Several of us have indicated we received Christmas trains that jumped started the hobby; in my case that train was American Flyer.
But when you brought your hard saved money to the hobby shop to BUY your first train, was it HO?
I remember saving my meager allowance to buy Athearn metal cars in HO. It took a few years but eventually I bought a Mantua
2-8-2 kit that I carefully assembled (it still runs). Before then I operated a couple of old Varney switchers that my dad had
acquired second hand and lettered for his RR, The North Central. I also received a Gilbert Hudson for Christmas about that time,
and then a Globe gear drive ATSF F-7, which ended my HO locomotive purchases for several years. AS a teenager I discovered
narrow gauge and acquired a couple of small Kidder HOn3 locos. In college I acquired my first 'quality' HO brass engine, a
WSM Heisler # 3 with HO and HOn3 trucks. Now I find myself buying 'experienced' locomotives that I couldn't afford back then;
still that brass display case at Franciscan Hobbies should have my nose print etched in the glass....
Kenneth R. Clark
P.O. Box 212454
Chula Vista, CA 91921