Archive for the ‘Train Shows’ Category

National Train Day & Rickreall Model Train Show

Friday, May 13th, 2011

Last Saturday was National Train Day, a holiday started in 2008 by Amtrak to celebrate the completion of the first transcontinental railroad. The golden spike was driven home on May 10th 1869 in Promontory, Utah connecting the Union Pacific and Central Pacific railroads. Although the holiday was initiated by Amtrak, all sorts of railroad museums, model railroad clubs, railfans, and model railroad retailers celebrate with events across the country.

Celebration of completion of the transamerican railroad on 1869-05-10 (May 10th 1869) at what is now Golden Spike National Historic Site.  Public Domain: From the NPS website at http://www.nps.gov/gosp/index.htm

Celebration of completion of the transamerican railroad on May 10th 1869 at what is now Golden Spike National Historic Site. Public Domain: From the NPS website at http://www.nps.gov/gosp/index.htm

This year we did our celebrating by being a part of the Rickreall Model Train Swapmeet & Show just west of Salem, Oregon hosted by the Polk Station Rail Model Train Club. This club was founded in 1993 and features an HO scale layout which is permanently housed in a large upstairs room of the historic Rickreall Grange Hall.

Show organizer and club president, Tom Pryor, welcomes everyone in at the front door. Photo by Cat Cook

Show organizer and club president, Tom Pryor, welcomes everyone in at the front door. Photo by Cat Cook

The subject of their layout is the Oregonian Railroad which was a narrow gauge railroad that ran through Polk Station to Dallas, Oregon until Southern Pacific acquired the line in 1890 which removed the narrow gauge and replaced it with standard gauge. The layout is quite large and has great use of light and sound. Below you will find just a couple of shots, one includes the Tim Burr logging truck from Woodland Scenics.

The use of lighting in the Polk Station Rail Model Train Club's layout is fabulous as seen in this part of the neighborhood. Photo by Cat Cook

The use of lighting in the Polk Station Rail Model Train Club's layout is fabulous as seen in this part of the neighborhood. Photo by Cat Cook

Section of the Polk Station Rail Model Train Club layout featuring a Tim Burr Logging truck by Woodland Scenics. Photo by Cat Cook

Section of the Polk Station Rail Model Train Club layout featuring a Tim Burr Logging truck by Woodland Scenics. Photo by Cat Cook

One of the best things about participating in train shows is meeting other vendors with unique items we haven’t seen before. This show gave us a few opportunities to meet such folks. First, we met Dave one of our ‘table neighbors’ upstairs. He does custom modeling and scratch building of HO vehicles and equipment. He displays and sells some of his already completed projects and takes on custom projects for customers looking for items that are not already available in the marketplace. Although he mostly works in HO scale, he is not vehemently opposed to doing projects in O or N scale. “If you can imagine it, I can build it,” he says. Dave can be reached at dgeo59@hotmail.com or 503-442-0140.

A custom detailed Ford F350 contactor's pick up by Dave. Photo by Cat Cook

A custom detailed Ford F350 contactor's pick up by Dave. Photo by Cat Cook

An drill that can be used for oil or water, custom built by Dave. Photo by Cat Cook

A trailer-mounted drill custom built by Dave. Photo by Cat Cook

Another unique vendor we met this show was photographer, Laurie Breier. Laurie’s collection of photography is called Graffiti Artistry and it provides a unique view of railcars acting as the canvas to graffiti’s paint.  Railroad graffiti is its own subculture which Laurie captures as striking images framed and ready to display. The subject inspires conversation about topics such as the history of ‘graffiti’ on trains back to the days of hobo codes, what is art, and how has graffiti affected railroads, railfans, and modeling. Laurie can be reached at wkndrs@cmspan.net.

Laurie Breier displaying some of her work at the Rickreall Model Train Show. Photo by Cat Cook

Laurie Breier displaying some of her work at the Rickreall Model Train Show. Photo by Cat Cook

Laurie sharing one of her photos featuring graffiti and rust taken near the Roseburg, OR rail yard. Photo by Cat Cook

Laurie sharing one of her photos featuring graffiti and rust taken near the Roseburg, OR rail yard. Photo by Cat Cook

If you missed participating in some of the events for this year’s National Train Day here are a couple of the other big rail events coming this summer:

And here are some lists of other rail events for your perusal:

National Train Day Street Faire this Saturday in Ashland, OR

Thursday, May 5th, 2011

The Ashland Historic Railroad Museum is celebrating National Train Day this Saturday the 7th from 12pm – 4pm at their current location 258 A Street in Ashland, Oregon. Aside from live music, railroad presentations by historians and rail organizations, and children’s activities they will be holding a raffle to help raise funds to acquire the original Railroad Depot for museum expansion.

The original Railroad Depot for Ashland at 5th and A Streets. Photo by Cat Cook

The original Railroad Depot for Ashland at 5th and A Streets. Photo by Cat Cook

We are already committed to attend the Rickreall Grange Train Swapmeet & Show May 7th & 8th and can’t attend ourselves but we donated a raffle prize to help the cause: a complete deluxe Thomas & Friends train set plus a Short Line Engineer Kit so the lucky winner can operate their new train in style.

Cat delivering the Thomas Train set to the museum for this weekend's raffle. Photo by Don Cook

Cat delivering the Thomas Train set to the museum for this weekend's raffle. Photo by Don Cook

If you live in the State of Jefferson consider dropping by to have a good ol’ time and support the museum! They are raffling off lots of goodies including a stay at the Ashland Springs Hotel!

Ashland Historical Railroad Museum Director & Curator Victoria Law and her husband getting ready for the event! Photo by: Cat Cook

Ashland Historical Railroad Museum Director & Curator Victoria Law and her husband Chris getting ready for the event! Photo by: Cat Cook

Here’s the flyer for the event!

National Train Day Flyer

National Train Day Flyer

Eugene Train Show: Railfans & Layouts & Speeders – Oh My!

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

Last weekend (April 9 & 10, 2011) was the 23rd Annual Willamette Cascade Model Railroad Club Train Show & Swap Meet in Eugene, OR. It was our first time there and we met many new & friendly folks. We look forward to going back for this show year after year. In all, it filled 3 large rooms of the Expo Building at the Lane County Fairgrounds. There were layouts, equipment, vintage railroadiana, railfan goodies, model trains & accessories in abundance. Lee & Diane Temple were on point organizing the show, their hard work paid off with a well-attended and smooth-running event. When they aren’t organizing the train show they specialize in buying, selling, and consigning trains, paper, books, memorabilia, & more! Their business is Temple’s Trains and Things and they can be reached at ttandt@ram-mail.com.

I think I was in the right place - Willamette Cascade Model Railroad Show - Photo by: Cat Cook

I think I was in the right place! - The Willamette Cascade Model Railroad Show - Photo by: Cat Cook

There were a few layouts including Clay’s Trailer-n-Train Railroad, a 24 by 10 foot G-scale layout that is displayed right on the trailer used to transport it from event to event. Across the way were the Oregon Electric O-Gaugers with their 30 by 12 foot O-scale layout. In one of the other rooms Roger Fegles, one of the members of the Willamette Cascade Model Railroad Club, had an awesome N-scale layout displayed.

Gary & Roger of the Willamette Cascade Model Railroad Club were all smiles while working the door at the show. Photo by: Cat Cook

Gary & Roger of the Willamette Cascade Model Railroad Club were all smiles while working the door at the show. Photo by: Cat Cook

Nearby, Ken showed off Dawson Station, his 1 x 4 foot N-scale layout based on the Hull-Oakes lumber mill in Dawson, Oregon. If you’ve never seen Ken’s Dawson Station layout or his website please check it out! I love his video tours, especially the Nightfall at Dawson Station which includes a soundtrack of Willamette Valley frogs & the Arduino Control of Model Train which gives an overview of the circuit boards used to control the locomotive and sound (Hey Dad, if you are reading this, watch that one!) By the way, wanna see how to use a Wii Nunchuk to control a locomotive forwards and backwards (with realistic acceleration) as well as to operate turnouts? You can see it in the Arduino Control of Model Train video. It’s pretty cool and geeky (two attributes I appreciate equally.)

Dawson Station Layout based on Hull-Oakes Sawmill - Photo by: Cat Cook

Dawson Station Layout based on Hull-Oakes Sawmill - Photo by: Cat Cook

If you’ve been to a train show before, you may have seen one of these on display:

M-19 Fairmont Speeder - Photo by: Cat Cook

M-19 Fairmont Speeder - Photo by: Cat Cook

These railroad motorcars, AKA speeders, were used to travel on and inspect track although nowadays Hy-Rail vehicles are usually used instead. The North American Rail Car Operators Association (NARCOA) is comprised of people who privately own these rail cars and get together for excursions on tracks around the country. We met Guy and his speeder named Sophia (pictured below) at the show and got to hear about this fascinating hobby. Because NARCOA has an excellent reputation for safety, they are allowed to rent out rail lines for their excursions. Often these excursions take the motorcar owners and their lucky few passengers to locales miles from civilization for some very unique railroading experiences. For more information about this hobby check out www.narcoa.org and www.railspeeders.com.

"Sophia" the Speeder! Photo by: Cat Cook

"Sophia" the Speeder! She's a Tamper TMC-2 - Photo by: Cat Cook

On the way home I snapped a couple more pictures of Central Oregon & Pacific’s Winchester switching yard:

CORP's Winchester Rail Switching Yard - Photo by Cat Cook

CORP's Winchester Rail Switching Yard - Photo by Cat Cook

Here are some EMD GP20Ds in Central Oregon & Pacific (CORP) and leasing company Capital Equipment Funding (CEFX) paint:

EMD GP20Ds at the Central Oregon & Pacific yard in Winchester, OR - Photo by: Cat Cook

EMD GP20Ds at the Central Oregon & Pacific yard in Winchester, OR - Photo by: Cat Cook

We passed this mystery piece of Maintenance of Way equipment on a West Rail Construction flat bed, if you can identify it please email me (Cat) at media@theshortline.com:

Maintenance of Way Equipment (Unidentified) Photo by: Cat Cook

Maintenance of Way Equipment (Unidentified) Photo by: Cat Cook

Happy Railroading!