The madness of Chester Machniewski 

What an enormous pleasure it was to meet Chester Machniewski today!  Here is a man whose welcome and smile were eclipsed only by his fanaticism for model trains. Lots of people have passions, but few take them to Chester’s affectation.  As far as I could tell, he does nothing on a small scale.  Need a large mill in 7mm scale?  Build one big enough for … Continue reading The madness of Chester Machniewski 

Operations ideas from BC Hydro

My friend, Colin Dover, intimated to me last night that he builds layouts purely so he can have a place to switch.  A couple of years ago, he tore out his representation of Vancouver Waterfront to build his “much simpler” Central Park line of BC Hydro. I put “much simpler” in quotes because, well, it is not a simple layout by my reckoning.  There are … Continue reading Operations ideas from BC Hydro

Cade’s Green

As guest editor for Model Railway Journal No. 250, Iain Rice profiled his own home layout, Cade’s Green.  Now, Iain’s is one of the few voices that somehow avoids the stultifying muffle of the American press, even when writing for Kalmbach. So, left to his own devices, his feature article absolutely sings with his rich moustachioed tone. Some readers will need an interpreter.  It’s an … Continue reading Cade’s Green

Reflections on the first layout tour

Well, the Railway Modellers’ Meet is in the can for 2017.  Everyone seems to agree that it was a super event. Pembroke was on the self-guided layout tour, which took place today around mid-day.  I was still sweeping the silk tree leaves off the driveway when the first guests pulled up, and for four hours I always had two to five people reviewing my efforts. … Continue reading Reflections on the first layout tour

Near miss on the Boundary Sub

On Wednesday evening, I had an opportunity to dispatch on my friend Scott Calvert’s layout.  His is a timetable and train order operation, just as the real Boundary was.  If you’ve never had an opportunity to participate in a TT&TO operation, I encourage you to come to Vancouver for the annual Railway Modellers’ Meet.   This year, we have operating sessions on two evenings, but they’re … Continue reading Near miss on the Boundary Sub

Coming Shifts in the Hobby

After visiting the south shore of Nova Scotia, and a dip into New Brunswick to celebrate Grammie’s 100th birthday, we found ourself on PEI.  We stayed with our friend Marshall Ouellet, who was Laura’s Katimavik parent before I’d ever considered moving to Vancouver.  He also happens to be a model railroader. The only other person I know on the Island is Chris Mears, my modern-day … Continue reading Coming Shifts in the Hobby