SPRING HILL — Dana and Nancy Jackson know a lot about model trains. And they should, considering they spend most of their time talking with other scale-model railroad enthusiasts inside their shop, Dana’s Railroad Supply, on Deltona Boulevard.
The cute little train shop looks like a classic train depot from the outside. And visitors aren’t disappointed upon entering. Every square inch is dedicated to a part, accessory, or tool needed to enhance any collector’s project.
But like most hobbyists, those who visit Dana’s Railroad Supply often come for interaction with people of like minds. They talk about trains, reminisce about their experiences on the railroad, or swap stories about their own collections.
They know what they’re looking for, explained Nancy. “In the beginning you get a little of everything until you start narrowing it down.”
On March 10, Dana’s Railroad Supply will play host to a train show and swap meet that will take place from 9 a.m. until 2 p.m. All gauges of model trains will be welcomed.
In addition, Dana’s will have an open house the same day, from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m.
Dana Jackson opened the shop in 2002, after being in the pharmacy field for years. But his passion for trains was instilled at a young age. He lived near a train yard and he remembers watching the passing trains through the fence with an obsession he couldn’t quite break.
“I was the easiest kid to babysit,” he said with a chuckle.
After running a pharmacy for veterinarians, he decided to pursue his other passion, the railroad. He added a detailed setup in the back room, a work in progress, with every detail imaginable. And he filled the front with all kinds of supplies.
Train collecting is a serious hobby. Bob and Peggy McCauley of Homosassa visited Dana’s Railroad Supply to add to his own collection. Bob had collected for years but took a break. He recently decided to get back in.
It can be a costly habit, Peggy said. “But it keeps him busy.”
Dana’s Railroad Supply stocks various items, including different scales of engines, cars, tracks, etc. “Freight cars that carry grain, plastics, oil, lumber, the whole gamut,” Nancy said. The historical significance is grounded in the detail of a collection.
It’s serious business, she added. “You can really get specific in the whole thing. Ours is from the 1940s, 1950s.”
Dana’s Railroad Supply is open Tuesday through Saturday at 4042 Deltona Blvd. Visit its website at danasrailroadsupply.com or call 352-684-2484.