Tracks-010, Issue #10 -- Model Railroading Newsletter
Articles in This Issue:
WELCOME to the July, 2020 issue of Tracks - a monthly newsletter published by Building Your Model Railroad, devoted to providing breaking news and tips to model railroaders of all ages and all scales in a quick and easy-to-read format. Resources are always credited where appropriate.
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Philip Skow (Ret. Army Nat'l Guard Police Dept.) and Andrew Filmore (Topeka Model Railroad Club Member) in Topeka, Kansas are undertaking a new multilevel HO scale layout, which they started from scratch this past month, although it's been in the planning stages for several months now - since March, 2020. It will be built in a 20' x 12' room, previously a home library room donated for this project by Philip. An adjacent room will serve as a Dispatch area and contains a workbench, electrical equipment, storage area, computer monitor and even a ham radio. (See photos below.)
Their layout will feature 200 ft of HO rail with trains that run through and around Topeka and West to Las Vegas serving coal and lumber industries. The locomotives will be powered by NCE SB-5 DCC.
When I heard about their project, I thought it would be great to monitor their progress as time goes on and write about it in the newsletter, so readers could actually follow the process of building a model railroad layout of this type - from the beginning. They seemed excited about the idea and graciously have granted me the permission to do so.
After considerable research, Phil and Andrew have settled on a layout plan designed by Jack Burgess, NMRA Master Model Railroader. Jack is a well-known model railroader who designed and built the Yosemite Valley Railroad, featured in Model Railroader and other magazines, and has published over 200 articles on model railroading.
They plan on building the entire benchwork first, and then continue by completing 6ft modular sections, one at a time, as follows:
~ Modular pieces (6ft long x 30” wide) at 40” high for main platform; L.A, S.F. Etc...
~ 2nd tier at 54” long, 24” wide, for Main 10ft Yard & Vegas Strip on opposite side.
~ 3rd tier at 66” long, 12” wide (coal industry & timber work w/ mill up there & a scout camp. (Andrew is an Eagle Scout.)
Their helix will be 3 1/2 turns.
They estimate that it will take about 2 years of diligent work to finish the basics.
When this room in the house was finished off by the previous owners, there were no vertical studs put in the walls. There are only horizontal 2x4's that were used to nail on the "sheetrock". So the current team decided to put 1x4s vertically every 16" drilled into the cinderblock, which lies behind the horizontal 2x4 rails, to provide better vertical support where they could attach their brackets for the bechwork.
Here are some pictures of what they have done so far...
To be Continued...
Since we are starting a new series monitoring the building of a new model railroad based on the Yosemite Valley layout plan designed by Jack Burgess, I thought it might be nice to show a tour of Jack's layout so we can see what he did with it that made it famous among other model railroaders.
This video of Keith's layout was put together by Rod Vance after Keith passed away. It serves as a great tribute to one our great model railroaders who devoted over 30 years of his life to the hobby. His main focus was on his friends and family who participated in over 1000 operating sessions. The scenery that he created was beautiful, but there are some areas that he hadn't been able to finish, although the trains ran through every section flawlessly, with the exception of operator errors. Fortunately, he had a good sense of humor and when mishaps occurred, he loved to take photos of them and paste them on his website.
Tons of scenery tips in this one video...
Hope you enjoyed this issue of Tracks. Feel free to pass it on to your friends, family and other model railroaders. If you have a great tip or article that you would like to publish on the website, please let me know - The more, the better. Any comments or suggestions are always welcome. You can either go to the Comments/Contact Page and enter your suggestions there or contact me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
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