Some had wheels that flipped, but these needed to be pulled or pushed. A few of the early 19th-century push toy rails were made from tinplate, like the large, durable, stylized locomotive toys from the U.S., which were painted red and gold and decorated with hearts and flowers. model trains annapolis md
Around 1875, technological advancements in materials and manufacturing enabled tin to be stamped, cut, rolled, and lithographed faster than ever before.
Toy trains were altered when Märklina German company that specialized in doll house accessories, sought to create an equal toy for boys where a constant revenue stream could be ensured by purchasing add-on accessories for years after the first purchase. In addition to boxed sets containing a train and monitor, Märklin offered extra track, rolling stock, and buildings offered separately, creating the predecessor to the modern model train layout featuring buildings and scenery along with a working train.
Electric trains followed, with the first appearing in 1897, produced by the U.S. company Carlisle & Finch. As residential use of power became more common in the early 20th century, electrical trains gained popularity and as time went on, these electric trains grew in sophistication, gaining lighting, the ability to change management, to emit a whistling sound, to smoke, to couple and uncouple cars and even load and unload freight. Toy trains from the first half of the 20th century were often made of lithographed tin; afterwards trains were often made mostly of plastic.
Pull toys and wind-up trains were marketed towards kids, while electrical trains were marketed towards teenagers, particularly teenaged boys. It was during the 1950s the modern emphasis on realism in model railroading began to grab on.
Today, S gauge and O gauge railroads are still considered toy trains even by their own adherents and are often accessorized with semi-scale model buildings by Plasticville or K-Line (who owns the rights to the Plasticville-like buildings produced by Marx in the 1950s into the 1970s). However, due to their high cost, one is more inclined to find an HO scale or N scale train set at a toy shop than a O scale collection.
Many modern electric toy trains contain sophisticated electronics that emit digitized sound effects and permit the operator to safely and easily run multiple remote controller trains on a single loop of course. In the last few years, many toy rail operators may operate a train with a TV camera at the front part of the motor and hooked up to a screen, such as pc monitor. This will show a picture, similar to that of a genuine (smaller size) railroad)
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