Hello, my name is Pitch and I'm an Engine Illitererate. I've been planning my layouts, two in fact, an HO and an N, for the last 4 years. I've been learning the lingo, the stratagy, methods, etc. and even adding to the conversation when there was something I knew that pertained to the subject at hand. But there is one area in which I am almost totally ignorant, Engines. Oh, I have figured out the configurations of steam engines, can recognize an F A&B unit when I see it (not any particulars though) and can even identify certain engines that are primarily used as switch engines (again, no particulars), but I can't tell a GP from an SD or a Dash 8. I like trains, but I like cool layouts even better. Is there anywhere that I might educate myself so I'm not a total idiot when someone starts talking locos and I haven't a clue as to what they are talking about, or, horror of horrors; asking me about one? Re: railfanning, I'm like a birdwatcher who can't tell a chickadee from a warbler, but still like watching birds. I suppose I could blame it on a mis-spent childhood. I have rarely lived closer than 40 miles from any operating railroad and even then I was preocupied with other things. We did take several cross country trips via train when I was very young. I remember thinking it was cool to sit in the front seat of the vistadome car and pretending that I was driving the train. Also, going through tunnels was pretty cool. Is there any redemption for me? They say confession is good for the soul. We shall see.