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1  Discussion Boards / On30 / Re: Still hoping & waiting for a Bachmann Prairie on: December 24, 2020, 10:30:18 PM
I'd be happy to see Bachmann produce a Baldwin 0-6-2T commonly used on the Hawaiian sugar plantation railroads.  Many of them were legitimately 30 inch gauge.  I'd be in serious trouble if one of them became available....

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
2  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: logging engines on: August 01, 2020, 01:34:27 PM
I disagree on the demand part, the lumber industry always has been a popular model subject, and Bachmann in particular hasn't seemed to have many problems selling their geared steam locomotives when they make them available.  And unless someone has them unreasonably priced brass and plastic logging locomotives have no trouble selling on the auction sites.

In order to understand geared steam locomotives one really has to understand the logging industry and how it operated, which has been alluded to a time or two on this thread.  Sawmilling had mostly been a local industry until the early 1800s, when lumber demands shot up as cities started expanding.  The development of the railroad network really allowed for the economical transport of lumber long distances, and sawmill sizes progressively grew to meet demand.  The problem this creates is that a sawmill of any size will very shortly cut through all the immediately available timber, which means that logs either have to be hauled over ever increasing distances or the sawmill has to frequently move.  Relocating sawmills became increasingly difficult as they transitioned into large industrial facilities, and so the industry had to develop ways to economically move logs over ever increasing distances.  It's no coincidence that the cradle of the modern sawmill industry lay in the Great Lakes region, as water provided the best way of moving logs, either floating across lakes or in the great "log drives" down rivers.  This only works for as long as the woods and the mill are on contiguous waterways.  Animals- usually oxen or horses- provided the next best way to move logs, but log size and friction limited the length of such moves, which led to greased skidways and then primitive animal powered tramways, and then in 1876 a southern Michigan logger built what is generally credited to be the first logging railroad. 

Logging railroads faced several problems.  Railroads always have been incredibly expensive to build, equip, and maintain, and generally the costs associated with logging railroads had to be charged as part of an operation's logging expense and would have to be recaptured with lumber sales as logging railroads rarely produced any other revenues for their owners.  This translated into some of the cheapest railroads an operation could get away with building- rudimentary at best engineering, ties laid directly on the ground, little to no ballast, a minimum of earthwork or grading, and light rail.  This in turn limited the size and weight of equipment operating on these roads, and most mainline equipment could not tolerate lightly built trackwork or steep grades found on most logging railroads.  Ephraim Shay solved these problems when he invented the locomotive that would be named after him, and its success prompted others to invent the Climax and Heisler and a few other less successful variations.  The geared engines essentially operated in the equivalent of a car's first gear all the time, and the short wheelbases of the powered trucks made them adept at negotiating the roughly built trackage.  These were the considerations at play that dictated speeds, not keeping the logs on the cars as stated.  Logging railroads expected logs to roll off cars, and almost every operation would run a special train usually towards the end of each season to pick up all the logs that prematurely rolled off the cars along the line.  Most log flats had some sort of cheese block to prevent logs from rolling off cars, and chained log loads to the cars as well.  By the later years log bunks became standard equipment on almost all log cars. 

However, logging railroads tended to grow along with the industry, and by the early 1900s the ever increasing distances between the woods and the mills forced logging railroads to develop well built heavy use mainlines to bridge that distance.  Geared steam locomotives were simply way too slow to be used on those operations, and most larger railroads tended to start using them only on the temporary spur line trackage built into the woods while the 60- to 90- ton 2-8-0s, 2-6-2s. and 2-8-2s would handle the mainline hauls.  A number of the larger operations simply got rid of their geared steam altogether and found it cheaper to build the logging spurs to a high enough standard to support the lighter rod locomotives. 

Hopefully the images come through okay. 

Trucks largely replaced spur line logging starting in the late 1930s, with the conversion complete essentially by the late 1950s.  Of course, most operations found it cheaper just to keep the logs on the trucks once there for the entire haul to the mill, and by the late 1950s/early 1960s the only logging railroads really left were a few mainline hauls where enough timber existed in one place to keep the railroad cost competitive with trucks and publicly financed highways.


When it comes to logging modeling, the most popular form seems to be the earlier era, with a geared steam locomotive or two hauling a few carloads of logs to a mill so small that its production would have taken many days to fill a standard gauge boxcar and would have never been able to afford a logging railroad in the first place, but hey, they look cool in model form.

Lastly, while most Shays and geared steam were built to either standard of 36" gauge, there were some built to oddball gauges, a few for domestic use and some for export.  Perhaps one of the more unusual gauges were four two-truck Heislers built to 45-1/4" gauge, used on the Northern Redwood Lumber Company logging railroad out of North Fork (later Korbel), California, on the northwest coast in the redwoods. m All were later rebuilt to standard gauge.     

I hope this helps. 

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV   
3  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: logging engines on: July 25, 2020, 01:30:31 PM
"Logging and Mining" engines covers a pretty broad range of models.  Graywolf, it would help in queries like this one if you could flesh out your question a little bit, as we can't read your mind or know what you are seeking. 

That being said, there have been a lot of HO scale logging and mining locomotive models produced in both brass and plastic through the years.  Off the top of my head the plastic models I can come up with include Bachmann's 3-truck Shay, 2-truck Climax, and 3-truck Climax; Model Die Casting/Roundhouse also made 2- and 3- truck Shays and Class A Climax locomotives; I think it was AHM that made 2- and 3- truck Heislers, Rivarossi later released updated and improved versions; and Mantua made 2-6-6-2 "Loggers" in two types of saddle tank and a tender equipped versions.  I don't think any of these are available new now, and several have been out of production for many years, but they are readily available through all the various used markets. 

In addition to the above list there are a number of smaller plastic steam locomotives that could readily be found on logging railroads.  Bachmann and Mantua both made smaller 2-6-2 prairies that could be reasonable stand ins, the Bachmann is still available but the Mantua has been out of production for many decades.  MDC/Roundhouse "old time" 2-6-0 and 2-8-0 models are both good starting points for logging locomotives, and Athearn has released upgraded versions of these in their Roundhouse line.  Ten wheelers were rare but not unheard of on logging railroads, and Bachmann's 4-6-0 would be a good starting point. 

Logging and mining steam have been incredibly popular in brass.  There have been many, many brass models of Shays, Hieslers, Climaxes, and Willamettes in many shapes and sizes produced.  Some of the logging rod locomotives produced in brass include 2-6-2T and 2-8-2Ts; four or five versions of 70-ton logging mikados; three 2-6-2 prairies; several variations of the 2-4-4-2, 2-6-6-2 and 2-6-6-2T logging mallets; plus some smaller locomotives like 0-8-0T, 0-4-4-0T, and a Vulcan Duplex.  As in plastic there are also a fairly large number of other small brass steamers that can be easily adapted for logging railroad service.  Unfortunately, most of these models date from the 1960s/1970s, can be expensive to purchase, and generally require motor replacement and substantial drive train upgrades if they are to be operated today.

I'll echo what Trainman203 said, that Baldwin 2-6-2 and 2-8-2 logging specific prototypes would be most welcome additions to Bachmann's line.  As noted above, there have been three logging specific prairies produced in brass, the generic "Prairie King", Polson/Rayonier #45, and the Oregon-American #105.  The "Prairie King" is closest to the earliest versions of the Baldwin logging prairie from the late 1800s/early 1900s, while both of the others are models of essentially one-off prototypes that had relatively few to no others like them.  I'd love to see a "modern" Baldwin prairie (middle 1920s), along the lines of the Dolbeer & Carson 3 or McCloud River #20/#21.  As for the Mikados, the brass versions produced have been a late 1890s Brooks mikado, two versions of the Polson/Rayonier #70, Brooks-Scanlon/Georgia Pacific #5, and the Owen Oregon/Medford Corp/California Western #3/#45.  All of these are in the 70-or so ton weight class, which were on the smaller end of the Baldwin logging mikado.  I'd love to see a model of a Baldwin 90-ton logging mikado, but I've pretty much given up that it will happen. 

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV 
4  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Upgraded Russian Decopod on: July 16, 2019, 01:38:25 AM
Re: tariff of now there are no tariffs on model railroad products.  They are however almost certainly included in this last batch of imports from China threatened with tariffs if the current negotiations break down.  That being said, the trade war has driven up raw material costs for everyone, so that almost certainly plays some role. 

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
5  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: I wish Bachmann would make............How about you?? on: June 10, 2018, 09:54:07 PM
Personally, I'd love to see a Baldwin superheated piston valve logging mikado, either 70-ton or preferably 90-ton weight class.  This is a model that's only ever been done in brass, four models of the 70-ton mikado, and two of those were early and late versions of the same prototype engine. 

Second would be a nice generic Baldwin logging/shortline prairie. 

Lastly would be an outside frame 0-6-2T in On30, there were a large number of those built in 30" gauge.

Those are my thoughts. 

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
6  Discussion Boards / On30 / Suggestion- Baldwin outside frame 0-6-2T on: November 04, 2017, 10:58:04 PM
My family and I spent a little over a week on the island of Kauai in 2016, during which time I became fascinated with the history of the Hawaiian sugar railroads.  In the year plus since, I've often thought that one of the Baldwin outside frame 0-6-2T locomotives once so common throughout the islands would be a perfect addition to the On30 line, especially in as much as so many of them were built to 30-inch gauge.  I see in doing a search of the archives this product has been suggested a couple times in the distant past, the last specific ones being close to a decade ago. 

Three of these still exist on Kauai, and several more 36" gauge machines exist elsewhere.  One of these served for a while on the Roaring Camp & Big Trees.  The three on Kauai are all 30" gauge and part of the Grove Farms collection...

There's also a nice video of one of these in operation from a couple years ago on the short amount of trackage Grove Farm has:

I'd like to revive the suggestion of producing these plus a string of cane cars in On30...I know my wallet would be in some measure of jeopardy should these be made...

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV 
7  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Susquehanna 2-8-2 SY class re release? on: January 08, 2017, 03:03:36 PM
I for one would sure like to see a Baldwin 90-ton, 48-inch driver logging/shortline mikado.  I know my bank account would be in serious trouble if Bachmann made one of those...

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
8  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Bachmann HO 2 truck Climax: Is there an oil bunker available? on: November 02, 2016, 01:44:50 AM
Depends on what part of the Nevada desert...there were if anything more coal burners operating out here than oil or especially wood, especially given the close proximity to the Utah mines.  That being said, I'm not aware of any drop in oil bunkers, I made on out of sheet styrene and an oil bunker I'm pretty sure came off of a Rivarossi Heisler.  Plus the water spout from the Climax.

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
9  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: A Small Mikado? on: September 07, 2016, 11:33:10 PM
So, in my opinion this is one of the largest holes in the modeling world at the moment.  There was a time when I would suggest a basic 90-ton Baldwin logging mikado as being an excellent addition to the Bachmann line, but I've long since given up that they will.  I hope to be surprised one of these years...but so far no dice.

As for modeling, your best option might be to start with one of the North West Short Line/Toby 70-ton Baldwin logging mikados, brass imports from a couple decades ago.  There were at least two versions of the Polson/Rayonier #70, one early and one late, which is today operating on the Mt. Rainier Railroad.  Both the prototype and the model are slide valve saturated steam, unusual in as much as the locomotive was built in the early 1920s long after such equipment had given way to piston valves and superheaters.  The other two models that I know of are both superheated piston valve machines, representing the Georgia Pacific #5 (formerly Brooks-Scanlon Lumber Company, on display in a park in Corvallis, Oregon) and Owen Oregon/Medford Corporation #3, now California Western #45.  The biggest drawback for these models if you are after a 90-ton "Mike" is that they all have 44-inch drivers, the 90-ton version has 48" drivers.  These brass models show up on ebay on a fairly regular basis, especially the Polson/Rayonier #70. 

One other possibility might be the Life-Like 0-8-0, I don't know the driver size under it but they look to be about the right would have to get rid of the entire boiler and cab and replace it with something smaller, and I don't know if the mechanism will fit, or can be modified to fit, under somthing smaller.  But that would be another possible starting point with some strong possibilities. 

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
10  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Authentic logging related rolling stock for 80 Ton Three-Truck Shay on: February 06, 2011, 02:28:23 PM
mattyg1306 wrote:

"Really, even though I am a Cass fan and proud of it, I will admit that Bachmann focuses a great deal on Cass because it is a "living" example(and Bachmann's headquarters in Philly is in relatively close proximity to Cass, making it a great source for their inspiration)...albeit in a different form as a tourist line...and very little on other prototypes, at least in HO scale so far (btw, Bach Man, I'm not dissing the Cass releases in any way...keep them coming but offer some other protos, too!)"

And I reply:

While the Bachmann models are based on Cass prototypes, they are very close to similar type machines used extensively around the industry.  That being said, I agree with your statement about needing other prototypes as well- it would be really nice to see, for example, a 70- to 90- ton Baldwin mikado on 48" drivers in the Spectrum line, along with a small list of other cars such as Hart 20- to 25-yeard side dump hoppers, the Pacific Car & Foundry "loggers special" ballast hopper, at least one of the various "loggers special" locomotive cranes produced by Brownhoist or Ohio, just to name a few...

One more interesting variation on the disconnect car theme occurred on the McCloud River operations in northeastern California.  In 1925 the McCloud River Lumber Company changed their logging practices from yarding short log chunks to yarding 32-foot long logs out of woods.  This change alone increased their logging output by 5,000 board feet a day, but it also posed a problem in how to handle the logs once they reached the railhead.  The McCloud River Railroad owned a fleet of several hundred short 26- and 28- foot flatcars at the time to handle the log traffic generated by the lumber company, and their common practice was to place the 32-foot long logs across two of the short flats for the trip to the mill.  This lasted until the railroad could purchase enough 40-foot flats, and rebuild enough of the short flats to 40-foot length, to handle the log traffic.  Not "true" disconnects, but along the same general idea... 

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
11  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Authentic logging related rolling stock for 80 Ton Three-Truck Shay on: February 05, 2011, 06:24:44 PM
I'll add a little to what has been written so far...

First off, disconnected trucks were common, but not universal.  What kind of log car an operation used was largely a reflection of what the company's harvest practices were, and, to a large part, what was available.  Skeleton log cars were perhaps the most commonly used, as they presented a number of advantages- no car deck for bark to accumulate on, the ability to have train brakes, and rugged construction.  However, as noted, the use of flatcars and/or skeletons limited the length of logs that could be loaded.  Where the companies chose to buck their logs- i.e., cut a downed tree into smaller, more manageable chunks- played a large roll in this.  The most common approach was to buck the tree on the ground as soon as it fell, which made the job of skidding the log to the railroad landing that much easier.  In such a case, flats or skeletons were far more practical than disconnects.  An additional factor is if the logging railroad operated its trains over any common carrier trackage, as ICC and state rules generally prohibited the use of disconnects on common carrier lines, though exemptions could be obtained.  However, if the company operating practices dictated delivery of longer logs to the mill, then disconnects would have been used.  Era plays a part in it to- disconnects were more prevalent in the early years.  Loggers seemed to transition later to flats or skeletons, especially if they had any sort of steep decending grades on the line, as with a train of disconnects you only had the engine brakes and manual application of hand brakes on each disconnect to fight gravity.  

In addition to log cars, your typical logging railroad would also have a collection of service equipment.  Nearly every operation had at least one or more steel flatcars with heavy frames, used to move logging equipment into and out of the woods.  The logging railroad was often used to provide supplies to outlying logging camps, which would require at least a couple boxcars and maybe a refrigerator car or two.  Logging equipment itself burned a lot of fuel, and the logging railroad would often have fuel cars- either wood flats equipped with wood racks for wood powered equipment, or steel tank cars for fuel oil.  Gasoline cars became common in later years as internal combustion replaced steam powered logging equipment.  Water was also a never-ending need in most operations- in the earlier years to keep men and animals hydrated, later to keep water in the boilers of steam powered logging equipment.  Your typical logging railroad would likely have numerous water cars, ranging from wooden boxes on flatcars to steel tank cars, to meet this need.  And then there would be a few pieces of more specialized equipment- a locomotive crane or two, a snowplow if you operated in snow country, ballast hoppers for ballasting track, your track gangs would likely have a small collection of work flats dedicated to the never-ending chore of building new log spurs and picking up the old ones, you would need a few fire cars to fight forest fires- mostly water cars equipped with pumps, hose, and firefighting tools, and then a lot of operations had outfit cars that housed track construction or logging crews out in the woods.  

For a good overview, I'd recommend finding the January through April 1984 issues of Railroad Model Craftsman.  RMC carried a four part series on pacific coast logging in those issues- January featured an overview of the logging industry, February covered the steam locomotives used in logging service, March covered steam era rolling stock and other equipment, and April covered the diesel era.  

As for specific recommendations, I'd suggest finding Kadee or Rivarossi skeleton cars, or Bachmann log flats, or Tichy Train Group's 42-foot flatcars- a very close representation of flatcars built by Pacific Car & Foundry that were extensively used in the logging inudstry.  Add a wood boxcar, a couple Life-Like 8,000 gallon tank cars, and a caboose- either one of Bachmann's 4-wheel models, or better yet one of MDC's old side door cabooses- and you'd have yourself a fairly accurate train to go with your Shay.

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV

12  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: Logging mikado on: January 02, 2011, 01:31:04 AM
I'd second, or third, or whatever it is, the many places, mikados such as these were actually more common than the geared steam logging modelers love, but other than five or six brass models of 70-ton prototypes they have never been available...

My vote would be for a 90-ton model...but then again I've been saying this on the Bachmann boards for several years now...I hope to see it one day happen.

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
13  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: More logging theme cars, buildings ect needed. on: December 03, 2010, 12:15:29 AM
Maybe twelve years ago Walthers ran a "Trees & Trains" series that included a modest sized sawmill, a planing mill, a lumber yard, a paper mill, log cars, woodchip cars, centerbeams, a book, and some other items.  The log cars were based on Milwaukee road prototypes; the woodchip and centerbeam cars were modern; and the sawmill buildings could fit in most eras, though it would be most appropriate for more recent layouts.  Most of these kits have been long discontinued, though a few have been re-issued a time or two, and most can be found at swap meets.  Walthers also did a "backwoods enginehouse" that has been long out of production but does closely represent something that would be found on a logging railroad.

I would second the motion for rolling stock such as camp cars, but I'd like to see other cars made available too, such as the Loggers Special ballast hoppers produced by Rogers and others that were used extensively in the woods, 20- to 25-ton steam powered Brownhoist or Ohio cranes, fire and water cars, etc. 

In my opinion, what is really missing from the HO scale market is a Baldwin logging mikado of the 70- to 90-ton wight range.  A lot of these saw service in the western woods- in a lot of areas, they were more prevalent than the geared locomotives everyone loves- but they have only been made available in five or six brass versions, all 70-ton models.  I'd like to see these before anything else. 

Lastly, one thing to keep in mind is that very few of the sawmills that you see built on your "typical" model logging railroad would ever be big enough to warrant construction of a logging railroad.  Then as now, railroads required a substantial amount of capital expenditure to build, equip, and operate, and in order for them to be economically justified the sawmill had to be large enough to produce enough volume of lumber to pay for the railroad.  Sawmills supported by a railroad almost had to be bigger than what most modelers have room to display. 

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV   

How about some HO versions of the "camp" cars that Bachmann did in On30?   They could be sold seperatly or in a compelte set.   Bachmann has done the motive power, has a logging flat car and car if you want to haul the tourists.  But we need some proper camp cars for the loggers, affordable skelleton style log cars.  The flats are nice, a bit over priced IMHO for what you get.   Rivarossi used to do a nice plastic one, Kaydee still does but also higher priced and a kit that many modelers might not care to attempt.  The Skel log cars plus the bobber caboose would make the perfect train for the Shay or Climax engines!   How about structures, a nice small sawmill designed to put next to a log pond, one that would fit the average home layout and not the huge variety.  How about an unloading "jill poke" to go next to the track and some skidding donkeys to put at the log loading area and out in the woods.   Logging is the prefect small layout prototype when money is tight in the train budget.  Most logging RR's had only a couple of engines, a small sawmill and a few log skels or disconnect style trucks to haul the logs.   A small back woods engine house that is long enough to house the 3 truck Shay or Climax would also be an awsome add on sale.   Bachmann could offer a whole logging series that doesnt require the modeler to deal with craftsman style kits that make up the bulk of the logging theme buildings on the market that work on a small layout.  HO versions of all the logging items in the On30 line up would be a good start.  Walthers did a sawmill series, but it was more modern and took quite a large layout to deal with the size of the structures.   How about it Bachmann?
14  Discussion Boards / HO / Re: spectrum wish list on: July 10, 2009, 07:26:06 PM
I will third the motion for a Baldwin logging mike, something along the lines of the CC&C #15 featured, or McCloud River #14, #15, or #18, or Rayonier #70, or a bunch of others...very, very common locomotive in the logging and shortline world, but it's only been done in model form in a couple of brass 70-ton mikes imported a few years back.  Sure would be nice to see the 90-ton version made in HO scale...but I've said that for many years now. 

Maybe next year.

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
15  Discussion Boards / General Discussion / Re: Pearl Harbor movie Loocomotive on: July 09, 2009, 12:35:41 AM
First off...don't go bashing Hollywood that quick.  Parts of the movie depicted the lives of the main characters prior to the war, and that is the part of the movie the trains showed up in.  I recall no hints of Hawaian railroading in the film.

I think Joe's right in that the #3751 had a cameo appearance in the movie.  The film crews also used the SP 4-6-0 (I think) that the Pacific Southwest Railroad Museum has at Campo, California.  It got more air time than the #3751 and actually showed up running at track speed a time or two. 

This being one of the scenes a couple of the characters are seated in a coach as a train is pulling out of a major terminal, and about half of a modern passenger diesel is visible through their big picture window.  Hollywood ain't perfect after all. 

Jeff Moore
Elko, NV
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