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Author Topic: Went to my first Train Fair.  (Read 1116 times)
Santa Fe buff

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« on: September 20, 2009, 08:58:21 PM »

Hi all,
I went to the Train Fair that was this weekend in Chicago Ridge, Illinois at the High School! It was incredible. I loved every second of it. I saw at least 20 Athearn Genesis locomotives, most were Tunnels (EMD SD40T-2s.). I had a lot of firsts, which just pulled me into the hobby further. Good Lord, I'm into the railroading for life! Here's a list of the layouts and what I saw:

Table 1: An M.T.H. O scale layout running on DCS with various locomotives from Norfolk Southern GE locomotives pulling an Intermodal freight. A Norfolk and Western Class Y3 Mallet pulling a N&W passenger train. An A.T.S.F. 4-8-4 Northern pulling a freight, and was traded for a Conrail diesel later on. The Norfolk Southern units went from a GE Dash 8-40C + SD40-2 to a Dash 9-44CW + SD40-2. They gave control of a cab to the Class Y3 Mallet to kids for fun, which was nice. I quote one kid, "Why doesn't the engine start up fast, I have it on full." I commented for him saying to a man next to me that it's very nice momentum on the locomotive, he nodded. (My first time seeing M.T.H. locomotives of such class in operation.)

Table 2: A large HO scale layout with many, many locomotives from Athearn. Running trains were a Conrail EMD SD60I + SD70M Flared Radiators pulling an Intermodal freight with a hidden camera in the last top containers showing the roof of a flat caboose and whatever was behind. A small television displayed the camera's footage. Then there was a BNSF manifest freight headed by an older Athearn BNSF GE Dash 9-44CW + BNSF EMD SD60M, another Athearn, newer. No camera. Lastly was an Elgin, Joliet, and Eastern manifest pulled by a EJ&E EMD SD40-2 + EJ&E SD40-2 both Tsunami Sound equipped. This train waiting in a third track yard until the two track mainline was clear enough for it to run through. The yard was filled with cars and locomotives with complete scenes. (My first time hearing HO scale sound.)

"Table" 3: A LGB on-the-floor set up featuring equipment from High Railed cars too Amtrak commuters. All complete with automatic signaling.  Great for people watching trains, a lot to see too. The P42s were very spiffy, but a few sound equipped steam, not many sound equipped diesel locomotives. (First time seeing G Gauge in action in real life.)

Table 4: A Milwaukee Road small N scale layout at eye level. This layout featured stunning scenic and locomotive detail. Featuring static grass, high detail trees, and with locomotives stationary at the station with mars light on full tilt and sound equipped DCC locomotives. It also had a few C&NW locomotives, but a sound equipped 2-6-2 Pacific had a lot of trouble operating on the layout. It found good track at Table 5. (First time seeing N scale mars and lighting with detailed scenery.)

Table 5: This giant N scale Union Pacific layout featured a new Athearn Tsunami Sound equipped 8,500 H.P. turbine. A KATO SD70ACe pulled a Manifest just like the Turbine. The layout featured complete scenery and backdrop. The yard and the rear side was complete and featured a new Bachmann DD40AX with it's strobe on. A Union Pacific passenger train was sitting with a complete A-B-B-A E unit set. This was inactive for the entire time there. They operated some steam locomotives (Including the C&NW 2-6-2.) later in the day. When I first approached the layout, I caught up (By power-walking.) to the Turbine train. It was going very fast since it hit a high voltage power block. Then disaster occurred, which scared me. As the train was going, very fast, a Gulf tanker car hit an uneven joint in the lift up section. It derailed, and ran for awhile. I was in shock, and soon at the high speed it was back on layout ground. It decoupled and the coupler hit a tie. The car jolted, and decoupled from the rest of the train (Mindful it's on a grade of 1.5% track and slopes on the right-of-way.) and tipped on it's side on the slope. The top hatch kept the car from disaster. I quickly hurried by best to get the the attention of an operator on the other side of the layout by yelling. I yelled, "Excuse me, excuse me! You have a derailment and wreck!" He walked over, the rest of the train was still powering on. He changed addresses and stopped the turbine. Called over some more fellows. They got the car on, leveled the lift, and coupled in no time. It never had anymore trouble after that. (First time for hearing N scale sound and seeing such a big N scale layout.)

I will talk more later, but I have more to say. I feel that is enough to keep you thinking for quite some time. Please let me know what you think. While I was there, I purchased a CB&Q 4-Bay hopper with Kadee sprung trucks on it. Then my first Proto 2000 piece, and undecorated caboose with full interior, grab irons modeled on (Looks nice really.) and interior lighting. All for $4.95 for the hopper, and $6.00 for the discontinued caboose.  Smiley

Cheers,
Joshua

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- Joshua Bauer
Paul M.

T&P Railway in the 1950s


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« Reply #1 on: September 20, 2009, 10:58:41 PM »

Sounds like you had a fun time!
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CNE Runner


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« Reply #2 on: September 21, 2009, 10:07:54 AM »

As a vendor, at several train shows, I welcome you. Train shows are wonderful places to find all sorts of interesting items. Additionally there usually is a wealth of experience to guide you in just about any task in the hobby. While I like to sell lots of product, I enjoy conversing with other model railroaders just as much. Most of the model railroad magazines carry calendars (Model Railroader's full calendar is on-line) that will inform you of other shows in your area.

'Glad you enjoyed yourself,
Ray
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"Keeping my hand on the throttle...and my eyes on the rail"
jettrainfan

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« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2009, 03:09:25 PM »

No jokes? darn! Grin Their is usually one strange thing like a octopus, Godzilla once and rats in tunnels. real funny and are usually on only one layout. Oh well, sounds like you had fun!
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