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Gary B

The Fox Valley Railroad
I work in tech and I'm in the 1% that does NOT have a cell phone. I understand why people need them and want them. I do not understand the addiction to them I see people have. I find a lot of cell phone users being very annoying, including my own sons sometimes. Please, I know I'm in the minority here by my own choice.
I know I'm in the minority here by my own choice.
Gary: That's no different than my feelings, toward brass locomotives. It's all a personal choice. BTW, the only reason I have a cell phone, is that the monthly cost of two wireless phones is less than the single land line they replaced.

I also believe that tooling and material costs have far exceeded inflation in recent years, espically in China where most all trains are made these days. The brass industry experienced the same thing when inflation in Japan went sky high as their economy recovered after the war. Brass is still made in Japan, but at prices that would make most everybody gasp once you do the exchange rate conversion. Even Korean built brass is nearly in the same boat. Brass models from China are starting to show up now, most smaller stuff like cabooses and signals in HO scale. HO plastic has also adopted some of the brass industry practices with limited runs/preorders and only make a small percentage over the number of preorders received. This also helps ramp up the prices. Where as Athearn produced that old SW7(they initially misslabled it a SW1200 which it is not) in the millions over many many years. Same for all their other blue box era models. This kept thier costs low for many years, bringing many new modelers into the hobby. And they still can be found at sensible prices on ebay and at shows. Yes some folks think they are worth the price of gold, just pass them by. Plenty of good deals out there. Even vintage brass is a steal compared to years ago. I see lots of great deals on them and other trains at shows. And I stress the "at shows" part. Many folks see $$$ signs and ask absurd prices on ebay, and some people not knowing better, pay them. My best deals are at shows where folks are selling off a late modeler's estate. Then again, I personally am not looking for the newest stuff with sound DCC and such. I prefer older models, where motors create ozone and hot oil smells. This hobby truely is for everybody, if your willing to put in the time to find models that fit your budget. Its not ment to be an "instant" hobby like an Ipad or other electronic device. But a hobby that grows, slowly and with a direction to create a world in miniature. Growing as the spending budget allows. Cheers Mike the Aspie is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to