Newb in S. Florida

Discussion in 'The Caboose' started by dwdean, Feb 9, 2008.

  1. dwdean

    dwdean New Member

    Hello all from S. Florida!

    I stumbled on this forum a while back but have mostly been reading until now.

    I'm returning to model railroading (OK, what I used to do was less model and much more "railroading") after a good many years and having a blast. I'm primarily in HO, but I have located all the O scale stuff I had growing up.

    I'm an ex-pat Californian and my interests really lie with the western roads (if it weren't for the internet, that'd probably be a tough call living in Florida) and the general trains I grew up watching. Anyone else here remember going to Roaring Camp in Felton to take a ride on their Shay? Yes, I adore Shays, but mostly because that's really the very first train that I ever remember.

    I've gone so far as to acquire an MDC Shay kit (2-truck) and am slowly working on it. I'm still waiting for the NWSL gears to get here before I can really do more than de-burr parts. Unfortunately, I couldn't get the pry-bar far enough into to my wallet to spend $200 on the out of print book everyone recommends, though I have found all kinds of sites including a Yahoo group with good information. We'll see.

    Also I am building a 4' X 9' layout on foamcore that can be taken apart in case I actually need to use the guest bedroom for guests. I'm going to try and lay some roadbed this weekend. Haven't really settled on an era yet (there are things that I find fascinating in just about anything I see.)

    I did decide to make the layout something simple that can grow and evolve; for now the idea is to use it as a series of studies in technique.

    Well, I've rambled on for quite while longer than I'd thought....

  2. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    Thanks for the "ramble" Dan! Good to meet you and glad you could join us!
    Keep us up to date on that new layout.
  3. scubadude

    scubadude Member

  4. rogerw

    rogerw Active Member

    Welcome Dan
  5. dwdean

    dwdean New Member

    Thanks all for the welcome and maybe will take some pictures and post them in an appropriate forum (when there's something to look at besides foamwork, can't really call it bench work as there's no bench ;).)

  6. dwight77

    dwight77 Member

    Hi dwdean:
    Where in S Florida are you? I am on the west coast...Ft. Myers. We have a pretty good model railroad club here.....Scale Rails of SW Florida.....Scale Rails of Southwest Florida .......we are always looking for new members who enjoy model railroading. Take a look at our website, and if you are in the area, please feel free to stop by and chat.
  7. dwdean

    dwdean New Member

    Hey dwight77,

    I'm on the east coast, Coral Springs. I've heard that there's a club in the area that meets a converted freight depot at one of the Tri-Rail stations, but haven't been able to really get any more info than that.

    Your club's web site is nice. I love the pictures of the LA division, I was beginning to think I was the only one out this way that's into the western roads. If you're not giving away any club secrets, I'd love to here more about the construction techniques that went into making the San Bernardino station. There's a mission style station up in Berkely (old Union Pacific) that I've been thinking about modeling. It's got that same adobe/stucco kind of exterior and I just haven't found or read about anything that sounded like it would look right, but you guys have obviously found the trick! That really looks good.

  8. dwight77

    dwight77 Member

    Hi dwdean:
    The San Bernadino station that you see on our website ( Scale Rails of Southwest Florida ) was built entirely from scratch by our member, Stan Seeds. Stan is a Master Model Railroader and is one of the few modelers who has achieved all eleven certificates from the NMRA. He built it out of styrene and molds he made. When he painted the walls, he applied sand to achieve the stuco effect. It is quite a piece of work.
  9. That model of the San Bernardino station is spot-on - very nice. I'm moving down to west Miami in about 3 weeks, so soon there'll be another western prototype modeler in your midst.
  10. dwight77

    dwight77 Member

    Hi Colton Modeler
    If you are in west are probably only about two hours from us. If you would ever like to come over and visit...we are open from 9:30 am t0 2:30 pm on Tues, Wed, and Sat. Let me know if you would like to visit and I will be glad to send you additional directions. We would love to have you come and visit.
    Dwight77 :thumb:
  11. I'd love to stop by and visit. It'll take some time to settle in and get everything situated with new house and job, but I'm really looking forward to being able to get out and explore - it's like a great new adventure. Driving out to Ft. Meyers sounds like a nice way to spend a Saturday - I'll definitely shoot you a note in the near future, Dwight.
  12. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    dwight77:we're driving from Miami to Ft Myers tomorrow. Unfortunately, SWMBO tells me that we don't have time for a railroad club as well as everything she wants to see.
  13. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Dean: we went to the museum in Deerfield Beach station yesterday. Nice setup, but looks as if they're understaffed.
    The sign says Wednesdays, but they advertised a Saturday opening in the Herald. Several layouts in N, HO and HOn3. Plus displays of prototype and model stuff.
    Saw 3 trains while we were there.
  14. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    You don't need the shay book. Look here:

    There have been a few other shay threads on this site. Also, the yahoo MDC roundhouse group may be useful for info and tips.

  15. dwdean

    dwdean New Member


    Yeah, I've went to a swap meet there last month, but haven't had a chance to go back. I do like the location, models on one hand with an active station right outside the door.

    I work in an office that's right next to those same tracks (except about 20 miles to the north). I think I'm the only one in the office that's not annoyed by the way the building shakes.


  16. dwdean

    dwdean New Member


    Thanks, yes, I've seen that thread and a couple of others and I've joined the Yahoo group, and I think you're absolutely right, I could have done this without the book. However, I got very lucky about three weeks ago, I was killing time browsing the book shelf in my LHS and actually found a copy on sale for the cover price. I practically killed myself trying to get to the register and get it paid for before someone saw what had. ;)

    For all of that, most of what's in the book has been stated somewhere (in various threads in this forum, other forums, and excellent web site by a Dutch gentleman who chronicled his work on one of these kits, and the Yahoo group. I think the book's explanation of how to assemble the "fake" drive gear train is a little more clear, and the book does have the advantage of putting all the info in one place. But I do think you're right, the kit could be built successfully with just the internet.

    So far I haven't found the work to difficult at all, just a little fussy. But it's really helped me unwind when I come home from work. It takes very little mental effort to deburr gears (and that's what I need after work :rolleyes:.)

    I'm in the process of assembly the trucks but am dragging my feet a little as neither my Echo Mountain wipers nor the superflex wire I ordered (separate from gear kits wall1) has arrived yet, so I'm going to hit a wall in hopefully not too short a time. One truck is giving me fits, I just don't like the way it runs, but I can't seem to see what's causing the bind.


Share This Page