An Overview of Electric and Wooden Train Sets

A Train Set is a model set, which usually is comprised of a toy train (usually an engine, goods wagons and or passenger cars, and a brake van or Caboose as it is sometimes know) and a selection of model train track that when joined together forms a contiuous oval of train track that the toy train can be moved around. There are generally two types of train set wooden and electric. Firstly wooden train sets which tend to be aimed at younger children of toddler age, these follow the model of a train set with a number of carriages and a loose oval of track which is generally quite small. Whilst electric train sets are aimed at school aged children and in many cases lead to a hobbist obsession in adult life. These railway sets can be more expansive and can be added to with a plethora of extra train track and train accessories.

Wooden Train Sets

A great learning toy for younger children, wooden train sets have always been popular and have recently had a resurgence in popularity. They are particularly well suited to younger children who can learn and practice many skills when playing with a wooden train set. A wooden railway are easy to set up, the connection points where each piece of train track connects are usually slightly loose this enables the track to be joined together easily. The loose connections also allow each train set layout to be made far more easily because the railway doesn’t have to be put together too precisely. This suits toddlers and pre-school children who perhaps do not have the full set of precise skills. Although smaller in size these train sets often have many additional wooden trains and wooden train accessories as well as buildings and scenery.

Electric Train Sets

Electric train sets are designed for older children and hobbists. An electric train set is usually powered by a controller/transformer with electricity from an outlet or battery. More modern variations, such as those made by Bachmann Industries, Hornby Railways, Märklin, and Lionel, LLC , include digital command control (DCC) in replacement of analogue control (DC) which offers more flexibility in a layout, and the ability to run more than one train. Sets come at various prices from USD for a starter set in HO scale to USD ,000 for a Märklin Gauge 1 set.

Hornby produces a wide range of train sets, such as ‘Smokey Joe’ and ‘Local Freight’, analogue entry level sets, up to ‘East Coast Express’, a premium set, comprising a Pullman train, double track oval and controller for two tracks/trains. Some Hornby sets, such as ‘The Western Spirit’, consist of a mixed train.

Since the introduction of digital control, both Hornby and Bachmann have introduced train sets which feature their respective ‘elite’, select’ and ‘dynamis’ control systems.

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