This site is dedicated to my model railroad, the HO scale Virginia Midland Railroad. This layout comprises a 10X9 room with two levels. The upper level is about 95% complete and the lower level scenery has just begun.

I do a handful of train shows in the Virginia/Maryland region and go by the name of Virginia Midland Shops.
I also can help you find that freight car/locomotive or other hard to find item.

Email: stctigers@gmail.com
You tube videos: http://www.youtube.com/user/Virginiamidlandrr/

Thursday, April 27, 2017

A Virginia Midland boxcar earning it's keep...

Darrell Darkow sent me some pictures of a boxcar he purchased from me a while back.  It's currently in service on his Royersford Modular Railroad.  I really appreciate emails like this and it made my day Darrell!

Here's his email:

 I wanted to share some pictures of the boxcar I bought from you. It has been in both club shows this year. We did a joint layout with the Allegheny Western lines club a few of there members instantly recognized your layout and at least one said they wanted that car. Had to fight them off lol. Hope your doing well I keep looking for updates to your blog. It has helped me develop more of my layout. .

Have a good day Darrell

More info on his modular layout:

All pics are copyrighted: Darrell Darkow

Monday, April 24, 2017

Upcoming presentation on the Virginia Midland on May 6th

I will be giving a presentation on building my Virginia Midland model railroad on May 6th in Charlottesville, VA.  This will be part of the James River Division NMRA.  Hope to see you there!

Info: http://jrdnmra.blogspot.com/p/meetings.html

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Spring Break and Happy Easter!

I know I have not posted a bunch over the last few months.  Been very busy with everything but looking forward to having having this week off coming up.  Hope to get a few things done on the layout and I will put a few posts on this blog.  Been trying to incorporate a video so that is coming too.  Had a great time at the Timonium Show last weekend and met a couple of blog followers.  I will also post on my great finds up at the show.  I also have been working on my presentation next month on my model railroad for my local James River NMRA division.  The meet is at Charlottesville, VA on May 8th.
So busy to say the least!  Take care!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

A snow day: Time for some layout work!

The last three weeks have been quite busy for me.  Work on the layout has been nonexistent, except I did get the hole cut in the wall two weeks ago.  I followed up with track and a turnout install on Sunday.   That's been it!  Today, I was fortunate to get a day off of work and I got a few things done on the layout.  Most of my work today was in the garage, beside the helix.  My last post on the lower level track work is here and a great lead into today's post:

Today was track work intensive.   I continued the passing siding through the wall and onto the platform that supports the helix.
Here's the new entrance to/from the helix.  Decided to put a passing siding in to help alleviate traffic going into Battlefield Yard.

Woodchip hopper checking clearances

The view through the hole.

After adding the track in the garage for the passing siding, I decided it was not long enough and wanted to make it longer.  So I added more flex track and curved it make it more than enough.  Work would have continued but I ran out of small screws that hold the track in place.

Test fitting the passing siding 

My door to cover the hole when not in use.

Original plan

My work area on the helix platform.

The long passing siding and through track will now curve around to give me plenty trackage.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Virginia Central Boxcars

I had some custom made Virginia Central boxcar decals made a few years ago and sell them occasionally. I do have the VC running on my layout and it is a real short line that ran in the Fredericksburg area until the mid 1980's.  My entire Virginia Midland line is actually the real VC line from the 1930's!  In the last 10 years, Atlas and Athearn have run green VC schemes on boxcars. Many years ago, Details West even did a VC green boxcar.  I sold a set of my VC decals to Jon Alaniva back a few years ago and he sent me a pic of the complete VC boxcar recently.

Here's his description of what boxcar he used and what he did from emails:

September 2014:

The decals arrived in today's mail. They look good.
I think I mentioned that the Exact Rail Evans-USRE 5277 appears to be the correct car for these. I plan on getting one at the end of the month; unfortunately there are no undecs available, so I'll strip one. The newer water based paints peel off pretty well in a bath of 90% isopropyl alcohol. 
If I remember correctly #1275 has a Superior door, which will save me some work. If I'm wrong, I have a pair of doors left over from an Atlas 5077 that I scratch-built Superior doors for to use for a "standard" sliding door.
I will send you pictures when it's done.

This past January 2017

Quite a while ago I got a set of decals from you for a Virginia Central boxcar. Just thought I'd share with you that I did finish it over the Christmas holidays. It came out quite well.
Removing the door from the ER model was a real pain - the plastic is .096" thick so I quite literally had to cut it out. Doors are from an Atlas 5077. The other modification is to remove the door stiffener on the sill. Other than that I'd say that the ER model was the best starting point for doing the model.

Here is Jon's completed #1275

Here the real VC #1275 ( Sam Beck photo)

These are the Atlas/Athearn/Details West cars that were done.  I've never seen a VC picture of one of these types.
Ex-VC boxcars still running the rails (Curt Beal photo)

Another Ex-VC now MQT 1025 still earning it's keep (Roberto Alaniz photo)

Other types/schemes of VC boxcars

Another number in the red scheme
VC in the early days!

Saturday, February 11, 2017