From the Desk: July 2014

Greetings fellow train modelers! I am happy to report that members Mark Bean, Brian King, and Canadian friend David King have finally been able to culminate their efforts on the automatic
reverse loop project that has been in progress for over a year.

reverse-loop-success-01After much consternation and brain racking, all the pieces came together when Mark arrived at Brian’s and was able to actually handle the hardware. There is a lot to be said for presence. Long distance communication is nice, but nowhere as nearly effective as actually being present. After Mark arrived it was only a matter of hours
overall until the software, hardware, and operation all came together to make the reverse loop automation a
success. Of course, this leads to more projects in the future. However, these may be a little easier to accomplish now that the experience of developing the original reverse loop has been successfully completed. We are considering building and automating a new one-trak interface tee sized module. This will take some time, so in the meantime, will utilize the current mechanically operated interface module.

reverse-loop-success-02This module works but has some limitations. The curves are really small, thus limiting the trains that can be sent to the reverse loop. It is also rather difficult to understand how to operate electrically when using it. The goal of the newer replacement module will be not only to automate things as much as possible, but to simplify the operation to make it much less difficult to use. will report on the progress of this project as we move along.

Speaking of moving along, set up a small layout at Dave’s Diner in the beginning of June at Dave’s weekly Cruise In. The small layout incorporated ’s “eyeglasses” loop to make it interesting. This loop limits the length of the trains possible to run without running into itself and keeps the public’s attention on the trains. Everyone expects the train to collide with itself, but careful prior planning prevents this from happening. The layout provided the first opportunity for to use the small generator purchased for just this reason. The generator ran perfectly and amazingly quiet for the entire time was there. This makes it easy for to take a layout nearly anywhere since we can now provide our own source of power to operate the trains. The next test will be next month when anticipates running a small HO layout, provided by club member Greg Brockway, at Dave’s again. Meanwhile, other club activities for July include the Whirlwind III tour. This will be a day trip to the Boston area to visit some of the renowned layouts in that area. will report on this in the next issue.

Keep on training!

Perserverance Pays!

mark-and-john-June2014‘s automatic reverse loop is finally finished and operational, thanks to our Australian club member, Mark Bean. Mark’s diligence and John’s scenic abilities make great additions to ’s arsenal of t-trak modules. After over a year of research and development, it was gratifying to finally succeed in reaching the desired goal.

Diners, Drive-Ins, and Trains!

set up a smal layout at Dave’s Diner in the beginning of June at Dave’s weekly Cruise In.

 DavesDiner_061714_01 DavesDiner_061714_02
 DavesDiner_061714_03 DavesDiner_061714_04

From the Desk: June 2014

mark-bean-australianWelcome back to the “Hobo”! Mark and his family are scheduled to visit us at the end of June from “down under” in Australia. We are anxiously awaiting his arrival and looking forward to all the excitement, camaraderie, and fresh new ideas Mark always brings with him. It is refreshing to get a different perspective on things, especially model railroading things, and Mark certainly is noted for his different perspective.

Mark has been in Australia for over ten years now and is firmly established as a citizen and resident there but his roots are back here in the good ‘ol USA. Hopefully, he can get to see many of the things that make this country so interesting and great and show his family the better side of America. There is much to offer for visitors and residents alike in nearly every nook and cranny of this great country. In our little nook we have a rich history of baseball with numerous teams which originated in New York to the Hall of Fame here in Cooperstown. To support this great sport over the years the railroad transported many of the fans from upstate areas to the city where the games were played. This continues even today with Amtrak being one of the best means of travel for convenience to the games in New York City. More often than not the close proximity of the train stations to desirable landmarks makes them the logical choice for getting to your destination. Besides the tourism industry, trains are also a mainstay of transportation for goods. It is one of the least expensive ways of shipping large quantities of goods over long distances available to industry today. This real life diversity makes modeling the railroad industry both challenging and exciting. It maintains a keen interest in the details of recreating a miniature world of travel and adventure for those involved in the hobby. This is where Mark’s outlook shines.

He finds the details many overlook and shines his own light on the obvious to the amazement of others. This introspection makes Mark’s models stand out over similar models where the details he incorporates are not found elsewhere. Mark’s willingness to share his observations and ideas with others makes him one of model railroading’s true giants. Mark is always ready to help in any way he can if you have a problem or idea that needs to be expanded. He often shares some of his ideas with when he occasionally writes a column for Hobos Fire. wishes Mark well and hopes he not only has a great time during his visit, but also gains some valuable insight to develop new ideas to incorporate into his own model railroading and further share some of these ideas with us in the future.


Hudson Hollow Revisited



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