Monday, March 28, 2011

Charles' First Op Session

Charles Etheredge had his first op session on his SP Austin to Llano line layout a couple of weeks back to good success. We ran a sequenced timetable using steam engines for the most part. I ran an extra up to the quarry in Marble Falls and a local out of Austin meeting Gordon with a local out of Hempstead.
A full kitchen
A full kitchen (Tom, Gordon, Duane, Charles)

Charles' at Bertram

A few usual first-time bugs were found (that's the point of the first few sessions!), but none were catastrophic. One problem was a steamer that had no pulling power. I saw Charles last week and he had applied Bull Frog Snot to one set of drivers (the geared set) and the guy now pulls like a champ.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Tulsa LDSIG/OpSIG Weekend March 2011

The 2nd annual Tulsa LDSIG/OpSIG weekend was another great event with fun layouts and stimulating conversations.

Friday night we operated on Tom Fausser's excellent freelanced NY Harbor layout. I pulled the docks job (see photo above) which worked the cement plant, docks and food warehouses. Good fun with coordination necessary with the two other switchers that worked the car floats and the Greenville area. The other job was the yard where all the traffic flowed in and out for the harbor jobs. The fact that it was a model of Hudson River train operations made me feel really at home...

Saturday was a day of talks by Keith Robinson, Tony Koester, Doug Gurin and myself. Keith talked about planning principles, Tony about double decks and an update on his Nickel Plate laoyut, and Doug about finescale operations. See my YouTube site for a condensed version of my presentation on Dynamos (Dynamic Abstracted Modules).
Tom Pearson works the Bottoms as part of the Frisco trick at Jim Senese's Kansas City Terminal 
Saturday night we had the opportunity to visit Jim Senese's Kansas City Terminal Railroad with new changes that eliminated the Santa Fe jobs in favor of expanded Katy and Frisco jobs. This was the second time I've been able to operate there, and it is still one of my favorites.

Sunday morning we had the pleasure of being the second crew to operate Steve Davis' large KCS layout. I ran the Sallisaw Turn and a through freight with block drops and pick ups. At only 18 months old, it is mostly complete with electronics and track work, and a bunch of scenery done as well. Most interesting surprise was the use of an iPad to operate switches in the main yard. Railroad and Company software made that possible. Lots of fun, and I'm looking forward to returning.
Steve Davis' KCS - lots of fun operating possibilities.

I'm already looking forward to next year...