|The small inner-city diesel shop can handle most maintenance required by JSSX locomotives.|
by Don Janes
Quite some time ago George did a post on this blog about our friend Jim Sloan’s model railroad. Jim lives here in Sarnia so I have the good fortune to be able to drop in to Jim’s place from time to time and see what progress he is making on his layout. My last visit was in early January, just before heading to Arizona.
Jim models the modern era based on the industrialized parts of the larger intercity and includes some empty and run-down factories that were victims of the free trade era when much of the countries industrial base was moved to countries like Mexico and China. This left behind a lot of empty rotting structures which Jim has done a great job of representing. At the same time he has included many industries that are still very productive and require rail service to bring in and ship out goods and materials.
The JSSX short line does a bulk of the switching but the layout also features a Grand Trunk Western mainline. The JSSX interchanges with the GTW on a regular basis. While the GTW tends to run mostly modern home road power the JSSX depends on older, used power that is no longer needed by their original owner. There also several leased units that show up from time to time.
I think what impresses me most about Jim’s layout is how he has really captured the feel of modern era, industrial based railroading. His large factories, gritty, weathered equipment and general overall look of what we see in today's industrial areas bring this layout to life. Jim is a master at weathering equipment and structures which is another factor that makes this layout so realistic. Check out the photos and you will see what I mean. I know Jim’s layout inspires me to improve my modeling and strive for more realistic looking equipment and structures.
|The JSSX decided to re-purpose an old covered hopper to serve as a sand tower at the locomotive shop|
|This long, curved concrete block factory features windows and doors created from photographs that were sized to fit the structure then cut out and glued to the walls. Very realistic.|
|This photo is a great example of Jim’s attention to detail. Check out the dilapidated chain link fence, well weathered freight cars and broken windows in the factory to name a few of the excellent details in this scene.|
|Here is another example of Jim’s weathering skill.|
|This well worn GP-38 is a great example of weathering. The photo doesn’t do this model justice.|
|The JSSX uses this old abandoned factory siding to store their M of W equipment.|
|One of the newer additions to Jim’s layout is this oil storage facility. Again, note all the great looking weathering in the scene.|
|The Wright Bridge and Tank Co. is an example of a very active industry on Jim’s layout|
|This large abandoned factory has lots of broken windows, each one done separately.|