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I read that the gentleman "Mr. Thor Sheil" passed in 2018, it looks like the service he was using to maintain his site has shut it down. It would be a shame to lose all of those great layout pictures. Maybe OGR could get the content and host it too?    

Thor Sheil has passed away (

(Update as of January 2021) Thanks to great work documented below, the site is available as 

Last edited by AtoZ Lewis
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Chris, Dale had posted in the forum how to make the test box, it's dirt simple, just a couple of components.  Here's a description from his website.

Testing the TMCC/Legacy Track Output Signal

Truthfully, I found that a much more definitive test was possible using an oscilloscope.  I find the TMCC command base puts out about a 3V to 3.5V peak to peak signal, and the Legacy command base should be in the 5V to 6V range.  The problem with the measurement is it seems any change in the circuit or meter used can throw off the results.

I too just recently realized that Thor's website was no longer available and my usually pretty trusty friend "wayback machine" for whatever reason did not save his website. I also was on it just a month or two ago and didn't try to save it then, much to my regret now.

In this thread a month or so ago @Ted Bertiger mentions actually knowing Thor personally via the local train club and his wife a little too. I do not want to be a burden on anyone but if his wife can be re-contacted, she may appreciate knowing the interest in and appreciation of his website that still exists and be able to assist with getting the data needed to get it rehosted.

If there is anyone that was smart enough to save the website or if we can get in contact with Audrey and get the information, I for one will donate towards getting it back online. It looks like @Dennis-LaRock may have the knowledge/experience to get it back up?

I have also thought about contacting the provider, (which seems to be yahoo if you follow the link to find the provider on Tucows?) and seeing if, assuming they still have the data and it is just a matter of payment and flipping a switch, would except payment from someone else, aka like one can with paying utilities.

I spent countless hours of my childhood on his train and army men website and have continued to reference it over the years and would love to get this jewel of a website and resource back on line.  ip linked to   -  It's hosted by Cloudflare... what a mess... I got into the account which is really, really weird.  I can change the DNS servers...this is *not* very secure.   I think the site was hacked/hijacked.  I just called Cloudflare... got message, they didn't identify themselves in the message and it hung-up without taking a message.

This is going to take some time...

Last edited by Dennis-LaRock

OK... the registrar is Go Daddy.  It is hosted by Cloudflare. is now owned by some Indonesian entity, I tried to speak with them to see if I could get the html (if they kept it) but they do not speak English.  So, the html is gone.  I can register thortrains.something and I can get something up very soon.  However, I don't have a good recollection of the layout of the site and, I am not a web 'designer'.  Are there any (or several) WordPress (or, the like) wizards out there who would like to work with me in recreating this?  I don't think it has to be a precise replication... just so it makes sense.

Last edited by Dennis-LaRock

I'm not an expert on these things by any means but in the zip file I sent you, once you unzip it, I know you can go to the index.html file and it will work like his website, just pulling the various links from that folder?  I'm not sure how that translates to actually having a hosted site as I am sadly not one of those wizards haha.

Also for what it is worth, when I followed the Tucows Domains finder thing (pre its hack/buyout), it had suggested that Yahoo Smallbusiness was the owner of the domain?  *shrug*

Last edited by CaptJ

If you have a complete website right down to the index file correctly linking to other pages in a folder tree on your computer, it should transfer directly to a web host.  I use FTP to transfer folder trees to and from the web server site, that always worked for me.

That works with sites I've captured using HTTrack Website Copier.  They work off-line on my computer, and if you FTP them as a complete package to the web host, they should work there.

With you on that John!  I just threw in the towel on the free hosting.  Just got off the phone with iPage.  I bought and hosting for three years.   I can use filezilla (which they prefer) for the ftp and there is a money back guarantee.

Order Details

ProductProduct PriceTerm DurationTotal Price
Go Plan - Foundation$1.99/mo3 Years$71.64$3.66/yr3 Years$10.98

Subtotal: $82.62

Tax: $0.00

Total: $82.62


That would be GREAT!  I'm a programmer not a web designer and terrible at formatting documents... look at the 3D catalog ...OUCH!   I should have it set up and quasi functional in a few days.  The .us is a restricted use domain which is why it's so cheap... I had to provide my Federal ID card (had to have it for NASA) to get it and it has to be 'approved'.   I'll get you the admin permissions and we should be good.  It does work *locally* (on my computer) using IIS so it shouldn't be to difficult to work with.



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Last edited by Dennis-LaRock

@Dennis-LaRock, your efforts here deserve some recognition! I have always recommended the original ThorTrains site to anyone first starting off in the hobby. The amount of information that was there, in one single place, was impressive. And for anyone who has limited space, Thor's small layout designs are inspirational. And the 3-D illustrations that were included on some of them helped bring them to life. No where else on the web could you find that amount of smaller FasTrack layout suggestions. Very helpful since FasTrack is now the standard in starter train sets. I've always felt that Thor's site would have been a great candidate for Lionel to sponsor.

So again Dennis, I commend you for taking on this project. And to @Rich Melvin, that is very considerate of you to offer your further assistance to make the ThorTrains website available again. No question in my mind that this site, the OGR Forum is certainly the most informative train forum out there. Nonetheless, the Thor site certainly was packed with information in one single place. Very helpful to anyone first starting off in the wide world of 3-rail trains, where every product is not so necessarily easily compatible.


Brian, Thank you for your kind words and appreciation... I hope i don't disappoint.

This is just a *test* there is still considerable work to be done...

There is a little more activity here... click on some stuff ...

Have to remove references to or you wind up in Indonesia...

Last edited by Dennis-LaRock
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