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June 2002 - Page 35

Fall River Subdivision
by John Parker
Photos by Doug Geiger, MMR


hey say the third times the charm... and thats certainly true with my Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Fall River Subdivision. Experience with the planning, c onstruction and model building on two previous layouts provided the opportunity to work out most of the must-haves based on the givens for this new layout. I enjoy railfanning and modeling current local prototypes, so that was a prerequisite. The Fall River Subdivision is a fictional piece of the vast BNSF system. The locale i s completely freelanced because thats m y preference, which allows modeling different terrains such as farmland plains, various sized towns, a large rail yard and mountains where a double-track mainline travels through. Prototypical motive power and rolling stock are found on the subdivision and structures along the line are typical of industries located throughout North America.

As BNSF continues to haul record amounts of coal from the Powder River Basin, the Fall River Subdivision often sees up to four coal trains a day.

Layout Construction
T he room which houses the layout is c ompletely finished with drywall ceiling and walls, recessed fluorescent (daylight bulbs) lighting and carpeted floor. Fascia and skirting are finished in dark earth tones to hide storage under the layout and direct the viewers attention to the detailed scenery. Eighteen-inch industrial carpet squares are used to cushion the concrete floor. During any messy construction jobs, they can be easily replaced if any unfortunate accidents cannot be cleaned-up. The lighting and electrical circuits all terminate at three switches located outside the layout room entrance door. This allows a quick shut down of all power and provides a great visual indication that nothing is left on at the end of the day. Construction techniques on the layout itself are traditional, such as L-girder benchwork, plywood and Homasote roadbed, M asonite fascia, and cardboard web and plaster for the scenery foundation. All of

The zookeeper explains to the local police the details of his unfortunate situation, while a reporter grabs a few photos for tomorrows paper.

JUNE 2002


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