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July 2002 - Page 41


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UP 2302 rolls down the switching lead before backing into Pioneer Packing to pick up some reefers and other empties. The grain cars probably belong down the track at Farmers Cooperative. Thanks to an earlier article in the Streamliner (UPHS) this engine has the correct number of domes and type of main drivers to match the prototype 2302.

Controls
If I was a typical model railroader, the power supply people would all be out of business. My fixed cabs use Variacs and toy train transformers. This arrangement varies the speed of the trains by controlling the voltage. I used to run up to five Athearn locos on a train and this requires a substantial power supply. Ive used this setup for about 30 years with all of the original parts still in place. For walk-around controls I build simple throttles using Radio Shack parts. These are rugged, easily repaired and provide good control for switching. The layout is divided into about 15 blocks, which are connected to the cabs by rotary switches. I dont feel that a DCC system will allow me to do much more than I already do, so thats one expense Ill skip.

which would really enhance the visuals and operations. The scenery is an ongoing project that I work on when the mood strikes me. Last year the local NMRA Division hosted a regional convention and I spent a lot of time

completing scenery to make the railroad presentable. Now Im more laid back and am enjoying the layout. This layout has been a joy to construct and operate. I hope that I can continue to refine it for many years to come.

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Future Plans
The engine terminal at Denver will be started next. This will give me a place to store and turn engines between runs. The prototype turntable was only 100 ' long, making the heavy Challengers a real problem. All of the other steam engines will fit on a 100' table. This includes 4-8-4s, early Challengers and the 4-12-2. Ill do like the UP and raise the rear wheels of the tender so the engine can swing. This is why Big Boys rarely visited Denver until much later in the steam era; they had to be turned on the wye. If I am going to spend money on electronics, itll be a signal system. The prototype used lower quadrant semaphores,

Three-way meet at Brighton. The LaSalle local pulls to the west end of the siding. The MP Colorado Eagle pulls through the crossover and 334 roars past on the main. This happens when LaSalle yard is full. UP 334 will pick up all of the eastbound cars at LaSalle, making room for the local after it leaves.

JULY 2002

MODEL RAILROADING 41

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