EJC’s Betsy Ross Railroad

I started building scale model Railroads when I was 14. I started with a 4’x8′ sheet of plywood in the basement and later, added another 4’x4′ on one end. I used Lionel O27 track and trains. I still have a coal loader that I bought with $13 hard earned $$! I had to save a bunch from the jobs I had delivering papers, setting pins in a bowling alley (this way way before automated pin setters came to be) and even caddying at the local golf course (again, before golf carts or even wheeled carriers for the golf bags). to get that loader So, I was pretty happy to have it. After I got through high and went to college, I read that old Lionel sets were actually worth something, so I came back home and went down in the basement and discovered all the train stuff was gone. I asked my dad what happened to it, and he said he needed the space and so he took it all apart. I groaned, and he said “Don’t worry, I put all the train stuff in a box. It’s out in the old playhouse.” I thought that was great until I got out the box. Dad had packed all the cars (which were made ffrom plastic) on the bottom and the heavy engines on the top. As a result, all the plastic cars were twisted and deformed from the heavy weight engines! Fortunately, the coal loader was reasonably OK, so I just ordered a new rubber conveyor belt. Here’s a picture of it.

   Then, after going to a few colleges/universities (3), and coming to California, I started with a n-scale  layout that fit in the living room (see previous post) and then finally I built the G-scale BC&WRR in the backyard (described in the leadin to thiese ramblings. I enjoyed that layout,but then my wife at that time thought the house was too small and we had to move. After a lot of moving around, I wound up in Mendocino. There was a lot of natural plants like scotch broom and Blackberries (a lot of people call them weeds, they are very tenacious). So, I didn’t want to fight all that for a garden railroad. Instead, I decided to build a ride-on railroad usin  7.5 inch gauge railroad. Here’s an early construction picture.

My goal was to get the first loop completed, and a train running on Memorial Weekend, 2019. We managed to do that with a lot of help from my friends. So, here’s a picture of my grandson at the controls and a number of kids riding the train.

Here’s a few pictures of the train going into.the woods, crossing the trestle, and going through the (unfinished) tunnel.

We have some things to finish, including the tunnel and switch stands, and we need to build a train barn.

Railroad Projects are never finished.

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