Southern Adirondack Update

Just some of the things that have kept me out of trouble this summer.
I got the Bachman B&M GP7 with sound and it came in a very baby blue and numbered 1575 (as you can see, I already have the 1575 and it has the train lighting box and other details).  A repaint into a more proper B&M blue and relettered to 1559 so I didn't have to make another lighting box (I've done 2 over the years...1575 and 1564).

I got a bottle of Testors gold paint and finally finished the StJ&LC (bicentennial painted and renumbered for the D&H) GP7 2606.  Jim L needs to stop drooling now!
I finally (after thinking about it for 6 or 7 years) built the Schylerville branch of the Southern Adirondack.  I need to do some wiring and build a box to keep the dust off (as its in the garage) but otherwise it's operational.  The RDC3 now has a proper place to layover and there's some switching work to be done in Victory Mills.  Obviously it needs scenery but at least I have some structures (need to be painted) and a plan.


The RS3 is my friend Ricks and he bought it to run on my layout.  We planned to change it from P&W 164 to D&H 4082 from the start, I just needed to find a proper brown to cover the lettering. After some mixing, I think I got it right and the project got done.

The RS3 is my friend Ricks and he bought it to run on my layout.  We planned to change it from P&W 164 to D&H 4082 from the start, I just needed to find a proper brown to cover the lettering.  After some mixing, I think I got it right and the project got done.
With the arrival of accessory decoders, the dispatchers control panel became obsolete.  This meant I could reframe where the panel was and make the area under the stairs (DB and ME cabins) a bit more stable.  I moved some stuff around and ended up with my desk under the engine shop and a more finished look for the command station.

Brad Peterson


Lee Schamberger Update

The WW&F has a Wharf !. Still to do are the seawalls , river bed , and the water. Plus a Lobster boat . On30 is funner!

Lee Schamberger

The Second Hutton Excavator

Glenn G. was kind enough to give me a second Woodland Scenics excavator kit to use on the Hutton Brick Co. diorama. (As you can see from the prototype slide, they had several.)  Since I had already built the first one according to the kit specs.  I decided to play a little with the second.

It took a lot of filing and grinding with the Dremel but, I removed all the cast on open doors and shuttered things as on the prototype.


 Wayne Sittner

Third Time Is The Charm!

I am hoping “third time is the charm” tonight as I load up the Civic and head south from Hinesburg to Cohoes, NY around eleven p.m. I have the ol’ thinkin’ cap on early tonight, and make “a call” before I leave to ensure D45 is indeed operating tonight and the two D&H engines are still powering the job! I do not want a replay of my last effort to catch this train, when I was cornered into shooting dirty CP GEs on 252 at Delanson. Reassured that D45 is running as advertised tonight, I have an enjoyable drive down to the Albany area and pull into Noah Fowlers home at 0145ish to pick him up only to find a darkened house and no Noah in the driveway! I sat for a few minutes, hoping he had just fallen asleep while waiting for me and was rewarded when lights came on in a room and the outline of a head appeared at the window! I waved from the Civic. Who else would be out here in the driveway with car lights on at 01:50 in the morning? In a couple minutes the room lights went out and here came Noah! Alright! Everything is in place for a third try at catching the two D&H engines on D45 passing the old mill at Cohoes!
During the drive down, I had encountered torrential downpours but the rain had stopped well before I arrived at Noah’s home. As we departed from Noah’s the rain began again and when we arrived at the old mill we were greeted by Mother Nature with another torrential downpour. The rain seemed to let up a little and we jumped out optimistically, with outside temps in the low seventies we could get wet for this shot, only to witness the rain come down harder, so we retreated back into the Civic to wait it out. I told Noah how the flash units can handle the moisture when inside a zip lock freezer bag. Noah had tracked the 7304 to having departed Saratoga, so D45 was heading our way somewhere north of our location. Great! But..........Mother Nature had us pinned down at the moment! lol! Patience paid off and after several more minutes the rain slowly abated and then stopped altogether. Noah and I emerged from the clean Civic commenting how nice it was of Mother Nature to wash the power for us tonight! lol! Listening for air horns, we safely set up the lighting and settled in waiting. It was surprising to both of us how busy the city of Cohoes was this time of night! Apart from the car traffic, people are out walking around!? Perhaps forty minutes later we agreed we could hear 7304s air horn away to the north. Ah! Finally! A few minutes later 7304 eased past us having just come off the big bridge over the Mohawk River, and in a flash the moment is captured! Success! It is a miracle that these two engines are still together on the same job working within driving distance from me! SHot in Cohoes, NY on August 21, 2014 at 03:37. Special thanks to Gordy Smith for his help! I added some HDR effect to this photo, see what you think? Please enjoy! Comments are welcomed!
All The Best In 2014;
Gary Knapp


Got up early today, in hopes of catching the southbound sleeper as she went through Munns. Here she is with the 5023 on the point rounding Hooper's Curve up behind the old feed plant.
 I caught her again passing the cemetery
I had to move quick to get her pulling into the station
It was a little easier after she stopped.  Soko was the Conductor while Short Pants Longtin was the Engineer.
Earlier this week I had some guests at the SVRR.
Bill Rooke and Fred Gemmill, from the Plattsburg area were under the watchful eye of the Yardmaster.  Bill was doing the Lower Jct Job while Fred switched the K Mill.
I could have used the Yardmaster's help with Sammy.  he is being tutored this summer by my daughter.  She wanted him to see the SVRR.  He has quick hands when it comes to small HO parts.

Jim Lafayette

"The Knight Train"

Skenesborough Council 276 of the Knights of Columbus have charted a special to take it's members and guests to the rededication of The Lower Junction Catholic Church named Saint James.  The trainmaster affectionately dubbed it "The Knight Train". 
Running tender first, she is stopping at the Lower Junction Station for the good Knights and their ladies to de-train.
Her passengers safely inside St James it's time to make the runaround and get set for the return trip to Skenesborough.
 Here we see her backing down the CK Lead to make the run-around.

Rutland #82, rented for this run, is headed down the run-around track as a CK employee enjoys the show. 

 The run-around complete, she has backed back to the station and had a drink of good Pine Lake water while she awaits the completion of the religious ceremonies.  In the mean time engineer Hank Weber is making a little adjustment while fireman Homer Knott gets his coal where he wants it.
The ceremony complete, its time to head back for home.
Jim Lafayette

NEPA Coal Mining‏

For as long as I can remember I've been inspired by the iconic photographs of the late Ed Miller.
His coverage of the Lackawanna & Wyoming Valley (Laurel Line) was unparalleled.  In an unhurried manner I've slowly been attempting to model the typical trains the Laurel Line operated between Scranton and Wilkes-Barre.  
Many of you have seen the #401 freight motor (scratch built) previously, as well as my typical trains of reefers and box cars that went south out of Scranton.  Now, thanks to the purchase of two Funaro & Camerlengo Erie hoppers (first two cars in the train),  I have enough cars for one of the typical trains that ran south to the Pittston area to service the Penna. Coal Company's Ewen Colliery.
For the New England modelers I offer a glimpse of NEPA.   For the Wyoming Valley group, something I'm sure your all too familiar with.
I must mention:  Those two F&C hoppers were built up kits that John Green was selling at Collinsville @ $5.00.  I just had to switch out the wheels and add appropriate weathering.

Wayne Sittner

"Hot Tips"

Acting on “hot tips’ from Noah Fowler to my south, and Frank Jolin north of me in Quebec, I was traveling over to Port Henry Station tonight when North End Dispatcher Gordy Smith came on the air, providing one part of a conversation, the second part I did not pick up, with the crew of train 642 which was apparently ready to depart from Rouses Point, NY. Evidently, the crew had (most gratuitously for me) inquired what was coming toward them on the railroad tonight. I was all ears! 642 had a rebuilt SD 60, BNSF Dash-9 and SD 40-2 for power! Gordy’s line up reminded me why I started looking for a way to photograph trains at night years ago. He told 642’s crew they would be meeting 253 at Bluff Point, near Plattsburgh, and 253 had one of the newly rebuilt SD 40-2s with flared radiators, CP 5012 leading. 931 was meeting a 252 at the time further south at Fort Ticonderoga, and 931 had a BNSF leader. Well behind 931 still south of Whitehall at the time was a 609 with a rebuilt SD 60M, BNSF Dash-9, rebuilt SD 60 power combo! Four trains with great leaders! This fact was not lost on Gordy, who mentioned to 642’s crew how if he was not working he would have been out chasing trains today! lol! This scenario reminded me of how it was every evening years ago, the D&H North End, quiet all day long excepting two Amtrak trains, would suddenly transform into a busy railroad after dark, which in turn inspired me to search for a way to photograph trains at night.
Tonight, one of the four trains, 253, was already out of reach too far north of me. I had been told of 609 and it’s power but 931s BNSF leader was a surprise! So I highballed over to Port Henry, quickly set up the lights and caught BNSF Dash-9 4123 coming past me from atop the cab roof of the RS-18. Gordy earlier had told 642s crew they would meet 609 either at Howards siding or Whitehall as 609 had work to do in Whitehall and he said The Chief would make that call later. So with 931 captured and myself back down on the ground off the surprisingly high RS-18 cabs roof, I was contemplating what would happen. Would I see 609 or 642 first? The rebuilt SD 60 leaders were the prize to get tonight, while the BNSF 4123 was a bonus. A precedent had been set before, remembering the pair of spotless BNSF SD 70ACes leading a 930 which was held at Howards for hours waiting for a 609 in this same situation. Talking equipment defect detectors are at Howards to my north, (twenty min. away) and Fort Ticonderoga south of me, (forty five min. away) but this location sits in a bowl and it is not unusual to not pick up either detector. What to do? I set up for 642, as I figured if they were running down to Whitehall they would show up first within the hour roughly, then if they did not show, I would move the lighting back in time to get 609 coming by as running time from Whitehall is around ninety min.
Forty minutes later I have the lighting set up and I’m drinking tea! What could go wrong!? I wait a half hour.............forty five min. No 642. I realize 642 is not coming first. The lighting gets moved back, lol! Forty five min. later, after I am satisfied with the lighting I can hear ‘em, EMD’s far away south of me, coming up Lake Champlain with a haz mat train of empty crude oil tank cars. Leader CP 6259 is an ex-SOO LINE wide cab SD 60, one of a handful built for the SOO, and Gordy has mentioned in passing how these are some of his favorite engines, so Railfan Rule #5 goes into effect: Always try to shoot a good photo of the dispatchers favorite locomotives for him! ha,ha,ha! Some twenty minutes later 609 is in town, I’m in position atop the cab roof and the engineer is giving a couple toots to the large D&H Track Gang as he passes them situated on the m.o.w. siding south of me, then 6259 swings around the curve, past the station and below me, captured in a flash! What a difference the fresh red paint 6259 wears versus the older oxidized red the many GE’s wear now! So this one is for you Gordy, and of course the many other viewers on this list. Shot on May 15, 2014 at 01:59. Special thanks to Noah Fowler and Frank Jolin! Please enjoy! Comments are welcomed.
All The Best In 2014;
Gary Knapp