The Model Railway Show – Episode 0028

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Overheads and Ironing Boards

In this episodeā€¦

Tom Piccirillo, President of Micro-Mark and O scale traction modeller.
Paul Allen, builder of Ingleton Sidings.

I Sing The Layout Electric

While some use live steam locomotives and people have experimented with live diesel models, the majority of model railway enthusiasts use electricity to power their trains. For a few of us, that’s perfectly prototypical – and that authenticity is one of the things that attracts people to interurban and trolley modeling.

Tom Piccirillo has certainly heard the hum of traction motors. He’s an NMRA Master Model Railroader best-known as the president of tool specialist Micro-Mark. And his basement is home to the Somerset County Traction System – an O scale traction empire.

Tom joins Trevor to talk about why he loves to work under wire, and how his traction empire helps develop new products for the Micro-Mark catalog.

(Tom is not the only well-known traction modeler. Others include Bob Hegge, Bill Clouser, Walt Olsen and Roger Chrysler. Companies such as The Car Works and MTS Imports have helped fill car barns with beautiful traction models. Enthusiasts such as Dan D. Sparks blog about traction modeling. And in addition to many fine home layouts, organizations including the Cambridge Model Railroad Club, the East Penn Traction Club and the Southern California Traction Club have spread the word about traction modeling at shows, with sectional or modular layouts.)

Pressing Matters

We all like to see the big display layouts at train shows, but those efforts require a crew, multiple vehicles or trailers, and quite a bit of money to build, maintain, transport, set up and operate. Is there another way?

Of course there is. How about an exhibition layout that fits into a single vehicle, can be set up quickly, and yet can entertain the crowds?

UK modeler Paul Allen has accomplished this and more with Ingleton Sidings – a layout based on the popular Inglenook design and built on an ironing board. In addition to being popular at shows, Ingleton Sidings was recently featured in the UK magazine Model Rail.

Paul talks to Jim about how he adds presence to a small layout, including the use of closed circuit television and digital photo frames. He also discusses the UK practice of covering the expenses for traveling layout exhibitors. (Yes, in the UK people get paid to offset the cost of exhibiting their layouts at shows!)

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Episode 28 (mp3)

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Next time on The Model Railway Show:

Jim talks to Doug Tagsold about building an operation-oriented layout operated while sitting.
Trevor speaks with Chris Lyon about launching a new model railway exhibition.

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