The Model Railway Show – Episode 0047

This episode of The Model Railway Show is made possible with the support of The National Model Railroad Association.

New Years Resolutions

In this episodeā€¦

James McNab, layout builder.
Brooks Stover, website builder.

Resolution 1: Build a layout in 2013

If you’re an armchair modeler, here’s a New Year’s resolution worth keeping: Get out of the chair and start on a well-designed layout that will be quick to build and detail to a high level, yet also offer opportunities for engaging operating sessions. Not possible? Don’t tell James McNab, who is proving it can be done.

James is modeling the Iowa Interstate’s Grimes Industrial Track – an industrial switching spur – in HO scale. He’s faithfully replicating the prototype in a 12′ x 18′-8″ space featuring narrow shelves and plenty of space for people.

James joins Trevor to discuss his choice of prototype, the advantages of picking a manageable theme, and how he uses prototype practices to keep operating sessions interesting.

If you’re looking for inspiration to get out of the chair and build a layout this year – or just want to follow his progress – James’ Grimes Line layout has its own section on the Iowa Interstate fan site, he’s blogged about it on Model Railroad Hobbyist‘s online community, and has posted videos of his layout on YouTube.

Resolution 2: Get your work online in 2013

Brooks Stover has written a lot about his S scale layout, which replicates the Buffalo Creek and Gauley – a West Virginia short line. But he admits that one of the most satisfying articles he’s written is not about his layout. The article appeared in the September 2009 issue of Railroad Model Craftsman magazine – and it’s about Brooks’ website.

The Buffalo Creek and Gauley website has become the go-to site for all things related to the railroad and how to model it.

Brooks joins Jim to explain why he decided to create the web site and the rewards of putting one’s layout and research online. He hopes others consider doing the same to showcase their layout or models. (We do too, and suggest it’s a great New Year’s resolution to make – and keep – for 2013!)

As Jim and Trevor discuss in this episode, blogging is an easy way to create a web presence – one that does not require a huge amount of technical expertise.

Two popular providers that can get you up and blogging immediately – and at no cost – are WordPress (which Trevor uses to maintain a blog for his layout) and Blogger (used for the blog written by members of the S Scale Workshop – a modular group to which both Jim and Trevor belong).

Trevor and Jim also mention some upcoming events:

Railroad Hobby Show – Springfield MA – January 26-27
Jim and other members of the S Scale Workshop will be displaying their modular layout for the first time at this huge annual show. You’ll find them at Section 166 of the Mallary Complex – drop by and say hello to Jim!

Streetsville Junction – Mississauga ON – April 26-28
Jim and Trevor will be moderating a panel on the state of hobby manufacturing at this convention, sponsored by the Niagara Frontier Region of the NMRA.

Peachtree Express – Atlanta GA – July 14-20
Time to start planning the trip to this year’s NMRA National Convention!

National Narrow Gauge Convention – Pasadena CA – August 28-31
This extremely popular convention for all things narrow-gauged is now in its 33rd year.

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Episode 47 (mp3)

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Next time on The Model Railway Show:

Jim welcomes back Brooks Stover to discuss his four principles of layout planning.

Trevor talks to Andy Reichert from Proto:87 Stores about how an interest in trolleys evolved into becoming a supplier for super-detailed track for HO scale.

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