We moved into our "new" and hopefully permanent quarters In October '99 The move went as planned requiring 10 loads of a 20 foot U-haul to move the 65 modules, kitchen and accrued junk. Because of the short moving distance, most of the modules were left on their legs and many were moved as pairs, maintaining the clamps and track alignment, but they were re-assembled in a radically differant configuration. The module concept of easy interchange failed badly as some zealous club members had developed "associated" module sets in our previous long and skinny quasi-stable location. The double ended freight yard consisted of seven six footers. We had to eliminate one of them. Another set of six modules requires 36 lineal feet! It was quite a struggle to get trains running again.
The photos give you some idea of what we encountered and what we have achieved. All photos are taken with various digital cameras by our club photographer Conn Housley
just click on the thumbnail for a 640 x 480 picture.
We've been in for a short time and already constructed some essential corner modules. An initial layout had been worked out and marked with masking tape on the conveniently spaced 12"x12" tiles. The HO layout room is about 50' x 60' .
A few months of hard work and things are looking up. The yard approachs have been re-laid and much work has been done on individual modules. The beginnings of our historical roundhouse replica is evident.
A popular scene enjoyed by our visitors is Bruce's Cityscape. Many intense mini-scenes are found in the City. We have history in the making across the aisle where you can see just a little of Larry's container train.
The large freight yards are double-ended, the other end a mirror image of this one. There are no power switches on the layout. Hand operated ground-throws are used almost exclusively as operation is strictly walk-around with Aristo radio control cabs.
This unique scene demo's one of the merits of modules in the club environement. Lorene has chosen to model a European scene complete with animated ice skaters. Our HO layout is certainly not scenery coordinated and that seems to add to the variety and fun. There is something for everybody.
For those of us who have left our youth behind and find it awkward to duck under we have built an entry device,that someone recently called a "geezer gate", complete with electrical interlock and lockdown, we'd like to tell you how to build it but Model Railroader has bought the copyrights. Until it is published, look at the original prototype for ideas, if your club could use one. 10/10/02 update: The gate has worked so well that we recently used the basic design to build a drop leaf module. Look here for the details
Our Historical museum recently acquired seven nice glass cases for display of railroadiana. One of the things we are proud to show is the O guage circus train by Master Modeler Milt Sorensen. Here is just a few of the many cars that carry the circus. This train really carries a whole circus that can be unpacked and erected, although rarely done, perhaps because of the shortage of scale working elephants. It's a gorgeous piece of work with a UP Challenger on the point.
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