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@RSJB18 posted:

Lew- very nice, now you actually have an engine from the home state of the PER. I have a Penn Central model from the Despatch Shops in Rochester. This is an earlier PS-1 version.

Bob, I also have this MTH PS3 SW1500, the prototype of which "lives" and works in Pittsburgh:


Actually just South of the 'Burgh, from Neville Island to just South of Canonsburg.


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@Mark Boyce posted:

I also connected temporary jumpers to all the power drops in my little three-track yard that has 2 GarGraves 042 switches, one RH and on LH.  I was able to run an engine everywhere with not trouble.    I have one more 042 LH switch I plan to install in the same location of the one I had trouble with and see what happens.  I will report my findings.  Garbage pickup is tonight, and the butchered troublemaker is already in the can.  Many would say keep it for parts.  I don't ever want to see it again! 

I installed the extra GarGraves 042 LH switch, connected power, and the train ran through both legs of the switch perfectly.  I still don't know what was wrong with the first switch, but I don't care.  It is out in the green can waiting for Mr. Green to haul it to the landfill tomorrow.


Thanks.  I 'was looking at your layout under a different post and it looked like you were doing a bridge plan.  Any way I can help, let me know.  Like this new train room, on my old layout I needed a bridge at the entrance and my scratch built wooden one served me well for a number of years.  The keys for me have been to get the pivot point at the exact top of the tracks,  use two heavy duty hinges for strength, and make sure you have an automatic track power kill switch (OGR Backroom has a great column on this) or you will crash your engine(s) when you forget to lower the bridge.  I also put a simple slide lock to lock down the bridge so it never shifted while I ran trains.


Morning guys, Last post till I get to North Dakota.

EB, Thank you sir. If I come across some great scenery I will do my best to get some photos and post them.

Mark Sorry about your Dremel, but I am glad you are able to fix it. But I am more happy that you got your second 042 switch working and your able to run trains threw it! When I get back to my wife's folks house from Menards I will post photos of all the nice stuff Menards had waiting for me!

Mike, Wonderful job on the lift bridge! I automated mine so I wouldn't have to lift it do the a bum right shoulder!

Jstewart, How wonderful is that! Congratulation! I became a grandpa for the 5th time this last Sunday! They are so great at that age!

Well I hope you all have a great weekend and find time for your trains and layouts! But most of all I hope you all stay safe and have fun!

Time to hit the Road!

Last edited by mike g.

I don't create elaborate, themed layouts for Xmas or Halloween. And I've never been big into Halloween decorating of the house, and yard. However, this year I had been talking with hubby Tom and thinking of us setting up a temporary, small Halloween theme O loop on 2 card tables and plywood on the front porch, where we would sit next to it and pass out candy this Halloween night. But due to Covid, etc. our neighborhood assoc is asking all to cancel trick-or-treating directly and have lights out.

So I decided to create the small layout in the foyer for purely mine and Tom's amusement anyway.

Went today to a Dollar Store, a Dollar General, and Walgreeens to look for some small, not expensive items.  Found some cute little things.

Going to use my prewar Lionel 600 series freight cars, my two modern era Lionel Halloween cars, but undecided on what engine yet. Maybe the MTH AT&SF  + 605 tender that smokes real well. Maybe the grey repainted prewar 249e and matching tender. One freight car, the tipple car will have candy corn in it. Maybe I'll look for black licorice pieces for the hopper.

Will create a Fastrack oval loop of O-36 curves and a couple of straights, that I'll pull off the still being built Upstairs O Gauge Layout. Have a white tablecloth to skirt the card tables, and will add a bit of assorted train ground cover materials.

Here's the start:



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Last edited by Carey TeaRose

I had been considering getting one of those lionel hot air balloon rides for my layout, but i've been reading about all the problems people were having with them, so I came across decorative hot air balloons which i've wired with flickering LEDs 1 for the burner, 2 on the inside of the balloon to show light cast by the burners.  This one is temporarily suspended off a bridge on my layout since the hill over which i want to put it is under-construction.  I did a video at "train sunset" light levels and at full bright....



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@leapinlarry posted:

Gandydancer, amazing scene with the milk cars, great pictures, Wow, RSJB18 Bob, beautiful Diesel, your layout is so cool.... Thanks for all the beautiful pictures. I visited my friend DR. Jack, the pictures are of his awesome railroad, you can see his Milwaukee train videos on Mr. Muffins web site. Happy Railroading Everyone 7AC56D40-98E0-4D7F-BFB7-CAB51375F803B9D61214-AAA9-4FE5-8F6E-F6457ABE97706FCE5310-C8CE-4022-A744-AE5337649D6FB075EC69-9E6E-4964-AD5F-6E7970A56412385A7080-A475-4936-955B-B15C6F889A78F5168DDD-650A-4D6F-8BC8-0FA5E366A772611D2D1A-8712-492A-AB81-3A39D050623E

Thank you leapinlarry....much appreciated!

Jstewart.204. Thanks for posting you're  new daughter and you're layout. It brings tears to my eyes as my daughter is now 38 and has three small children.  Time goes so fast. Cherish all those memories you can and take a lot of pictures. The ones on you're layout are super.  She is definitely  a blessing from God. Thanks for the post.

"Cooking dirt" -- unless i'm mistaken, Mike means exactly what he said. A number of us have used real dirt (more accurately sand), stone dust, etc. on our model railroads. When so doing it's advisable to heat in a 250+ degree oven for at least a half hour to kill any living matter in it. But then it's your home and what creatures you want to bring into it.


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Last edited by modeltrainsparts
@Jstewart204 posted:

I ran some trains this morning with my daughter, she is 11 days old today. Its her first time running trains with me. I think she liked it 😊.


Get a little pink train hat.  And then take a selfie picture of you and her with that train hat in front of your trains.  My daughter, now 14, has given me crap about the same picture since she was 3 or 4 and I am a proud dad rebuffing her complaints every day. To this date it is my favorite picture.  Enjoy her every day as every dad here can attest!

Did some refurbishment on my ZW R, new cord, repaired the buss bar to the U terminals and a general clean up.  Needs a new roller on the right side throttle pretty badly, so that will be on my next parts order.  Then added a transformer shelf to the layout edge so I could move the ZW back away from the track some.  Next up is to run some wire to a few lights and get them going off one of the inner throttles.  AD

Replaced the fisheye portholes windows on my one-off Gulf, Mobile & Ohio PW F-3A unit with P&D Hobby O scale units previously painted by Christine Braden to dolor match the red stripe.  Doing so required the holes to be enlarged 2mm or so--a very risky undertaking for my hands of stone. 

Also replaced the P&D Hobby O scale portholes I'd previously installed with silver edges with red ones painted by Christine on the companion F-3B unit.

Comparison photos to follow.


Christmas is coming early this year, my son is graduating from Nuclear Command Power Training School in three weeks. I will only have a few days with him before he ships out to a Aircraft Carrier or Submarine for the next four years. Given my current medical condition, I don't know when I will be able to do this again.

First picture is Pocono 1643 waiting for the signal to go green, going to pass a closed Jim's train shop with a big gone fishing sign.

Second picture is Hudson 1151 taking on water at East Stroudsburg.

Third picture is Hudson 1151 about to climb the Pocono Mountain just after passing Analomink, Pa.

1643 is still waiting for the green.


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Great work everyone!

Lee wonderful video and Pete great photos! Please let your son know we thank him for his service and for you bringing him up to respect his country!

Well I made it to Menards today and will post photos in what did you buy lately. Was a good trip and the CEO got some things for the layout also!

I hope everyone is doing well and having fun!

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