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2nd Annual Potomac Division Operations Saturday

Saturday, May 16, 2020


The 2nd Annual Potomac Operations Saturday will be held on May 16, 2020.It is simple to participate. Just send an e-mail (ocrr@comcast.net) listing which of the layouts or layout below on which you would like to operate. We can handle up to 40 operators and if that isn’t enough, we will get another layout or two. Sign-ups close May 1. Morning sessions will run 9 to 12. Afternoon sessions will run 2 to 5.

You are welcome whether you are brand new to ops or an old head. You can sign up for two, we promise you will get one, and will try to make sure you also get your second choice. We have layouts in both Virginia and Maryland, but you can pick the layouts you want regardless of where you live. When sign ups close on May 1, we will let you know your layouts; and hosts will contact you with addresses and other information that will help make the day fun for everyone.

Here’s the schedule for May 16:

Marshall Abrams – Silver Spring, Maryland, AM (6 spaces)
Pete and Jane Clark – Damascus, Maryland, PM (6 spaces)
Cam Green – Broad Run, Virginia, PM (10-12 spaces)
Bryan Kidd – Nokesville, Virginia (10 spaces)
Brian Sheron – Poolesville, Maryland, AM (6 spaces)

Marshall Abrams, Abrams Railroad Empire (ARE), HO scale:

Operations on the ARE are governed by "Employee Instructions," computer-generated switch lists and route instructions. Most of the operation on the ARE is concerned with local switching in towns and yards.These switching jobs involve delivering cars to specific industries and picking up other specific cars from those industries, all under constraints of available track and cars at those industries. Several of the jobs can be considered switching puzzles.
There are some point-to-point routes where the operator must set turnouts to follow the assigned routes. Many of the through trains are broken down when they arrive at their destinations.
There's lots more on the ARE web page at http://abrams-railroad.potomac-nmra.org/ .
Pete and Jane Clark, East Broadtop, Hon3: This fully sceniced coal hauling narrow gauge model railroad runs from Mt. Union, Pa. through Orbisonia where the main yard, shops and iron furnace are located, and on to the mining town of Robertsdale. Jobs include crews for several coal and mixed freight trains, a passenger train, iron furnace shifter and dispatcher. New since the Great Model Railroads 2016 cover article is a branch line that includes the towns of Shade Gap and Neelyton. The layout is HOn3, and uses TT&O, and card cards. Track plan and article in the 2016 Great Model Railroads.

Cam Green, Maine Central, HO scale:

Cam’s railroad simulates the operations of the Maine Central Railroad between Yarmouth Junction and East Augusta in the mid to late 1970’s. Modeled sections of Maine Central: Lower Road Between Yarmouth Junction and Augusta, ME. Lewiston Lower Branch; Cobbosseecontee Branch; Rockland Branch (Staging only).

The layout is double deck, operated as a Point to Point. but is essentially a loop through staging. It also includes one double track helix.

Bryan Kidd, Chesapeake & Ohio, HO scale:

Bryan’s layout is based on the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway’s Alleghany (spelled with an ‘a’ ) Subdivision in the early 1950s. Steam was still abundant with H-6 No. 1309 (now at the Western Maryland Scenic Railroad) having just been built in 1949.  However, notwithstanding management’s pronouncement of their commitment to coal (C&O’s primary source of revenue), diesels were beginning to make their presence known. In 1956 the last fire was dropped.  The layout is an HO-scale point-to-point double-track mainline of approximately 140’,minimum radius for mainline curves of 32”  Mainline turnouts are mostly 8s with some 6s; yards are 5s and 6s. The track and turnouts are mostly Shinohara (Walthers)  Turnouts are powered with Tortoise motors and controlled via Loco Net on the mainline, and by rotary switches in the yards.

 Brian Sheron, Long Island Rail Road, HO scale:

Brian Sheron models the Long Island Rail Road, Port Jefferson Branch, Atlantic Branch, and the City Terminal Zone, circa 1964 (or, if he wants to run his G5’s, K4’s, and H10’s, he changes out his fleet of cabooses, and dials the era back 10 years to 1954). The layout occupies three rooms in his basement, a 13’ x 19’ room, a 12’ x 12’ room, and 10’ x20' room. It is primarily a double track, folded dogbone arrangement. One branch (City Terminal Zone) runs into the 12’ x 12’ room where he models New York City, complete with an operating overhead El, and Penn Station, including a cutaway of the LIRR underground platforms in Penn Station where the P-54 MU’s would arrive to deliver and pick up the famous “Dashing Dan” LIRR commuter. The newest branch, the Atlantic Branch, goes into the 10’ x 20’ room, where Brian models Holban Yard, Flatbush Avenue in Brooklyn, and the LIRR car floats in Long Island City. The layout is 100% sceniced, and chock full of detail (Brian estimates he has about 2,000 figures, and more than 800 vehicles on the layout). All of his engines are prototypical for the eras he models (although he also has two Atlas C-420s in the 1970’s Metro livery — because he thought they were neat!).

Brian’s layout is powered by Digitrax DCC, with both wired and wireless throttles. He operates his layout using switchlists, and all operators will have plenty to do, either taking out a local freight with instructions for switching out cars at various industries around the layout, or acting as yardmaster in either Sunnyside or Holban yard and building trains. He does not use timetables or schedules, so operators can work with no pressure and at whatever pace they are comfortable.

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Last modified: March 02 2020 16:57:16.