Things change in a decade or so
So, in the 10 years or so since I've been in model railroading, two major changes occurred. First off, DCC is all over the place now, which I think is really great. The other major change is that the Kadee magne-matic coupler patents expired. So now everybody has their own magnetic couplers. And some of them really suck, and some of them don't, but they're nearly all plastic. Which is good, because some model makers like to have a solid metal bit going from coupler pocket to coupler pocket (and to a rail, if it's a loco).