“Go Exploring!”

I’ve added a new feature to this blog in response to a request from a friend. He was looking for a way to pick up where he left off, when real life prevented him from visiting the blog on a regular basis.

I dug through my available WordPress Widgets and found an archive navigating widget, which allows readers to filter all my posts by month. I’ve called it “Go Exploring!” and you’ll find it in the right-hand column on the home page. (That is, if you’re reading this on a computer. If you’re on a mobile device, it’s probably at the bottom of the screen – keep scrolling!)

Interestingly, I can show the number of posts by month as well. Seems I’m prolific…

It’s not a perfect solution, but I hope this addition makes it a little easier to get around my blog.

(Remember, if you want an easy way to make sure you never miss a post, you can enter your email address in the appropriate box in the right hand column and my new posts will be delivered directly to your inbox.)

4 thoughts on ““Go Exploring!”

  1. Hi Trevor:

    I really enjoy your Port Rowan website and your fine branch line layout which is very realistic. Having worked for the railroad for over 46 years I gravitate to smaller, simpler layouts like yours which I can easily understand rather than larger, busy railroads which I have worked on in my career. Allow me to add a post I placed on the Proto-Layouts Yahoo group:

    “With all the recent discussion about Clark possibly building a new branch line layout, may I suggest taking a look at this website: http://themodelrailwayshow.com/cn1950s/? I know Tony and others have pointed out this layout but I just spent a nice afternoon, yesterday (dodging severe weather) enjoying Trevor Marshall’s, great website and multitude of photos. You might enjoy it too.
    Here is a very simple layout much along the lines of Jared’s fine ATSF, Alma Branch and Clark’s M&STL but even simpler. Less than a dozen turnouts but very realistic and gosh those little S scale, CN, ten wheelers, 30/40’, rolling stock and mixed train coaches are nice. It just proves that much like Tom Johnson’s, Lance’s modern, switching layouts it really does not take much to have a really realistic layout which runs smooth and does not take years to build. This certainly is not to take anything away from large layouts like Tony’s, Andy’s, Rob’s, Jeff’s and others who enjoy that route. This is just a suggestion to sit back and enjoy viewing a nice example of a well-done smaller layout.”

    Thanks, for sharing your layout it’s great inspiration for us all.


    • Hi Barry:

      Thanks so much for the kind words – here and on the Proto-Layouts Yahoo group. I’m flattered!

      Like you, I’m a fan of the smaller, simple, more realistic layout – for several reasons. I think most importantly, they illustrate that one can do something that’s very rewarding and entertaining in a modest amount of space, and in a reasonable amount of time.

      It’s been less than two years since I started planning this layout, and I’m really happy with my progress. I’m also happy that I have made such progress without the hobby becoming all-consuming (to the detriment of relationships, other passions, and so on).


  2. Hi Trevor:

    I am not sure if anyone from the Proto Modelers group commented on your site but I hope they did since it is well organized, easy to surf and full of great information.
    A few points you may want to consider for additional discussion:
    1. Could you address your traverser, how it was constructed, how it operates and could it also function as a train turntable to eliminate hand turning those delicate steamers? I personally would appreciate knowing a bit more about these devices
    which are usually found on English layouts.
    2. While at this time I model in HO and previously N with no suitable small steam locomotives like the CN 4-6-0s, what would you suggest for small steam in those scales? I am am big fan of the HO and N, Bachmann 2-6-0 and 2-8-0s along with maybe a 4-6-0 especially with sound. Your thoughts? Maybe inclusion of this information would open more doors for folks in other scales to consider the fine information found on your site.
    3. Finally I appreciate the many fine small layout examples for modeling other railroads/areas and wondered if there were any which led off a full wye, (both legs to allow turning engines and trains) junction with a mainline connection to a branch but ended in a small terminal like Port Rowan with a turntable?

    Well, sorry if I asked too many questions just always wanting to look at additional applications for an already fine layout.



    • Hi Barry:

      Thanks for the note and suggestions for additional discussion…

      1 – I have written about the sector plate a few times on the blog, including posts with photos covering its construction. For future reference, you will find a Category called “sector plate” in the drop-down menu to the right on the home page. For now, here’s a direct link. Let me know if you have additional questions – you can comment on any of the relevant posts. My particular sector plate does not function as a train-length turntable, and although I have plans to add a plug-in locomotive cassette at the end of the plate, I haven’t actually built it.

      2 – I have almost no experience with the modern offerings for small steam power in HO scale – and am clueless about N scale. Most of my small steam experience in HO involved brass imports, which could be quite dodgy. I suggest you ask on a suitable newsgroup or forum.

      3 – There are plenty of examples of branch lines that started at a wye junction and ended at a terminal with turntable. Wiarton comes to mind – it connected via a wye with the line between Palmerston and Owen Sound. If the CNR is your interest then you might want to check out the series of books by Ian Wilson. They’re not the only source for such plans, but a good place to start.

      I must admit I’m unlikely to present such plans as part of my achievable layouts series (now with its own blog), simply because including a wye, a terminal, and staging for the mainline connection would likely require a huge amount of space – particularly in the larger indoor scales – and there’s no shortage of layout designs for large spaces. I expect that, going forward, I’m going to concentrate on presenting smaller pieces of prototype railroads – similar to what I did with CNR Pine Street, Thorold. These segments can be satisfying on their own as a shelf layout for an apartment or condo dweller – but can also be incorporated into larger layout designs.

      Never apologize for asking questions! I hope the answers are helpful.


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