The author reviews three different ways to connect two parts of the layout while still allowing people to pass through into the layout. He then describes how he built his bridge.
After mentioning several other major changes in the model railroading industry, the author opines about the need for the S-scale community to adopt the new NASG S-scale standard.
This first installment covers selecting the proper drivers, the matching axle, the cylinder blocks, and the crosshead assemblies. Next, the author uses steel or aluminum U-shaped shelf brackets for the frame. Next up are making scale drawings.
This article covers why you might want to hold operating sessions, what you need to have to do operations, and detailed planning to bring it all about.
The author tackles some design problems that they locomotives have to make them run smoother.
The author presents the idea of a "train layout" as a 3D sculpture.
How to decide which curve sizes your layout needs.
This article describes grade crossings and ideas for how to model them.
Sam has come to the conclusion that we tend to criticize our own and even others' layouts. This article reminds us that this is just a hobby and that model railroads are because we enjoy the act of creating and enjoying the results.
Stress is a killer, and model railroading, in moderation, can be the cure, or so the author proposes.
Keeping notes about your layout in a three-ring binder, even if some information is stored in a computer program, because you can bring a notebook with you when visiting friends. Keeping information such as the background story, track plans, prototype info, operating scheme, etc.
"The Magnificent Seven" - Seven S gaugers who influenced Sam. They are Ed Schumacher, John Bortz, Frank Titman, Wally Collins, Claude Wade, Walter Graeff, and Jesse Bennett.
Sam discusses what operations are, why people like operating session or don't like them, handling stress preparing for a session, car-card system, and how to start the first session.
How does one get foreign-road cars on one's layout? Via the Interchange Track. This unique and easy-to-model track is fully discussed in this article, which includes how to integrate it into your layout's operational scheme.
The author's layout models the Pittsburgh area, but he had never actually been there in person. A trip with camera in hand allowed him to better model the area.
The author makes the case for associating with model railroaders that are not into S-scale, such as the local NMRA, other conventions, etc., especially after one retires.
What to do when there is a house-supporting pole in the middle of your layout space? The author's solution was to build a four-sided building around the square pole, which, when the camera is set a the right angle, makes the pole invisible.
In this next installment of the series on how build your own steam locomotive, the author starts the work of building the frame and installing the driver wheels.
In this installment the construction and installation of the side rods is accomplished, including how to resolve any binding. Also covered is drive quartering.
This final installment of building a steam locomotive frame will deal with the main rod cylinder set and crosshead assembly.
The shallow-depth structure was perfect for the author's new town on his layout, so he built it and provides us with his commentary and construction hints.
The author describes the thoughts he went through developing a design, track plan, and realistic integration of his layout into this available space (he had several options). Includes a sketch of the track plan.
How to make the AM coupler be self-centering and some fine-tuning to get it to operate smoothly.
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