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/

Monday, June 18, 2018

June 2018 NMRA James River Division issue of Crossties is out!

June 2018 issue of Crossties


Sunday, June 17, 2018

Happy Fathers Day!

Happy Fathers Day to all the dads out there!  This is a great hobby to share with your kids because it so very different from any of the many things they do all day long.  My kids always come in the layout room and check out what I'm doing on many occasions.  Take time to explain to them what your doing.  Because sooner or later they won't be interest anymore when they get into their teenage years.  I'm pretty sure my oldest Cameron is hooked because I catch him in the layout room more!

Monday, May 28, 2018

Happy Memorial Day! And maybe some modeling on my part?

Wanted to take time to thank all of our service men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice so we could have this great county we live in.  I took time to visit a local civil war cemetery in Fredericksburg on Saturday night.  They do a illumination every Memorial Day where they set out 15,000 plus candles by each headstone.  It's a Union cemetery for the battle of Fredericksburg.  I took a good friend there for the first time and he was just blown away.   Let us not forget all the lost soldiers that shaped this great nation.

Model railroading has taken a backseat the last couple of months to life but it will hopefully start to ramp up soon.  I've got 3 weeks of school left, but a shorter summer since we start in early August this year.  I've picked up I few items over the last few weeks, including another locomotive: a 70 tonner.  I want to put sound in this and paint it into a simple paint scheme like below.  So if you don't mind, I'm going to get off the computer and head into my layout room and get a few things done.  Might even have to clean up for a bit before again gets accomplished.  Take care!
Picture from Warren Calloway

Sunday, May 13, 2018

NMRA James River Meet in Schuyler Virginia yesterday

Yesterday, I traveled down to Schuyler Virginia for our local NMRA meet.  Not a long ride but through some of the better parts of Virginia. Most people do not recognize Schuyler, but it's where the old TV show "The Waltons" was set.  They even have a museum.  Schuyler is about 30 minutes south of Charlottesville.  The area is also famous for it Soapstone deposits and is still mined to this day.  The meet was located at a private quarry garden that is opened to the public by appointment.
Schuyler Quarry Gardens

The reason we were here is that an O scale model railroad is also being built at the gardens visitor center.  The track is laid and represents the area in the mid 1900's, to represent the Nelson and Albermarle RR that ran in the area.  It's probably a year from being totally complete but has a great start.  The layout is being built by a good friend and a great modeler, Mark Chase from Richmond.  Check out his great website below.

No I didn't stop.

If your a fan of the Walton's you will definitely recognize this house!

Soapstone info

Soapstone info

This O scale Saddlebag log represents one of ten the N&A had.

The building were made out of soapstone in real life so a foam core was used to simulate it.

More of the mill facility.  

Mark Chase giving his presentation on the Soapstone industry.  Yes that is a 44 tonner for the N&A!

View from the garden overlook
On the way home, I stopped and took some pics of a fertilizer unloader.  Very simple and definitely could be used on my layout.

The auger to the top of the structure

The actual storage building
Could not pass up this picture in Gordonsville!  That's a '37 Packard

Thursday, May 10, 2018

New Edition of Crossties

Out this month is my local NMRA,  the James River division puts out a great publication every even month.  Lots of great articles and reviews of our previous meets and other info.  It's even got my smiling face in it every edition.  Definitely check it out!

Crossties April 2018 edition

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Model railroading and Spring don't go together

As we approach the month of May here in Virginia, it seems winter is still holding on by a thread.  I've spent several evening baseball practices this month watching my boys, freezing from the wind.  Looks as if we will finally be past that this week as Thursday is calling for temps near 90.  The good thing is that I just cut grass for the first time last weekend!  So, that gets me to model railroading.  For most of us, it takes a back seat this time of year.  We have so many things to do around the house after winter, there is hardly any free time.  Throw in three kids 12 and under, and you time is very limited.  I have not accomplished a whole lot, but mainly have gotten started on a few things.  I finally have figured out my favorite part of the hobby, building locomotives.  It seems that I am always in the middle of one of those projects.  You will see, I am actually in the middle of several.  Plus I have a few in the my storage drawers that are about 80% done!  Plus with a train show just about every month, that gets me shopping and thinking of future loco projects. Anyways, on with my pictures:
Should have seen my work desk before I cleaned it.  Just got the big stuff off.

My RS3M "Dewitt Geep" project.  Not happy with the color or the hand railings.  I will paint this Conrail blue and patch it for VMID

This a Proto 2000 chop nose Geep I got from a good friend.  The hard work is done, just have to check the drive (Proto crack gear issues) and decide on a paint job.  

An Intermountain GP10 painted in the MidSouth scheme.  I will patch this for the VMID.  Already has Lok sound installed and in VMID colors

Bad habit: For me, piling up stuff on unfinished scenery is a norm.  As you can see, not much time in the office tends to add more piling up.  I need to get the scenery done on the lower level!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Valley Forge RPM meet recap

A recap on the Valley Forge RPM meet is finally here.  I'm on spring break this week but here it is Tuesday night and I'm been going nonstop since the weekend.  I hope to get some work done in the layout room and have gotten a few things accomplished.  Want to do this write up last week but did not have the time.  So here we are.  The Valley Forge meet is a every 2 year meet.  They do the odd years near Pittsburgh.  This one was near Philly.  Good drive up on Saturday morning and did not realize it was $16 in tolls to get up there.  I'm sorry, but a $8 toll is ridiculous!  It was somewhere up there by the Susquehanna River on I-95.  My presentation went well and was about 30-35 people in attendance.   Lots of top notch and who's who presenters like Lance Mindheim, Mike Rose and Ramon Rhodes.  Great location and hotel.  Well worth the trip.  I recommend attending a RPM meet.  It will definitely get the juices flowing.  I'm helping out with one coming up in September near Baltimore.

The Mid Atlantic RPM meet

Lance Mindheim's presentation

Mike Rose's presentation

Eric Hansmann's presentation
Ted Dilorio

Ted Dilorio's GRS and Ramon Rhodes BNSF

Kenny Corden

Even vehicles do make the display room.  Lots of them this year.

My stuff crammed into a small space.  

Even some half completed items

More great looking vehicles

Butch Eyler's amazing work!

More Butch Eyler

Interesting switcher

Scale Trains made an appearance.  My do those C39-8's look good!

Monday, March 19, 2018

NMRA Layout Tour in January

My local NMRA division is the James River Division here in Virginia.  I've been a member for a few years now.  We get together 6 times a year and have a publication sent out between meets.  My layout was opened up for the meet nearby in January.  Here is our Crossties publication featuring the Virginia Midland Railroad and a bunch of other things.  I'm also head of the modeling theme contest for each meet.

Check it out!

Crossties February2018

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Presentation at the Valley Forge RPM meet next weekend

I will give a presentation on building my Virginia Midland model railroad next weekend at the Valley Forge RPM meet up near Philadelphia, PA.  It's a good time with so many talented modelers and great presenters.  My presentation is at 1PM on Saturday in the private dining room on the first floor.  The meet starts on Friday evening, all day Saturday and Sunday morning.  They're layout tours on Sunday afternoon.  I've attended the one in 2014 with Norm Wolf and it was a great time. 

Info on the meet can be found here: 2018 Valley Forge RPM Meet Info

Clinic schedule is here: 2018 Schedule

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

February update video

Newest video is out!  We will take a look at the new OSB plant on the lower level at Parker and a depot in the works for the same area.  I'll also take share my train show "finds" from the recent show at Timonium.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Post Timonium Show

Had a great time at the Great Scale Model Train Show this past weekend.  We had over 5000+ people through the doors on Saturday and Sunday was slower (freezing rain/cold heavy rain) but still it was a great show.  I sold lots of stuff and the the show was a great success.  I did manage to snap a few pics on Saturday.  In all, it was a great time with friends and the others who run this show.  Glad to be a part of it!

Next show is April 14th and 15th
Great Scale Model Train Show
Here's Mike and Paul of Makin Tracks.  Mike is the owner of the show.  Jerry on the left is a long time staff member.

Kevin (in the brown jacket) selling some of his items.  

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Great Scale Model Train Show this weekend Feb. 3rd/4th

Well, its that time of the year for the big show at the Maryland State Fair grounds. Yes, it's the Great Scale Train Show February show.  This one promises almost 900 tables and is easiest the biggest in the Mid-Atlantic region.  I'll be up Thursday night to help get the show doing "behind-the-scenes" work to make sure this show is awesome.  Doors open up 9AM sharp on Saturday.  All the info and upcoming shows can be found on the flyer below.

Great Scale Model Train Show:  www,GSMTS.com
Maryland State Fairgrounds-Timonium MD
Saturday Feb 3rd: 9AM-5PM
Sunday Feb 4th: 10AM-4PM

I'll be helping out Mike as usual with Makin Tracks: Makin Tracks Discount Model Railroad supplies

Monday, January 22, 2018

A little change of pace

Had a chance to do some different things for a change on the layout.  I've finally got away from all my locomotive builds here lately and other things that involved not working on the layout.  From my post before the open house, I'm building an OSB plant on the lower level.  Of course, I started that right before the open house.  I made some progress on the loading shed (where the particle wood is loaded).  I started on the rest of the build that would stick out about 1" from the backdrop.  I also put together an old blue box kit of a Winchester and Western grain hopper.  A hard to find hopper that is not made in a newer reincarnation.  I also started on a wooden depot kit that will be in the Parker area, right down from the OSB plant.

A classic kit for a awesome railroad.

Here's one side of the OSB plant.  It will be about 4-5 feet long.

I love to put together wood kits.  I have a whole drawer full of them!

This the depot kit,  MPP was a great company and made lots of good products.  I find them from time to time at shows and on Ebay.  Very easy to build and look great.