Monday, September 21, 2015

Photo update of layout

After a Labor Day vacation and some time away from layout construction, I got back to work and completed the instillation of the layout fascia panels with the exception of one small piece that needs some terrain work completed before the final cuts can be made. This was the last of the "lumber" type projects needed to finish the layout. After several years of 4x8 sheets and other assorted lumber, I am very pleased to be done with this phase of building the layout!

Going forward from here it is just the fun stuff of building structures, equipment and scenery, and of coarse, operating trains. I still have to finish laying the track to the turntables at Danbury CT and State Line MA.

Last weekend I built a circuit and installed the wiring for the signals at Berkshire junction, next the signals will have to be assembled and installed. While on the subject of signals, I was saddened to hear of the passing of Dick Yager, the owner of Oregon Rail Supply. I have enjoyed building his signal kits in the past. Dick was always eager to answer any questions I had about his kits. He will be missed, I hope Oregon Rail Supply can continue.

I thought it was a good time to post some pictures of the layout at it's present state.

This first photo below shows the isle that has four modeled locations, two on each side of the isle.

Top left is Danbury CT, the hub of the layout.
Bottom left is State Line MA, this is where the NH interchanges with the Boston & Albany.
Top right is New Milford CT.
Bottom right is Rising junction MA, at this junction the State Line branch departs the Berkshire Line for State Line interchange yard and the Berkshire continues northward to Pittsfield MA.

                                                               Click to enlarge photos

There are also five staging areas in this isle. They are for, Maybrook NY interchange yard, Cedar Hill classification yard at New Haven CT, Pittsfield MA and the staging for the Boston & Albany interchange trains. The fifth and the only visible staging in this photo is sandwiched between the Danbury and State Line levels, this staging is for NYC destinations, three freight cars can be seen in the photo at the siding designated for Oak Point yard traffic.

The 2nd 3rd photos are a closer look at Danbury CT.

4th & 5th, New Milford CT.

6th & 7th, Rising junction MA.

8th & 9th, State Line Ma. interchange yard.

The next photo is an overall view of the isle with two modeled locations. Berkshire junction on top and the mill town of Housatonic Ma. on the lower level. Sandwiched in between the upper and lower levels is the intermediate staging yard for towns located on the Berkshire between New Milford CT and Rising MA.

The next two photos are a closer look at Berkshire junction (Signal Station 199).

Two freight cars can be seen at one of the sidings on the intermediate staging yard level in the second photo. The edge of the plywood just above the freight cars is where the last fascia panel will go after the terrain is completed between the tracks and the front edge of the layout at Berkshire junction.

The last photos are Housatonic MA.

Unfortunately I have no "Model Railroader Magazine" type layout plan to post on this blog. I completed a one inch to the foot plan on graph paper before starting construction on this layout, it is to big for me to scan and frankly rough looking.

I will draw a schematic of the layout and post it next time.

This is not a big layout, but there is plenty of staging, therefore I hope it will operate like one!


  1. Your have a nice layout on the go...looks like you have got a lot done in short order. I was wondering about the barn in photo number 3 in the Danbury it a kit or looks really nice...George Dutka

    1. Hi George,
      The Barn is a Walthers kit modified to look like the prototype one that overlooked Danbury yard for many years. This barn appears in the back ground of so many photos taken at Danbury it had to be included on the layout. The copula is scratch built, but it still needs the prominent weather vane like the prototype.
      Received my Oct RMC today, nice cover shot! Will read the article when I have the time.
      Regards, Joe Smith

  2. Joe:
    I knew the article was coming up but I was surprised to see the cover shot, thanks. You barn looks great...will have to look at the Walthers offering. Vector Cuts has weather vanes and Alder Models at one time offered a few...I have a few Alder vanes that are extras...what kind do you need...George

  3. George
    The Walthers kit is part # 933-3330. I have started to make the weather vane from phosphor bronze wire, just have not finished and installed it. Thanks, Joe

  4. Joe:

    I really enjoyed the photos of your layout progress. They show a lot of careful planning, and great craftsmanship on the models completed so far. The Danbury photos show your model of the General Office Building, on the far side of the Berkshire Line. I can't quite make out the lettering on the sign -- I would imagine by the date of your layout that the building was no longer being used by the New Haven. What does the sign say?

    Dan Vandermause
    Ellicott City, Maryland

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. Dan:

    The ex-NY&NE RR building on the far side of the Maybrook line was owned in my modeling era (and still is) by Leahy Fuels. Proprietor John Leahy also owned the Danbury Fair grounds, every year around the beginning of October the Danbury State Fair was held at that location.

    The yellow sign in question advertised the dates of the fair annually. The sign reads.............

    First Day Sat Sept 28 Last Day Oct 6

    The prototype building can be partially be seen in the back ground of a 1957 photo in the newest issue of the SHORELINER VOL 37 issue 3, page 19 top photo. This magazine is available from

    The building will be the subject of a future post.

    Thanks for your interest, Joe

  7. I see on the Rising area a track coming towards the camera along the table edge. Is that the spur to the paper mill?

    1. No, the track along the outer edge of the layout goes to State Line, interchange with the Boston & Albany.

      The track along the rear or backdrop goes to the Rising Paper Co.

    2. Ok. I found pictures of Rising from years ago when Dalys siding was in use. After seeing those pictures I see it now. The red shanty puts everything into perspective. I too am modeling Rising. How long is your Rising segment? Mine should be about 16 feet long not including South of Rising and State Line staging.