Besides the pandemic troubles of the last year, the model railroad has had some problems, too.
It started with 'cleaning up' the railroad by building one long train out of 3 little ones.
That sure cleaned out the short sidings,
now there's empty space to run a vacuum to get dust off the tracks.
But that left only two places to park a 49 car train.
A long train also meant that sometimes the rear end of the train was out of sight.
My approaches to the drawbridge over the Mississippi River have safety gates
to prevent cars and locomotives from accidentally taking a dunk into the water if the bridge isn't in place,
but something didn't hold this time.
|The caboose was actually the first over the edge, and landed in the river (8 scale feet deep) but actually 38 real inches to the carpet floor.|
And I know I am missing some cars from over the years.
I found this one pinched between a shelf leg and the wall.
At least it didn't slam in to the concrete floor.
I found a 40 foot hi-cube boxcar laying on its side in a tunnel, just far enough away from the rails that the trains could still run through. It must have been there for six months.
It seems that my worst wrecks involve cars that are light, or have high centers of gravity.
Tank cars like to roll over, some roll all the way off the edge of the railroad.
I found 2 that must have rolled and fell a foot into some empty cardboard boxes.
I hadn't seen them in a month, and I know I didn't put them into a storage box.
I have some plastic fences to prevent the worst roll offs. And I put up some trees.
But not enough yet.
Something also happened while pulling the long train up a hill the first time.
I didn't see it because I was watching the engines come out the other end of the tunnel.
There were 3 powered locomotives, and suddenly they ran too easily.
And I looked to see what happened.
The train had parted, and somehow this one hopper had flopped and propped all the way up the hill side.
The car was moving to the right.
I wish I had seen how that happened. No other cars were involved, and no others were derailed.
This has been a very dependable 3-way switch, and it seems the original separation of the train was 3 feet away from here.
The train was being pulled into the tunnel, not pushed.
There was this big gap in the train, and this one car in such an unusual position,
like it had just jumped up there.
|All this long train business was to make one train do an over-and-under on the railroad.|
Past the junction tower, over the bridge, around the wye, through the wall tunnel,
and drop to the lower (river) level and through the underpass
|And the track curves in an S, so there's one more over / under|
This is 49 cars. How did I ever run a 90 car train on this railroad? about 18 years ago. And haven't done it since.
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This page was filmed December, 2021