May 20, 2017

She'll be coming around the mountain....but very slowly!

 
 
 
This odd looking steam engine was unique as steam engines go but it served a purpose to run on very rough rails in the backwoods of America. Speed was
not required but getting over quickly laid track on uneven ground was. The Climax engine served the logging industry for some 50 years and like most things
their time has past into history except in the modeling world. Our member Janus Ledum owned this little piece of history.
 
Member Tom Hindley asked me to rough up these 2 covered hoppers as they were too shiny and bright colors.
Now they look like they are earning a living for the railroads.
 
Happy go lucky Steve Weso has this 4 unit set of BN power pulling a 40 car coal train around the layout
on Thursday with 2 lease units in the lead.
 
The tail end of Steve's train was this highly detailed BN caboose  (when they used cabooses up until 1985)
Steve's friend heavy weathered this caboose just like the way they looked at the end of their careers.
 
New member Ver Walker acquired these 2 brutes in UP colors showing the flags on their flanks.
He also had a unit in push position at the rear and the train ran flawlessly.
 
Marvin again made pies and cake for our 3 members who are celebrating birthdays in May and everyone
who attended enjoyed the fruits of his efforts. Rod Huffman and Jim Bowden were the birthday boys
who were in attendance. Russ McPherson could not make it, maybe next time.

May 16, 2017

The past is relived every day at the Evergreen!

If you traveled on the Northern Pacific in the early 1950s you would have the pleasure of riding behind a multible set of F units such as these beauties
that Jim Bowden had on the layout today.
 
Jack was all over the layout today doing switching jobs with his little switch engine working the mines
and other industries and yards we have on the layout
 
When the Montana Rail Link started life in the early 1980s, Owner Dennis Washington decided to invest in
hand me down BN locomotives and part of the deal was a few of these wide nosed F45 units.
 
The Milwaukee Road was in business until 1980 when they decided to shrink the railroad back to the
midwest and abandon everything west of Mobridge, North Dakota. That was a sad day for railfans,
employees, and investors. Losing a transcon was painful.
 
Jack pointed out that this experimental paint job on this Southern Pacific diesel was very unique as to
the fact that there are 2 different schemes involved in this experiment. Look at the nose as one side has
the wings in red and the other was solid red.  Strange these railroad people?

May 14, 2017

...and what was her answer?

 
 
 
 

Fw: Too many choices from the Evergreen! FOR UPCOMING CONVENTION WITH MNRA

Almost 9 years ago 12 modelers decided to start a new HO train club in the Spokane Valley called the Evergreen Railroad Modelers. We now have over 35 members
to work on and play with a nearly finished layout that features 3 separate rail lines plus a trolley line. We modeled a 1950 era layout with DCC and Code 83 rail.
We have conducted many clinics for our members and guests over the years teaching scenery, DCC, tree making, weathering with an air brush and other subjects.
The layout consists of 18 bridges, numerous tunnels, large yard, mountains, towns, city and a sea port. Open Tuesdays from 1 to 6 pm and Thursdays from 1 to 9 pm.
 
 
 
 
 

May 13, 2017

Intruder alert!

 
Last week the club suffered an invader from the southeast in the form of Southern Railroad power.
They were big on high nose units that gave the crew a bit more crash protection from cars and trucks that
might get in their way. I can't remember who brought them in but they will return!
 
Speaking about foreigners, does Montana Rail Link count? Their tracks end about 75 miles northeast of Spokane at Sandpoint, Idaho where they connect with the old NP line
just north of the Sandpoint bridge. These units are from some guy named Steve Weso that makes railroad videos for our enjoyment.
 
Now we get to friendly territory where hometown boy Spokane, Portland and Seattle made Spokane
their eastern exit. These 4 Alco FAs are in the original scheme.
 
You heard of grain trains, now a new term has been hatched called crane trains. This one is the brain
child of Rod Huffman and it is being pulled by a Milwaukee Road steam engine, what are the odds?
 
Gone but not forgotten is this Northern Pacific 4-8-4 passenger engine. It was just sold on Ebay.
Western Pacific is well represented by John Schwarze who recently retired from the BNSF. Now that he is retired,
what does he do? He plays with model trains!!!

May 3, 2017

Guess who officially retired today?

 
 
 
Keith's retirement party happened today and that should remove any doubt to any street rumors to the contrary. Here we see Keith with me at his
official last day as a BNSF engineer in the Spokane office at Yardley. 38 years is enough and that seals the deal!
 
Now we can play with model trains all day long just like Don Carnegie with his Milwaukee Road trains.
One loaded train going one direction where the opposite train brings the empties back to the mine.
 
Tom Kirk now has 4 UP engines for his trains pulling a long freight.
Jack Papas likes to do switching with a single unit just like they do around the Spokane yard.
 
Jack took my Milwaukee Road Fs for a spin with the clubs passenger cars.
 
Speaking of F units I am in the process of working over a bunch of plastic shells into BN units in both
A units with cabs and B units that are cabless. Of all the engines I have sold recently the BN Fs were
the ones that I regretted so I am making more for me and others.

May 1, 2017

Modeling mirrors real life!

Jack Pappas works the port district at the Evergreen club with his BNSF Geep while his short line loco waits its turn.
 
Burt broke away from the Camas Prairie mindset to run his Santa Fe steam engine that is scheduled
to become a Northern Pacific steamer.
 
The Goat goes Blue! From 1966 to 1970 the Great Northern played with Big Sky Blue just before the
BN merger canceled any attempt to  change to anything else than BN Green.  Janis owns the passenger train but
I'm not sure who owns the freight train other than Jim Hill?
 
This one is owned by happy Steve Weso working the Green branch looking for an industry that needs empty
bulkhead flats. The crew is praying that the bridge will hold together as it is a Heimerdinger creation.
 
East meets west as Maine Central trains rule the rails. At least they don't smoke?
 
Burlington Northern still has a remnant of one of their merger units still in service as a modern set
passes in the background.

Apr 29, 2017

What's this.... 8 engines and no cars?

Scotty Smith showed up Tuesday with a collection of Union Pacific heritage locos that were absorbed into the UP system. Each loco other than UP itself is a adaptation of the original railroad look
but changed to be more improved.  Union Pacific is one of the original railroad names that survives today.
 
For instance, this is the future look they put on a Missouri, Kansas & Texas Railroad , called the Katy,
that I consider a fancy, modern look for a small railroad that UP took over in 1988.
 
Well, UP got the red right as these old warhorses look pretty grimy to me.
 
Rio Grande always had a neat paint scheme on their locos, especially the passenger scheme and this
modern version would look pretty good climbing the hills of the Rockies today.
 
Another fallen flag is the Chicago & Northwestern in green and yellow. The engine number represents
the year the railroad was merged into the yellow peril. Ignore the fingertip! I said...oh never mind!
 
No those models are not N scale as Scotty Smith is a slightly large person and the illusion is understandable.