This site is dedicated to my model railroad, the HO scale Virginia Midland Railroad. This layout comprises a 12X9 room with two levels. The upper level is complete and the lower level scenery has just begun.

I do a handful of train shows in the Virginia/Maryland region with Makin Tracks.
I also can help you find that freight car/locomotive or other hard to find item.

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

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Progress continues on the branch line

Looking toward the completed layout.  The track on the right leads to the hidden staging.  The center turnout leads to the VC and starts the branch line.  The tracks on the left will be the VC switching lead and VC engine service track.
The hidden trackage into the garage.  The cars are on the sand facility lead.  /The facility will be hidden but will provide many carloads of sand and gravel.  The facility will have it's own switcher that will make an appearance on the layout.
The sand facility switcher.  It's an Atlas HH600 with added Tsunami sound. 
Further down the branch line, the only online customer is going to be a pulpwood dealer.  The unfinished track will lead to a run-around track.  The sand facility switcher will bring loads to the run-around for the VM.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Change of plans on the east end of the layout and the On30 layout.

Well did some bench work altering in the last week.  Against the wall where the hidden staging goes to the garage, I had a grade trackage that went down to the lower level.  This was part of the of the Virginia Central (VC) trackage.  the grade was very steep and  led at one time to a 3 track staging yard.  This did not work out because of the steep grade only short trains could make it up.  I eventually changed it by lowering the last part to put a sand loading facility and trackage. One backfire was I had to put in another grade in to switch the sand facility. I really liked it because I used the 2970 hoppers and they were small.   But I could only bring down 2 hoppers at a time to clear the switch and end of the track.
The view from the completed layout.   The hole goes to hidden trackage in the garage.  The new branch line will continue to the gray building (On30) and head to the right.  The original grade started here on the right side of the bench work.  Taking it out gave me more space against this wall.
The hole leads to different hidden staging in the garage.  The crossing gives me more options.  The track to the right was the staging for the On30 layout.  The left is the staging for the RF&P railroad. 

  Well let's change it all.  Above this side of the layout was a On30 layout completely wired and ready for scenery.  I did at one time have have a around-the-room HO layout complete with swing bridge near the door.  I took the swinging bridge out and that side became an On30 layout.  Well the On30 trackage was removed this weekend.  I will put the On30 below on the lower level (sand facility) and add a some to it.  It's almost like a shadow box, with lighting and at chair level.  It's about the same space as above.
   On the window side, where the On30 layout is probable become branch line with a pulpwood customer and the hidden trackage(from the On30 layout) will become a offline industry (probably the sand facility) The trackage to the hidden trackage will lead to the facility.  I obtained the 2 separate hidden stagings to the garage by putting a crossing in the wall.  Remember On30 runs on HO track.  
Notice how my work bench is below the bench work.  Looks as if my work bench is kinda neat today.   

Monday, November 7, 2011

Scenery definitely brings the layout to life

Been working on the dreaded back corner of the layout.  Since it's inception in 2004, my layout has had about a dozen of industries in this corner.  Engine facility, paper plant, grain elevator, etc are a few of them.  I finally used smaller industries and even added a small spur for a small engine facility or maybe some thing else?    Anyways, I finally settled and then slowly added scenery to spruce it up.

Klotz Distributors has a overgrown and junky spur.

Patriot Industries deals in pool chemicals thus has a fence around it's facility.

Looking down the Klotz spur.  Boxcars filled with all types of wood are unloaded here.

The Patriot spur still needs a little more weeds to make it just right.

Some tank cars have been spotted.  Still need to add gates and security barbed wire at the top of the fence.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

New 6 axle power on the Virginia Midland

VM #281 switching Mid-Atlantic Feeds

A closeup of VM #281 
Virginia Midland needed some 6 axle power for their increasing workload. Being on a branch line, most 6 axle power cannot be used. A SD20-3 was constructed from SD35. It does well for all the switching on the line. A SD20-3 is basically a SD20-2 like Chessie System and CSX have but it has 4 stacks instead of 2.

Decided to weather up a covered hopper also.  This patched hopper looks as if it was decaled, but right out of the box I covered up the reporting marks and data with tape.  Weathered it and then took the tape off.  An easy way to make a freight car look as if it got a new owner.