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My wife and I was looking for a budget g-scale set for my nephew, so once my track is built in the backyard, he can come over and run on it, (plus he has his own circle of track in the box).
The 2 sets I am looking at is the bachman bighauler sets or the small aristocraft sets (eggliner is goofie but ok hehe). The cheaper the better, but I don't want to go super junky cheap lol


Wonder if any of you guys even put together a set , engine, circle of track, transformer. I am trying to hit $100 (or less $50 would be prefect) lol hes 5.


Any ideas?


Andrew
 

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Last year the local Hobby Lobby's closed out all G-scale Bachmann sets at $99. I picked one up for the church layout but not myself, DANG IT!
P.S. the track is crap!
 

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The cheaper the better.
There's an old saying that still holds true in many cases, most of time, you get what you pay for.

Personally, I got with Aristo Craft, USA Trains, or even LGB.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have accucraft, aster, LGB, USA, Aristo, the top live steam stuff, trying to get my nephew (he loves trains) his own without making it the top gift he gets this year (usually reserve to the parents lol).

I know u get what you pay for, looking for special deals etc etc lol, or unique ideas. Doh lol, (ya the bachman big hauler's for $99 is a deal, prob what I will pickup, yes I know the track is crap lol, hollow and all.)
 

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The Bachman set will definitely be cheaper than the Aristo. They run well and I have bought several on sale. Later RJD
 

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How old is your nephew? I ask beccause Bachmann tends to be more fragile. I even had a hard time not breaking the little parts on a bachmann set plus the quality of the engine is not so good. You might want to go with something more durable. The LGB Value starter set is a great one.
https://hiawathahobbies.3dcartstores.com/LGB-Value-Starter-Set_p_507-10003-reviews.html It will handle a lot more abuse and last a lot longer
Not much to break plus you can really paint it up to look nice. Even Hartlnd sets are good
http://www.h-l-w.com/Specials/NS%20Photos/SWSet.jpg
http://www.h-l-w.com/Products/barrelkitspage.html
 

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Take a look at the new Piko starter sets, they appear quite robust, and the track is suitable for outdoor use.
 

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Andrew,
I started into large scale with a Bachmann Big Hauler set. The drives are now very good quality, and you will get many years of use out of them. The starter sets are very affordable, and will allow your nephew to have his own LS train. There are alot of ways for him to expand his set should he choose. And with kids, they will go through stages, so even though he likes trains now, he may find another interest in a couple years. So your idea of staying away from high dollar is a very good idea. Hopefully you will have many memories to share with him.

Good luck!
 

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I have to mention that most sets are rated for 8 years of age or older as the steam engines have pinch points and young children can be hurt by this equipment.

Large scale trains have powerful geared down motors and the drive rods can hurt a child if touched when running.

Children must be watched closely when running these engines.
 

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I have a lot of experience with this, having given four large scale train sets to nephews and nieces over the last few years.

The regular bachmann big haulers have the problem of the lead truck falling off the track easily. Also, the 4 axle cars tend to make it more difficult for rerailing. However, you get more train for the buck. The one family has a big hauler Tweetsie set, since my sister in law went to school in Tweetsie country and has fond memories. My wife's sister got one of the Sams club sets with an annie. The Annie set seems to work better, but they have not run it very much (my nephew just turned 4, I gave this to them when he was 1).

I gave my other nephews an LGB PRR starter set. That seems to have held up a lot better, but then again, those boys don't run that train too much except at Christmas.

I have an LGB Toytrain "Cow" set, and find that to work very well. However, a friend bought his nephew the regular LGB toy train starter set, and it seems to have difficulty pulling the short train around the track. He purchased an Aristo Rodgers for that nephew this year.

If you have spare brass track and a spare transformer that you don't need, you can get a small loco and some bachmann freight car kits. You should be able to find an inexpensive locomotive either from a dealer or on ebay. I think I saw ridge road had the aristo 0-4-0T by itself for like $75.

The kits ar like $25 each, including the metal wheels. Then, you can paint them up special just for your nephew. This year, I did four hopper cars, a gon and a flat car for 3 nephew, 1 neice, and my cousin. Didn't take much time, and it will be special for the both of you.
 

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Hey Andrew,
The only sets I have are Annie Christmas sets, but my three girls (5,8 & 10) have played with mine and not broken them. Yes, the track is cheap, but it can be replaced.
 

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I let kids play on our layout al the time, and I've observed that they really like the little LGB starter set locos because they're easy to re-rail and they don't look fragile or intimidating. The Bachmann sets are a great value but they are big and sort of a pain to re-rail. They like the aristo "eggliner" for the same reason--four wheels, no fiddly little parts, easy to manage


I'd maybe look for an aristo 0-4-0 steamer set or one of their "little critter" starter sets.



Or as suggested if you want an inexpensive way to go find some used brass track, buy a loco and some of the Hartland "mini" series freight cars. They come in a kit that's ridiculously easy to assemble and they are cheap--like around 10-15 buck each. My daughter and the local kids love the little gondolas and ore tipples. you could find a decent starter loco on ebay or maybe in the classifieds




Here's a picture of some hartland minis being pulled by an lgb start set loco. Kids LOVE this train. There's a better picture on our website. Hartland also makes a "mini caboose" which is at the end of the train: it's a bit more expensive
 

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