Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Mogul races in St Thomas yard?

But now you know what Jay had in the box!
3 gorgeous Precision Scale brass SP Moguls, awaiting the installation of decoders, speakers and Keep Alives!
What's going on you ask?

I've come to the realization that the Wabash layout will not be able to come to life in the manner that I had first hoped for.
The doubt had been in my brain for a few months , but got solidified as a result of the 3 days of running TT&TO in La Mesa.
Successful TT&TO ops require mainline, lots of mainline. With the stations preferably out of sight from each other. Operators need time(which equals distance) between stations to review orders and the timetable as well as having a sense of going somewhere.
I was trying to replicate 50 miles of mainline in less than 2 scale miles, the compression just wasn't going to work. No room for meets, no challenges, no thinking required.
Now I am enamoured with the Cayuga Sub, and don't regret for a minute the time spent on this project. But if I'm to get a layout running I need to find a prototype that better fits my space.
The first thought I had was to take the old San Jacinto branch that Andy Sperandeo drew up decades ago and tweak it into my current space. Particularly now that I better understand the operations on a branch like that.
But then my friend and "Model Railroad Enabler" Trevor Marshall stepped in with a similar theme, but a little more to my liking.
The Clovis Branch of the SP. A lovely branch that reached up to Friant, with lots of winerys, fruit packing, some stock, and a goodly amount of general merchandise. Oh and a ballast quarry.
The track plan Trevor whipped up for me has the added bonus of fitting perfectly on the existing benchwork.
The actual towns will be laid out in the same manner as I did with the old layout. Full size templates and a survey to guide me.
It'll take some time to fully engage in this project. Rolling stock as to get sold, some layout work will be undone, etc.
Right now all the F-7s are spoken for, but I will be making up a list of rolling stock that I'll be selling and will make it available when the time comes. It is interesting that a good amount of the foreign road equipment is reusable.
The offer from Trevor of the 3 Moguls is what clinched the deal. We took all 3 out and test ran them, and determined how to get into the Vanderbuilt tenders for decoder installation.
I have a really good feeling about this new venture. Besides, for me, it's more about the journey than the destination.
Guess I'll have to redo the intro page to this blog!


Ryan Mendell said...

Awesome idea Pierre and Trevor, a much more achievable layout. And some great brass locos get to come out of hiding to boot....


Trevor said...

Well, I'm glad we can talk about this publicly now! :-)
The plan you posted is a sketch, really - as you say, you'll work out the final details full-size. Still, I was about half-way through drawing it when you showed up this weekend to collect the moguls. I'll have to finish it and send you an updated scan to share with your readers - including some labels so they now what they're looking at.
I should get that done before you get the decoders into those tenders. Ship in a bottle, much? They'll sound great with paired sugar cubes, as discussed.

Eugene said...

You have picked a more popular road.

Bernie said...

Interesting decision. I recently operated on two layouts depicting agriculture in California in the transition era. They both were enjoyable experiences.

I have been a big advocate of branch line modeling in a medium size space. Even if the branch was lightly used, you can always add trains to add activity. My O scale layout is a good example where I essentially doubled the train density to get a interesting operation for bigger groups, but we revert to the simpler schedule if there aren't enough operators available.

good luck.

Batey said...

After investing almost a year in the Northern Pacific Yacolt branch I have arrived at the room prep stage. It's only at this point I'm seeing it's not going to work. Not from a design or opps perspective but not being able to get the locomotives to run the breach without a large compromise.

It's been refreshing lately to see a few such as yourself change the end view after investing so much time in a project. If it's not coming together in your head it's probably not going to in the layout room.

Looking forward to your new venture.

Simon Dunkley said...

The “Enabler” didn’t get as far as enabling S Scale, then?