October brings about changes…the weather…the layout…what? The layout? Yeah, it’s that old affliction…paralysis by analysis. I briefly have been thinking about building the southern area of the layout in the current space. It’s starting to get really annoying.

I continue to get more fluent on 3rdPlanIt software; and I am reminded all too frequently about the givens and druthers of layout planning…and the fact that what I can visualize in my mind…WON’T FIT IN MY SPACE!!! It’s frustrating, to say the least. However, I continue to practice with the program; and the class instructions I received from Randy at Eldorado Software really helped with my advancement in that CAD software.

Major repairs (expensive; but normal) to my truck this month have me counting pennies…so I am glad there is not anything expensive on the horizon. But, it did cut into my bench work budget. So, I will spend the rest of the month building new freight cars that are sitting here on the bench. And , I need to get some locomotives done, too. If some extra funds surface…I’ll sweep them into the bench work kitty.

The lure of the Southern Half of the layout brings with it much nicer scenery, and maybe a few trestles. But, the northern half has the lure of West Frankfort, and my hometown memories. I am ready for the larger layout room. I am so tired of trying to compress my layout dreams.

Trainfest is coming up…and I am thinking about going up again this year. My wife will not be with me…and I can literally drive up on Thursday evening…and get up Friday morning…go to the show…close it down…and head home. Sounds fun, eh? I am up for a road trip. I can stay in a motel near the show too. I feel 200% better this year and can make the trip much easier.

I know I said I would have some new photos up last month…never got around to them…and the track plan is about 1/3 finished. I am finishing the staging tracks now. I am thinking about having 3rd PlanIt do the CNC machining of the track boards…they can do that based on the plan that is drawn up and sent to them…Anyway…they’ll ship the track boards to me…and I simply install them. It’s really pretty interesting.

I might attend my first St Louis train show in a few years…I haven’t felt like going…but my health continues to improve. I have lost 58 pounds as of today…and my energy level is at a 5 year high. So, I feel good…and feel like going to a train show. I attended the STL RPM meet…and did okay…but the health kicked on in early August…and hasn’t let up.

I hope to have some stuff to show by November…and I’ll have decided on whether I am going to Trainfest or not.

Until next month…

Categories: Uncategorized

Thomas Austin

I am a Southern Illinois Native. I am a fan of nostalgia, and the history of Southern Illinois. Model Railroading has been a large part of my life; and it helps serve that interest. Through this interest I have learned much about the region; the people; and the industries that gave us all hope of building a life beyond our formal education. Small Towns in the Midwest built this nation...and this site aims to share that fact with the world.


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