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Do youtubers contribute positively to railway modelling?


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Youtube, video hosting site. Host of millions of hours of "content" related to whatever your imagination can think of. Hobbyists, activists, proffessionals, influencers, lifestyle gurus etc.

 

Anyone can create and upload videos, anyone in terms of those who know how...the internet anyone if you like. 

 

Railway modelling is well catered for and hours more content is added minute by minute. 

 

It would be great to hear thoughts from those who use it, as consumer or producer or both, from those who have misgivings for whatever reason and those who are ambivalant. 

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6 minutes ago, AY Mod said:

Some do; some don't. ;)

 

It's a bit like telly; there ain't half some rubbish interspersed with occasional gems.

 

Whoever came up with the term 'influencer' should be incarcerated and anyone who calls themselves such needs to go and have a word with themselves.

 

I have been influenced by some of those folk, just not in the way they might have liked. Genuine influencers would never describe themselves as such. It is the case I am told elsewhere that a youtuber and influencer are different things. Influencers operate on youtube but have a product to sell or whatever. Not all youtubers do this. 

 

I am guilty of focusing on the utter rubbish and not giving the good stuff enough attention perhaps. I instinctively dont like the youtube format and its accompanying culture. 

 

4 mins of unwrapping and laying out a kit, discussing flash levels and "reviewing" the instructions of a kit that has been around for 50 years may well be a good watch for some. There is a skip forward function though. 

 

 

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Some of it is downright dangerous. You can, for example, run a Hornby set in a paddling pool (really, I was surprised too) and it is TOTALLY NOT DANGEROUS because the Youtuber involved (yes, it's him) SAID SO IN CAPITALS BECAUSE IT'S ONLY 12VOLTS.

 

No mention of what happens when little Johny goes to unplug the controller from the 240v extention trailing across the garden with wet hands. 

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Yes I think they do .  It’s like everything else though some is good and some is bad . You have to watch it to make up your own mind .  I think in general it’s good because it’s getting model railways out there to a wider audience and actually giving railway modellers more of a voice , a recent example being YouTube reviews on Hornby Mk3 DVT for instance . Should be good for manufacturers too as if they have a good product , exposure on YouTube should be great promotional experience . I recently acquired a Hornby A2/2 solely because of seeing it run on YouTube , but YouTube had also informed me of build quality issues so was cautious . Similarly the Hornby Mag video of Heljan 86 was what finally pushed me over the line to buy one . 
 

I enjoy seeing other people’s layouts , from fully scenic technical layouts like Dean Park to toy train sets ( that’s not an insult the YouTuber calls them that himself) of Barrie Davis . All entertaining .   I know more now about taking locos apart and putting them back together because of “OOBill” . I wallow in the nostalgia of Triang Hornby and Wrenn of the 60-70s thanks to Oscar Paisley and Mr Snooze  and yes I like Sams Trains because I think he tells it like it is from the consumers point of view . That said I tend to avoid live streams  because there’s no structure and I’m really not into requesting locos to be run . On the other hand Jenny Kirks Monday Club is just like being down the club but without the politics  and is a welcome relief to East Coronation Farm soap drivel that’s 7-9pm on British Telly . 
 

So very positive on it . 

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4 minutes ago, Wheatley said:

Some of it is downright dangerous. You can, for example, run a Hornby set in a paddling pool (really, I was surprised too) and it is TOTALLY NOT DANGEROUS because the Youtuber involved (yes, it's him) SAID SO IN CAPITALS BECAUSE IT'S ONLY 12VOLTS.

 

No mention of what happens when little Johny goes to unplug the controller from the 240v extention trailing across the garden with wet hands. 

100 percent in agreement. I cannot type here what came out of my mouth when this popped up!! I dont think the youtuber in question is representative of the wider modelling youtube folk but I worry he might become so. 

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I dont really see how they could be seen as a negative, maybe a minority but this would be reflected in channel size and popularity.

There are layouts for every ones taste and will get more people in to the hobby. People that will watch youtube but might not necessarily go to a model rail exhibition.

 

Reviews of new products is infinitly better on youtube rather than a written artical as you can see it in more detail as well as moving around a layout.

 

Whats not to like?

 

 

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Posted (edited)

From my personal experience, yes. I have taken a huge amount of inspiration from YouTube, and learnt a lot from watching people do things.

 

It's actually been more useful for my guitar hobby, but if it wasn't for various YouTube videos I would never have attempted weathering, for example.

 

There is some absolute toss on there too, but I feel like I can identify and ignore that.

Edited by Zomboid
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1 hour ago, westernviscount said:

Do youtubers contribute positively to railway modelling?

Of course they do.  There are some absolutely excellent instructive videos out there.  I for one would not be without this series (currently up to about 45 sessions) on how to use the iTrain software package.  Just try teaching yourself the subtleties of this sophisticated product from the manual - and that's not a criticism of an extensive manual running to over 200 pages.  

 

Yes of course there's also the usual morons posting all sorts of drivel, but there are videos of how to tackle all sorts of issues from soldering, fitting DCC chips to particular locos, weathering etc and the chance to see some privately owned layouts you're unlikely to get a chance to visit.

 

You do have to be selective and decide whether the author knows what he's talking about.  I don't bother with "reviews" by kids showing how they took the latest RTR loco out of its box. 

 

 

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Influential videos - no.

Informative videos - yes.

Instructional videos - yes

 

Problem is, there's a very blurred line between the first two.

 

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1 hour ago, Oldddudders said:

What used to be described as "arrested development". 

Not politically correct now, and yes we probably do see more of them in model railways and at preserved lines than other fields.

 

Seems to me it helps keep them off the streets and they're largely harmless - apart from wasting your time if you're daft enough to watch them.  I fairly quickly decide whether or not I'm going to continue listening to any videos, and if they're crap, then I go something else.

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From my point of view as a consumer I find that some are very good, mostly those giving instructions or showing round a layout. I generally have very little time for review type you tubers as far too often these individuals seem more obsessed with their own voices and bring many personal gripes with them to their videos. 

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Some of the channels can be very informative and helpful showing how things can be done thats not possible in the same way in books or magazines.

 

Those that show that they have come across problems when doing something are also helpful in 2 ways 1 how you can avoid

2 not just yourself that hit s problems 

 

I have never watched Sam's trains 

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On the positive front, four things I’ve learned from YouTube that I probably wouldn’t easily have learned otherwise:

 

- how to fix our microwave oven when it broke (I would never in a million years have guessed how to remove the cover concealing “the works”);

 

- how to service hydraulic brakes on my bike;

 

- the finer and more subtle points of remagnetising old permanent magnet motors; and,

 

- besides the good stuff, there is an awful lot of pure rubbish on YouTube.

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Posted (edited)

Some are excellent. Some are terrible. Some deserve to spend eternity in a very hot place.

 

Not just railway modelling, but I did find some very good plastic kit modelling ones as well. Not just long builds in several parts, but tutorials on things like airbrushing, and timelapse videos.

 

If more railway modeller video makers did videos like this rather than just opening the box then we might attract more newcomers.

 

 

 

 

Jason

Edited by Steamport Southport
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In the past 12 months I have learned how to break eggs without breaking the yoke or getting bits of shell in the mix and how to neatly apply silicone sealer, two skills which up to now have defeated me. I’ve seen a few modelling videos but cannot recall learning anything and the reviews of new models are mostly tedious and uninformative. However You Tube is “free” so I don’t expect much. 

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I regularly watch about 6or 7 channels. They generally are How to type videos and I’ve settled on these as they are all well presented, of interest, reasonable length and none do “unboxings”. I’ve watched some of those others who are “affiliated” and these are nothing more than poor adverts. I’ve actually ended up watching more US stuff recently and although the prototype isn’t of interest, the quality of modelling is, and on the whole, the presentation is better. 
 

I don’t get the whole influencer thing. Maybe I’m old fashioned but it adds nothing to society and in some cases detracts from the hobby. Best way to stop them is to just ignore them and starve them of the publicity they crave so much. 
 

For the record, I find Everard Junction, Chadwick, Dean Park, Luke Towan and Ken Patterson to be some of the best out there. 
 

 

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Let's for a moment ask the question the other way around; 'Do youtubers contribute negatively to railway modelling' or perhaps, 'Do they detract from railway modelling'.  In the first case at least, I suspect most of us will come to the same conclusions as we did with the 'positively' worded question, and in the second case, I suspect the consensus would be 'mostly, no'.  YouTube is a medium open to the general public to use and post video on, so attracts the entire bonkers and otherwise gamut of human ability, oddness, mendacity, and agendae, just like the humanity itself does.  It is up to the viewer to make up his own mind how to, or indeed if, he wants to deal with it. 

 

Sam is a excellent example; personally, I find his gushing childishness irritating but have to confess that he provides a very useful means of seeing new stock running and being able to make our own assessments of it's performance and/or value for money.  I cringe at the carpet's proximity to pickups and gear trains, but try watching with Sam muted, there is useful information there.  Not as good a Jenny Emily's, which are by an experienced and knowledgeable modeller of exquisite pedigree and aimed at the sort of people who infest this site, but they have their uses nonetheless. 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Hibelroad said:

In the past 12 months I have learned how to break eggs without breaking the yoke or getting bits of shell in the mix and how to neatly apply silicone sealer, two skills which up to now have defeated me. I’ve seen a few modelling videos but cannot recall learning anything and the reviews of new models are mostly tedious and uninformative. However You Tube is “free” so I don’t expect much. 

I often think I look in the wrong places or perhaps allow autoplay to dictate. Like you, in terms of railway modelling I have seen little of quality or use. 

 

As for youtube being free, it may well be in terms of money, however the amount of time it occupies (I would go so far as to say more time than we realise or would like), the targetted ads and data collection may well be youtube selling US to advertisers...I say may well be...that is what it is. We are the thing up for sale. Our time, data and attention.

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Tbh i dont know about others but in my case i just do it because i find the feedback interesting and i find the comments ect very motivational and rewarding.

 

Its an awful lot of effort to do though, as it means stuff takes 3x as long as you are constantly messing about sorting camera stuff out, getting a good angle of what you are doing and trying not to say something stupid.  Then there is the sheer time it takes just to edit up a video so that its not utter garbage.

 

Im not sure i would say im some sort of ‘Influencer’ though, just a guy enjoying his hobby.  I guess some people out there think of it a bit differently though, who knows.

 

Must admit other than Richard of Everard Junction i dont actually watch many others religiously really. his is just genuinely excellent content. No showing off, just consistently good modelling with no bull. 
More channels like his would do the hobby a lot of good.

 

Interesting to hear you guys thoughts on it all tbf.

 

Eric

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I find you tube useful particularly if I am having trouble taking the body off a loco etc but I do find the ‘influencers’ really irritating I will make my own mind up thanks I don’t need any influencing!

I did watch the guy who was doing the Hornby rant about his ‘injun’ which was faulty definitely 10 minutes of my life wasted!

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