The author describes his Amtrak trip to the 1994 NASG Convention, and reviews the activities there. The article continues over many pages and includes lots of photos of people and models.
Photos of the temporary layout set up as part of the event.
A listing of all the winners of the contests held at the 1998 NASG Convention. Photos follow in the subsequent pages, followed by a full summary by the editor.
A report about the 1999 NASG Convention, with lots of photos.
A full report of the Convention in San Jose.
A full report along with photos of the 2001 NASG Convention in Scranton, PA.
The article covers the events at the 2002 NASG Convention. The preceding page and the pages of the article itself have lots of photos taken at the event.
A handful of photos with captions.
Comments and photos of the 2010 NASG Convention.
The author reports on the annual show. Includes a couple of people photos. The article is followed by two pages of photos of contest winning models. More photos are shown on pages 19, 20, and 21.
The author reports about the event. The article includes several photos of product and people.
A brief description of the show, and a couple of photos.
The author provides a report about the event, and shares some information about the 2017 show. Photos are shown on the next page.
A full report, with photos, of the Convention. Also covered are the model contest winners, and the layouts set up at the hotel.
The author reports on the event, and includes several photos.
The author reports on the event. Several people contributed photos to the article.
The author reports on the show, and shares several photos. More photos are shown on pages 36 and 37 of the PDF version of this issue.
Don Heimburger is celebrating 35 years of continuous publication of the S Gaugian magazine. This article gives some background on Don.
A detailed timeline of significant events over the 50 years of the NASG.
The author shares a few slides from past S-related events.
A few photos taken at the 2001 Fall S Fest.
A brief history of Russ, and more information about the new Russel M. Mobley Memorial Library, with a listing of what is available.
Try a different way of setting up a Christmas train in the livingroom.
The author describes how clubs influenced his modeling.
A review of the softbound book which is the first American Flyer guide published by TM Books & Video, Inc.
The author replaces the 4-wheel trucks with 6-wheel ones, installed Kadee KD802 couplers, adds window shades, and installed diaphragm. Includes two model photos.
The author shares a design of an S-scale layout that could fit in a 12'x13' spare bedroom. The article provides switching suggestions, construction methods, and covers control and scenery topics.
This article presents the modular concept for the Pennsylvania Railroad's Horseshoe Curve in S-scale. Includes a proposed track plan.
The author describes for whom armchair modeling is a good idea.
Photos of those who received awards at the 2012 NASG Convention.
The background story behind the American Models 4-6-2 locomotive, which is based on this B&O prototype. Includes drawings for the original and the 1930s version of the locomotive.
Diners to be found near the 2008 NASG Convention location.
A photo essay of the Badgerland S Gaugers club set up at the NMRA Mad City show in Madison, Wisconsin.
Following an explanation of the purpose of the award is a listing of those whom have won it up through 2009.
A group of North Carolina and Tennessee S-scale modelers get together for a day to discuss the idea of becoming a club. An S-scale modular layout was set up and clinics were offered. Thirty people attended. Includes several photos of attendees.
The author describes the 2013 Fall S Fest organized by the State-Line S Gaugers in Janesville, Wisconsin. There are also photos of the South Jersey S Gaugers November 2013 train show.
A detailed report with plenty of photos of the 2012 NASG Convention. Also includes Jay Mellon's vendor report.
The author states that S-scale modelers should check out the various annual soft-cover magazines that are published for ideas.
The reader is to identify the prototype depots shown in the 6 photos.
A product review of the construction of this kit. Includes a couple of photos.
Erv Rahr sent in his proposed track plan, and Jeff offers his design ideas to improve the plan.
The 37th annual Fall S Fest was held in the Milwaukee area and hosted by the Badgerland S Gaugers, with about 400-500 people attending. The show report includes photos taken at the event.
A report of the 29th annual Fall S Fest hosted by the Badgerland S Gaugers in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin, area.
The author reports on the activities of this event.
A brief review of the show and some photos.
Photos and a review of the 2010 Fall S Fest in Tinley Park.
A report on the show held in Waukesha, Wisconsin. Includes a number of photos of people attending the event.
Report about the show.
Ron Schlicht and Jim Starosta, members of the Badgerland S Gaugers received the award for their 6 American Flyer straight modules at the 1998 Trainfest.
After a brief introduction to this informal event, the author describes what happened at Phil Moser's home with nearly 950 feet of AF track laid down. Includes a couple of photos taken at the event, as well as a rough track plan spanning almost the entire house.
The author took kits from HO- and O-scale and modified them to fit S. It is a brief photo essay, showing the models.
Photos and drawings of a two-stall outhouse.
Advice about what it takes to tear down a large layout, and documenting your inventory for your loved ones and friends.
Photos of Steve's 12'x23' layout which is open during the 2003 NASG Convention. Includes a track plan.
Having or starting a Christmas tradition around model trains is a good practice. The author shares some of the ones he and his family have developed.
A brief review and some photos of the event.
The author offers suggestions that will help you put together a magazine article over a period of time.
The ATSF caboose is labeled as "O-27", but the author claims that its dimensions scale out to S-scale nearly perfectly. The article covers how to modify the model, and includes photos.
This is the first special issue, where the annual Membership Directory is replaced with a special edition of the NASG Dispatch.
The author updates his wish-list for various manufacturers to produce, primarily focusing on rolling stock.
The author introduces the article on the BC&G and why it is an excellent shortline to model in S-scale.
Consider designing in operations into the continuously-circling trains on a club's modular layout at a train show.
Commentary about the S-scale-only regional and national events.
The author proposed the idea of promoting S-scale as the "last builder's scale".
How to let go of existing, non-S equipment when switching to S-scale.
Even if your home layout is not yet finished, it can be successfully operated as long as the track work is ready.
How to deal with the argument that S-scale costs more than HO- or N-scale.
The author attended the 1997 NMRA Convention and NTS show, and shares his views on how S-scale could be involved in those national events.
The author compares S-scale's evolution to that of HO-scale, to see where S is in its growth compare to HO (and O).
What should be defined as the "standard S-scale modeling" at this point in time? Associating S-scale with A.C. Gilbert in the late 1990s makes no sense, since the company has been gone for many decades. The author proposes code 125 hi-rail as the current default definition of what S-scale is.
What should be defined as the "standard S-scale modeling" at this point in time? The author continues with last issue's discussion covering track and coupler default standards.
The author proposes the idea of creating more regions of representation with the NASG.
Would other larger model railroading manufacturers consider adding S-scale products to their product line? If so, which ones?
The author shares his thoughts on how to improve NASG Conventions.
The author shares his thoughts about the past and current state of S-scale automobiles availability.
The author describes his strong desire to collecting magazines.
The April Fools edition of the column has the author fantasizing about being an S-scale dictator telling the manufacturers which products they should produce.
The author laments the fact that a majority of recent deaths have been on the "scale" side of S. He offers ideas on how to attract more "scale" modelers to S.
The author ponders the need for more modern equipment to be available in S-scale.
The author reflects on joint NMRA/NASG conventions, conjunction conventions (at the same time but slightly different locations), and back-to-back conventions (same location, but one immediately following the other).
The author opines about what a "hi-railer" is, and how to encourage people to switch to S-scale.
The author feels that "scale" modelers are looking for a voice since the S/Sn3 Modeling Guide has ceased.
Making a case for an all-"scale"-only regional meet or convention.
Dealing with the loss of several leaders and pioneers in S-scale within the recent year or two.
The author makes the case for local clubs to consider starting a regional convention, similar to the Fall S Fest or the Spring S Spree.
Speculating on when the first S-scale plastic-bodied steam locomotive would be produced and what it might be.
What to consider when deciding what your minimum radius should be for your layout?
Getting enough seed money to make an S-scale project a "go".
For those who just switched to S-scale, here is a reality-check, and a prioritized list of how to go about getting started in designing and building a layout in S-scale.
The author lists the handful of truly portable S-scale layouts that are around, and suggests that the new NASG President, Roy Hoffman, spends some effort at trying to get other groups or individuals to build portable layout.
The issue of joint versus stand-alone NASG Conventions is discussed in this column, supplemented by comments by Josh Seltzer on the issue. The problem is that joint conventions aren't as well attended by S-scale modelers as when the convention is a stand-alone one.
The World's Greatest Hobby show is explained, and who their target audience is.
The hobby of model railroading is a game, the author proposes.
What is the definition of "modern" when it comes to the era of modeling that one engages in? The author proposed anything 1975 and newer.
The author offers up ideas for bringing more narrow-gauge modelers into the NASG.
Consider the idea of quality over quantity, e.g. building a smaller layout, especially if you are new to S-scale.
The author is making a case for manufacturers to start producing S-scale plastic structure kits.
The idea of introducing both idealism and humor into our model railroads.
The author describes the "pros" for modeling the transition era, and the "pros" for modeling the modern era, and answers the question of whether the transition era is still #1.
Using the rough lengths of a 10-car train in S-scale, one can figure what will and what won't fit in a layout space before beginning the benchwork.
The author describes the S-scale activities taking place in Canada, Canadian prototype railroading, and S-scale manufacturers making products for Canadian railroad modeling.
Since Tony Koester announced tearing down his "Allegheny Midland" HO-scale layout, the author is considering the idea of others following suit, and perhaps entertaining the idea of a larger scale as they age.
Celebrating his 10th year as editor of this magazine, the author reflects how to got "roped" into becoming an S-scale modeler. The column continues with a review of the 2003 NASG Convention, of which he was a co-chair.
The author makes the case that good track planning is a skillset lacking in the world of S-scale modeling. He lists some good designs, why some designs are bad, and tips on how to improve a design.
How S-scale is represented (or not) in the various prototype railroad historical societies, and how we can change that.
How to decide which prototype railroad to model in your layout.
In general, S-scale manufacturers have been cognizant of each others' products, so as to avoid duplication-of-effort. However, this column points out a few exceptions. He continues by mentioning the product types that he thinks are best for brass production and those best for plastic models.
The author reflects on where he has been buying his S-scale products (at S-specific train shows).
The author makes the point that he is seeing people re-enter the hobby in S-scale, slowly gravitating more and more toward the "scale" side of the hobby, and putting AF products on the shelves.
Dealing with the reality that will loose some modelers to the other scales, and how we should be upfront about the challenges that exist in modeling in S-scale.
The author compares the S-MOD standard modular layouts to the new Free-mo standard S-scale layouts.
The editor explains why this issues is focused on track planning for S-scale layouts.
The author admits that it is passenger trains that got him into model railroading and has kept him there, regardless of chosen scale. He also recommends a number of specific cars that S-scale manufacturers should consider producing.
The author wonders if there are any permanent S-scale club layouts in existence (layouts that are set-up year-round).
The author suggests the styrene bridges, especially non-craftsman style ones, would be a good addition to S-scale.
The editor contemplates which plastic structures the major manufacturers could produce that would be of benefit to S-scale modelers, preferably ready-to-run.
The visual appeal of S-scale models becomes apparent when seen in person.
The author answers the question: Is S-scale still a scrounger scale? With Lionel and American Models much more is available.
Why do we procrastinate working on our model railroading projects?
Are 1:64 vehicles truly to scale, and why don't manufacturers simply make them exactly 1:64 scale?
Where can we find the active pockets of S-scale modelers?
The author is making the point that manufacturers should list structure dimensions, rolling stock built dates, paint scheme eras, etc.
What first drew the author to model railroading was advertisements of products shown on a real layout. He wonders why more manufacturers don't do ads like that.
Considering adding animation, such as movement, lights, and sounds to your structures.
The author urges everyone to start considering getting away from the 4'x8' layout and the extremely-tight curves that such a shape requires in S-scale. He makes the point that even HO-scale modelers no longer use that default layout style.
The author adds some of his items to a Christmas-in-July wish-list.
The author adds some of his items to a Christmas-in-July wish-list.
The various types of newcomers to S-scale and how to best help them get started in S.
Instead of calling 1:64 modeling, "S-scale", the author continues to complicate matters with all the various sub-divisions that for some reason must always be specified. No other scale does this.
How to justify the expense of going to conventions.
Jeff reviews the, then, current state of S-scale passenger cars.
What will be the future of S-scale magazines? Will there be a downloadable, online-only one that can be sustained?
How do we go about promoting S-scale to the hi-rail modelers?
"If you sell S, you need to promote S!", is the editor's opinion, reflecting on how vendors and manufacturers might want to interact with their customer base at train shows.
The editor opines about the future of resin kits in S-scale and what might be produced next.
The editor opines on what it might take to switch from a steam-era layout to a 1970s/80s-era layout in S-scale.
Making the case for focusing on mini-scenes when building a layout.
The NASG is 50 and the NMRA is 75 this year. This article recalls some of their history.
Keeping "model" in model railroading. The hobby still requires model building.
The editor draws the distinction between two types of S-scale model railroad displays set up at train shows.
The editor discusses the various polls that are done within discussion groups to determine what modelers would like to see produced in S-scale.
The editor is observing how NASG Convention attendance might be related to the general state of the economy, as well as the number of NASG members that live in the area where the Convention is held that year.
The author describes how he kitbashed the HO-scale Heljan/ConCor courthouse kit into an S-scale version. Includes photos of the completed model.
Using two Plasticville coaling towers, this coal dealer structure can be built using the authors step-by-step instructions and accompanying photos.
Various people providing commentary on the passing of Josh Seltzer. Includes a couple of photos of him, his equipment, his layout, and his company's ads.
Jesse, who had a large S-scale layout (20' x 44') modeling the Great Northern Pacific, passed away at 96. Includes a couple of photos of his layout.
Photo essay of layouts at the 2016 NASG Convention.
The author proposes six ways to model railroading history, listing the positives and the negatives of modeling each, and how it might appeal to people new to model railroading or new to S-scale.
The 1998 Lionel catalog announces several road names for the all-new-tooling SD40-2 locomotive. This article combines both the new engine, other engines and cars coming out, and prototype information.
A detailed report with photos of the 2008 NASG Convention. It is followed by pages of photos of attendees, award winners, and the contest models.
Introduction to NASG president Alan Evans.
The author reports on the 2014 Fall S Fest and the all-scales Trainfest in Milwaukee.
Photos taken at the show, as well as at local layouts that were open for tours.
Older model railroaders grew up in the transition era, and model that, but younger modelers didn't, so they are less likely to model that time period. The point of the article is that we all model history, even those who model "today", by the time the product comes out, it is already "dated".
The author covers the difficulties encountered when storing, transporting, and maintaining large modular or portable layouts.
Thorough review of the event, with lots of photos of people and models.
A report of the events that took place at the 2004 NASG Convention. Includes many photos.
A review of all the activities that took place at the Convention, followed by many pages of photos of models, layouts, and people.
A full report of the 2006 NASG Convention held in Pontiac, Michigan.
A detailed report about the 2007 NASG Convention in Baltimore, MD.
Photos, contest winners, and a summary of the 1996 NASG Convention in Dearborn, Michigan.
Photos and a report of the 1997 NASG Convention in Denver, CO.
The author describes the events at the Convention. Includes many photos taken at the event.
Notes about the 2017 NASG BOT meeting. The rest of this article is really a continuation of the report started on page 17.
A listing of the model contest winners of the 2000 NASG Convention. Includes photos of Dick Karnes and his best-of-show model. Photos of the various models start on page 14.
A listing of the annual NASG Convention cars from 1985 through 2010.
A page of photos of new products taken at the 2003 Spring S Spree.
The editor changed the title of his editorial from "Jeff's Junction" to "OS from S Tower" with this issue ("OS" stands for "On Station" indicating when a train passes a station). This editorial covers Jeff's explanation of what the NASG's BOT is responsible for.
The editor reviews the 16-page insert in the May 2011 Railroad Model Craftsman magazine featuring S-scale products and articles.
S-scale coverage in the annual magazines that Kalmbach produces, and how we could contribute more S-related articles to those issues.
The editor is proposing the idea of creating a "Great Model Railroads" magazine that only features S-scale layouts. One such magazine would be for standard- and narrow-gauge "scale" layouts, and a second such magazine could be for A.F. and hi-rail layouts.
Although a number of craftsman-style kits are available in S, the author proposes that cheaper plastic kits, similar to Walther's HO-scale Cornerstone ones, are needed in S-scale.
The author revisits the merit of joint NMRA/NASG conventions vs. stand-alone ones, making arguments for both.
The author reviews the 2012 Lionel catalog.
This column is devoted to thanking all the individuals who have helped the Dispatch be what it is today.
The author makes the point that, within S-scale, the "hi-rail" modelers have the numbers of the "scale" modelers.
The author answers the question, "Why do I like the oddball scale S?" (having switched from many years in HO-scale).
The author proposed ideas for the main S-scale manufacturers to implement.
The NASG is an umbrella organization for all aspects of "S".
What kind of modeling can one do during a period of economic recession? The author provides a list of ideas that cost little or no money.
Jeff announces that he is stepping down as the full-time editor of the magazine, and handing it over to Bill Pyper.
The author captures his thoughts on how far you are willing to compromise on your layout to model the real world, and what is the definition of "good enough".
The author suggests the idea of building a modular layout entirely made out of Lionel products available today, to show the audience what can be accomplished in S-scale today.
The author suggests the Winfield Railroad as a shortline that could be modeled in S-scale. It covers the purpose of the railroad, what kinds of equipment it used, and it includes prototype photos and a suggested track plan.
A few photos of grain elevators.
The author proposes that we should all be prototype modelers to some extent, and he shares a few ideas to help us in that direction.
This photo essay includes a basic drawing of the Hancock, West Virginia/Hancock, MD yard of the Baltimore & Ohio. The prototype photos are of yard track, the former passenger station at Hancock, MD, four-track signal bridge, a handcar shed, the Hancock Tower, and the old freight house.
A photo and design diagrams of this vehicular underpass.
Photos and a description of the Altoona, PA area.
A quick review of the Fall S Fest and the Indianapolis S Show.
Photos and drawings.
A brief introduction to Dick Kloes' layout, with two photos. The layout was open as part of the 2000 Fall S Fest.
The author reviews the 2-3/8"-wide, 36"-long cork roadbed material sold by Scenery Unlimited.
The author describes and shares photos of the Trainfest in Milwaukee, Wisconsin held in November 2013.
After briefly reviewing the history of S, the author proposes that we latch onto Lionel and MTH as the main drivers for the future of S-scale modeling.
Moving to a larger scales makes sense for people at or approaching retirement age.
Ideas on how to start modeling in S-scale when on a tight budget.
The author encourages the reader to visit prototype steam locomotive operations.
Various rough sketches are provided to give ideas on general track designs one could use in a bedroom, garage, or basement.
How to integrate industries that have a purpose into your layout's design. Several track plans for switching areas are included in the article.
The author shares a track plan converted to S-scale of an O-scale layout by draftsman J. Harold Geissel published in the August, 1939 Model Railroader.
The author presents an S-scale version of an O-scale track plan originally published by Model Railroader magazine in the 1940s.
Jeff took an O-scale layout built by Frank Smith of New Jersey in the 1930s, updated the design, and scaled it to fit a 15' by 33' S-scale layout. It is an around-the-walls design intended for a basement. It looks like a point-to-point design, but a single hidden track connects the two ends to allow for continuous running.
The author revisits a design published in 2007 that is currently being implemented with some minor modifications. It is a twice-around loop with yard facilities spread out across two peninsulas.
S-Helper Service has announced the F3 project, and this article provides some prototype details, planned first-run road names, and prices.
Many photos taken during the 2010 NASG Convention.
Photos taken at this year's Spree.
Photos and drawings.
The author attends the Spring S Spree in Strongsville, Ohio, put on by the Cuyahoga Valley S Gauge Association. Includes several photos of Randy Sappo's structures, Josh Seltzer and his layout, and Jim Zborowski's layout.
The author proposes ideas that can help you move from the collecting stage to the actual narrowing-down of items that you will really use on your "dream" layout.
It is the size of S- and O-scale equipment that attracted the author to S-scale.
The author was given a collection of slides owned by the Chuck Porter, which he shares on this page.
A full report of the event, including several photos of attendees, layouts, and models.
The author describes all aspects of the convention held from August 4 to 8, 2009 in St. Louis. There were just under 200 in attendance, but there was lots of interesting things to do. Includes photos of those in attendance, layouts on the tour, and clinics held.
A review of the show, and several pages of photos taken at the event.
In addition to the usual reporting about the 2013 NASG Convention, the author also reports on the awards and the general meetings. There are a lot photos from several people included in this report.
Is Sn3 able to compete with the other scales' narrow-gauges? The author describes what happened with Bachmann introducing their On30 product line.
A preview of what can be expected at this year's Fall S Fest.
A report about the NASG's booth at the Sn3 Symposium in St. Louis.
An interview with Ertl's Product Manager James Willey about their 1:64 product line.
The author visits with Lionel and interviews the company's Steve Saxton and Carl Crosier about the future of S-scale products at Lionel.
The hypothetical design and construction of a 12'x13' layout. Includes a track plan.
A condensed version of the Ertl hand-out capturing the company's history. Also includes a page of photos of the latest 1:64 Ertl items in 1994.
The author recalls the 1972 NASG Convention (first one held in Kansas City), the 1973-1976 ones, and the 1989 one (the second one held in Kansas City). He then offers ideas for future Convention locations.
This article covers the information about the upcoming 2003 NASG Convention in Oconomowoc, WI. Includes prototype photos of area activities, and model photos of layouts open for tours.
This article covers the planned schedule for the 2003 NASG Convention.
The track plan included with this article shows an S-scale layout designed for a 12' x 13'6" spare bedroom, and thoughts on how to build it.
History and information about roadside diners, and how to model them in S-scale. Includes one prototype photo, two model photos, and a thorough listing of diners in the Worchester, MA area.
The author continues his layout design ideas for an East Broad Top-based Sn3 layout (see June 2002 Dispatch). Includes a map, several prototype photos, and several track plans.
How we as humans tend to collect things, even things that don't have anything to do with trains.
This article has the author describing how he got into S-scale when he was approached about becoming the Dispatch editor, and saw all the products available in S. Also includes preparing the basement, coming up with a track plan design, and deciding upon which railroad to model. Includes several track plan designs.
The author continues his updates on his Elk & Gauley layout, with completing a loop of track to run trains, and installing various bridges.
Jeff continues his layout construction article, this time covering building sectional benchwork, and evaluating the earlier track plan. Includes construction photos, and track plan drawing.
The author now tackles the issue of building an S-scale equipment roster for his planned layout. Also covers structures, track, and electronics.
The author describes how the model railroading greats influenced his approach to the hobby. When switching to S-scale, he had to become familiar with the mainstays of S, such as Frank Titman and Sam Powell.
Jeff continues his central West Virginia layout construction project, covering foam hills, bridges, and tunnels. Includes several under-construction photos.
The author was able to incorporate a lower level in the construction of his peninsula. Includes construction tips, plans, and photos.
At the 2016 NASG Convention, there were official operating sessions held for the first time at one of the annual Conventions. The author was able to attend two such sessions, and describes his experiences.
The author shares a track plan he enhanced for Luther Stephens that measures 15'x22'.
The author takes an HO-scale plan and converts it to a 20'x14' S-scale version. He provides a description of what could be used to implement it in S-scale.
Using two standard modules with some temporary track to be able to model an L-shaped switching layout.
Small prototype photos and a track plan for the layout of a coal dealer positioned in a triangle.
A report and photos of the 2015 NASG Convention, including contest winners, award winners,
A Flyer Fest is not a conventional train show, but rather a gathering of people at a host's home, where hundreds of feet of A.F. and A.F.-compatible track is placed on the floor with trains operating. The article includes many photos from the 1993 event. The article describes the history of the event. The track plan of the 1993 event is included (two pages), which was held at Mike Schafer's house.
Are we are railfan first or a model railroader? The author shares his life's experiences.
Jeff conducts an interview with Ed Loizeaux about the 2011 convention. Convention photos are found on page 15.
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