The Model Railway Show – Episode 0027

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Capturing Space

In this episodeā€¦

Paul Dolkos, modeler and photographer.
Mike Brock, modeler.

Great model railroad photography

His current HO scale layout, based on the Baltimore harbor district, was the cover story in the 2010 edition of Model Railroad Planning and he is the contributing editor for Scenery By The Seasons from Kalmbach publishing.

And his previous layout – subject of numerous articles as well as its own Great Model Railroads DVD (Volume 46) – has inspired legions of model railway enthusiasts to try their hand at modeling the Boston and Maine Railroad.

But Paul Dolkos is known as much for his photography as he is for excellent craftsmanship.

Paul is the go-to guy when great photos are needed for Model Railroader and Great Model Railroads. He joins Jim to talk about how that happened, what he looks for when capturing a layout with a camera… and how one of the most famous model railway hobbyists on the planet was also one of his toughest assignments.

Building for the Big Boy

Has any North American steam locomotive captured the imagination of modelers quite like the Union Pacific’s 4-8-8-4? Known as the Big Boy, it has been offered in model form in all major scales – including several iterations in HO.

But what does one do with such a mechanical monster?

If you’re Mike Brock, you build an HO scale layout that showcases the Big Boy in its traditional stomping ground.

Mike has owned UP 4-8-8-4 models from several manufacturers, including Pacific Fast Mail, Key Model Imports, Precision Scale Company, Broadway Limited Imports and Athearn. And his Sherman Hill layout – the cover story in the 2002 edition of Model Railroad Planning and featured in the March 2002 edition of Model Railroader – showcases the broad curves, generous turnouts, big facilities and long passing sidings needed to support articulated superpower and equally impressive train lengths in a realistic setting.

One would expect such a layout to fill a gymnasium but surprisingly – as the MR Track Plan Database reveals – it’s a mid-sized undertaking (at least by North American standards) at 22 by 34 feet.

Mike joins Trevor to discuss what a layout owner needs to consider if Big Boys are the power of choice. Since he’s also heavily involved with Prototype Rails, Mike also shares information about this popular RPM meet, held each January in Cocoa Beach, Florida.

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Episode 27 (mp3)

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Next time on The Model Railway Show:

Trevor talks to Tom Piccirillo about the attraction of traction.
Jim speaks with Paul Allen about building an exhibition layout… on an ironing board.

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