Blog entries from August 2017 and earlier have been migrated from a former site and many of the images are incorrectly linked. These will be repaired over time.

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Jerry Britton's PRR Middle Division in HO Scale has scheduled a public open house on Saturday, November 5, 2016, from 12:00 - 3:00 p.m. The address and map is available from The Model Railroad Open House web site, referenced below.

The model railroad depicts the Lewistown, Pa., area during the early 1950s. The four track Pennsy main line passes the Lewistown Junction station, behind which radiate out the Lewistown and Milroy secondaries. 

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The PRR Middle Division in HO Scale was open today for the annual meeting of the Pennsylvania Railroad Technical & Historical Society (PRRT&HS). The event drew around 45 visitors over a three hour period.

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The PRR Middle Division in HO Scale will be open on November 7th from 3:00 to 6:00 p.m.

I am participating as part of a south-central Pennsylvania tour, which I organize, and we are open the weekend of November 7th-8th. The schedule is at http://svmr.pennsyrr.com.

In turn, the above tour is part of the annual PA/NJ/MD/DE Model Railroad Open House organized by Bruce Friedman. This year there are a record 137 model railroads open over the course of five weeks in November. Many of the railroads are Pennsy-themed. The full schedule is at http://modelrailroadopenhouse.com.

Hope to see you on the 7th!

RRampmeter

Another tool that I added to the fray was a RRampMeter from DCC Specialties. I saw these in use at several open houses during November and I immediately recognized its benefit.

Although initially released for use for measuring track power directly off of the tracks, everyone seemed to be using right at their command stations and boosters.

The RRampMeter, inline with the power bus, displays voltage to the track as well as current draw in amps. With the RRampMeter you can tell when you are approaching max amperage on the power bus.

I purchased one, and mounted it, but modified my wiring so that I can move it between command station and boosters with little effort. I may eventually add additional RRampMeters on the boosters.

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The JMRI/CATS control panel from my former PRR Eastern Region in N Scale model railroad.

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While preparing for my open house in early November, I was experiencing some trouble bringing the system back online following a short. I would clear the short, but the Digitrax system would continue to report a short mode.

I finally found that if I took my A-A lashup of Walthers E8 diesels and tilted them off the rails for a moment, the system would return to service. I figured it was something amiss with the E8's.

Several months ago I started listening to several podcasts related to model railroading. They are actually quite enjoyable. One that I listen to regularly is Lionel Strang's A Modeler's Life. They interview model railroaders and bring out their background in the hobby. Reflecting on my own past, I decided to share where I got my start.

Born in 1962, I got my first train set at a very young age... no later than seven, but I really don't remember. The HO scale set included a Mantua GP in Reading yellow and green livery. Many years later it would take a nose dive off the layout due to a sibling which resulted in breaking the short hood off.

The first layout was on a sheet of plywood laying on top of a pool table. From an Atlas plan book, it was a basic figure eight with the Atlas pier set. Never got to scenery and, quite frankly, I don't remember running in much.

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The PRR Middle Division in HO scale held an open house on November 7, 2015, in support of National Model Railroad Month.

Above, left to right, Bill Millham, Ken Dunn, and Rick Spano, talk shop near the Granville Bridge.

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In conjunction with the PRRT&HS annual meeting, the PRR Middle Division hosted its first open house on Sunday, May 4th.

The guest book contained 55 entries. There were a few additional spouses that were not entered. Thank you to all who attended and for your very positive feedback. Several inquired about op sessions, but that's a ways off yet!

A shout out to Dave Wartell who ran a switcher throughout the event to provide some movement on the Milroy Secondary. Thanks, Dave!