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July 2001 - Page 40

Howard Zanes

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ry to picture a whirlwind of activity, miles of trains, enough benchwork to construct a small home, individually crafted structures, overwhelming scenery, and even on-board video cameras...all used in conjunction with each other and combining to create one of the most spectacular layouts a single modeler has ever created. Youd have to be a marathon man to even try to understand the full-scope of Howard Zanes Piermont Division. There is so much activity, both visual and implied, that this layout falls well beyond the point of model railroading in the traditional sense. If there was ever a layout that seemed to take on a life of its own, this is it.

Im fortunate to have gotten to know Howard as much as a friend as a fellow modeler. The first time I visited the Piermont, the total ceiling-high effect of the lush scenery, detailed structures and tiny Shays left an indelible impression. To return years later and see the layout more than double in size, grow in new directions, and evolve into a seemingly complete model of an actual railroad was quite a thrill. Admittedly, Im a structure guy, but the Piermont has something for everybody. If you are the kind of modeler that thrives on realistic details and serious focus, youve come to the right place...welcome to Maryland, come on in, but please be careful

not to let the cat (Howard has nine of them!) into the layout room. In preparing this article I asked Howard if hed like to write the actual text, but he declined, admitting he didnt want to be put into the position of possibly sounding as if he was show boating. If Howards name seems familiar to you it may be due to the fact that in addition to his modeling skills, he has been a moving force behind the Great Scale Train Show that takes place in Timonium, Maryland, four times per year. Any regular show attendee will tell you that Howards show is one of the best in the country, often boasting 600 or more tables, and a serious


JULY 2001

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