Feb 12, 2014
That's the attraction, Doug. :teeth:
By the size of large insects compared to the Little Plastic People (LPP), with ants the size of large dogs, spiders the size of sedans, and flying insects the size of trucks, one would think it is the Paleozoic era.:wideeyes:
In reality it is set in the mid to late 1990's. That way I can run the engines of roads that merged with the UP, and still had the original name on them before repainting.
This pretty much sums up my era and modelling interests as well. Gotta love those Black Widows, Daylights and most importantly (for me at least) SP steam of that period.
Well, truthfully I figured the reaction would be much worse. Nobody broke out the flamethrower yet...
Actually something Rube Goldberg is rather helter-skelter, whereas these are truly rather deliberately laid out. And there are real signs of life as they pass, which explains our fascination.
I've seen many a diseasel which has the flu, and is or has thrown up all over the place. :uhoh:
ken G Price, you should see when my praying mantis gets into the train room. He is 5 1/2 " long !!!:wideeyes:
Sniffs and sneezles cause diezzles
-Thomas the (Steam) Train
But in an earlier time, the saga's would remember you as "Doug-Burnt-in His House" ;-)
More what you expected? ))
I need to vote twice as I have two layouts! One firmly stuck in 1920, and the other firmly stuck in 1972. I voted for '72.
To me, that's the ultimate solution without compromises; I have a steam logging railroad layout, eastern, and the Santa Fe layout in Arizona, I don't feel like I'm missing much here. In N scale there's room for more than one. I can run SD45-2's or a Shay, what's your mood tonight?
I like the sunny California!
You know, something that should have been obvious just occurred to me.
When it was mentioned up thread that some earlier polls had shown a majority of modelers interested in the transition era, those polls referred to ALL model railroaders. What we have here is a poll of predominantly N-scalers, right?
There might have been an HO or Z scaler who has participated. The poll itself is in the N Scale Forum. Anyhow, I believe N modeling has been influenced more toward diesels, by a lesser selection of steam than larger scales.
From my perspective, the past polls have been arranged differently. Such as instead of having a section for 1960-1980, they cut off before 1970, when the mega-merger era began, 1968, then, then UGH. When the second generation diesel power began arriving, after mid-1960's.
modern....sorry, but its all I know....don't care for steam although I like the caboose
Usually, I see 60s and 70s grouped together as the bankruptcy era. 80s and 90s are sometimes grouped as post staggers, but not modern, though that's rare.
It's a little unfair to suggest Transition modeling requires more research. The reason transition used to dominated is because of all the greatest gen/baby boomers who grew up in it. They are just modeling what they know too.
Personally, I tend to view the 1970's-mid 1990's (or Penn Central to the Conrail breakup) period as being the "second transition era" where we had the elimination/rebuilding of first generation power, nationalization of passenger service in North America, deregulation resulting in the abandonment/selling of branch lines by the class 1's, the merger mania, and the first phase of the homogenization of road power with the major railroads eliminating everything that wasn't a EMD/GMD or GE locomotive.
I model the transition era, specifically seven or eight years before I was born. So I'm definitely not modeling what I know. I just think the '50s were a much more interesting and colorful period of railroading than what's come along since.
So there's another reason. :teeth:
For me it began in 1960, when Ben Heinemann truly changed the paradigm from trying to out compete others for business, to buying up and ripping out competition. First the M&St.L, then CGW. Meanwhile, a few months before the CGW, came a disaster named Penn Central. Then the delayed BN merger, launching the era of creating hiking and biking trails, while whining about pollution and highway traffic.... Now, railroads have become "managed assets", with miles and miles of dehumanized, lifeless miles and miles. Plus power and defaced rolling stock, as the old folk tune opines, "little boxes all the same." Yawn. When I actually come upon a section gang or signal maintainer I can chat with, it is an unusual day.
Unfair? At least modern modelers can just walk down to the track with their cameras and notebooks and get all the info they want. I can do that somewhat since I live about 20 minutes drive away from the UP mainline in Weber Canyon in one direction and the same from Ogden in the other direction, but much (like nearly ALL) of the old stuff that was around during the transition era (signal heads, signal bridges, unballasted bridges, many of the sidings, most of the lineside structures) are gone. The freeway (built in '65 I think) has eliminated some small towns, re-routed the Weber River and Echo Creek as well as the mainline in Wilhemina Pass, so to get it accurate, I can't just stroll down and take photos anymore.
Luckily, I've been at this since the early 80's and I've documented a lot of it before the "old" stuff was torn down. Luckily for me, the Big Boys and Challengers running between Ogden and Cheyenne were just about the most well-documented locomotives ever, and I get lots of information about their surrounding by closely observing photos and videos of what's in the background and foreground when photographers were shooting them as the main subject.
Some features have remained a secret until just recently such as the north side of the Echo Fairbanks & Morse coaling tower as well as face-on photos of the west side of it. Luckily, through relentless research and just plain old inspiration, I've found several photos (some of which the origins are unknown) and some that were previously unpublished photos taken by Emil Albrecht of goings-on at Echo during the Big Boy and Challenger era which shows me what I need to know to finish my Echo Coaling tower model after waiting to do so for over 15 years.
Don't tell ME that anybody can possibly think that researching something that presently exists is easier than researching something that's been mostly GONE since the late 50's!
The only thing that may be "more difficult" to do would be to sift through the plethora of information that's available about the Modern Era vs the relative scarcity of info about the Transition Era.
Secondly, I'm a "Baby Boomer" but I never saw Big Boys or Challengers operate when I was a kid. I lived in Germany for a few years in the late 60's and early 70's and rode many steam powered DBB passenger trains and photographed them along with the steam powered freights. They fascinated me. I chose my era and location because it was arguably the epitome of steam power in the USA, and the mainline was very handy to me after I moved here after my hitch in the US Navy. What I now know about equipment, structures, track, signals and operations of the UP between Ogden and Wahsatch in the Transition Era I've had to get the hard way...by doing research...not by remembering it, since I never saw it as an 8 year old kid.
Heck Ken, you can't even get close to RR property anymore without being harassed by the RR po-pos in the white trucks roaming all over their properties.