Thursday 29 February 2024

Throwback Thursday - Idler Car


CN 1371 and its associated idler car are working the Sarnia boat yard on April 23, 1994.
By Peter Mumby.

The St Clair River separates Port Huron, Michigan from Sarnia, Ontario.  The original Grand Trunk Railway tunnel under the river was opened in 1891, and was able to accommodate most existing rolling stock for the next seventy years or so.  In the last several decades of the twentieth century cars such as autoracks and high cube boxcars were introduced which exceeded the clearances of the tunnel.  Car ferries had to be used to transfer these cars across the river, adding a lot of extra effort and expense to the movement of this type of freight.  In 1993 construction started on a new tunnel which would handle these types of high cars.  The new tunnel was opened in late 1994 and the use of the car ferries was terminated.  

CN 665361 was an idler car which allowed locomotives such as the 1371 to reach the traffic on a car ferry without placing its weight on the apron which spanned the space between the deck and the ground.  The park bench and the extra hand holds are thoughtful additions for the comfort and safety of the crew members working in the Sarnia boat yard.

Tuesday 27 February 2024

BAR Reefers

This car looks very new in this photo. Note the black ends. New 3- 52

A couple of steel BAR reefers...George Dutka  

BAR 8000 was new 4-55.

Monday 26 February 2024

Bellows Falls

On the White River Division one is looking at the area of the B&M Rutland joint freight house. The ITLA structure looks bigger than a building flat.
A look around the area of my Bellows Falls freight house. In the background I built an ITLA kit as a bit of a thicker looking building flat. I set the structure on an angle with a chimney at the rear which make the structure appear like it is a full structure. The small shack is from BarMills shack pack...George Dutka  

Sunday 25 February 2024

CV Cabooses

The siding is being installed during the fall of 2011 inside the shop. The caboose had been stripped down to a shell. 
I stopped in at Willimantic back in 2011 to visit the museum there. The CV center cupola caboose was looking really good with new siding being applied. The interior was still a mess though but being worked on. I have never got back to see the final product, but a trip I hope is in my future...George Dutka  

Saturday 24 February 2024

BAR GP7 and GP9

A bit of a close-up view of Peter Mumby's loaner geep's to the WRD. These engines are wonderfully weathered Atlas and Proto engines...George Dutka     

Friday 23 February 2024

GTW - Delray Michigan

The Delray tower is seen to the right in this view from Dec, 1 2023 that was taken by Ken Borg.
Kenneth Borg has sent me some photos from Delray in Detroit Michigan awhile back. I did not see the tower there so I asked if it was still standing. Ken sent me this view of the tower as it looks today...George Dutka 

CN L507 with GTW 8952 in the consist at Delray. Ken Borg photo.
CN L 507 at Delray Dec 18 2023. Ken Borg photo

Thursday 22 February 2024

Throwback Thursday - Scale Test Cars

Two very different styles of scale test cars were found together in London on May 20, 1995.

By Peter Mumby. 

Scale test cars of two different styles and eras were coupled together at Quebec St Yard in London on May 20, 1995.  420926 was a product of Atlas Steel from 1916, while 420927 had been built in 1969 by National Steel Car.  The newer car had been rebuilt in 1988 from covered hopper number 381933.  It might seem unusual to have two very different cars numbered consecutively, but this is likely the result of the rationalization of two different previous number series.  420926 was ex-400926, while 420927 had been renumbered in 1990 from 416060.  This variety continued throughout the number series.  I also have in my collection photos of 420925, 28, 39, and 41 in the older style, and 420930 and 36 in the cylindrical style.

Tuesday 20 February 2024

Abandoned Fuel Tank


A B&M 44 tonner passes over the underpass which leads from the Westboro shop area to WRJ. The abandoned oil tank is something I picked up at a train show years ago in poor shape. I glued it back together, painted, added wire holds, a ladder and a sign to the tank. Of course some grime and rust has been added...George Dutka  

Sunday 18 February 2024

NH 31024 Boxcar

NH boxcar 31024 seen in St. Thomas was built 11-1944. Bob Bowes copy from Sirman collection.

Here we see a nice clean looking view of a New Haven boxcar near where I live in St. Thomas Ontario at the L&PS diamond during June 1952. It looks like it had been recently repainted...George Dutka   

Saturday 17 February 2024

A 1980's View of the WRD

An Accurail CV boxcar that has had some changes is included in a train that also has North Stratford Ry. boxcars in the consist.
I took this picture sometime ago to reflect a more modern era than the 1950's that normally is set on the layout...George Dutka  

Another view has the CV run through train heading into the Bellows Falls tunnel with a CN international caboose which had yellow cupolas. This is a True Line Trains model. I had seen many of these on my early visits to Vermont.

Friday 16 February 2024

The East Broad Top Railroad - Don Janes


An overall look at one end of the shop complex.  

The East Broad Top Railroad

A Step Back In Railroad History……by Don Janes 

Part Two

The old stone office was originally a farm house before the railroad was built in Rock Hill Furnace (Orbisonia) 

An interior shot of one of the old shop buildings. Things lay pretty much where they were when the railroad closed down in the 1950’s.

The old 8 stall roundhouse is in great shape and houses three other EBT steam engines beside #16 and an old gas electric passenger unit.  Hopefully some of these engines will be restored to operating condition some day.

The train has backed down to the yard for water before its last run of the day.

The conductor is walking the train as the tender is filled from a hose that runs over to the roundhouse

#16 waits at the station to depart on her last trip of the day.

Thursday 15 February 2024

Throwback Thursday - Canadian Operation Only

NW 555077 was sitting at CN St Thomas North on June 12, 1994.
By Peter Mumby.

During the final years of operation with cabooses, NS freights 327 and 328 utilized a group of Norfolk & Western cars which were specifically labelled for "Canadian Operation Only."  One such car, NW 555077, was photographed in the CN St Thomas North yard on June 12, 1994.  I also have in my collection photos of cabooses 555009, 019, 020, 023, 027, and 029 which carried identical markings.  NW 555020 remains in St Thomas today as part of the collection of the Elgin County Railway Museum.  

Tuesday 13 February 2024

Snapshot - February 2024


 Diesel switcher M-7 assembling the first morning train. 

The East Broad Top Railroad

A Step Back In Railroad History……by Don Janes 

Part One

     In Oct.2023 my wife and I set out for a railfanning week in Pennsylvania and Maryland. One of the primary reasons for the trip was to visit the narrow gauge East Broad Top Railroad in Pennsylvania.  The railroad sat dormant for quite a few years and was recently brought back to life by new owners with various grants and donations helping to retore the railroad. I had read about the EBT and now that they were running live steam again, I thought it was a good time to visit.  We had planned to visit the railroad on a Saturday but while at the Stausburg Railroad I ran into another railfan who was quite knowledgeable about the EBT and he informed me that they were running trains on Friday for a private group of people but it would be totally accessible for photos but without the usual crowds.  We arrived at the station in Orbisonia (in the borough of Rockhill Furnace) on Friday morning to take in the events of the day right from the beginning.  We would take the four mile train ride the next day when it was open to the public.

        One of the highlights besides watching and riding the steam train was a walking tour of the shops. The railroad shut down in the mid 1950’s and everything remains almost the same as the day they locked the doors.  A lot of foundation work had to be done to stabilize the buildings but all the machinery was left much the same as when it closed.  They are currently rebuilding one of the steam engines and doing some other restoration work on some of the other equipment in one section of the shops.  The roundhouse is also an interesting spot and there are several EBT steam engines that have been inside since the 1950’s and are in very good condition since they were under cover for years, out of the harsh elements. All in all, it was a great two days of experiencing the glory days of steam railroading.  The EBT is doing a great job of restoring the railroad and hopefully will continue to do so for years to come.

A closer view of M-7

Railfans gather at the Orbisonia depot for the morning’s special train.

EBT #16 has just finished running around the wye and is heading to pick up her train in the yard.

#16 backs down to her train by the main shop

The first run of the day is seen departing Orbisonia.

#16 rolls along a fill about 3 miles from town. Today’s consist is a mixed train.

The train is passing over a country road about a mile from the current end of track.


Monday 12 February 2024

West Chazy NY - Postcard

An older era postcard view of the West Chazy, NY station. It appears they colored this one. Not the order board out front in the stop and hold position...George Dutka      

Sunday 11 February 2024

BEST - Rockingham

The completed freight house still needs a home on my layout...will see were it fits in.
I built this B&M structure a few years back but don't think I posted much about it. Here are a few views of the completed model with the new sign added...George Dutka  

Two doors are modeled part way open with a bit of details inside.

The roof got a really worn look to it.

Saturday 10 February 2024

CP Work Open Top Hoppers

London, Ontario CP yard.

There was a string of CP open top hoppers in London yard back in 2023, probably for the underpass work program. It was interesting to see how these cars have faired over the years...George Dutka 

The primer is beginning to show through the top coat of paint.

On this car the car numbers are just spray bombed on. Lots of the original logo is either worn off or covered over.

Friday 9 February 2024

B&M Milk Scene

An overall view of a scene that is not on the layout anymore. I had built a B&M style milk platform and converted an N scale ice house as drop-ins for this scene. The B&M BL2 is a Lifelike model detailed lettered and painted by my friend Warren Dodgson years ago. It is now in my collection. I have added DCC to the model...George Dutka   


Thursday 8 February 2024

Throwback Thursday - Out for a Spin

CP 5410 is all hooked up and pumping air to power the London turntable on October 24, 1993.

By Peter Mumby.  

On October 24, 1993, CP 5410 was taking a spin on the turntable at Quebec St yard in London, Ontario.  As you can see from the hose connections, this device was powered by compressed air taken from the locomotive itself.

On CP the 5400 number series was reserved for SD40 and SD40-2 locomotives purchased on the second hand market.  DRF -30x  5410 was an SD40 built in 1971 by GMD as Quebec North Shore & Labrador 214.  It had been acquired from QNSL in 1985.

Tuesday 6 February 2024

Rutland Ry on the WRD!

Rutland Ry RS-1 405 on occasion is seen along the WRD. This is an Atlas model I detailed years ago and about 2010 added DCC and sound. The boxcar is a Kadee PS-1 that has light weathering applied. I took this photo over 10 years ago.  

Monday 5 February 2024

CN 9555 - A Well Weathered Engine

CN 9555 has seen better days. When I hired on in 1977 this series of engines were brand new. Seen here in London, Ontario early January 2024.

Here we see a very weathered CN engine that would be neat to see in a model version. Anyone want to give this one a try...George Dutka  

Sunday 4 February 2024

West Hopkinton, NH Flag Stop

This is what is included in the BEST kit.

Some more about the flag stop...George Dutka 

Spray bomb for the windows and door was used.

The chimney is ready to be installed along with window glazing.  

MIG Tuscan and Oil Ochre are the tones used for the walls. I then covered the paint with Bragdon dark rust and dust bowl brown. 

A view of the back wall.