Audio Episode

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Jim Martin: Jim's radio broadcasting career includes both the private sector and the CBC, Canada's national network. During his many years on air he was a reporter, announcer, news director, talk show and news magazine host, and his favorite part, interviewer. For many years he was also the book review and video review editor for Canadian Railway Modeller. More recently he has been writing articles for Railroad Model Craftsman. He also enjoys presenting backdrop painting clinics to local groups and train shows.

Trevor Marshall: Trevor cut his teeth in radio at Standard Broadcast News, a national radio newswire service in Canada. The radio news writing style has served him well in his current profession as a freelance writer for clients in the transportation, life sciences, and government sectors. Trevor's articles for the hobby press have appeared in Model Railroad Planning, Model Railroader, Railroad Model Craftsman and other publications and he regularly presents model and prototype railway clinics on a variety of topics. He finds everything about the hobby interesting, but is particularly interested in the process that goes into a well-thought-out, prototype-based layout.

Chris Abbott is our Technical Director. Jim and Trevor would still be talking to each other without his help.

Otto Vondrak is our Creative Director. That awesome badge and banner on the site? That's his doing.

David Woodhead is our Music Director. If you find yourself humming our theme song, well - you're not alone. Jim and Trevor have had it stuck in their heads for weeks now. Well done, David!

The thoughtful hobbyist

The Model Railway Show

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In this episode…


Tony Koester, Columnist, Model Railroader magazine.

Byron Henderson, Editor, Layout Design Journal.



Thoughts on “Trains of Thought”


For a quarter century, well-known modeler and author Tony Koester has entertained us with his Trains of Thought column in Model Railroader magazine.


Always insightful, often humorous, Trains of Thought has documented Tony’s own growth in the hobby, the transition from the proto-freelanced, mountain railroading of the Allegheny Midland to the prototype-based flat-land speedway of the Nickel Plate Road, the evolution of the thinking of some of the hobby’s most prolific practitioners about what’s possible in our train rooms, and much more.


To celebrate this milestone, Tony chats with Jim and shares his reflections on Trains of Thought.


Related Links:

Photo of Tony Koester’s HO scale Nickel Plate layout.



Big thoughts on better layouts


For anybody interested in adding depth and breadth to their knowledge of layout design – as well as anybody who wants to avoid common mistakes before building their layout – there’s one publication that is essential reading. It’s the Layout Design Journal, the magazine for members of the Layout Design Special Interest Group.


As a benefit of LDSIG membership, the Journal is not as well known as mainstream magazines but it has been highly influential on our hobby, serving as a forum for discussing and developing best practices related to design choices ranging from staging and multi-decking to using details and vignettes to effectively tell stories. In recent years, however, the printing schedule of this volunteer publication has become somewhat erratic.


The LDSIG, however, has taken steps to address this. Starting with issue #41, the Journal has a new, professional editor with a stronger mandate. That editor is Byron Henderson, a well-known custom layout designer and author. Byron speaks with Trevor about his plans for the magazine, including how he intends to return the Layout Design Journal to a quarterly publication.


Related Links:

Photo of Byron Henderson’s N scale switching layout.