Home Layout Tours

Home Layout Tours

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Choo Choo City Rails Home Layout Tours Descriptions

Bill Orman's MLS&T - Sun 6/2/19, 10am to 1pm.

The MLS&T is a HO freelanced, present day railroad, depicting the Tennessee and Southern Kentucky landscape. Trains originate and return to Memphis, TN and Meridian, MS (hidden staging) using a shared NS/CSX mainline arriving in New Holland yard for distribution to several major industries. The layout is primarily a switching layout with 128 feet of mainline, a branchline (Tucker) providing five industries to serve, and Seeburg-Simmons industrial park on a peninsula.

Major industries served are an auto plant car loading facility, an auto transload facility to car carrier trucks, auto parts suppliers and JIT warehousing, as well as, a container/transload yard for container traffic and various tank cars. Additional traffic includes a coal fired power plant, salvage company, cement plant and flour mill providing a broad array of traffic on the railroad.


Jerry Holmes's Alleghany Sub - Sat. 6/1/19, 9am to noon

The Alleghany Sub was, (and still is), principally a coal hauling, class 1 line, requiring the heaviest of motive power with pushers to move long strings of loaded hoppers east over the Alleghany summit. It is an 80 mile run from the marshalling yards at Hinton, W. VA:. to the classification yards at Clifton Forge, VA. The coal was usually moved,· during this period, by a pair of huge, 2-6-6-6, H-8 Allegheny type, articulated steam locomotives, one in front, one in the rear.

Premium passenger service was also high on C & O's list of.priorities in those days with many trains such as the George Washington and the Sportsman running daily over ~he line between Washington, D.C. and Chicago. These trains usuall made stops and drops at the mountain resort town of White Sulpher Springs, site of the famous Greenbriar Hotel.


Ed Tougaw's Intermont & Western Virginia Railroad - Sat 6/1/19, 1pm to 4pm

The I&WV Railroad (a.k.a. “the Weavie RR) is a fictional railroad located in the south western tip of Virginia set in late steam transition era of 1955 through 1958.  It connects and serves as a bridge line between the Interstate RR on the east and the Chesapeake & Ohio RR on the west.  These two connections provide traffic from several major lines including Southern, L&N, NW, WM, and Clinchfield railroads.  The primary sources of online revenue for the Weavie RR are generated by three coal branch lines and timber.  A short line dedicated to moving timber, the Ken Cove & Williamsburg RR shares trackage between Ken Cove and Ridgeside.

This multi-level N scale layout features 3.5 scale miles of mainline, a marshalling yard, and facilities for servicing coal locomotives.  Ed uses tried-and-true electrical blocks with several DC cabs.


Jim Bailiff's Cincinnati Railroad - Sharonville Division - Sat 6/1/19, 9am to noon.

This railroad is 26’ x 30’ multi-level HO scale, E-shaped walk-in railroad, depicting Kentucky coal and timber operations in the early 1950’s.  The layout is wired for both DC and DCC operation.  The railroad spans 120’ of mainline plus sidings and uses a helix to reach its three levels.  This beautiful layout is considered complete with all structures, scenery and backgrounds, and also includes many lighting effects.  The layout features the downtown Cincinnati area complete with passenger station, a roundhouse with associated coaling towers, water, and sanding operations. Structures have been built using Craftsman kits, kitbashing methods, and scratch building.  This is another must-see layout.


Randy Pye's L&N - Ringgold Division - Cancelled

This HO railroad is in a 13’ x 13’ spare bedroom, with all trackwork and controls located within an arm's reach while seated.   It features an around the room twice mainline with several bridges and very nice photographic backdrops.  The engine facility includes a turntable and roundhouse, and a switching district was extended into the closet.  Motive power is mostly diesel with some run-through foreign power, and includes passenger traffic.The layout is strictly DC with Atlas controls.  Randy has recreated his childhood vision of 1950's through early 1970's L&N in southeastern TN and northern GA.


David Holsinger's Nona County Rails - Fri 5/31/19, 1pm to 4pm

This 13' x 30' HO layout set in springtime in the early1960's is a rail fanning delight.  It features a variety of midwest railroads (CB&Q, AT&SF, MP, to name a few) running on four separate mainlines, each on a separate level:  1) the Highport Route  2) the Ridgecut Route 3) the Rail Station Route and 4) the Wishbone Route.   The "farm side" of the layout includes stockpens, soybean and corn fields (including 8000 handmade cornstalks!), and greenhouses;  the "industrial side" of the layout includes an oil terminal, a cement plant, grain elevators, and numerous other detailed scenes.  This railroad has fully complete scenery and simple DC control.  David is a renown composer and conductor of another sort, but to relax he conducts the traffic on the Nona County Rails.


Barry Miller's Lookout Mountain Southern - Sat 6/1/19, 9am to noon

Barry’s HO scale layout is a 24’ x 13’ freelanced, present day, multi-level layout, representing the NS and CSX on the Chattanooga to Wauhatchie route.  The railroad features lower staging on both sides of the dog-bone design and two helixes, allowing for continuous running, switching, and self-staging for operations. There are several industries to switch, including a coal mine, bakery, flour mill, printing plant, car shop, petroleum distributer, intermodal yard, and scrap yard.  Also featured are multiple prototype bridges that will certainly “catch your eye”.


Willie Clonts' Soddy Daisy Southern - Fri 5/31/19, 1pm to 4pm, and Sun 6/2/19, 10am to 1pm

This freelanced HO scale railroad is a 16 x 40 foot layout, set in Appalachia during the 1930-1949 period.  It is a beautiful scenic railroad, featuring two harbors, an operating swing bridge, multiple craftsman kit-built and scratch-built buildings, piers, and barges.  The layout design is “around the room” style with a peninsula featuring 18” of elevation change.  Steam engines are the prevalent power with first generation diesel being added.  The layout has recently doubled in size and is a must-see museum quality layout, built by a true artist.


Ed Painter's Virginia Piedmont, Appalachian, and Western Railway -

Fri 5/31/19, 9am to noon

The railroad will be a loose representation of the Appalachian mountain region of Southwest Virginia and Southern West Virginia as well as the Piedmont region of Virginia.  The main benchwork is built in a basic "U" configuration, 42’ long with 90 degree wings of 16’ and 18’ at each end measuring 6’ across.  Two separate branch lines will cross over along back and left side walls, one measuring 50' long and the other nearly 17' long.  Generous aisleways and a nice crew lounge are provided.  The layout will include coal mines, a coke production facility, a 4 unit coal-fired power plant, a cement production plant, and a paper mill as the primary industries with a number of smaller industries and businesses served by rail.  One large yard will include classification tracks, a turntable, and circular enginehouse for the steam locomotives.  The prototypes are Norfolk and Western and Southern Railways, from 1960 to 1981, featuring both passenger and freight traffic.  Work on the layout began during the winter of 2018, but the entire double track mainline and several long passing sidings are already powered by NCE DCC wireless control system.  The track is code 100 rail with Peco Insulfrog turnouts.  Frequent work sessions will ensure significant progress in time for the convention.

Additionally, Ed's house in Cohutta GA is conveniently situated where Norfolk Southern's single track I-Line (Cohutta to Cleveland) splits off from the double-track H-line (Atlanta to Chattanooga) to provide a bypass around Chattanooga for trains heading north to Knoxville and Bristol.  An average day sees more than 40 trains on the H-line with a few sporadic ones on the I-Line, so plan to spend some time rail-fanning here.


Rich Stichler's European and Japanese layouts - Fri 5/31/19, 9am to noon

And now for something much smaller.....Z scale!  Rich has two separate portable layouts each measuring approximately 2' x 3'.  The European layout is fully scenicked with mountains, tunnels, bridges, a castle, streets, and vehicles.  The Japanese layout includes an engine house, turntable, bridges, and a bustling town.  The buildings include an impressive amount of detail, and both passenger and freight trains glide across the sleek track work.  Rich has also included a passing siding and several rail-served industries, proving that you always have enough room for a layout - it's just a matter of choosing the proper scale for your space.


Chip Chipman’s Concord Central - Sat 6/1/19,  1pm to 4pm

This HO free-lanced railroad is set in early 1990’s Chattanooga tri-state area (where Georgia, Alabama, and Tennessee converge) and features a classification yard, intermodal yard, locomotive shop, and several large industries such as grain elevator and scrap yard (with real rust debris!).  Concord Central provides the local switching for the various NS and CSX mainline freights.  The completed scenery includes forested hillsides and rocky outcroppings native to the Chattanooga area.  The downtown city area includes many buildings with signs, populated sidewalks, and nicely striped pavement.  Come take a good look at the Concord Central.


Brian Ford’s BN Monett Sub  - Sat 6/1/19,  1pm to 4pm

Springfield MO was established as the headquarters of the SLSF (Frisco) Railway, due to the crossing of the St Louis to Tulsa and Memphis to Kansas City mainlines.  In 1980 the entire Frisco was absorbed into the Burlington Northern as the Springfield Division.  This HO layout is designed for operations and models the Springfield area of the BN in the mid-1990’s before the mega-merger with ATSF.  It features Springfield Yard in the middle of a folded dogbone, walk-through arrangement, with many of the actual on-line industries such as French’s Mustard, Springfield Underground, Kerr-McGee, Dayton Rubber, Rich-Mix cement, Associated Wholesale Grocers, and the Southwest Power plant.  Staging loops at each end of the layout will represent Memphis/St Louis and Tulsa/Kansas City.  The Missouri & Northern Arkansas has trackage rights over the BN from Aurora into Springfield Yard, and an interchange with KCS at Neosho will provide additional traffic to and from Joplin.  Still under construction but with Springfield yard and an additional 50 ft of the mainline powered up, this layout uses a variety of non-traditional construction techniques and materials.


Ted Yarborough’s D&RGW and Rio Grande Southern - Sun 6/2/19,  1pm to 4pm

This narrow gauge garden railroad features Heartland and Bachmann ‘Geese’as well as Bachmann and and LGB locomotives. Wooden structures are custom made and resemble Colorado buildings. There are tunnels and bridges on 5 non-connected loops totaling about 250 ft. of track.  Scale size plants are located around the garden railroad, which was started in 1992.  Special Note: rain will cancel the tour of this railroad; please call if in question before driving to Chatsworth, located approximately 15 minutes east of SacleTrain's train-watching party in Dalton.


Whitfield-Murray Historical Society's Layouts at Chattsworth L&N Depot- Sun 6/2/19,  1pm to 4pm

Small operating garden display of G-Scale train belonging to NS engineer. Layout located in 1905 L & N Depot. HO scale railroad belonging to local educator also operating inside depot. M-5 SCL caboose on display behind depot. Tours of depot given by Historical Society members. Free admission/donations accepted.  Located approximately 15 minutes east of ScaleTrain's train-watching party in Dalton.


Chattanooga Model Railroader Club (CMRC) HO Scale Rat-Hole Division Sun 6/2/19,  10:00am to 1:00pm

The Chattanooga Model Railroad Club, formerly at the Chattanooga Choo Choo, is building a new HO scale layout at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum (TVRM) in the basement of the Administration Building (former NMRA HQ). 

The 2,000 sq. ft. layout will depict the Southern Railway’s CNO&TP’s  2nd district.  The 2nd district is know as the “Rat Hole Division” so-named for its numerous tunnels. Beginning in the early 60’s, many were day-lighted although quite a few remain to this day. The area being modeled will depict the section between Danville, KY and Oakdale, TN as it was in the late 60’s. 

After more than a year of planning and track design, actual construction started in August 2018.  The benchwork has been completed.  Currently work is being done on the view blocks down the center of the peninsulas.  Cork roadbed has been installed in the Danville Yard and sub-roadbed has started toward Burnside, KY.

The control system is state of the art computer interfaced capable of running multiple trains simultaneously, maintaining proper train separation, activating signals and preventing collisions when in “auto mode”.  Old style block control panels with their rows of toggle switches and relays  will give way to solid state electronics. When club members meet tablets, smart phones and wireless throttles will control the trains.  Members can just bring a train to run, or take part in “operating sessions” where trains are made up, assigned to a conductor and engineer, then operate as their full size counterparts do, per the directions of the railroad dispatcher. 

Membership in the club is open to anyone interested in building or operating the railroad. Contact Brendan Brosnan at hot-metal@epbfi.com