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/

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Settling back into summer modeling

Last week was the first week off for me as a teacher this summer.  I really did not get a break as I had a track camp for little kids most of the week, a summer school workday Friday and a train show Saturday.  Quite busy.  This week started off with a project for a client of mine I have done cars for the last few years.  I'm about half way done with his cars.  I have found some time to work on my layout a little and added a new signal to BY and weathered a old freight car.  I got my lumber and materials for the end of the lower level and I have waited to do after the freight car batch.  That is my top priority now.

I sold a lot of my On30 items at the train show Saturday and picked up a few items of need.  I did find a guy selling signals and I knew I need a few more.  I had to replace the 3 over 3 at BY because I accidentally shorted out a few included all important red.  So that needed replacement.  On a whim I bought a B&O cpl that I was thinking I would put on the Orange line.  But why not BY?  it looks good.  I hooked all my signals to toggle switches to be changed by the dispatcher.  That's usually me.  Makes it a little more operational.  This one I hooked up to 2 toggles so that I could use all the position lights.
In with the new, out with the old.  I moved the signal back a bit for switch possibilities.

Medium Approach



Approach medium
 I'm not a signal expert but the above signals are from a web search of B&O cpl signal meanings.
Signal aspects of the B&O Railroad
Tried a different method of weathering today.  Almost done but needs to be darkened a bit.  A boxcar you do not see everyday!

Monday, June 16, 2014

Monday Musings

I am finally starting to get back into modeling since my usual hiatus that I have in the spring.  I got into the layout room some on Saturday and really got moving in there today.  Got a little heat wave coming so I will be hunkering down inside with the AC!  I will be up at Timonium, MD this weekend selling most my On30 items and some HO stuff with Norm Wolf on Saturday.  If you never have been to one of the shows at Timonium, what are you waiting for?

Now some updates:
Did some reporting mark updating.  The Virginia Midland's reporting marks are VMID.  I've updated a few here:
Custom 2 bay hopper chopped from an Atlas cylindrical hopper.

A custom run from Intermountain I found at on Ebay.  I just had to have it.

My desk has seen better days.  Still adjusting to the smaller surface area.

VC #106 is getting closer to being finished.  Only needs the horn, antenna and weathering.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Summer is upon me!

Well, most people get excited about the summertime because of the warm weather and heading on vacations.  I get excited because I get a lot of time off (since I am a teacher) and I am not as busy as I have been with teaching/coaching.  Well that time is upon me.  We finish up school this week and I got a million projects slated as usual this summer.  I got several freight car/locomotive projects sitting on my smaller desk right now.   None of them are really calling my name right now.  I do have some cars to do for customer of mine so that project will move to the top.  After that, my main objective is to complete my track on the bottom level.  This mainly consists of the town of Orange.  I'm also going to redo right above Orange where my sand unloading operation is.  I have a better option for silos and removing track is needed.  I hope to make that trackage a little better.
This is a pic of under the layout.  The trackage is laid to the far corner.  This area will be a shadow box with a possible wye.

Here is an overview of were Orange will be.  I'll have to move my junk holder on the shelf.  I also want to redo the sand hopper unloading area above.  I may knockout 2 birds with one stone here.  Might even take out the river scene.  This is some of my first scenery and while most is fine some of it, like the ballast sucks.

I always like how this scene turned out. 
Last area to finish on the top level is near the team track.  Might just put some more trees in on a bluff.

My newest train show find.  Picked it up for $35.  This RS36 will be the new VC power replacing the GP35's for now.  Hope to finish it this week.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Op. session this past Saturday

Had an operational session this past Saturday afternoon and tried a new concept, 3 operators. Norm Wolf, and Dale Latham and myself tried the new concept.   I did not think it could be possible but with the extra person on the lower level and the other on the upper level, it worked out OK.  I did not do a whole lot but sort cars in Battlefield Yard.  One thing that could be better were the controllers.  I use NCE and do not have radio control.  So cords were strung out all over my office.  This seemed to be the biggest problem. 

Anyways, summer is getting closer and my busy times are getting ready to be a thing of the past after this week.  I hope to post more often and get more done on the layout.  I've have recently painted a new Alco yellow.  This will be my newest engine on the Virginia Central.  The green #3 is having some pickup problems.  I may switch the #3 and #5 (gray scheme) and combine them into one.  I really love the green #3 of the VC. 
Dale and Norm contemplate their next move on the layout.  Dale (left) is working the  F'burg Flats on the upper level and Norm is working the lower level Mine run Branch.

I get the easy job of maintaining Battlefield Yard.  Pretty empty right now. 

Norm uses the run-around track with V251- the Mine Run turn.  SD20-2 and C424 provide the power today.