Anaheim Convention 2008

The 2008 NMRA and LDSIG Conventions was held in Anaheim July 13-19.

Information on NMRA Conventions is available at the national convention website -; information on the LDSIG Convention is available here as well as on the NMRA site.

SIG Room

All week long you can make the SIG room the place to be. We are sharing the room with other Special Interest Groups including the Operations Special Interest Group which is planning a full round of operations during the convention. NMRA Special Interest Groups (SIGs) were invited at Anaheim Special 2008 to share modeling ideas, publications, services and membership information with convention attendees. The SIG Room (Grand Ballroom salon E with the contest room) is open Sunday, July 13th from 7:00 PM to 11:00 PM, Monday and Tuesday 8:00 AM to 10:00, Thursday and Friday from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM. Saturday, July 19th the SIG Room will open and 8 AM and close at noon. Make the SIG Room your convention headquarters networking opportunities, meeting others for planning, designing, building, and operating considerations intended for your dream layout.

Displays & LDSIG Desk – in the SIG Room [Grand Ballroom salon E with the contest room]. Members’ informative displays include track plan diagrams, layout photographs and 3-D mock-ups, and priority lists of design features to help others learn how others have solved layout design problems. Frequently, the layout designer is available for discussion. Design-related clinic schedules, descriptions of open-house layouts for the Wednesday, Thursday, and Saturday tours, carpool signup lists, a local restaurant list, and a roommate-wanted list will be available. A bulletin board will have important updates about LDSIG events -- be sure and check daily for activities and schedules. You may catch great discussions from time to time, especially in-between clinics.

Layout Design Advice – The Layout Design SIG offers a free design consultation service. Stop by for an available consultation period. Bring your list of "Givens & Druthers," proposed track plans, questions, etc., to obtain valuable help.

Meet 'n Greet

Meet 'n Greet – Sunday, July 13th, 7:00p, Begin your convention by meeting other attendees who are especially interested in layout design. Hear informal LDSIG-member introductions about their layout design and construction status, plus timely event announcements and networking opportunities. Meet published authors and respected contributors to various email lists. Sunday, 7:00p, in the SIG room.

Layout Design Clinic Track

Layout Design Clinic Track – Tuesday, July 15, A series of clinics will be presented focusing on layout design.

  Track One Track Two
Time Presentor Title Presentor Title
9:00 AM Byron Henderson Layout Design from the Prototype Cal Sexsmith Track and Scenery Design for a Prairie Town
10:30AM Seth Neumann RR communications Bob Clark Layout Design With A Passenger Train Orientation
1:00 PM Otis McGee John Armstrong's Shasta Route, part 1   Robert Reid Layout Designs For A Small Room
2:30 PM Otis McGee John Armstrong's Shasta Route, part 2   Bruce Morden   SP Santa Barbara Subdivision
4:00 PM Gurin, Fugate,

Henderson, Triggs  
Panel Discussion on Design Trends -

Featuring LDJ Editors
Paul Deis Designing A Garden Railroad, Survey to Construction  

The clinics will give real examples of design challenges and solutions to assist you in designing your dream layout.

LDSIG Annual Meeting

LDSIG Annual Meeting – Wednesday, July 16th 8:30am to 10:30am in the Rancho Las Palmas Room [downstairs]. Our annual membership meeting agenda includes officer and volunteer reports. All LDSIG members at the convention are encouraged to participate. Layout tour maps will be distributed at the meeting.

Layout Tours and Picnics

This year the LDSIG has organized several self-guided tours. Two have meals and participants need Convention event tickets. Tickets must be purchased at NMRA tour desk before Monday at 9:00p so we can finalize food order. The tours are by carpool or rental car (no transportation provided). As private transportation, insurance is to be provided by the participants in the tour. Neither the LDSIG, Inc. nor the NMRA provide insurance coverage for private transportation. Sign up for carpools will be Sunday-Tuesday in the SIG Room. The time and location for finalizing carpools and organizing car rentals will be announced on the LDSIG’s Bulletin Board in the SIG Room. Maps will be distributed at the annual meeting, Wednesday morning. Information on nearby rental car agencies will be available for those wanting to gather a group of friends or “birds of a feather” to visit specific layouts. The LDSIG Layout Tours are open to members’ spouses, and Layout Tour tickets are required.

An interesting phenomenon occurs in Southern California along with other areas of the west. In residence buildings there are very few basements and because of the low pitched or flat roofs very few attics. That leaves spare bedrooms and garages as the most common space for the modeler’s railroad empire. Sometimes that space has to be shared with other uses – a bed, a desk and storage space in a bedroom or a car, tools and a laundry in a garage. Sometimes the former occupants never grace the space after the railroad is constructed – child off to college or car sits in the driveway. Occasionally, the modeler is lucky and is able to construct a purpose built space for their model railroad, but this is the exception and not the rule.

This year the LDSIG is offering two formal tours with 21 layouts of various sizes.

For the Wednesday tour the plan is to start at the Convention and see the layouts in Orange County in the morning and work our way north toward the San Gabriel Mountains then along the 210/134 towards the San Fernando Valley in the afternoon. The picnic will be held between 4 and 5 at Travel Town in Griffith Park. We will resume the tour with the Burbank, and Van Nuys layouts and then head to the South Bay for a few layouts there before heading back to the convention.

The Thursday tour to Santa Barbara is planned for the afternoon. Many of the same layouts will be on the convention bus tour Thursday morning. We want to allow the buses to complete their tours so that we can spend more time appreciating the layouts. Jon Cure’s layout is the initial layout tour stop and will allow you plenty of time to see both of his layouts. It will also allow you to stop for a quick lunch if you desire on the way up to Santa Barbara before the 1PM openings of the layouts there. Several of the Thursday layouts are open for operations Thursday evening. The meal for the Thursday tour will be at Gary Siegel’s amidst the G-gauge layout.

Most of the layouts fall in the garage or spare room category. There are a few unusual locations including one outside, one in a purpose built basement, two in a space dug out under the residence specifically for the model railroad and three clubs in larger spaces. Additionally, we have arranged for an informal tour on Saturday of three layouts in San Diego County. One is located in a basement or at least a lower story, one is in an office trailer and there is also a special behind the scenes tour of the La Mesa Club at the San Diego Model Railroad Museum. We hope you enjoy your visits to these model railroad empires and appreciate the use of the available space and the designs necessary to accommodate the railroad empires in those spaces.

Wednesday Layout Tour and Picnic

Wednesday LDSIG Layout Tour and Picnic (Convention Tour SGM1) – Wednesday, July 16th 10:30 AM departure, last layouts open until 10:00 PM. We have lined up about thirteen innovative home and club layouts which will be open for you to choose from. The picnic meal (ticket required) will be served at a location approximately halfway through the tour.

The following descriptions and photos will orient the visitors to the layouts on the tours.

Wednesday 10-2 HO Mike Kresen Connequenessing Line Scenery 90% 14x20 Easy Access Theme: Western Pennsylvania 1950’s

Mike Kresen’s HO scale Connequenessing Line, is a freelanced layout depicting an area in western Pennsylvania in the early 1950's. Mike began building the layout in 2003. The layout is approximately 14'X20' and is in a 2-car garage size. All Digitrax controlled including 31 Tortoise Machine switches controlled through stationary decoders. Mike is working on computer control including programming of locos via Decoder Pro software. The layout integrates 2 working yards, 1 turntable and a reverse loop via a double crossover. Motive power is a mix of steam and early diesel locomotives.

Wednesday 10-12 HO Jim Lancaster Los Angeles & San Diego Railroad Scenery 70% 40x15 Easy Access Theme: Southern California Citrus

Jim Lancaster’s HO scale Los Angeles and San Diego has been constructed in its own 40’ x 15’ building in back of Jim’s home , The model represents parts of Riverside and Orange County. The railroads represented on the layout include Santa Fe, Southern Pacific and Union Pacific. The benchwork is essentially complete (including an upper deck) but track and scenery on some sections of the layout are still not finished. The layout has several staging yards that enable numerous trains to enter the “working” portion of his layout. Jim has been doing some amazing research into the citrus packing houses of Southern and Central California [1] and has incorporated that research into his model empire. While the layout is still under construction, you can view the layout and some of Jim’s modeling skills at

Wednesday 11-2 N Lestico, Mark UP Cascade Subdivision Scenery 70% 28X17 Easy Access Theme: Contemporary UP in Oregon

Mark Lestico’s N scale UP Cascade Subdivision is built in the typical Southern California garage. The N-Scale Cascade Subdivision is an operations focused re-creation of the beautiful Cascade crossing between Eugene and Klamath Falls, Oregon. The layout is set in the present time with Union Pacific in control of the line. The layout features a 13 track staging yard and 5.3 scale miles of mainline track. A 6 hour radio dispatched operating session duplicates all of the prototype traffic found on this line today. Innovations include using a sloping garage floor to your advantage, using narrow benchwork for a long run, Steel boltless shelving for benchwork, domino construction and many other contemporary design concepts. Over two years were spent on room preparation alone. Come and enjoy a clean, crisp and contemporary model railroading experience on the Cascade Subdivision in Whittier.

Wednesday 10-1 HO Bill Meyer ATSF Western Region Big Creek Sub Scenery 85% 19x25 Duck under or stairs Theme: ATSF in Orange Co., CA

• Bill Meyer’s HO scale ATSF Western Region Big Creek Subdivision is a freelanced railroad based on the traffic and industries of Fullerton, CA and North Orange County set in the late pre-BSNF merger 1990’s era. The railroad scenery is about 85% complete and has 95’ of mainline with double ended staging supporting a total of 17 trains run in a 3-4 hour session. Traffic includes manifests from east/west ATSF traffic and 20+ local industries switched by the DB & AJ Railroad. In addition, there is interchange traffic with the SP and the DB & AJ Railroad. The dispatcher, yardmaster, road crews and SP local crew operate the railroad using CVP EasyDCC wireless throttles. Car forwarding is managed using car cards and waybills. Traffic control is managed via track warrant dispatching using radios.

Wednesday 11-2 HO Ralph Hougesen Amargosa Railroad Scenery 75% 14x17 Easy Access Theme: Bullfrog Mining District

Ralph Hougesen’s HO scale Amargosa Railroad is a freelanced railroad set in the post war through mid nineteen fifties era in the desert east of Death Valley between Beatty and Goldfield Nevada with connections and interchange with the SP, the UP and Santa Fe. Industries modeled are mining and support for the mining community with plenty of traffic to keep the railroad busy. The 14 X 17 HO layout is in an around the room dog bone configuration with combination of very reliable handlaid code 55 and Atlas code 100 track. Switches are operated using hand throws. The operational focus is local industry switching using car cards and waybills. Waybills are not turned. There is no dispatcher so crews handle clearance and meet negotiation. Control is DCC using Digitrax wired and wireless throttles. Most motive power has sound installed. The layout scenery is 75% complete. It is a beautiful little layout that runs very well.

Wednesday 1-4 HO Mike O’Brien Scenery 0% Basement stairs Theme: MKT Denison, TX

Mike O’Brien is still in the planning stages of his layout although some of the benchwork is already built. Come visit the LDSIG’s president and offer him some design advice in one of the few basements you will see in Southern California.

Wednesday 1-4 HOn3 and Sn3 Slim Gauge Guild Scenery 70% 40x40 Easy Access Theme: Colorado narrow gauge

The Slim Gauge Guild’s Sn3 and HOn3 Colorado layouts. Yes, there are two layouts at this location both modeling Colorado narrow gauge. The 2000 square foot basement contains an Hon3 DRGW and RGS based layout from the 1920 – 1949 time period. Specific prototype locations are modeled. The Sn3 layout is more freelanced. Scenery is nearing 90%. Both layouts were recently featured in Scale Rails and can be seen at

Wednesday 1-4 HO Jim Spencer Denver and Rio Grande Western Scenery Easy Access Theme: Colorado Rockies

Jim Spencer’s HO scale Denver and Rio Grande Western models the Second Division standard gauge over Tennessee Pass and the Third Division narrow gauge over Marshall Pass with Salida as the junction between the two. The standard gauge models the run from Salida to Minturn on the other side of the pass. The future narrow gauge will model the run from Salida to Gunnison with branches to Baldwin and the Black Canyon.

The layout is entirely unscenicked. It was actually excavated under my house and was not originally designed to be there. However it is in finished space well suited for a layout. My house is on a hillside and the layout occupies the downslope. As such it is entered on level. But there is a duckunder of about 50" high required to enter the room.

It is a two deck design with the upper deck housing the standard gauge and dual gauge yards, mostly in place. The future lower deck will house the narrow gauge . Linking the two levels is a massive helix that transports the narrow gauge down about 24" to the lower deck. Atop the helix is the main dual gauge yard and turntable with roundhouse.

Construction of the upper deck is 2" foam-masonite composite panels that are cantilevered from the walls using ordinary threaded plumbing pipes and pipe flanges. This has minimized the thickness and eliminates interference with the lower deck. The roadbed is entirely on extruded foam and utilizes Woodland Scenics risers for elevation changes. Scenery will utilize the more common expanded bead foam.

The layout utlizes Digitrax DCC and has some locos equipped with sound.Tennessee and Marshall Pass is in a space under Jim’s home specifically prepared for the railroad. The lower level is Marshall Pass (narrow gauge) yet to be started. The upper level is Tennessee Pass (standard and dual gauge) which should at least have a full loop and most of the yards done by July. The construction is very interesting and unusual. It is mostly foam and cantilevered out of the wall. It uses Woodland Scenics risers and Jack Parker's Central Valley switch and tie system. It is DCC with SoundTrax.

Travel Town will be the site of our mid-tour meal. Started in 1952, this collection of prototype rolling stock includes 16 locomotives, 19 freight and passenger cars an several trolleys and motor cars. We will be picnicking at the museum. The tables just to the right of the large shed in the adjacent photo have been reserved for the LDSIG. There is ample of parking and plenty to see. For more information on the mueum go to the Travel Town web site:

Wednesday 5-8 HO Paul Catapano Little Rock Subdivision of the Atlantic Inland Railway Scenery 40% 25x51 Stairs Theme: Appalachian coal & bridge route

Paul Catapano’s HO scale Little Rock Subdivision of the Atlantic Inland Railway is a freelanced eastern railroad set in July of 1952 in western West Virginia. The modeled portion of the road has a coal hauling base with industrial switching. Four coal branches coming out of staging drive coal traffic. A direct eastern interchange with the Western Maryland and a southern interchange via a secondary line to CRR, VGN, N&W, and INT provides a high level of interchange bridge traffic. Paul built the two story garage with the specific purpose of putting a railroad on the second floor. It is so large that he fondly calls it the “Garage Mahal.” The double deck 25' X 51' layout was built with a primary focus on operations. There is no helix but the second level is reached through a long grade requiring helper engines on all but the shortest trains. Stacked staging yards are beyond the modeled sections on both decks.

The layout is largely without scenery although Paul has put in some landforms and many structures or signs to designate specific industries. The operation uses TT/TO for traffic control and CC/WB for car forwarding. A Dispatcher is located downstairs, outside the layout room with a local Agent Operator in the layout room receiving and delivering train orders. Along with yardmaster, road crew and dedicated switching positions, there is a helper service crew for the grade between decks. Control is via wired and wireless CVP DCC throttles.

Wednesday 5-8 HO Dan Wexler Hamlin & Valley Central Railroad Scenery 95% 18x20 Easy Access Theme: California Citrus

Dan Wexler’s HO scale Hamlin & Valley Central Railway is a freelance industrial short line railroad with a citrus shipment focus set somewhere in California during the summer of 1964. The fully sceniced railroad measures 18 X 20 feet overall and is housed in a finished two car garage. While a talented staff maintains steam profitably for main line operations, yard jobs and the secondary mountainous Ore Grande Branch are serviced by Alco diesels acquired from operating partner ATSF. The railroad features a point to point configuration on two levels. Traffic control is via Time Table with switch list car forwarding by Rail-OPs. Digitrax DCC wired and wireless throttles are used for control. Web site at








Wednesday 6-8 HO Lee Christopher McCloud Railway Scenery 40% 19x17 Easy Access Theme: McCloud Railway

Lee Christopher’s HO scale McCloud Railway represents a circa 1997 short line handling lumber, paper and mining products. It’s modeled after the McCloud Railway and models specific areas on the prototype. This multi-level layout is 17’ x 19’ and operates point-to-point. Curves are minimum 28” with easements and turnouts are minimum #6, hand laid to fit the track plan. Rail is hand laid Codes 83, 70, 55 and 40. A signature element of the track plan is an actual representation of a long switchback used by the prototype. The railroad interchanges freight with the Union Pacific as part of the operations. More information at

Wednesday 6-10 HO Los Angeles Model Railroad Society Great Lakes and Western Railroad Scenery 99% 40x50 Stairs Theme: Freelance

The Los Angeles Model Railroad Society’s HO scale Great Lakes & Western Railroad is a proto-freelance Railroad set in the steam-diesel transition era (1945-1960). The 2000 square foot GL&W has many interesting scenes along its route. Most all scenes and structures are based on actual prototypes. The railroad runs in an East- West direction from the Great Lakes to the west side of the Continental Divide parallel to other major name railroads and assists those railroads in relieving congestion during times of heavy traffic by issuing trackage rights to those railroads. The major railroads haul loads destined to locations on the GL&W as well as provide motive power and crews to switch the local industries. Traffic that results includes freight from several different roads working the GL&W as well as name passenger trains stopping at the local stations. The railroad features over 800 feet of mainline and two major yards. Trains running include local switching, interchange, unit trains and scheduled passenger service. Industries served include the largest HO scale oil refinery ever built , a modern intermodal transfer facility similar to Port of Long Beach, a grain terminal, an ore terminal including a scale model of Great Lakes ore ship Aurora, sugar beet loading, lumber operations, citrus operations with icing facilities, passenger trains from the golden era of passenger service and a large narrow gauge railroad. Yards include both diesel and steam service facilities. Operation positions include yard masters, local switching and road crews. The club is integrating computer control into its operations facilitating dispatcher assigned computer controlled routing although local routing control is also supported. Switch lists are used for yard switching while car cards and waybills (see are used for individual and block car movements. The club uses Digitrax DCC for train control and communications are via radio headset. Web site:

Wednesday 6- 9 N Frank Kenny Central Pacific Railway Scenery 50% 19x20 +10x12 Easy Access Theme: Tehachapi Freelance

Frank Kenny’s N scale Central Pacific Railway is a two-car garage and 1 bedroom layout. This railroad is set in California and reflects the areas from Mojave to Fresno, including the Tehachapi loop area. The era is the present. The premise is the SP was having financial troubles and needed money, so the CPRX (Central Pacific Railway ) management stepped up and bought the trackage between LA and Sacramento from the SP. The traffic is still BNSF/UP. There are also Amtrak and Metrolink trains as well as Central Pacific trains. The layout is built for operations. The mainline track was finished in August 2005. There are still a few sidings and spurs to be installed, including the industrial trackage of Fresno, and the remaining 9 tracks of the lower staging yard in the bedroom staging area. The layout is in a 19’ x 20’ room with the upper and lower staging yards in a 10’ x 12’ room, which also will contain the dispatcher’s desk. The main engine facility also will be located in this room. The layout is double-decked with the mountains on the upper level and the Valley on the lower level. Spline is used for the upper level roadbed. Control is Digitrax. Scenery is in progress (~50%) at this time.

Thursday Layout Tour and Picnic

Thursday LDSIG Layout Tour and Picnic (Convention Tour SGM2)

- Thursday, 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM, Santa Barbara, CA (about 130 miles north of Anaheim ~ 2.5 hours drive plus stops enroute). These layouts would have been on our Wednesday Tour and Picnic, but were too far away. This self-guided layout tour visits eight interesting layouts. There will be a picnic (ticket required) at Gary Siegel’s Thursday afternoon at 4:30 PM. Those who are operating layouts in the Santa Barbara area with the OpSIG are encouraged to join the LDSIG tour and join us for dinner.

The following descriptions and photos will orient the visitors to the layouts on the tours.

Thursday 8 - 12 HO Santa Susana Railroad Historical Society Santa Susana Pacific Scenery 90% 25x54 Easy Access Theme: So. California

Santa Susana Railroad Historical Society’s HO scale Santa Susana Pacific is located in the freight room of the historic Southern Pacific Santa Susana Depot, built in 1903 and recently renovated. The one thousand square foot layout utilizes Digitrax to control the trains, and the club in the midst of installing a DCC controlled signaling system. The existing track work, structures and scenery are being upagraded to "fine scale" modeling standards on the back 1/3 of the layout. The layout loosely represents Southern Pacific’s coast line in the mid 1950s, and the most featured display is of Simi Valley and its local industries. Also modeled are areas such as Camarillo, Felton, Cuesta, and Salinas.

Thursday 9:30- 2 HO Jon Cure SP Inyo Subdivision Scenery 70% 37x25 Easy Access Theme: Eastern California – Nevada

Jon Cure’s HO scale Southern Pacific Inyo Subdivision is located in Jon’s four car garage garage. The 37’ X 25’ layout models modern day traffic in California’s Mojave Desert and Owens Valley as well as an Eastern Sierra branch and some Nevada desert. Major industries include carbon black, copper smelting, tungsten and talc mining, cement, lumber and paper mills, and military installations as well as assorted industrial/commercial businesses such as lumber, fuel, scrap, etc. In addition there is an interchange with the Trona Railway. Typical trains are SP, WP, and ATSF. Trains are run from staging as extra’s and car forwarding is controlled by car cards and waybills. Jobs typically include yard masters, local switching crews, and manifest trains with scheduled work. The layout scenery is approximately 60% complete. Train control is NCE DCC with some sound equipped motive power. The garage is next to the UP/Metrolink (former SP) Coastline trackage so you might enjoy some real train traffic. As a bonus, Jon also has a T&NO Beaumont Industrial RR, an around the walls HO scale DC switching layout inside his house. Photos of the layout can be seen at

Thursday 1- 4 HO Gary Siegel L&N Eastern Kentucky Division Scenery 90% 25x60 Easy Access Theme: L&N Railroad 1971

Gary Siegel’s HO scale L&N Eastern Kentucky Division, is a well known operations oriented railroad in the Los Angeles region. The railroad was on the NMRA tour for the Long Beach national convention in 1996. It was featured in Model Railroader in April 1996. At the time of the article layout modeled the fictitious Ashlan subdivision of the L&N extending from Dent, KY, to Ashlan, VA interchanging with the Clinchfield. The layout has since expanded considerably and the area now models from Hazard, to Ashlan with interchanges with the Norfolk & Western through Norton, VA, the Kentucky Northern at Harlan Junction, KY and the Chesapeake and Ohio, at Deane, KY and Corbin, KY. More recently, the railroad was featured in Rail Model Journal in January and February 2008 and Model Railroad Craftsman in May 2008. The Eastern Kentucky Division models an area of coal mines in the Appalachians in eastern Kentucky and western Virginia. The year is 1971 so both 1st and 2nd generation diesels are the rule. Operations focus on coal traffic both on and off the line with mines and coal processing industries distributed in the mountainous Appalachian scenery. The EK is still running its own passenger trains. The 1500 sq ft HO scale layout is fully scenicked. Crews staff yards at Ashlan, Fowler, Dent, and Hazard. Road crews are responsible for mine runs, empty and full coal trains, hot freights, forwarders, local freights and an occasional passenger train. Communication to the dispatcher is via 5-channel radios. 3:1 fast clock moves the action along. Car cards and waybills are used to direct car forwarding. Control is DCC using CVP EasyDCC wireless and wired throttles. Web site:

Thursday 1- 4 G Gary Siegel SP Santa Cruz Division Scenery 60% 200x185 Easy Access Theme: Santa Cruz to San Jose

Gary’s SP Santa Cruz Division layout is an operations oriented 1:32 standard gauge layout. Modeled after the Southern Pacific’s line from San Jose to Santa Cruz, the old South Pacific Coast R.R. The era is in the late 60's. the mainline is 750 feet long with five passing sidings. The railroad design is point to point. Mainline minimum radius is 8'6". The maximum mainline grade is 1.5%. We run with 1st. and 2nd. generation deisels. Mainline track and industrial spurs are in. The yard and industrial tracks at San Jose and Santa Cruz are not in yet. There are some temporary yard tracks in. Gary has planted several hundred dwarf Alberta spruce trees as part of the scenery. For more photos scroll down a few pages at the Gold Coast Garden Railway Society’s October 2007 newsletter

Thursday 1- 4 N Walter Naumann UP&W Scenery 20% 50x15 Stairs, ramp available Theme: Union Pacific Sherman Hill

Walter Naumann’s N-scale UP&W, is a representation of the Union Pacific June 20, 1949 with a no compromise scale mile representation of the “S” curve at Sherman Hill (scale 200 inch minimum radius) with hand laid #10 and #20 turnouts, super elevated code 40 track, and a goal of 100 cars trains. Less detailed operating extensions include yards at Cheyenne, Green River, and North Platt. Separate East and West nested-loop staging completes the layout. Car forwarding is by car blocks. Control is Lenz DCC using cordless phones for wireless throttles. It will have the m_RPS model Railroad Position System as shown at Operation positions include road crews, yardmasters, and dispatch. There will be 50 feet of double track main with one center siding, three 5 track main yards, and 8 staging tracks

Thursday 1- 4 HO James Donlon Southern Pacific Coast Line Scenery 60% 18x21 CRAWL UNDER Theme: SP Coastline ~ 1950

James Donlon’s HO scale Southern Pacific Coast Line, James Donlon’s HO scale, three deck representation of the Southern Pacific Coastline route. The circa 1950 era allows a mix of steam, first generation diesels and a few second generation diesels. The railroad seeks to faithfully recreate the SP’s Ventura Sub Division operations between Burbank Junction (roughly Glendale CA) and Sea Cliff (south Santa Barbara) with 350 feet of mainline in an around the 22’ x 19’ room. The railroad was built for operation. Using an original SP timetable from the era, James dispatches trains based on the actual time table of the day using and 8:1 fast clock to cover a 24 hour period in 3 hours with an average of 16-20 trains operating. The times of the trains on his model are within minutes of the actual 1952 SP timetable. Trains include through and local freights as well as named passenger consists. Trains run as scheduled and extra’s. Towns and landmarks along the route are captured in the layout including Santa Susana Pass, the yard at Oxnard and the “Y” for the Santa Paula branch line. The layout scenery is expected to be 30% complete. Car forwarding is handled via car cards and simplified waybills. Rolling stock and motive power are per the period and some power has sound. The layout configuration includes hidden staging at either end of the route and helixes to traverse decks. Operators include road crews, local switching jobs, and the Oxnard Yardmaster. MRC Prodigy DCC is used for train control. Entry to the layout requires navigating a “CRAWL under” so be prepared.

Thursday 1- 4 N Dana Driskel Los Angeles & Salt Lake Scenery 50% 18x21 Easy Access Theme: Salt Lake Route

Dana Driskel's N-scale Los Angeles and Salt Lake is in the back portion of his garage. This is Dana's third iteration of the route between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City, now a part of the Union Pacific. Dana takes his inspiration from the LA&SL's Third subdivision in the year 1920. The Third Sub was a helper district in southern Nevada. The railroad is itself a helix with grades around the walls. Nevada Desert and canyon landscape is the scenery theme.

Thursday 1- 4 HO Bruce Morden SP Santa Barbara Subdivision Scenery 0% 20x20 Easy Access Theme: SP Coastline

Bruce Morden’s HO scale Southern Pacific Santa Barbara Subdivision is another 2-car garage. The Southern Pacific Santa Barbara Subdivision models an area from Carpinteria to Goleta. Bruce’s layout is a work in progress and so far there is no scenery. Tracks have been completed on the first of three proposed levels. Two staging yards are completed and one medium sized on line yard. Construction includes “thin wall”, L-girder, and open grid. Roadbed includes solid masonite spline and plywood-homosote sandwiches. Bruce hopes to one day extend the tracks over Cuesta grade to San Miguel.

Saturday Self-guided Layout Tour

Saturday LDSIG Layout Tour

This tour will be very informal but we have several outstanding opportunities for layout visits on Saturday. Jay Styron's Southern Pacific Friant Branch and Steve Harris' Rio Grande Southern will be open and may be visited on trip to San Diego. We have arranged special "behind the scenes" tours of the La Mesa Model Railroad Club's Tehachapi layout at the San Diego Model Railroad Museum. If you are interested in participating in this special tour check in the SIG room.

Saturday 9-12 HO Jay Styron SP Friant Branch Scenery 70% 13x22 Easy Access Theme: SP Friant Branch (Fresno)

Jay Styron’s HO-scale SP Friant Branch layout (12' x 32') is housed in a fully finished room built under his house for the railroad. He has recreated the Southern Pacific's Friant Branch in the Fresno, California, area. The design of the layout includes careful consideration of aisle space, layout access, storage and lighting. Industries modeled include citrus farms, wineries, fruit packing houses and reefer icing facilities. Operations are DCC controlled.

Saturday 9-5 HOn3 Steve Harris Rio Grande Southern Scenery 70% 20x8 Easy Access Theme: Colorado narrow gauge

Steve Harris’ HOn3 Rio Grande Southern is housed in a commercial office trailer. Steve’s railroad was featured in Model Railroader in November 2004. More recently Model Railroader ran an article on one of Steve’s removable hills (Apr 2008). Steve has also had articles in the Narrow Gauge & Short Line Gazette on some of his structures and rolling stock. The helix has been replaced by one of Dick Robert’s train elevators.

Saturday 11-5 HO La Mesa Model RR Club Tehachapi Pass Scenery 80% 7500 sq ft on two levels Easy Access Theme: Tehachapi Pass

The La Mesa Model Railroad Club’s Tehachapi Pass layout is one of the largest model railroads in the world. For more than 24 years, the club has engaged in a demanding and expensive undertaking. Members have planned and built well over half the joint Southern Pacific/Santa Fe Railroad running from Bakersfield to Mojave, California, in the 1950s. The 70 actual miles was compressed to 25 scale miles. Two of the most dramatic things about the route are the mountain scenery and the nearly continuous series of sharp reverse curves forced upon the railroad by the rugged terrain. The current layout consists of the area from the Southern Pacific Bakersfield Yard through the famous Tehachapi Loop, where an engine of a 100 car train spirals up to cross directly over it’s caboose 70 feet below After 2 1/2 years of major construction to build the mezzanine and public viewing area, the club is now in high gear to finish the dream started over 20 years ago - building the best ever historical model railroad! Current projects include building switches, installing benchwork, adding details, buildings and scenery, adding to rolling stock and wiring the new railroad for DCC.

We have made some special arrangements to visit the La Mesa Club. Contact Bruce Morden in the SIG room at the convention to make arrangements for a special behind the scenes tour. The club’s layout is part of the San Diego Model Railroad Museum in Balboa Park near downtown San Diego. There is an admission charge of $6 for admittance to the museum. The museum includes 2 HO scale layouts, one O scale layout, one N scale layout and one O gauge toy train layout. It is well worth the $6 even without the behind the scenes tour.

Check for further details on these and other special tours in the SIG room.

Contact Coordinator

Bruce Morden is our LDSIG local convention coordinator for Anaheim, and he is actively looking for layouts to add to our tour. If you have interest in presenting a clinic, please contact Bruce Morden Please send any suggestions to him.

Anaheim is 27 miles southeast from downtown Los Angeles, about a 40 minute drive of so depending upon traffic.