Thursday, December 13, 2007

N Scale Life-Like SW8 Contacts

N scale Life-Like switchers are great little locomotives with fine details and fantastic low-speed, especially with a decoder in it.

The only trouble I have had is with the brass contacts that transfer power from the trucks to the frame.

I documented my conversion, based on a web page I once saw, which is no longer available. I had to go by memory and I think I got it right!

Life-Like SW8 Contacts

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Prince Edward Island Railway

Prince Edward Island is one of my favorite places to visit and, being a railfan, I'm naturally inclined towards what's left of their railway system.

image from

I have a really great book that I bought this past summer while visiting Orangedale Station near Wycocomagh, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia: A Photo History of the Prince Edward Island Railway by Allan Graham.

This is one of my favorite railway books I've collected thus far. I guess there's just something about that rural railway in PEI that appeals to me. (And I've just noticed, on looking at the first page inside the cover that not only is it signed by the author, which I knew, but it was also sponsored by the CN Lines SIG, which I did NOT know! :-)

Look here for a railway structure listing from the Railroad Station Historical Society:

Extant Prince Edward Island Railroad/Railway Structures

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Kingmill Enterprises

Kingmill Enterprises sells software that allows you to design your own custom scale structures. You then send a data file to them and they will cut a laser-cut wood kit for you! Very cool!

I've been meaning to use them for quite a while now but never really got around to it. I really should do it now while the dollar is more favorable. :)

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Darjeeling Himalayan Railway Society

My wife sent me the link for the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway Society about a year ago and while I looked at the page and bookmarked it, I didn't think any more about it. However, I recently saw an ad about a new movie, "Darjeeling Limited", which I suspect has little to do with the real railway but how often do you get movies with a train premise? The last I recall seeing was "The Polar Express"... Anyhow, I went to check the original link and there's just a placeholder now!

Let's make do with this Wikipedia link in the meantime. I didn't know it was a UNESCO World Heritage Site! :)


Thursday, November 15, 2007

CN Lines Special Interest Group

I first became aware of the CN Lines Special Interest Group (SIG) through their magazine, CN Lines.

These folks are very serious about CN, obviously, but they're a wealth of really great information about Canadian National.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Here's a site that I find has frequent updates and interesting how-to articles for scenery, track and structures. I tend to read everything I see online with respect to how to do things as so many people out there have better imaginations and resourcefulness than myself. :)

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Micro/Small Layouts for Model Railroads

This is another site I like to go to fairly often:


While some of the designs are way too small for most of us, there are lots of interesting ideas within those pages. Most of the contributors are European and British, where you tend to see a lot of compact designs anyway, and there's no limit to which scale you're using. That being said, I get the general idea from the site that scales like N and Z are not considered challenging enough when it comes to small layout designs. ;-)

Friday, November 9, 2007

Steve Boyko's "New Brunswick Railways"

This is the best site for local railway info, in my humble opinion:

Take a Model Train to Work Day 2007

"The World's Greatest Hobby" Announces the
Seventh Annual "Take a Model Train to Work Day"
On Friday, November 16, 2007

Waukesha, WI - On Friday, November 16, 2007, model railroaders across the country will add trains and tracks to the watercooler conversations when they bring their favorite locomotive or other hobby artifact to work. Launched in 2001 by Model Trains: the World's Greatest Hobby, Take a Model Train to Work Day kicks off model railroading's high season, culminating in the December holidays.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Brandt Road Rail Corporation

This company makes some very nice rail-going trucks. I've seen one in action in the Amherst area and I believe it's used for local (Moncton, Sackville, Amherst) switching duties instead of a dedicated locomotive.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Fox Valley Models

Here's a new site that someone recently brought to my attention:

Looks like they have some nice N scale structures and rolling stock available. I'm especially interested in the "Milk House". :)