruz

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« Reply #11 on: February 26, 2007, 11:51:13 PM »

   The one nice thing about recent issues of MR has been the articles
by Pelle Seoborg (who lives in Denmark), on scenery and backdrops,
and there was one a couple of years ago on laying flextrack that
should be required reading.
   I have sliced all these articles out and put them into pocket pages,
creating my own collected edition of his work. I have never scene anyone
do better desert scenery.
    That is the one nice thing. I have not been able to detect any others.

-John
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Joe Satnik


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« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2007, 09:40:30 AM »

Dear Robert,

Do you recall the year (or approximate year) of the issue with the alien on the cover?

My all time favorite is Warren Buffet's HO scale Wisconsin Central, April 2001.

Thanks.

Sincerely,

Joe Satnik
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If your loco is too heavy to lift, you'd better be able to ride in, on or behind it.
r.cprmier

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« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2007, 01:37:32 PM »

Sheldon;
The "kids" won't remember the old MR mags, the ones with guys like Gordy Odegard, Linn Westcott, a very young Russ Larson, et al. 
I am somewhat ambivalent in my take on the contemporary MR, as it is in colour, not B&W; it is bigger, paper is higher quality, etc; but it is somewhat becoming a directory for products and not a magazine to be read for its articles and knowledge; nor will reading it now neccessarily further one's skills in one aspect or another.

When I first got into the hobby as a serious modeler in '67, there were articles by Whit Towers, Jim Findley, Chuck Yungkirth etc, on how to build this or that, which is what played heavily into cultivating my interest as a modeler.

You mentioned RMC; but I can remember when Hal Carstens too, was putting out a rag that was much better than the present-not that that is an indictment upon its quality-at least I do not intend it to be.

Things do change though; and not neccessarily for the better where you or I are concerned, but it is evolving as perhaps it should be and serving a newer type of modeler; after all, we're all in business to make a profit, and you cannot make one by not giving the majority of people what they want, right? 

Rich
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Rich

NEW YORK NEW HAVEN & HARTFORD RR. CO.
-GONE, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN!
Atlantic Central

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« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2007, 02:59:04 PM »

Rich,

As I sit here and type this, I am looking across the room at book shelf containing almost every issue of Model Railroader from about 1965 to now, and decent percentage of the years before that. In the next room is a similar collection of RMC on another bookshelf.

My disapointment with MR is not the modern format, or even the large amount of advertising, or even the lack of simple "how to" articles from all those great modelers you mentioned. I know times change, and as both a long time modeler and someone who has worked in the hobby industry I know the hobby has changed.

What disapoints me the most about MR is that as the hobby's biggest mag, until a few years ago, they always tried to represent a broad approach, at least within the scope of scale modeling in N thru O scale, leaving highrail and other areas to their own niche publications.

But it seems now more than ever they have lots of agenda's but no real direction. They have latched onto some supposed trends and tried to make them gospel, or they jump into niche areas with no respect for established conventions in those groups. Some examples:


Trying to "rename" On30 to On2-1/2.

The bias against anyone still using DC. This is more about pushing the idea of walk around operation then anything, or, maybe it is advertiser driven - see DCC below.

The bias against freelancing and selective compression. A discussion of passenger car modeling a while back included lots of model manufacturer specific info and totaly ignored Athearn's products. Fact is, while feelanced, most of Athearn's heavy weights are darn close to actual prototypes. And, since we all seletively compress our curves, a reasonable discussion would have included both lines of thought.

The bais in favor of sound and DCC, is this out of loyality to manufacturers desperate to sell enough of this stuff to justify its production?


This is just few of my observations of what I see as an anti fun bias that would be more at home in some stuffy niche publication called "ultra realizm our way" than in what used to be the main stream, starting point, reference point publication of the hobby. It all started about the the time they removed the "Model Railroading is Run" banner from the cover.

You used that dreaded term that so many scolded me for, so I will use it. I too consider myself a "serious modeler", but I don't need Model Railroader to define it for me. We the modelers should be defining it for them, but they seem lost in their own world of rigid writing style requiremments for articles and in presenting only that kind of modeling that fits their "agenda" for the hobby.

RMC is doing a much better job of expanding ideas rather than limiting them these days. One good example - Howard Zane's layout and the style of his articles recently published in RMC, would not have made it into MR under the current management. Maybe that is why he ended up in RMC and I'm sure RMC was very happy to have a modeler with his accoplishiments and notablity in their mag.

Howard has fun with model trains, he is not documenting some division of the Nickel Plate down to the last tie. Both are valid choices, but I would bet you could overhear this comment in the MR offices as they looked through his book and/or RMC article - "What a shame, all that space, effort and talent and he just freelanced the area and runs any old roadname he likes".

I don't model the way Howard does, nor do I model the way Tony does, and both are great talents in our hobby. But MR sure gives the impression these days that the one is "better" and therefore welcome and the other is not.

Sheldon
« Last Edit: March 05, 2007, 03:06:16 PM by atlanticcentral » Logged
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