The Model Railway Show – Episode 0032

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MMRs and Memorable Modelers

In this episodeā€¦

Gerry Leone, Master Model Railroader 346.
Gavin Sowry, New Zealander and Gn15 layout-builder.

The Road to MMR

A few years ago, Gerry Leone decided to become a Master Model Railroader – the highest honour awarded by the National Model Railroad Association’s Achievement Program. A few hundred hobbyists have done this over the past half-century that the NMRA has run the program – Gerry is MMR 346 – but what makes Gerry’s effort stand out is that he documented the process and has shared it in print and online as a way to help others pursue MMR status.

Gerry has written about the experience for the NMRA’s magazine and web site. He has also posted extensive information about how he achieved the seven certificates needed in a special section called The Road to MMR on the website he maintains for his HO scale Bona Vista Railroad.

Gerry joins Trevor to describe why he decided to pursue his MMR, how the experience enhanced his enjoyment of the hobby and how it has influenced his beautiful layout. He also offers advice to others who may be considering pursuing their MMR. As he notes, many experienced hobbyists are probably most of the way to an MMR and don’t realize it.

A global tribute to Carl Arendt

Like many in the hobby, Gavin Sowry was saddened by the passing in early 2011 of small layout champion Carl Arendt.

Carl lived in Washington State and the fact that he influenced Gavin, a New Zealander, to add a Gn15 modeling component to his enjoyment of the hobby is proof that Carl’s influence spanned the globe. And not just his influence – but also Carl’s modeling: A friend of Gavin’s owns a Gn15 tipper wagon originally built by Carl for the famous Squarefoot Estate Railway.

And thus was born the idea for a global tribute to Carl: Why not share this wagon with others by sending it on an around-the-world tour of Gn15 layouts?

The idea was promoted on the GnATTERbox – the forum related to a website for Gn15 enthusiasts – and regular updates of the wagon’s progress are posted on the Roaming Wagon thread. Meanwhile, photos of the wagon’s travels appear on Flickr and the NZ Trains web site.

Gavin joins Jim to describe how this idea formed, where the wagon has been, where it’s going, and how other Gn15 enthusiasts can get on the list to take part in this globe-spanning tribute to Carl.

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Next time on The Model Railway Show:

Trevor speaks with Lance Mindheim about his new book, How to Operate a Modern Era Switching Layout.
Jim talks to Don Goodman-Wilson about the joys of modeling Japanese railway prototypes.

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