Monday, November 30, 2009

The dust has settled...

So it's time to reflect on the Princeton Train show from a distance.
It's safe to say that the experiences with Brandon and Jeremiah were the highlight. Compare their attitudes to the old man that watched me struggle for a moment with mating a pair of couplers. He said.
"That ain't workin' worth a shit" and turned and walk away. Ignorant twits like that the world can do without.
A couple of times I heard people say. "That's a proper model railroad." That made me feel pretty good too.
Several folks actually recognised the model as being Phillips recycling in Saint Cloud. The building must have been a pretty good representation then, considering it was built by guesstimation. So that's more to feel good about.
There was nothing to feel bad about to be honest. As this layout was my first experience using Kadee couplers and magnets I didn't know what to expect. Sure some of the couplers need adjusting but those that were set up worked perfectly. I'll carry on using them I think. The delayed action feature was a lot of fun to watch.
The only thing I can really complain about is not having a proper fiddle yard (staging area) it was very difficult to marshall a train for the operating sequence.
Still, all these good experiences don't stop me from wanting to improve things. There's a lot I'd like to incorporate on the next layout.
Next layout?
Yes. I saw things in this model that really inspired me. The curved layout front for example and the way the track followed it. A real change from watching rectangular slab baseboards. Several people remarked on this fact. It also made for interesting relationships between the building and the front of the layout. So often people cop out and have everything parallel and perpendicular to the front edge of a model. I won't do that again.
Another myth to dispell about exhibtion layouts is that little kids won't watch a shunting/switching layout. Many really young children delighted in watching the trackmobile scurry in and out of the building taking a boxcar in there and re-appearing without it. Also taking an empty gondola in there and re-appearing with it loaded went down well with everyone.
So lots to incorporate in the replacement layout then. But don't worry. That will be a while away. I plan to show this layout a few more times yet.
Of course if anyone wants to buy the layout. I'm open to offers.


  1. Ian...I've been following the progress of this layout since its inception and have really enjoyed the whole thing.
    Sounds like the layout was a big hit at the show. glad you're enjoying the Kadees, like anything they just need tuneing and then are lots of fun....Might want to think about using thePeco Locolift as a fiddleyard ala Jack Shortliner!


  2. Thanks Gene. I'm glad you enjoyed following everything. As for PECO Loco lifts. I was using them three or four years ago on Purespring watercress and as a result I'm not convinced as to their usefulness as a substitute for a fiddle yard.