On Saturday, January 20, 2024, the Southern New Mexico N Scalers held their Monthly Meeting and Run Day at the SNMNS headquarters at the fairgrounds in Las Cruces. One of the trains featured that day was the Milwaukee Road Hiawatha passenger train led by a set of EMD F7s in an A-B-A configuration.
The Holiday Model Railroad display is fully operational at the Sunflower Bank in downtown El Paso. The Sunflower Bank sponsors the display which is created and run by volunteers from the Railroad Model and Historical Association of El Paso. The layout features O Scale and G Scale trains featuring at least one Polar Express.
On July 16 and 17, the Clovis Area Train Society hosted their train show and Fun Run at the North Plains Mall in Clovis, NM. I transported 15 T-Trak modules that belong to Roadrunners members in the Las Cruces area to the show. I set up our layout in a simple rectangle that was about 12 feet by 5 feet in size.
I was able to borrow a small DCC system so that I could run the SNMNS club’s UP City of Los Angeles Passenger train.
Also on display, the CATS had their rather extensive modular HO layout that consisted of 45 modules. That is approximately 360 feet of mainline track, which is almost 6 scale miles of mainline. Pretty impressive, if you ask me. The layout was so large that it was difficult to get the whole thing in one photo. Here is a panorama shot of the HO Layout:
In addition, the CATS had an extensive N Scale layout that was a combination of N-Trak and T-Track modular systems.
They are able to interface the two modular systems by creating a helix that takes trains down from N-Trak level to the tabletop T-Trak level.
In addition to these temporary layouts, the CATS have a semi-permanent location in one of the stores at the mall. They have a nice size HO layout based on the standard modules as well as an N Scale layout made using T-Trak modules.
Also on display were an experimental table-top HO modular layout and an O gauge layout. For more pictures and some videos of model trains in action, please see my photo album at this link: https://photos.app.goo.gl/4W6bpBGnpN5NnPuUA
During the past two holiday seasons, the Railroad Model and Historical Association of El Paso has collaborated with Sunflower Bank to create a delightful Christmas train layout in downtown El Paso. The layout boasted three train sets, including an O Scale Polar Express, an O Scale Winter Wonderland, and a G Scale Polar Express. Dedicated members of EPMR (El Paso Model Railroad) spent countless hours constructing the layout and operating the trains during certain weekday hours. The Sunflower Bank generously sponsored the layout, covering the expenses for the trains, most of the buildings, and various accessories.
This is a wonderful tradition for the holiday season and it’s great to see the El Paso community coming together to create something special and enjoyable for all. It’s also fantastic that the Sunflower Bank is sponsoring the layout and supporting the efforts of the Railroad Model and Historical Association of El Paso. It’s always encouraging to see businesses invest in the community in such meaningful ways. In addition to the fun generated from this wonderful layout EPMR was able to share the long history of the railroads in El Paso and the region with adults and children from El Paso and beyond. This year, the group is eagerly anticipating the opportunity to enhance the size and content of the layout for an even more enjoyable experience. Click on the link below to watch our layout video.
Any model train library should include a variety of resources to help model train enthusiasts learn more about the hobby and improve their skills. Here are some examples of the types of things included in the EPMR library shown above.
Books: There are many books available that cover a wide range of topics related to model trains, such as layout design, scenery building, wiring, weathering techniques, and model railroad history. Look for books that are specific to your scale or type of modeling (e.g. steam era modeling or modern era modeling).
Magazines: Model train magazines provide regular updates on new products, layout designs, and industry news. They can also offer tutorials and tips for improving your modeling skills. Some popular magazines include Model Railroader, Railroad Model Craftsman, and Model Railroad Hobbyist.
DVDs and videos: Many model train experts and companies have created instructional videos that can be helpful for beginners or advanced modelers. Topics covered can include layout design, scenery building, weathering techniques, and more.
Online resources: There are many websites, forums, and blogs dedicated to model trains that can be helpful for learning more about the hobby. Some popular resources include the Model Railroader website, the Trainboard forum, and the Model Railroad Hobbyist blog.
Catalogs and product guides: Manufacturers of model trains and accessories release product catalogs and guides that can be helpful for planning your layout and choosing the right equipment for your needs.
Overall, in our model train library we hope to include a variety of resources that cover different aspects of the hobby, from design and construction to operation and maintenance. By building a comprehensive library, we can continue to learn and improve our skills as model train enthusiasts.
We are in the process of building a database that will provide users with an index of our contents and we are currently seeking additional volunteers to help catalog our library. Below is a description of how volunteers could help. Contact us by email if interested: firstname.lastname@example.org 1. Inventory: Create and update lists of items in the library’s collection. 2. Cataloging: Use Microsoft Office Software to review, edit, and create library database records. Skills/Experience: cataloging – data entry – databases – scanning 3. Collections/Donations: Organize and label collection materials, weed duplicates, and date materials. 4. Process donated items: Books, magazines, trains, etc. Skills/Experience: general knowledge of model train paperwork, filing/organizational – attention to detail. 5. Create and update magazine indexes. Skills/Experience: data entry – office software (Word/Excel) 6. Marketing: Highlight items from the library’s collection for Facebook posts, website, email blasts, newsletters, displays, etc. Skills/Experience: marketing – research – writing – office software (Word)