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Thread: Want to buy first N scale set. Recommendations?

  1. Default Want to buy first N scale set. Recommendations?

    I'd like to get started and find a used set. I'm not familiar with power output required. ,but would like to find something that I can "grow" into. More power, more track than I need. I have space so it's just a matter of building it out in the future. I am living in JApan and would like to find a used set. Will be back in USA and could pick up something there as well. Where is best place to buy used train sets? Craigslist? on forums like this? My goal is to buy track and equipment, and then perhaps purchase a train set that i like - ideally a Japanese Shinkansen and/or Japanese regional trains. Is there any issue with Kato train sets that are made in USA vs. Made for Japan market in terms of power output/locomotive, etc?

    Any advice appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Well, especially since you're in Japan, I'd go with Kato. At least half of my locos and all of my track are Kato, as well as several accessories.

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  3. #3

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    Do yourself a favor and buy something new to start with. Used stuff can be troublesome and N scale is tricky to work on especially for a beginner.

    I'd recommend a starter set.

    Before everybody jumps in and says "starter sets are crap" Just because you start with one does not have anything to do with where you will end up. Except that you may find the ease of using a starter set helps you get your feet wet and develops a love for model trains.

    I agree with Beady about Kato

    http://www.modeltrainstuff.com/N-Sca...starter%20sets

    But Bachmann makes starter sets as well.

    http://www.modeltrainstuff.com/N-Sca...search=%20sets

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  4. #4

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    I would suggest trying to stay away from a "set" and would look at buying a quality locomotive. Usually "sets" aren't of the best quality. If you are going to be back in the states, I would look into internet retailers such as MB Klein as Louis mentioned. - http://www.modeltrainstuff.com/ . I order from them and other internet retailers as I have no hobby shops at all in my area, and they do discount their items at a fairly good savings. Kato has probably some of the best locomotives available in N scale.
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  5. Default

    I thought all of Kato's products are made in Japan, even the ones for the US market. Kato makes great stuff. I have their CZ, El Capitan, and Broadway Limited. Which Shinkansen are you looking for? ebay has a lot of stuff, new and used.

  6. #6

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    All of my N Scale engines are Kato and they are excellent. I also agree with the others who have recommended staying away from a "Train Set" as the do tend to be a little cheap and, sometimes, nasty.

    I'd also stay away from used equipment, especially track. You mentioned you wanted something that you could grow into, larger than what you need. If I were you I would look at Peco Sectional Track, easy to use with very little (if any) guess work, especially for a first layout.

    In the US the best and only place to buy model train gear (in my opinion) is Kleins. Very large range, good prices and rarely out of stock.
    Cheers,

    Tony
    (aka wombat457)

    "...knowing what to do is one thing, being able to do it is another..."

    http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/f...Indoor-N-Scale

  7. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by otiscnj View Post
    I thought all of Kato's products are made in Japan, even the ones for the US market. Kato makes great stuff. I have their CZ, El Capitan, and Broadway Limited. Which Shinkansen are you looking for? ebay has a lot of stuff, new and used.
    Otis--I love all of the JR trains here in Japan. The N700 Shinkansen is the iconic white and blue train with pointed nose. The world's standard in high speed rail. When I finally get my feet wet I'd like to dabble into the train I take every day to work - it's a purple regional train called Hankyu line. Finally, the Kyushuu Trains are amazing - standard seats are like the luxury "green car" seats on the other Shinkansens. This country is a train nerd's paradise!

  8. Default

    Hey Everyone, thanks for all of your great replies. It helped me focus my research. I have a few follow on questions/comments.

    1) For an inquiry like this, should I be posting this on the general forum? I'm new to the forum so I'm not sure if it's just those who have commented on this t
    hread are getting updates? I'd like to post this to the broadest audience possible. In other words, I'm going to be posting follow on questions about track type, specific Japanese trains, power considerations (100 vs. 120 USA), and other related topics that may be more appropriate for another forum(s)?

  9. Default Used Train Gear - Japan - various considerations

    Hey everyone, thanks again for all the feedback. I'm still learning the ropes of the forum.

    Re: Used gear in Japan, the quality of everything is amazing here. At second hand stores, even 15 year old items are in original packaging. Rarely are parts missing, and if they are, the item is deeply discounted. I've bought used stereo equipment here and it worked perfectly. I would not hesitate to buy due to reliability. However, what I am worried about is interoperability between manufacturers (Kato, Tomix, Bachmann, etc) and power supply.

    Per my previous post, kindly advise if it makes sense to re-post this on the General forum... Right now it is 'nested' under my original post, titled "Want to buy first N scale set. Recommendations?". This title doesn't really capture the breadth of the discussion. If there were a way to "tag" posts that may solve the issue.

    Thanks!

  10. #10

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    Thomas,

    If you re looking at building a layout then I might suggest you post in the Layout Construction Design forum. You'll probably get more replies in there if nothing else.
    Cheers,

    Tony
    (aka wombat457)

    "...knowing what to do is one thing, being able to do it is another..."

    http://www.modelrailroadforums.com/f...Indoor-N-Scale

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