Feb 23, 2017

What's new at the Evergreen Railroad?

We just entered the Twenty First Century with Scotty adding CD and DVD viewing to our members
and guests to enjoy railroad entertainment while viewing the club's activity.  The mighty Heimerdinger's
photos were shown on the big screen today.
The Twenty Century was pretty good to us railfans as it gave us the Great Northern Railroad including the Big Sky Blue era. I miss it more each day.
Keith Wiles must feel the same way to have a 20 car passenger train with all the equipment matching including the locos.
The BN was another Twenty Century loss with the BNSF changing everything. Here we have a Robert
Case set catching up to to a mile long grain train owned by John Schwarze. What is this world coming too?
Member Rod Huffman insisted on this shot as it reflects the real thing that happened near Seattle
with an SUV running into a Sounder commuter train yesterday.  But where's the road?
U boats were not just in the water but we had them in Spokane as well in the form of U25s and U28s
owned by Marvin the Magnificent.  The yellows are factory supplied. I would go with the lead unit color.
Another angle on John's train as it was a pretty long one for sure. John runs the real ones for a living.

Welcome to Pesek Place

After abandoning the Evergreen Club for greener pastures which turned out to be Georgetown, Texas, I tracked him down last week on my vacation trip with Alice to Austin,
Texas to visit my son James. Here we find Phil up in his second story train layout setup to show me around. Notice everything is on place as Phil is an organizer!
His collection of HO models represents the southwest where Phil grew up so Rock Island, Kansas City Southern
and other roads' equipment is predominant. No SP&S stuff was seen in my investigation. Nice shelf Phil!
The layout is in its infancy but good stuff is coming soon. Note the opening in the layout as it needs
further information as it a piece of art.  The layout will represent the wooded area of his childhood memories.
He was very complimentary to the club members who helped him learn woodworking, electric stuff and
weathering. Phil has won awards for his modeling at national events. He does pay attention!. And he gave
me a new bottle of Flowquil rust paint! Nice!
The bridge area swings down out of the way when Phil or
his friends want to get into the layout. It was very precise
in its structure to allow power to continue through the tracks.
He didn't learn this stuff from me as you can see how precise he lays out everything with logic.
We sure miss him in Spokane as he is a very likeable guy....for a lawyer!
One day Phil brought these 2 KCS units in with a photo of the real thing and he asked me to replicate
the weathering and here is how they look today. Phil will be visiting us the end of March sometime.
Thanks for the warm welcome in my visit, Phil. See you again soon!

Feb 17, 2017

Revised date correction on open house


Evergreen members finally are coming together!

It looks like three trains are going to come together at one switch in the every near future as the Milwaukee Road caboose seems to be leaving the scene of the
crime or accident. Maybe one or two of them will stop in time?  Good thing they are stopped for the photo?
Member Tom Hindley has green blocks all the way to Bakersville as 4 big Santa Fe units haul uphill
at the front of the layout.
Member Jack Pappas moved a flock of ore hoppers back to the Green Branch with his 4 axle units.
It seems Chuck Heimerdinger is going to be upset again as Jack has not lettered his small switcher
as Chuck says its illegal for it not to be. Sorry Chuck but ore cars needed to be moved.
We celebrated Tom Hindley's 60th birthday tonight at the club with desserts made by Chef Marvin.\
Another celebration was for Keith Wiles 38th but not for his birthday but for 38 years working for BN
and BNSF as an engineer. Now he is retired. Can you tell which one Keith is?
A special guest today was Jack Pappas's dad came to visit him at the club
as he was a modeler himself as well as an Air Force veteran and seems
to be a terrific dad making sure his son is fitting in to the club.

Feb 16, 2017

Those Wednesday's Warriors play with steam engines!

With a little Photoshop I was able to remove the aisle and show John Smith's impressive Southern Pacific Cab Forward in a promotional paint scheme
back in the age of steam.
The gray boilered body really catches the eye as it rolls over a steel bridge as it brings fresh fruits and
vegetables to the starving masses in New York and other places back east.
Not to be outdone on this historic night is this 4-6-6-4 Challenger in Northern Pacific livery. Marvelous
Marvin owns this one.
Then we have the king of all steam engines is this 4-8-8-4 Big Boy making its way across the land of
fruits and nuts on its maiden run. A real one is being restored as we speak by the Union Pacific.
Here are the 3 bad boys together conniving together, perhaps to take over the world? The first
is with the SP and its turned around for safety reasons to be ahead of the smoke if they fail to make it
out of snowsheds and tunnels. The second is a 4-8-8-4 Big Boy, the largest of them all. The third is a
4-6-6-4 Challenger or a little brother to the Big Boy and the Cab Forward.
The Cab Forwards has to be oil fired to get the fuel into the firebox located in the cab. Coal just would not do. Each one of these engines had articulated wheel sets so they could navigate curves
in the rails.  It was like have 2 sets of driving wheels but one engineer. Lots of power was achieved as long as you had good rail underneath these monster machines because of their weight.

Feb 15, 2017

Flyer for Open house on March 4th.

You can print out the first one for a few friends or hang them at your favorite grocery store
or shop for people to know what is happening in the area. You can change the size as well.
Make one for yourself so you don't forget and paste it on your refrigerator. The train show is
the next day at the Spokane Fairgrounds.
The second one will print out on a 8.5 x 11 " sheet for 2 copies on 1 sheet of paper
and you can cut them apart for additional handouts. I got them for Sunset Junction.
I use this kid's photo as he reminds me why I love trains.

Feb 14, 2017

Montana moves to the Spokane Valley....maybe a chunck of it anyway!

Marvin tells me that he now has 12 MRL locos in his roster as that railroad now is the sole landlord for Paradise, Montana where he grew up at.
John Schwarze has expanded his horizon beyond the Western Pacific with the addition of 2 Union
Pacific locos to his roster.
Robert Case showed off his 12 car BN passenger fleet that he recently acquired. It looked very
Speaking impressive, here we have Rod Huffman making another run with 37 cabooses on his train.
He says he wants to get to 100 cabooses for his final collection.
Here's the head end of Robert's BN passenger fleet making its maiden run. I told you it was impressive.
Will Windom looks pleased to be videotaping our trains on the layout to add it our Evergreen website.
Will and Don Carnegie are working on making it better.

Feb 9, 2017

Waiting my turn to get a photo.

It was bound to happen, two of the newer members are now taking photos and setting up for scenes and little old me has to wait for my turn. Will Windom and Rod Huffman
(of airplane crashes on the Evergreen fame ) elbow each other to get the ultimate shot of their trains at Beaver Canyon
Later on I was able to talk Rod to move his BNSF loco and caboose to the next bridge
on the Green Branch and took this looking up shot.
Will's latest addition to his collection of branch line engines is this Central Oregon & Pacific diesel but it doesn't scare off
the fisherman who is looking for his evening meal somewhere in the clear waters of Thomas Creek.
John Schwarze WP locos break on the scene as we are setting up for another shot for the Will and Rod show.
I stopped at the club today (Weds) to run my brass Northern Pacific FT diesels and other models but these units got the
attention with my camera coming out of one of 18 tunnels on the layout.
I turned the lights down for low light photography to enhance the headlight. I think it did that and more. This particular diesel
was called the steam engine killer as it replaced a lot of steamers in the late 1940s.

Feb 7, 2017

The Evergreen story.

In the beginning there were 12 Equity members that invested $500.00 each to start the Evergreen Railroad
Modelers club in the Spokane Valley. Here we see 4 members adding background panels to the back side of
the layout in a storefront some 25 feet by 60 feet in size. Today we now have 34 members with a variety of
talents and skills. We estimate that there is 30,000 dollars and at least that many hours invested in this layout
to make this layout possible. That's is more than any individual could hope to achieve by himself.
The layout starts taking form and the subgrade is in place waiting for the rail to be laid next. The official
date of the start of this club was September 1st, 2008 some 8 and a half years ago. The layout consists of
3 independent rail systems with grades built into the original design. The roadbed laid is what we call the
Blue line , better known as the main track with 36 inch minimum radius. The other 2 are yet to to built in this photo.
The same location in the above photo some 5 years later with Steve Welton working trains on the Blue Main
with plenty of rock scenery and trestles to add to the view of the 2 trains passing each other.
A bit of wimsey is done with Photoshop to change the I-90 highway exit sign to include the club name
on it. I lifted the Evergreen name from Evergreen Road sign 2 miles west of this exit. It is a tourist
location after all so why not?
We run dozens of club members trains each month and we also have our own equipment painted up
as our own railroad. We have only one goal at our club and that is to have fun. That's why we are in
the hobby in the first place!

Feb 4, 2017

Welcome to Alaska!

I have been to Alaska twice on cruise ships and rode the White Pass up the hill to Canada but never got further north to ride the Alaska Railroad from Anchorage
and into the wilderness. Jim Bowden lived up there for 40 years and enjoyed seeing them just about every day. Now he models in HO scale several versions of the
different passenger trains they had depending on the time line and different power sets.
Here we have Alaska meeting with Maine Central Railroad but where this would occur
in real life escapes me for the moment.
Member Steve hart showed up today at the club to run his Milwaukee Road #156 Bi-Centennial scheme on the point of other normal SD40-2s and a switcher.
The switcher must have been needing maintainance and is returning to its assigned location. Don C. has a near identical collection of locos.
Greg Mercier had 2 Maine Central trains running Thursday including this steam engine with a freight.
See how nice it runs without making all that nasty smoke like the SP&S locos do on our railroad.
Rodney Dangerfield, woops, Rodney Huffman has a Great Northern U boat on the rails but seems to be running
backwards. But for Rod that may be normal.
Final shot of the Alaska passing through some scenery that may be comparable to the real scenery
up there past the Great White North.