Cheap Backyard Railroading

I’ve always wanted an outdoor railroad, but it turns out the “real” equipment is expensive! Fortunately I found an alternative in cheap 1980s Christmas tree trains! Made by “New Bright” under a variety of product names, these can often be found at thrift stores and garage sales in the $5-$10 range.


While New Bright does G Scale trains as well, the ones I’ve been collecting are closer to “S scale”. I don’t know if they actually have an official scale or gauge, as they’re just cheap-o plastic products with no real attempt to be detail-accurate. I still enjoy them, and the battery-powered locomotives mean I don’t have to mess with wiring up track.

These won’t last long-term outdoors, so I did put them away before winter. Maybe next year I’ll actually find some outdoor-rated brass track and upgrade to more legitimate G scale!

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