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Discussion Starter #41

Just some holiday shoppers.


Now there is snow around the windmill!


More snow in the town!



Amtrak rolling through the partial snow-covered scape.


Hey, is that the real Santa in someone's chimney? Or is it the father dressed up as Santa to fool the kids? Regardless, he can't use the sleigh and reindeer since not many places have snow on Christmas anymore, like Brockton.


Kids in the snow near one of the railroad crossings.

Here's a video, too!
 

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Discussion Starter #42
Christmas has been over for a while now on my layout...


I've brought the Mantua GP20 out for a bit while I give the steam engine a rest.


One of my Christmas presents this year for my model train layout was a set of Woodland Scenics train station figures and accessories, most of which I placed at the Arlee Station.


Alleycats at a trash can. This is from Woodland Scenics's "Dogs and Cats" figure pack.


Said pack also included ANOTHER dog urinating at a fire hydrant. I couldn't resist adding it downtown, because it does remind me of how my dog is obsessed with marking her territory at hydrants.


The Amtrak train passes through the wintery landscape.


People throwing away their Christmas trees after the holiday.
 

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Discussion Starter #43
Some more photos...


Trying out a longer freight consist as part of running my main freight on the outer loop that passes through the woods and the residential neighborhood.


An auto-carrier train stops for the main freight.


The Amtrak train rolls through the TYCO crossing gate.


The main freight dropping off a hopper car to be unloaded at the coal yard.


The freight rolling through the TYCO lighted signal crossing.


The Amtrak train stopped at the downtown station.


The freight rolling across the Bachmann E-Z Track blinking truss bridge.
 

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man lovin this setup!!!

i sold an amtrak train and cars on evay years ago. didnt fair well. after fees and free shipping.. cost me $12... oh well. woulda kept it if i knew cuz i like it.
 

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Discussion Starter #45

I've been setting up more Life-Like winter trees, including their wintery evergreen/pines.


The Amtrak local passing through the wintery woods...


...and stopping at the Arlee Station.


This year marks the 40th anniversary of the official debut of Phase III, my favorite Amtrak paint scheme! They began making F40PHs with that paint scheme in 1980, along with the AEM-7 electrics going into service that year, and Amtrak slowly starting to update their existing older locomotives and rolling stock with it (their EMD F-units started being painted in Phase III as early as 1980.)


My auto-carrier train in action! The Mantua Classics GP20 is pulling Athearn, Life-Like and TYCO's auto-carrier cars with a TYCO wide-vision caboose at the end.


I also found the time to install my Bachmann E-Z Command Walk-Around Companion control unit, along with the plug for it going into another end of the layout. Maybe I'll get a second plug to put at the end where the logging mill and drive-in theater are at.
 

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Discussion Starter #46
Been a while, but I got some more updates!

The following photos were taken in March:
modelrailroadspring2020 - 1.jpg

Spring comes to my town, with the snow melting! (In reality, the decorated styrofoam snow pieces were removed and placed in storage until next Christmas.)

modelrailroadspring2020 - 2.jpg

There was still leftover bits of foam and "snow" material from the removal, but I left it there for a month to create the realistic illusion of the winter-spring transition, combined with the barren trees.

modelrailroadspring2020 - 3.jpg

The freight train rolls over a small pond and river underneath the Bachmann E-Z Track blinking bridge.

The following photos were taken in June...
modelrailroadspring2020 - 5.jpg

Now the transition from spring to summer is happening on my layout! All the snow is melted away, and I swapped out the barren trees for spring trees!

modelrailroadspring2020 - 6.jpg

That couple is back up at the Lover's Lane, even with the new billboard for the Skyview Drive-In being there!

modelrailroadspring2020 - 7.jpg

The swimming pool behind the Plasticville Suburban Split Level has been reopened, and the family next door are having barbecues again!

modelrailroadspring2020 - 8.jpg

My town is NOT being affected by the current coronavirus crisis, and everyone is well and businesses and schools are thriving. But many of the residents here that work as doctors and nurses have to frequently commute to the big city via Amtrak to treat and test patients during the crisis!

modelrailroadspring2020 - 9.jpg

Even the Skyview Drive-In Theater is reopened and doing pretty well!

modelrailroadspring2020 - 11.jpg

Another family gets ready to go on a picnic, like in the olden days!

modelrailroadspring2020 - 12.jpg

The freight trains are still busy here, like this one unloading logs at the TYCO Prestomatic bin. One of the boxcars is also loaded with toilet paper to ship during this crisis :p
 

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Discussion Starter #47
I've been doing other things this summer, but with the pandemic going on I've actually found some more time to work on my model train layout! (Usually I don't really start working on it again until autumn starts.) Here are some more recent photos, from August…

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 1.jpg

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 2.jpg

Recently I took a couple of spare Life-Like diamond road signs and customized them to warn motorists that a side road they are approaching has a railroad crossing shortly after the turn, just like the ones in real life.

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 4.jpg

Drive-in movie theaters are enjoying a healthy business thanks to the pandemic, and the Skyview Drive-In is no exception! The Android tablet's Wi-Fi connection is getting flakey, so I downloaded some drive-in theater intermission videos as MP4s onto a micro-SD card and loaded that into the tablet.

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 5.jpg

Just a nice shot of the farm on the layout.

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 6.jpg

An overview.

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 7.jpg

The main BNSF freight passes my Walthers DCC-equipped BNSF GP9M pulling the TYCO crane car and boom tender.

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 8.jpg

Another railroad crossing accident on the layout! Luckily the driver got out of the car in time.

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 9.jpg

The main BNSF freight unloading crates from the TYCO operating boxcar.

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 12.jpg

The Amtrak train stopped at the TYCO Arlee Station. It does make for an interesting sight seeing the Amfleet cars next to the building like that.

modelrailroadsummer2020 - 13.jpg

The main freight having passed through the railroad crossing protected by Bachmann's non-operating Plasticville railroad crossing they've been making since the early 1970s, posed in this picture with the gates rising.
 

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Discussion Starter #48
Here are more photos!

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 3.jpg

Summer has ended on my train layout and the kids are actually going back to school! Like I said, my town is safe from the pandemic.

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 4.jpg

Another view of the schools. I might soon add an expansion to the high school.

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 5.jpg

The hobos still hanging out in the railroad yard.

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 6.jpg

The Center Street School back in session.

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 7.jpg

I find a railroad yard like this a perfect place to put older operating accessories like the TYCO Prestomatic bins for my operating boxcar and log dump car, the Life-Like coal tipple and lighted yard tower, the TYCO lighted factory and the AHM freight carrier. The Pola trucking terminal (Walthers Trainline version) also looks good there too.

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 8.jpg

For now I've switched to GE power for my main freight, with a pair of BNSF "Fakebonnets" (Walthers Trainline Dash 8-40BW with decoders hardwired into them) hauling the freight cars.

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 9.jpg

During this operating session, when I was running the Amtrak train, something went wrong and the second Amfleet car ended up uncoupling from the first car and the F40PH locomotive. Luckily I noticed what happened before a wreck could happen, and set up so that my little BNSF work train would push the uncoupled Amfleet cars back to the rest of the train, similar to real-life railroad operation.

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 10.jpg

Another shot of my BNSF work train pushing the Amtrak cars, consisting of my Bachmann DCC-equipped GP40 that came with my E-Z Command unit pulling the TYCO crane car and boom tender, the Santa Fe versions of course!

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 11.jpg

The Amtrak train all together again pulling into the downtown station, only a little late.

modelrailroadsummerend2020 - 12.jpg

The GE Fakebonnet-led BNSF freight rolling past the Skyview Drive-In Theater, now with a playground!
 

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Discussion Starter #51
Some more new pics, especially since I now have another locomotive I installed a DCC decoder into!

547171

My Walthers Trainline BNSF "Heritage II" Dash 8-40BW heads up the main freight, with a slightly patched Santa Fe Warbonnet behind it.

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To go with the two Walthers Trainline Dash-8 engines, I pulled out my Walthers Trainline BNSF bay window caboose.

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The freight train passing by my farm again.

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The freight passing my short BNSF work train consisting of the Bachmann "Heritage IV" GP40 locomotive and TYCO Santa Fe crane car and boom tender.

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After the last set of pics were taken, I rearranged my main freight a bit and had my Walthers Trainline BNSF "Fakebonnet" Dash 8-40BW locomotive be up front with the "Heritage II" behind it, based off how I've seen some real-life configurations, even done to this day (though real-life "Fakebonnet" locomotives are rare nowadays, with many having been repainted in the orange BNSF colors.)

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I also added a driveway to my TYCO Lighted Ranch House with a diagonally-cut styrofoam piece painted black. Now the car can get in and out of the garage easily!

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A nice shot of the main freight stopped so a pipe section can be unloaded from the TYCO Freight Unloading Depot.

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A shot of the Unloading Depot itself in action.

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An overview of the layout.
 

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Discussion Starter #52
547180

The main freight switching onto the inner track loop, passing the work train.

547181

The freight train unloading crates from the Operating Boxcar.

547182

A neat shot of the Amtrak passenger train approaching the Arlee Station with the Skyview Drive-In theater in the background.

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The BNSF freight train passing through the TYCO Operating Crossing Gate.

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A nice shot of the TYCO Drug Store, with a little newsstand (a Scenic Accents pack from Woodland Scenics) in front of the store.

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The BNSF freight train rolling past the Skyview Drive-In on a busy evening.

547186

I installed a second light inside the concession/projection building to create the illusion of a movie projector coming out of the openings!
 

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This is simply amazing!!!!!

I put all of my trains away.. O and HO... as I was going to finish my master bathroom and list my house. Corona hit the market and houses are selling immediately and for stupid prices...
so we are searching but nothing has stood out yet... once it does, someday, then i will be back at it.

keep up the good work!
 

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very nice Wiley!
Its a great inspiration to keep me building and collecting.....I have a long way to go....lol
 

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Discussion Starter #56
Christmas is coming to my train layout!

550520

The Baldwin 2-8-0 steam locomotive and tender is brought out to be checked on…

550521

550522

My latest main freight consist. I switched back to using my Bachmann (BN)SF GP40-2 diesels for pulling the rolling stock, mostly TYCO with a couple of Life-Like cars and a Bachmann BNSF caboose to go with the lead locomotive (again, the one that came with my E-Z Command DCC set when I bought it over six years ago for my previous layout!)

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The Christmas train, raring and ready to go! I might buy a new car or two for it this holiday season.

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Santa Claus visiting kids at the church.

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The downtown train station is decorated for Christmas!

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The first snow of the season! I'm reusing the quarter-inch styrofoam pieces I decorated with "snow material" from Woodland Scenics, and am making new ones for additional coverage as well.

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I also bought one of those winter-colored Hawthorne Village versions of Bachmann's E-Z Track Dual Crossing Gate to go with the snow on the layout.

550528

The Christmas tree lot set up behind a newsstand, with the town tree not too far from it!
 

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Discussion Starter #57
More pics of my Christmasy layout...

550985

Well, my mid-1970s TYCO Pak I use for powering the turnouts, TYCO Prestomatic accessories and nearby lights burned out after the last set of pics, so I replaced it with this 1980s Bachmann power pack that's so far getting the job done.

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Look! Santa Claus is riding on the caboose of my Christmas train!

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The Christmas train stops for the Amtrak local traveling through the snow.

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Still quite a few holiday travelers on my layout, which isn't affected by the real-life pandemic thankfully.

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Just a shot of the main BNSF freight unloading crates from the TYCO operating boxcar. Sometimes the crates go flying onto the nearby street though.

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The Christmas train passes through the snowscape and past the BNSF freight.

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A new addition to my Christmas train: a Walthers Trainline Santa Claus Coal Express hopper!

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Now I've got nearly 3/4 of the layout covered with snow in areas where it'd normally be. Now I need to restock on barren trees…
 

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I'm looking at your benchwork and am wondering how did you brace the corners to prevent rocking of the platform?
 
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