Mark’s been in touch with his 10×18 Lionel layout:
“This layout is a downsized after moving its 10 x 18 the old layout was 20 x 18.
You will see a brewery that I made its from Utica, NY started in 1888 and still going strong.
I been in this hobby since my father had 027 lionel and HO Lionel as a child since I can remember.
I have over 60 Post War lionel and MTH , Williams, K-Line and MPC Lionel.
Have over 300 pieces of rolling stock and 8 Passenger Sets.
I use Tubular 027 Track and have Lionel, K-line and Gargrave switchs.
I use a few blocks to park engine and to bring on line. The best part of being a operator is having a cold beer and watching trains..
A big thanks to Mark.
Now onto something a little bit different.
I didn’t whether to post the below or not because it’s slightly off topic – but then I remembered who was Bob was.
You’ll remember him from this N scale layout.
Well, once I’d connected the dots, I was happy to post:
“Al…I hope all is well with you.
Here is a new post that is a little different but I hope everyone enjoys it.
We model railroad hobbyists love to share our passion. We display our layouts in museums, exhibit them at model railroad shows, and participate in blogs like yours.
Once in a while, a less conventional way to share our love of this amazing hobby presents itself. I have recently had such an opportunity.
My daughter is the artistic director of a theater program for young adults and adults with a variety of physical and developmental disabilities.
Each year, her clients write and perform in an original musical play. A recurring theme of these musicals is how the actors are often stereotyped by their disabilities and how they are able to overcome these stereotypes.
For the past several years, it has been my privilege to design and build the sets and props for these plays.
This year, the setting for the story was an abandoned amusement park that the actors wanted to restore to its former glory.
One of the main props needed was a kiddie amusement park train. Their director likes models of the sets and props because it helps her visualize how they will appear on stage.
So I make simple models of everything. She did not like the original design for the locomotive because it looked too real.
She wanted something that looked more like a kiddie amusement park locomotive. So…back to the drawing board.
The new design met with her approval. She originally wanted a locomotive and two cars; however, because of limited space on the stage, I only constructed the full-scale locomotive.
The locomotive had to move under its own power so I fabricated a wooden framework over an electric powered kids ride-on jeep .
The locomotive body consisted of plywood panels attached to the framework.
The boiler was foamboard and the original smoke stack was a plastic flower pot. The mechanical components typical of a steam locomotive are absent but that is what the director wanted.
Just before the initial performance, she decided that the locomotive looked entirely too new. After all, it was supposed to be in an abandoned amusement park.
So we did a little last minute weathering.
The locomotive’s appearance on stage was greeted with great fanfare.
The most challenging part of the build was fabricating a mechanism for blowing a large puff of smoke from the smokestack (now a simple cylinder). The “smoke effect” mechanism consisted of a canister of compressed air and a plastic cup filled with baby power.
I put the mechanism inside the smokestack and a quick pull on the canister trigger released a large plume of baby powder smoke (sorry for the poor quality of the photo…it is a screenshot captured from a video).
The actors, especially the young lad who played the engineer and the audience members loved the smoke. At the end of each performance, children from the audience could have their picture taken sitting in the locomotive.
This was not one of my most mechanically accurate builds but it certainly was one of my most popular.
And…it introduced model railroading to a whole new audience. Thank you for letting me share this with you.
That’s all for today folks – please do keep ’em coming because I am emjoy them as much as you.
And if today is the day you get started on your layout, the Beginner’s Guide is here.
PS Latest ebay cheat sheet is here.
Bob, this is super! Having fun with kids and adults in a play such as shown is one way to show the loveof the hobby. I loved it and wish to thank Al for giving me, and I hope others,this chance to see someone present their love of the hobby such as shown here. Thank you both for this opportunity to see the hobby in a different light. Bill Wiles from Nova Scotia.
First, I would say Mark did a great job with down sizing his layout. Personally, because of being disabled since 2003, I prefer working with American Flyer and Lionel scale train’s. My first train was an American Flyer Set for Christmas in the early 60’s. Then in the 90’s, I fell in love with a Kline passenger set. If I remember correctly, it was only sold at Boscov’s Department Store’s. Plus, I bought each of the additional piece’s too. This included the B unit and an additional 4 passenger car’s.
For those that never heard of Boscov’s. It is a family owned and operated chain of Department Store’s, based in Reading, Pennsylvania. This is the same Reading, Pennsylvania. Where we have real working engine’s, rolling stock and passenger train rides today. To give people an idea of how it was in year’s past when the train was how people got around in a country, before the automobile came along. Plus, the Reading scale model Train’s anyone of us may have on our layout today.
Now, on to the second Post. I believe it does belong being shown on this site. Yes, some may disagree. But, when we stop and think. Making use of a Power Wheels, as the base for a platform for which to build a moving Train Engine. I can only see good things coming from it. First, to be used on stage. As we see in this post. And second, additionally adding another way to stir interest in any young person’s mind for train’s. As much as, children love watching model trains and seeing a real train rolling on their tracks in any part of the world. What child with interest in watching any scale train. Would really enjoy having their own moving Train Engine, by using a Power Wheels for the base. In the future, I can see more people joining the model train fun, as we ourselves enjoy today as adults. When we help children enjoy trains even more. By the fine example we see in the second Post here today.
Al, my hat is off to you for deciding to include the second Post on your website. Thank you, for the awesome work you do to help everyone of us enjoy our own model railroad and to learn from others how they build and model their layouts.
Bob, I’ve been working with directors for going on 40 years designing sets, building sets, and acting in amateur theater, so I understand the process you went through. The locomotive you and I would like to have built would have been more life-like, but the end result filled the needs of the production. They were having so much fun! I think that was the goal. And the confidence they gain by performing in front of an audience will serve them well in life.
Thanks Al, for putting my layout on, Have to send you a few updates, made a couple scenery changes. Thanks Linden
The ultimate man cave. The smell of beer and old O trains running-it dont get no better’n that. The layout is great.
Big Al did right in posting this wonderful story. You are to be commended in what you did and it shows what us train guys can do when asked. You were asked to build something maybe you would have done differently but you followed the director’s wishes and a great job you did! There are users and givers in this world and you are a giver. Bravo
To all be safe
Looks pretty kool.!!!! I hope mine turns out that good.
Mark that is the best looking model railroad of the Lionel scale that I have ever seen.
Possibly the greatest observation ever made on this terrific site: “Having a cold beer and watching trains.”
Modelling at any scale requires imagination, inventiveness, ingenuity and skill – a great project Bob and one to bring so much joy to so many Very well done and thank you for posting Al.
Andrew Down Under