Category Archives: model railroading

MODELING MEMORIES

His memories of New England various,

Were by and large vicarious…

Mostly pictures he saw

with interest and awe,

His chances of a visit–hilarious!

Point of fact he was too young,

Couldn’t drive himself even some…

The eight-hour ride

Once a summer left wide,

Window for relevant magazines to come!

Still his interest grew,

Past the time when he knew…

This paint scheme was gone,

these ALCOs moved on.

But the history he wanted to view.

Found an N scale engine thus,

Painted just like this—a plus–

To re-enact

Historical fact,

Without too much fuss!

–Jonathan Caswell

 

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RAIL, NOT NAIL, CLIPPERS

This modeler became chipper,

Receiving a new rail clipper…

Now his joints there

Were reasonably square,

Gandy dancers didn’t snicker.

When testing his track found a glitch,

Replaced the oldest train switch…

Threw it away

In the garbage to stay?

New track kept trains from the ditch!

Rebuilt the long run-around,

Whose rail joints were now sound…

Good symmetry

From track brands (three-?),

No rail cars hit the ground.

Those huge rough-soldered leads,

Of wires to rail have needs…

Alternative means

Or file them down clean,

Then soon we start planting fake weeds!

–Jonathan Caswell

HIGHER SPEED RAIL

HIGHER SPEED RAIL

(To  tune of “THE YELLOW ROSE OF TEXAS”)

Been working on the N scale

Whenever I’ve found time,

Rebuilding older trackage

So electrics will work fine…

Putting in curved turnouts

Simulating former speed,

My truncated mainline

Once hosted iron steeds!

The story goes that this was once

A high-speed mainline,

Alas, this part of the railroad is

In serious decline…

A few banked curves remain to

Remind us what once was,

The rest of the roadbed

Like that economy, went bust.

But renewing hope is out there

My imaginary line,

Hosts a  tourist train

Which looks like it does fine…

A collection of Rail Diesel Cars–

Steam engines have a few–

An array of passenger train cars,

Restoration still to do!

When rebuilding’s finished

(It’s going to run this time),

They’ll have a ceremony

So get yourself in line…

Cooking for a grand shindig

The restaurants in town,

Will serve the finest dishes

With MOXIE passed around!

They’ll serve their finest cuisine

So chug that MOXIE down!!!!

–Jonathan Caswell

MY N-SCALE MODEL TRAIN LAYOUT UPDATE

MY N-SCALE MODEL TRAIN LAYOUT UPDATE

Seeing another’s planning

Has me thinking too….

There’s not enough room on the layout

For passenger trains coming through!

I have a long spur behind the station

That could tie back into the main…

I have a curved turnout elsewhere

That would help my passenger train.

Other side of this spur, a turntable,

That I’ve yet to install…

Would turn single-ended locomotives

So I could run them all!

Changing plans is nothing new with me,

It’s a fun part and I do it…

Appreciating the whole hobby

I decided and must get to it.

–Jonathan Caswell

THE DOUBLE RUN AROUND!

THE DOUBLE RUN AROUND!

Getting the run around is a hassle,

Especially in one’s castle…

But my train fleet

Needs a place to meet,

Time to some double track wrassle!

I have enough engines and cars

And buildings  to make my trains stars…

On a display

Two trains–at least–can play,

With the rest in a museum yard.

A part of my staging it could be

Or displayed and running separately…

I’ll scrounge a board,

Something I can afford,

Then I can prop it up conveniently.

–Jonathan Caswell

HANDS-ON…MY HISTORY

HANDS-ON…MY HISTORY

I took a fabled RS-1* into the living room

On a tray to try doing some work…

I wanted to replace that body shell with one bought new,

Then progress was caught up with a jerk.

It was the Two-Fourteen I had in my hands,

Numbered for our first letter exchange…

February Second completed the first round

As our relationship grew strong and aged.

The “214” is painted silver with red-white-and blue

Stripe around both hoods (old AMTRAK stock)…

Maybe I’ll just finish changing this one’s couplers’

Putting one of three “NEW HAVENs” on the body shell changing block!

–Jonathan Caswell

*NOTE:

All of these locomotives are N scale models of the American Locomotive Company (ALCO) model RS-1…in the author’s collection.  Some of his units are lettered and numbered for important life events….like when he and his wife exchanged their first letters (#214)  or the date they were engaged (#5388…for the date 5/3/1988).