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 INRAIL Pics along the Indiana Northern Rail.
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Crew Chief

Posted - 06/14/2006 :  10:11:04 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Here is a little bit about my railroad.
My railroad is a narrow shelf layout that ranges from 12 to 18 inches wide and pretty much models along the right of way with a few businesses modeled near the tracks in my various towns and many grain elevators. The railroad is 85 feet long (takes up wall space in three rooms) with several towns modeled. I did not try to model any of the towns exactly the way they were in real life. A friend of mine said that is crazy and is not very easy to model everything the way it was without spending hours and hours scratch building everything (no time for that!). My benchwork is very simple because there was no need to build 1x4 bracing underneath many parts of the railroad because of it being so narrow. A carpenter told me that with the narrow shelves I have, metal brackets on 12 inch centers would be good enough. So, I purchased some really nice shelving type of lumber that ranged from 8 to 10 feet long and attached them to metal brackets I purchased at Wal-Mart. Some of the areas that are 18 inches wide have 1x4 supports. This benchwork has been up for almost 10 years with no problems to speak of. Many of the buildings are Walthers structures that have been changed or kitbashed with other structures to change the look and of course they are fairly quick to build. I also have several laser wood structures from various manufacturers. The industries are all grain elevators and fertilizer dealerships. There are 7 grain elevators on my rr. Some of them are American Model Builders laser kits, some kitbashed from Walthers kits, and one that is totally scratch built. Everything is weathered with many details around the buildings. When you look at my pictures, you may get the feeling of the 50's or 60's instead of today. Well, after several field trips, I have found that many of these old buildings with their original signs still exist in these small farm towns. Many of them are antique or junk dealers today but some are still old country grocery stores or simply vacant. I mixed in some up-to-date signs along with today's automobiles and pick up trucks to bring everything into today.

I model the old Pennsy branch line from Logansport to South Bend (I only model the part from Logansport to Delong). The real line shut down in 1979 under Conrail and that is where the Logansport and Indiana Northern picks up. By adding many more grain elevators compared to what really existed, it gives a reason for the rr to continue on into today. Later on, the Logansport and Indiana Northern (reporting marks LINR), the Hoosier Northern (the old EL line that interchanges at Delong at the north end of my rr, reporting marks HNOR), and my best friends (Quintin Schini) layout in New Paris, Indiana, called the Marion and Indiana Northern (reporting marks MIN) all merged together to form INRAIL or The Indiana Northern Rail Corporation (reporting marks INRC). Many different paint schemes can be found on the Indiana Northern (just like many real shortlines). The LINR is gray and maroon. The HNOR is a BN green and gray. The MIN is red and gray and INRAIL decided to use red and gray as its official color scheme. We also have some patch jobs like two BN GP35's in original paint with INRAIL under the cab window. We also have some Conrail units still in CR blue, some original, and some with patch jobs and new numbers with INRAIL instead of CONRAIL on the side of the long hood.

My room (rooms) are finished with many signs applied to the walls for decor and other train collectable stuff decorating the room. My wife collects dolls and she has added some train related dolls (mostly Lionel collectables)to my room. Hey, I figured this is a way to get her involved. I also have many display cases with many of my covered hoppers on display inside of them. I decided to use shop lights for my lighting and I have them hanging below the suspended ceiling so it is much easier to change the bulbs when they burn out. We have a horrible lady bug problem here in northern Indiana in the fall and spring. I did not want my lights above the ceiling tiles where I would have to drop a panel to change a bulb and get all kinds of junk all over the rr. The hanging shop lights may not look as neat as the other but it sure does keep things simple (and simple to hook up!).

Well, that was a little bit (or a lot!) about my layout. I wanted to add some new pictures I took of Bruce Lake Grocery to start with. I had some pics posted on the June weekend photo fun but I liked the way these came out better. I was really happy with the close up showing that small ray of light shinning down from above. I also included a couple of pics of Karrie's Antiques. I will add more pictures in the next few days and will start with close up views of many of my structures along the right of way and then show some distant shots of the overall view of the narrow shelves and the room. Some pictures of the Indiana Northern (INRAIL) power and weathered covered hoppers will also be added later. Tom Johnson

A couple shots of Karrie's Antiques. I posted these on the June photo fun but figured maybe some did not see them.

more to follow.

Country: USA | Posts: 672

Thorn Creek and Western

Posted - 06/14/2006 :  10:27:14 PM  Show Profile  Visit Thorn Creek and Western's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Beautiful work! How did you model the pumpkins?


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Premium Member

Posted - 06/14/2006 :  11:03:32 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Beautifully conceived scenes, Tom! Simply outstanding!

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George D

Premium Member

Posted - 06/14/2006 :  11:20:01 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Beautiful work Tom.


Fly Army

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Crew Chief

Posted - 06/14/2006 :  11:40:49 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Dave. Most of the pumpkins came from Busch and is called "The Pumpkin Patch." There are some white metal pumpkins that I painted but can't remember who made them. It seems like they came from a company called SS Limited. It is the company that has all of those white metal details in the Walther's catalog. The pumpkins from Busch are a little to bumpy for my tast but they will do and are the best out there right now. Busch also makes sunflowers and rows of corn that looks pretty good when finished. Tom Johnson

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Crew Chief

Posted - 06/15/2006 :  02:06:28 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Here are the elevators on the Indiana Northern.

Farmers Co-op, Bruce Lake, Indiana.

Frick Services, Kewanna, Indiana

Countrymark Co-op, Metea-Lucerne, Indiana.

Excel Co-op, Delong, Indiana.

Lucerne Elevator, Lucerne, Indiana.

Farmers Inc. Elevator, Delong, Indiana.

Farmers Co-op Inc., Delong, Indiana.

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Tabooma County Rwy

Posted - 06/15/2006 :  10:41:14 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Tom, wonderful thread you've started on your railraod. I really enjoyed reading the history of your and your friends' railroads - it reads "real"!!! And I still think the Bruce Lake Grocery is one of the finest model structures I've ever seen - every thing about it is "just right".

I'm really looking forward to more pictures of areas of your layout, and also to pictures of the layout rooms - keep them coming!

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Posted - 06/15/2006 :  10:45:08 AM  Show Profile  Visit jknapp's Homepage  Reply with Quote
WOW!! Beautiful modeling!!!

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Posted - 06/15/2006 :  11:24:55 AM  Show Profile  Visit wvrr's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Really nice work, Tom!


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Posted - 06/15/2006 :  11:42:37 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote

You are definitely the grain elevator meister, par exellence. It's easy to see why that midwestern area of the country is known as the 'bread basket of America'.

I love that nice shady area behind the store under the trees. Such a beautiful model of a building where it would be so nice to go in the morning, purchase a roll and coffee, and sit out on the bench enjoying the day while chatting with the locals.

Your modeling is evocative of some of the best aspects and values of what a nice town was like, and could still be, given the proper respect for what has gone before and can be recycled into a viable use in the present era.

In a certain sense, you are capturing your 'time', in a very similar manner to the way the paintings Edward Hopper did of NYC and New England in the 1930's-40's. Very nice work.

Stevie O'

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Premium Member

Posted - 06/15/2006 :  11:52:01 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Tom, please keep the photos coming. I'd love to see what the layout looks like if you were looking at it from a distance. In other words is there anyway we can get a photo or two of your train rooms? I'm just a curious.

Joe <><

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Premium Member

Posted - 06/15/2006 :  1:05:34 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I can only echo what others have already said before me.
Thanks for the information on the gas pumps from the other thread.
The 70's pumps will work just fine.
I model Alaska in 1986 so your rural scenes are right on target as to what I model since some of Alaska is still very rural even today.
Therefore what really catches my eye is the store and surrounding structures.
You could find the center of many small towns in Alaska looking this way even today.

I have a problem with vehicles since there seems to be only modern and 50's and earlier era's available.
I lucked out as they opened a new Walmart in my area and I was able to get their cars for less than $2 each.
However that said I can only have so many 55 Chevy's cruising around the layout.

This forum started with most of the original membership building craftsman's structures and dioramas but recently we have had join our ranks many members who have a layout up and running such as yours.
It is a pleasure to see such excellent work being posted here on Railroad-Line by yourself and many other members.
Thanks for the pictures and I look forward to seeing many more.

John Bagley
Modeling the Alaska Railroad in HO in Wildwood Georgia.

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Premium Member

Posted - 06/15/2006 :  1:33:02 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Tom,Thanks for sharing and welcome to the forum..I always look forward to your pixs..Great modeling.

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Tim Kerkhoff

Posted - 06/15/2006 :  4:26:43 PM  Show Profile  Send Tim Kerkhoff a Yahoo! Message  Reply with Quote

I have to say you captured Inidana an its elevators for sure. One of the favorites is the photo of the Wayne elevator with the two trucks lined up and waiting to be dumped. I k now you have been answering all kinds of questions, but I have to ask, what did you use for corn in the truck? Is it just painted?
It adds such a nice touch.

BTW ...Larry and I are talking about making a trip up sometime. If there is a better time to do this,let me know. We are pretty flexible.

Nice photography too.

Country: USA | Posts: 5879 Go to Top of Page

Crew Chief

Posted - 06/15/2006 :  4:29:03 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks again guys for the many compliments. I really appreciate them and I really like the way you welcome new members and make them feel right at home.

John (Bbags). I am with you on the lack of cars and especially pick up trucks from the 70's and 80's. I know there are the Trident Chevy's but we need more variety and other makes. It seems like there are a ton of vehicles for today and also for the 50's and into the 60's. Classic Metal Works has helped some but we need more from the 70's and 80's.

Stevie O. I am with you on the porch picture of Bruce Lake Grocery. I lucked out on that picture in that most of it actually stayed in some what of a focus. I think I will enlarge that pictures and take it to school this fall so when I am having a bad day, I can look at that picture and put myself on that front porch drinking a bottle of pop with the guys (just like Barney, Andy, and Goober....right?).

I love building grain elevators but I try not to go overboard with tons of detail. I like the "good enough" approach. We all know how complicated a grain elevator can be.

Tom Johnson

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Mike Hamer

Posted - 06/15/2006 :  5:20:51 PM  Show Profile  Visit Mike Hamer's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi Tom...thanks for posting more great pics of the layout. Joe asked for some more distant shots to show how the layout appears within the context of your train room. We have a thread currently on page two in the "Model Railroad Construction" forum called "An Overall View of Your Layout" where you could post some overall images of the room.

Mike Hamer
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Edited by - Mike Hamer on 06/15/2006 5:22:56 PM

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