February 23, 2018 Meeting
Operations was the name of the game at our February 23rd meeting. Only 1980s and early 1990s motive power was allowed so make sure you make it by our Friday Night Running at the Club page and check out some oldies but goldies.
One of the more unusual units to show up Friday night was this Chicago North Shore & Milwaukee Electroliner. The Electroliners were a pair of streamlined four-coach electric multiple unit interurban passenger train sets operated between Chicago and Milwaukee. They were built by St. Louis Car Company in 1941.
Each set carried two numbers, 801-802 and 803-804. There were only 2 of these prototype units built and both are still in exsistance.
801-802 is currently being restored to its early 1960s operating condition at the Illinois Railway Museum (IRM) in Union, Illinois. Updates on the restoration can be found on the liners Facebook page "Campaign For The Electroliner". 803-804 is preserved at the Rockhill Trolley Museum in Orbisonia, Pennsylvania. It is a running liner though it has not been restored.
This week we need to inform everyone about The Nappanee Train Show for 2018. We are sorry to inform you that the Elkhart Model RR Club will not be hosting our annual train show in Nappanee,Indiana at the Dutch Village Market on March 17th, 2018. The building was sold in May of 2017 and will not be hosting events such as our train show.
We looked for a alternate site to have the show and were unable to locate one for the March 17th 2018 date.We are very optimistic that we will have another site for the 3rd Saturday in March of 2019. We are sorry for any inconvenience that may cause you.
And now as always on to running trains. Again make sure to check out our Friday Night Running at the Club Page for all the action.
February 16, 2018 Meeting
February 16th was a business meeting night. Several members were in attendance and heard updates on several projects including; all of the trackwork is finished for the new N scale layout. The tunnel guards to prevent derailments and valuable equipment falling to the floor in the tunnels are 75 % finished. Also after over a foot of snow the club lot was plowed
thanks to Matt Glassman and his contacts at Bradford‘s lawn care.
One of the assets of the club is a large library going back several decades. With over a 100 railroad related items in the library we have created a database that covers the entire library for easier access for the members. Some of the more valuable items in the library include bound volumes of Model Railroad from the 1st issue in 1934 to 1967. I thought you would like to see the 1st issue. As far as I can tell this is the cover of the very first issue of Model Railroader.
Here's an interior page with an ad and a letter from Linn Westcott.
This next is from issue 5 and is the first with a color on the front page.
After the meeting of course it was time to run some trains and get set up for an operations session at next meeting February 23, 2018.
February 9, 2018 Meeting
The February 9th meeting had to be cancelled due to the weather. Several inches of snow fell on Friday. A couple of hardy souls went by the club to make sure everything was ok but the streets and roadways were too dangerous to travel on and several of our members have several miles to travel to make it to a meeting.
I thought we would take a look at maintenance since there was no running at the club.Nathan Overmyer has been the fellow crawling the tunnels at EMRRC to install guards in the tunnels to prevent equipment falling to the floor in case of a derailment. We have few derailments in the tunnels as Paul Ewing went in several years ago and upgraded and replaced the entire track in the tunnels.
Here's a quick video to show running through the tunnels and a look at the track work.
Some other maintenance taking place includes freshening up the mountain areas. How do you freshen up a mountain? Well you add new foliage, trees. rocks and ground cover.
Also Paul who is an avid bicyclist and hiker is adding walking and bike trails to our largest mountain Mt. Hammes. Mt. Hammes has an extremely long tunnel running through it along with a shorter tunnel. This trackage is the main access to the Budweiser Brewery and of course if the Bud isn’t getting delivered the citizens of Elkhart and several other small towns and cities, get out of sorts.
Speaking of Elkhart David Menges has been going through the entire layout adding people, automobiles and updating scenes in general. One of the small but necessary items in Elkhart is dumpsters. David has added several in the city.
There is always a Friday Night Running at the Club video even if we didn't run on a particular Friday. We went back in the archives and pulled some of our favorite old footage from years ago so be sure to check out our Friday Night Running at the Club page for a Blast From the Past.
February 2, 2018 Meeting
January 2018 has passed and in Northern Indiana that means snowy and cold days. But at the Elkhart Model Railroad club the heat was on and the camaraderie and friendships (plus a lot of hot air) added to an enjoyable night. The first meeting of a new month is taken up by maintenance and cleaning. It's amazing how much background work needs to happen in order to keep a large club layout up and running.
Tunnel guards are being installed along the roadbed inside of the tunnels. We don't have a lot of derailments but if there ever is one in the tunnels it can be a long way to the bottom with an expensive engine or car. We bought some inexpensive clear plastic sheets at a craft store. It's thin but durable and only needs to be scored to get a clean cut. We are screwing the 2 1/2 inch high by 36 inch long sheets into the side of the roadbed after pre-drilling holes in the sheets. We are allowing enough room to reach over the guard to access derailments. Gabe Smith, Nathan Overmyer, Steve Storey and Jim Ford are contributing to this project. Also while we're under the layout Randy Robbins joined us working on electrical wiring for signals. Meanwhile up top work continues by the bridge and trestle crew on finishing Berkey Trestle upgrades and the new project shoring up the trestle for the bypass to Flushing/Toledo and Chicago. The layout has dozens of bridges and trestles many of which are labor intensive. The bridge and trestle crew has a year round job trying to keep up with the maintenance on all of these structures.
The track crew was out working on the mainline taking out weather related bumps and dips in the high speed mainline area.
Also the ballast crews were out finishing out the mainline and putting new ballast in the new industrial area still under construction.
On any railroad there are always bad order cars and engines. John Banicki and Joseph Cipalla were busy the entire night working on cars and engines so they would perform flawlessly on the layout when needed.
After cleaning and maintenance there was still plenty of time to run some trains and there were lots of airplanes moving across the layout tonight, be sure to check out all the action on our Friday Night Running at the Club page.NEWS for January 2018
January 26, 2018 Meeting
This Friday meet was an operations night and we had a several folks show up including one visitor to try their hand at operating on the EMRRC layout. The large layout makes operating a challenge for both the experienced and novice operator as there are plenty of trains to move across the line. Our Dispatcher Ron Breniser, Yard Masters David Menges and Charlie Yoakam kept things moving along smoothly and a lot fun.We also got a look at the rebuilt Berkey trestle that runs across Berkey Pond and the upgrades to our main 390 foot wood trestle. Charlie Yoakam and Jerry Piatt have been working diligently on this project and it's near completion. Charlie & Jerry used Woodland Scenics water to complete the scene.
EMRRC has installed the latest update to JMRI 4.10. For some reason we had problems communicating with smart phones and tablets, especially when running consists. After a quick reinstall the system worked perfectly. Smart phones, tablets and Digitrax throttles all got along without another hiccup. Must have been operator error on the install..Lots of trains, not too many mishaps and the blue smoke was kept to a minimum coming out of dispatch. Be sure to check out our Friday Night Running at the Club page for all the action.
January 19, 2018 Meeting
A good showing of members for the Friday night meeting turned out. The third Friday of every month is our business meeting. Here's a synopsis of our latest business meeting. I had neglected to put on the EMRRC website that we have visitors come in an hour later the third Friday of every month due to the business meeting. That has been corrected on the site. Sorry if anyone was inconvinced by this. A new board took over for the 2018 season. The officers are: President: Chuck Hart, Vice President: Jerry Piatt, Treasurer: Steve Storey and Secretary: John Banicki
Gary Pressnell after a stint with the Coast Guard and over 30 years as a toolmaker is still with the club. In other business Nathan Overmyer was welcomed to the club as a probationary member. Announcements included the NMRA Michiana Division Meeting in New Carlisle, Indiana and the latest posting of train shows and swap meets in Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and Illinois. Here's a link.
After the meeting the setup was accomplished for next weeks operation session. The guy in the hat is our dispatcher. He looks happy does't he?
Of course trains were running on the main line.
Percy actually came to visit Thomas. Be sure to visit our Friday Night running at the Club page for all the action.
January 12, 2018 Meeting
Lots of members here for running HO and working on the new N scale layout. More trackwork, including many right and left hand switches being put down for N scale.
EMRRC is always looking for new members. There are many advantages to belonging to EMRRC. Come by and visit us any Friday night for more information and run some trains with us.
Here are some of the benefits available to members;
EMRRC has been here since 1950.
Over 300 years of accumulated experience with the members.
24/7 access to clubhouse for members.
The Club owns the land and the clubhouse.
Large HO scale layout with over 1000' of mainline.
New N scale layout.
Digitrax DCC control and JMRI programming for both HO scale and N scale.
Monthly clinics on everything from DCC to scenery making.
January 5, 2018 Meeting
A very cold and snowy Friday Meeting at EMRRC. The temperature was hovering around 9 degrees and there was anywhere from 8 to 12 inches of snow on the ground depending on where you were coming from. Lots of brave members using 4 wheel drives, front wheel drive and just regular transportation came from Northern Indiana and Southwestern Michigan to run trains. It was supposed to be a cleaning night but Gary Pressnell got stuck in the parking lot and everyone was worn out from watching him shovel out so we decided to run trains in order to thaw Gary out. Plenty of action as always, be sure to check out our Friday Night Running at the Club video.