Location, Location, Location

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Bob Collins, Nov 5, 2001.

  1. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member


    Welcome to The Gauge. I think that if you hang around here long enough you'll find out that we have a great bunch of folks from all over the world who have done some fantastic things with model railroading and are willing to share. I absolutely would not be where I am today in getting my layout in working order without the expertise and encouragement of these find folks. Now if they'll just stick with me another year or so we might actually get to see it completed!!

    I actuallu got a six track yard laid and wired today. Most I've accomplished in weeks. Feels good to have a few hours to get back into the swing.

  2. BDC

    BDC Member

    I am living down in Lawton, OK, which is about 70 miles southwest of OK City. Not too much rail traffic around here, except for a twice daily BNSF train led by either 2 GP40's or a GP60M and GP38, southwest bound in the mornings and northeast in the evenings. They run on some old Frisco tracks, with some abandoned Rock Island tracks almost paralleling them for a little bit. Not too much else, unliess the local Army post decides to show off its 2 44-ton switchers and a SW1200 moving TOFC cars around.
  3. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member


    I'm betting those same BNSF train you mention come right through Rolla, MO where I live. We too are on the old Frisco mainline from St Loius to Springfield, MO and on to Oklahoma City. We have a bit more traffic than that with 8 freights scheduled in each direction everyday.

    During the big floods of 1993 it was almost difficult to get across the tracks in Rolla between trains as the line here was one of the few that remaioned operational for a number of weeks. Sure did make for some great train watching though:D

    I guess you live there near the Army's artillery school and I live here near the Army's engineer, chemical and military police schools. I see the 44 tonner on post from time to time, but you almost need to go looking for it. One of the interest things about railroad near the post is that is where there is a wye located on the BNSF mainline. Sometime the steam engine Frisco 1522 (4-6-2) will come out from St. Louis on a test run and use the wye near the post to get turned around. It then has a grade to climb of about 750 feet over a 12 mile stretch of mainline coming back to Rolla.

  4. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Well, I live in Bucyrus OH,and live 2 houses down from the NS Sandusky main line.I can rail fan from my front window or my front yard!!!NS runs about 40-45 trains a day on this line. CSX runs east and west thru down town on the old Pennsy FT. Wayne line. That sees about 6-7 trains daily. NS Bellevue yard is about 30-35 miles from Bucyrus and sees over 100 trains aday. Marion OH is 17 miles from here and is a mecca for rail fans. There is 4 model railroad clubs 1 is in town here and the other three is about 30 min drive.I model in HO and am a member of 2 clubs.By the way I model the Chessie System And my free lance short line the Toledo & southwestern.Currently I don't have a layout and am new to computers.
  5. K.V.Div

    K.V.Div Member

    I hail from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada and have lived here for the past 26 years (on and off).
    Prior to that, I spent my first 20 years in Cranbrook (mainly), Grand Forks and Penticton (occasionally), all 3 cities also in British Columbia.
    I spent 21 years in the navy, travelling (while working my butt off) and seeing the world (Which explains the "on and off" part of my time in Victoria).
    I have been a model rail for about 28 years total and, although I do model a small amount of HO, I am a hard core N Scaler, modeling the Canadian Pacific's Kootenay and Kettle Valley divisions during the period from 1950 to 1970 inclusive.
    I am active in both NTrak and oNeTrak and am quite involved with the local clubs.
    I have worked in a model train store for the past 5 1/2 years and have been the manager for the past 2 years.
    I haven't posted much since I regestered, due to personal family problems, but hope to post more often, now that my duties as executor are pretty much complete.
    Happy Modeling.

  6. Bill Stone

    Bill Stone Member

    Hi from San Dimas, California.

    We're about 20 miles East of Pasadena, astride what used to be the Santa Fe main line between LA and San Bernardino (and then East via Cajon.) The line has been severed in Pasadena, and now we only see a couple of short trains a week pushing boxes or covered hoppers or a few tank cars to industries between here and Pasadena, including a large Miller brewery. At one time both the Santa FE and the SP served San Dimas and each had tracks through and a station --- as well as another set of tracks for the famous old Pacific Electric, which also had a nice-sized station in town. This was a whole lot of rail activity in a small town of (then) perhaps 5,000 souls. The SP station is long gone, and the exSP tracks now carry the Metro Link trains between San Bernardino and LA. The Santa Fe station is now owned by the city, and is used as a museum. The PE tracks and station are gone.

    San Dimas reputedly gets it's name from the fact that this used to be a haven for horse thieves, and the canyon where they hid was tagged San Dimas Canyon --- after the repentant thief on the cross, even tho' his name was "Dismas" or something like that. At any rate, it's a better name than the original for the area --- Mud Springs!

    Some of you mentioned trains you've "met" while traveling..... A year ago my wife and I spent three terrific weeks in Chile. While in La Serena (good-sized ocean resort city, several hundred miles Northwest of Santiago) I discovered a modern narrow gauge line that exclusively - or almost exclusively - serves as a copper ore hauler. Long strings of modern, well-maintained hoppers pulled by some sort of small diesel that I cannot identify (I model 1880's so don't know beans about diesels, nor have I much motivation to learn.)

    I've enjoyed reading about all of your home towns. Hope we get a few hundred more responses to this thread.

  7. Dave Flinn

    Dave Flinn Member

    Ok. Guess it's time to chime in here, although I think I've posted some information in the past; and I believe the "story" of my railroad, the Housatonic and Cayuga, is in the archives.

    I live in Lansing, NY, a "suburb" of Ithaca, which is probably best known as the home of Cornell University and Ithaca College. Rail activity around here is minimal, with two or three trains a week going to and from a power plant (coal) and a salt mine. The branch on which they run exists only for them, and nothing else. In times past, the Lehigh Valley came through town, and there were some other roads, too. My NRHS Chapter is very LV-oriented, but my personal interest is in the Housatonic Branch of the New Haven, where I grew up with fond memories.

    I am active in Rotary, as is Bob Collins, who started this thread, and am on the Board of Trustees of our local regional professional theatre, The Hangar Theatre (so-called because it operates in an old airport hangar).

    Guess that's enough for now, but I enjoy finding out about the members of The Gauge. Keep those posts coming.
  8. PBMarsh

    PBMarsh New Member


    Hey Bob,

    I found your home away from home here at The Gauge. My name is Phil Marsh & I live in Paris, Texas (northeast of Dallas). The rail traffic that flows through here serves 3 plants: Kimberley Clark, Campbell Soup and Earthgrains Bakery. There are 2 depots in town, one has been refurbished into a great restraunt and the other has just been refurbished into the Chamber of Commerce office. Paris has a population of 25,000 with a fairly active model club known as The Oklahoma, Red River & Texas Railroad Club of which I am a member.
    I am 48 years old and was really moving along until I had a heart attack & stroke 18 months ago. Thats when the hobby really took off for me because I had so much time on my hands to rehabilitate and the detail work of modeling was great therapy for the stroke. My layout is upstairs and for the longest time I could not climb the stairs. I was not going to be deterred from working on the layout, so I started building small dioramas at the kitchen table (we had to buy a new table). Each scene has a place on the layout. For now, most of the dioramas are on display in glass cases at our public library. I may have to fight to get them back (ha). Slowly I have started to place the dioramas on the layout. You can see some of the completed scenes at http://www.pbmarsh.com[/URL]
  9. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    Hi Phil;

    Great to see you here on The Gauge. Now I can't for the life of me remember who it was that put me on to your website earlier and I guess eventually brought you to the Gauge.

    It was someone interested in starting to scratchbuild for their layout. Who ever it was please identify yourself.

    Phil, you will also want to take a look at Shamus's Badger Creek layout. Absolutely outstanding.

    There are some great people on here from all over the world. All you need to do is ask a question and you might get answers from South Africa to Australia, or Califormia to Shropshire, England.

    Please stay in the loop on here. There is always someone interesting to talk with about anything with iron wheels on it!

  10. PBMarsh

    PBMarsh New Member

    Hey Bob,
    Thanks for the warm welcome. I did as you said and took a tour of Shamus' site plus others and I am like a little kid in a candy store. This is a great place to 'meet and greet' and share information. Shamus has obviously been doing this for awhile. What a talent he is. I love details, details, details.
    By the way Bob, thanks for the pics of your layout. I noticed you are using foam risers. I think I should change any future building to include them. They appear to be alot be better than what I am currently using.

  11. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

    Bob, I think I was the one that told you about Phil. I met him at the train shiow in Longview Tx. I believe I'm going to have a computer failure here shortly. I look at Shamus's web page, then at Phils, and I drool so bad I'm gonna short this thing out. Phil lives about 90 miles or so, and some day soon I'm going to cast my eyeballs on that set. OK bob, your turn to turn green with envy. Hardy!! Har!!! Har!!!

  12. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    I would very much like to encourage others to take a look at Phil's website and see the work he has done. Very interesting.

  13. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    Lynn, I think your mean streak is showing:D

    It really is a lot of fun being able to look at each others work. In many respects it is an inspiration to try a little harder to make mine look "right" , just in case someone asked to see it:eek:

    Phil was kidding, I think:rolleyes: when he said he found my home away from home, but in a sense he is correct. Model railroading has become an important outlet for me in my advanced age and having a chance to communicate with others with the same interests is really great. The only other place I can find this sort of fun from the internet is through Rotary where I also have any number of friends from all over the world.

    I actually haven't talked much with Woodie lately, we've had some fun conversations and I haven't talked enough with jimmyb about railroads in South Africa and about my visit there in general.

    Other than the UK, are there any oth EU countries represented here on the Gauge?

    Any woooo, great to have Phil on board and I'm sorry that Lynn is the one who got to meet you first and might be the first to see your work firsthand:p

  14. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member


    I just realized that I failed to answer your comment/question regarding the use of foam. Yes, I am using it, as is obvious from the photos. I am using Woodland Scenics stuff. I have purchased enough of it over the past year to put one of their kids through college, but it really is great stuff to work with. Sometimes it is a bit of a brain teaser when you are doing grades, but I finally learned that by buying an extra package of inclines for the grade you want to use (2,3 or 4%), it all works out very well. I like to be able to bend it to any curve I want. Early on I learned a valuable lesson from Shamus about transition curves and using the foam allows you to actually lay out your curve without putting in anything permanently and later having to tear out again. I think I bought about every quilting pin in town (actually about 600 of them!) and they are what I use to pin the foam to the blueboard. After I have it laid out I can unpin each section, one at a time, and then glue them back into place and pin them down again until the glue dries. So far, so good :D

    Most of my track is 3" above the benchwork. Did it that way to reduce the grades needed to clear track over track in a couple of places. The foam comes in 1,2 or 4 inch thick pieces, three feet long. This meant to get my roadbed up where I wanted it I had to glue a 1" and a 2" piece together. Took lots of time to glue and pin and unglue, but I really like the results. As I begin to think about scenery I think I am really going to be pleased even more when I am able to better visualize what the track elevation is going to mean in terms of terrain options. We'll see if I'm quick witted enough to take advantage of what I have already built! It remains to be seen.

  15. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

    Bob, I'm not thru with my mean streak yet. I think I'll rub it in a little bit. At the train show Phil had about 3 of his 12X12" diaramas there. SO SO SO I HAVE seen his work firsthand, and believe me, they are even better than the pictures show. I really can't describe them. However after I get to see his layout and all the new ones, I think I can find a way to describe them. (Is it hurting a little bit?)

    You're right, I am a mean little cuss
  16. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    Well Lynn, the little cuss.

    I will be expecting a full report, including lots and lots of pictures! Oh yes, and a full report to all on the materials used, etc. If you are going to drive 90 miles each way you might as well make it worth all our time too!!

    Of course, if you aren't on your best behavior, whatever that might be:D , Phil might not let you in at all to see the dioramas!

    The big cuss:rolleyes:
  17. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

    I may be slow and ignurt, but not DUM. Ive been reading and answering these post and never told my own deep, dark secrets. I live in Whitehouse, Tx , about halfway between Dallas and Shrevesport. Born, raised in Wisconsin, 20 years USAF, 12 years in Air Traffic Control in Houston, Tx, medical retirement. Now 71+ and having a grand time.
    Had one massive heart attack, several major surgeries on my back. That may sound bad, but the heart was 13 years ago and no problems since. The back was 3+ years ago, and at that time I was given 2months to total paralasis or surgery. I said CUT. I have costant pain, but I praise the Lord every morning that I can rise, walk, see hear, and all the other good things.

    Now you can understand why I love to joke and pick on people, and believe me, I'm having fun and wouldn't change a thing.

    OK Bob, yor turn

  18. Bob Collins

    Bob Collins Active Member

    Hey, I'm DUM. That's probably why I have so much fun:cool: I'm 65 years old, spent 20+ years in the Army. Started out in the Infantry, wound up eventually in the intell business (maybe DUM like a fox;) ) Did a tour at SAC Hq in Omaha with the Joint Staff. Grew up in Council Bluffs, across the river so was basically home for four years. I served in such exotic places at Korea (twice), Vietnam, (one full tour and lots of TDY), Germany, (Munich, hey someone had to do it!), Hawaii, (again, it was either me or some other poor slob)and stateside in Kansas, Georgia, North Carolina and twice in Baltimore (loved it).

    I fortunately enjoy good health, although I am a Type II diabetic. I have lost 40 pounds and walk regularly and have had no complications at all.

    Love to travel, in the past couple of years my wife of 44 years and I have been back to Europe and the UK, spent a month in South Africa ( I highly recommend it) and a week in Mexico. We have plans for a week in Mexico in January, a couple of weeks in Turkey in October 2002 and I don't know how long (probably a month) in Australia in June 2003.

    Besides model railroading I have a long relationship with Rotary International which I also have something of a passion about.

    Five grandkids to visit and spoil is really my top priority though:rolleyes:

    Guess that's about it. Everything else I said on the location, location, location thread some weeks ago.

  19. yellowlynn

    yellowlynn Member

    Bob, this thread is getting soi long I was going to hang it up, but I had one thing I forgot. I don't know what kind of glue you're using, but I tried latex sealant caulking, formula 230. It is water cleanup, comes brown and white, and a small bead, flattened down with a finger will hold track beautifully. Tack in place for a couple hours and that is it. For me, it stayed pliable enough that to take it up, slide a knife under it, then slide and twist and it comes right up.

    I never got into any other clubs or fraternities except the masons. I have 40+ years. Our lodge repairs and gives away bikes to kids, anytime, but mainly at Christmas. That is slowing down, as only 2 of us work on them, and he is older than me.

    That, and plaing with trains
  20. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    Phil, I have checked out the pictures on your website, (Thank you Lynn for making us aware of it!) and all I can say is: Awesome! The level of detail and workmanship is outstanding. I particularly like your groundcover, could you let us know the materials used and your procedure for applying it? I'd really appreciate it.

    Regards, Gary

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