Friday, November 16, 2018

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club creates new members-only Facebook page

The WMRC has created a new members-only Facebook page called the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club Chat Room. This is a members-only page where we can discuss and share all sorts of topics about the hobby that we all love! But you have to be a member to join in on the fun! You can join up by going to https://www.facebook.com/groups/750121262009047/

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Two models entered at Winnipeg Model Railroad Club's monthly model display

Christopher Robinson and John Bate submitted two entries for the WMRC's monthly model display this month. Christopher entered a Grand Trunk GP-38 that was originally his father's engine. He weathered it using several coats of acrylic paints. One technique he used was to apply a thick mix of medium grey paint on one side, letting it set for ten minutes, then running it under the tap with cold water.

He also installed a TCS T1 decoder, which required some cutting and filing on the inside of the shell and the chassis. He plans to install LEDs for headlights, front and rear.

John Bate submitted a N scale model of a company house (complete with an outhouse). This was a City Classics kit, which he also weathered.




Monday, November 05, 2018

Learn how to use the NMRA gauge at November's Winnipeg Model Railroad Club meeting


WMRC Past President Larry Leavens will demonstrate how to use the NMRA gauge. When building a model railroad, clearances are an important part of the design. The NMRA clearance gauge is a handy tool to have to easily measure them. It is useful to ensure steps and other low hanging parts of your train will clear buildings and scenery along the line. It is also used to fine tune your track work to help ensure flawless operation of trains.



John Bate will talk about the NMRA National Convention that was held in Kansas City this past summer. John was a clinician at the convention and he'll talk about what he saw and what he did while at the event. The annual NMRA National Convention is the biggest single model railroad event each year and Kansas City is a “hot bed” for the hobby. By all accounts, the convention was a huge success.

The meeting starts at 7:30PM on Friday, November 9, in the Tank Room at the Charleswood Legion, 6003 Roblin Boulevard. The canteen will be open, and we'll have a 50/50 draw and our monthly model display. Not a member? Not a problem! Guests are always warmly welcomed!

Saturday, November 03, 2018

Portage La Prairie CPR station holds grand opening Sunday November 4

Portage La Prairie Heritage and the Portage La Prairie Model Railroad Club are hosting the grand opening of the restored CPR station at 251 3rd Street NE in Portage La Prairie from 2:00PM to 4:00PM on Sunday, November 4. Model railroad layouts will be on display and cake and refreshments will be served.

Monday, October 29, 2018

Exclusive photos of the CP executive train in Manitoba


On a recent rail fanning trip, long time member Felix Lesiuk caught sight of the CP Rail executive train rolling down the mainline near Rosser, Manitoba. This train is used only occasionally for private excursions and tours taken by CP Rail executives. It is a rare sight to see this magnificent train on the rails, and our man Felix was at the right time at the right place!



Monday, October 22, 2018

Enjoy a Halloween ride on the Assiniboine Valley Railway this weekend

The Assiniboine Valley Railway is having a very special (but not too scary) Halloween train run this weekend only! It runs on October 27, and on Sunday, October 28. Hours are from 6:00PM to 9:00PM. Please take note that the train is running in the evening.

Take a ride for two bucks, or buy a 12 ride pass for $20. Kids two years old and under ride for free. All minors must be accompanied by an adult. The AVR is located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park.

Monday, October 15, 2018

Model display entries at Winnipeg Model Railroad Club's September meeting

WMRC Past President Larry Leavens brought in a model of a Bentonite plant that he had been working on. Bentonite is a clay product that swells when wet and is used in construction to reduce seepage in the soil. It is shipped either as a powder or in pellets, either in bulk or bagged.

The structure is a Faller Concrete Plant kit. The base of the building where a cement truck would receive the premixed concrete, was filled with corrugated sheet styrene. The majority of the structure was painted with ‘rattle can spray paint’ prior to the assembly of the major components.
The structure will be incorporated into a larger industry, Pembina Mountain Clays, at Scott’s Siding. The siding is named in memory of long-time WMRC member Charlie Scott.

Neil Carleton brought in a Canadian Pacific truss rod boxcar built from a kit. The kit was repainted and decorated with period correct decals from Black Cat Decals. Weathering followed using Pan pastels and then sprayed with Testors Dullcoat.

Saturday, October 13, 2018

Enjoy the fall foliage this weekend at the Assiniboine Valley Railway this weekend

October is an especially wonderful time to ride on the AVR, as the fall foliage is in its full glory!
They're open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, October 13, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, October 14. A ride costs two bucks and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Kids two years of age and under ride for free. All minors must be accompanied by an adult. The AVR is located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park.

Monday, October 08, 2018

Two great clinics to be presented at the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club's October meet


WMRC Treasurer John Bate will talk about his trip to the NMRA National Convention, which was recently held in Kansas City. John presented a clinic at the convention and also toured a number of layouts. He'll show you what a NMRA national convention is all about and talk about those things that caught his eye.


After that, Tyler Fedoroshyn will present a clinic about locomotive maintenance and repair in 1:1 scale. Tyler is a model railroader who works for GE (the people who make the diesels) as a service tech here in Winnipeg. Tyler has worked in both Weston (Canadian Pacific) and Symington (Canadian National) diesel shops. His presentation will include an overview of the shops and describe the various reasons why locomotives are brought into the shops. 

This will include stories about the problematic ones and stories about the particularly big  jobs like wrecks and major engine failures. He'll also talk about his HO scale CP PortCoquitlam shops with ideas on how you can model prototypical shop operations. Tyler spent 4 weeks this summer training at GE's Erie, Pennsylvania plant and may have some photos of that facility.

The meeting starts at 7:30PM on Friday, October 12, in the Tank Room at the Charleswood Legion, 6003 Roblin Boulevard. The canteen will be open, and we'll have a 50/50 draw and our monthly model display. Not a member? Not a problem! Guests are always warmly welcomed!

Thursday, October 04, 2018

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club's blog reaches its fifth anniversary


Five years ago today the WMRC went online in a big way when their blog was created by their newly appointed social media director Paul Ullrich (with a lot of help from his wife Margaret, who has two very popular blogs, Winnipeg is Better than Chocolate and I'm Turning 60). The blog got 90 views on the very first day. As of today, it has had 208, 540 views and has a worldwide audience.

605 posts have been created and archived for anyone to view. Thanks to all of our club members, model railroaders and rail fans throughout the world who have made this blog such a success!

Tuesday, October 02, 2018

Watch Ian Plett on Global TV

WMRC Vice president and Public Relations Director Ian Plett was interviewed on Global TV's local morning show on September 28. He was there to promote the Manitoba Mega Train Show, which was held on September 29 and 30.

Ian, who is also Superintendent of the NMRA No. 1 Northern Division and President of their Free-Mo group, set up the largest display the show ever had, combining forces with the Kildonan Short Lines modular group.

The WMRC always has a significant presence at the show, as the club is involved in set up and take-down of the event, including assembling the mega-train and manning the admissions desk.

You can see Ian's interview by going to: https://globalnews.ca/video/4496572/model-train-lovers-unite-at-manitoba-mega-train-hobby-show

Sunday, September 23, 2018

Manitoba Mega Train Show is happening on September 29 and 30

You've never seen anything like it! 40,000 square feet of trains, trains and more trains! Tons of displays and over 70 vendors! This is the event all of Manitoba's model railroaders and rail fans have been waiting for all year!

Yes, it's Manitoba Mega Train Show time, and the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club will be there in full force, doing the set-up and the take down, volunteering at the admissions table, running the mega-train and holding their own display table.

The two days of fun begins on Saturday, September 29 at 9:00AM and runs until 5:00PM at the Red River Exhibition Place, 3977 Portage Avenue, right by Assiniboia Downs. The hours are the same on Sunday, September 30. Admission is only seven bucks. Admission for youths ages 4-12 is five bucks. A family pack admission is only twenty bucks. Free admission for children 3 and under. Admission includes unlimited free rides on the mega-train. Don't miss this event!

Monday, September 17, 2018

John Longhurst scores another article in Trackside Photographer



 Our good friend and long time WMRC member John Longhurst has informed us that he has a posting in Trackside Photographer, titled "Blowing the Past Away". It's about the abandoned grain elevator in the former town of Thrasher, Saskatchewan. It was deemed a safety hazard and burned to the ground by the owner. It's sad to see the loss of another one of these prairie giants which dotted the landscape. You can view his post at: http://thetracksidephotographer.com/2018/08/30/blowing-the-past-away/

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

See the Gateway Western Railway in action at Railway Days at the Winnipeg Railway Museum

Join the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club and the Winnipeg Railway Museum's annual celebration of railroading and see the Gateway Western Railway, Winnipeg's largest operating HO railway, in action! The Gateway Western Railway is open to the public just twice a year, so don't miss this rare opportunity to view it!

The volunteer crew from the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club and the Winnipeg Railway Museum have been working hard every week on making improvements to the layout, so even if you've seen it just a few months ago in May during Doors Open Winnipeg, you're bound to see something new this time!

The museum is located on the second level of the Via Rail station at 123 Main Street, and is open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, September 15 and Sunday, September 16. Admission by donation.

Monday, September 10, 2018

Double header clinics featured at Winnipeg Model Railroad Club's September meeting

We have a thrilling double header, featuring longtime WMRC member Dwight Kjartanson, who will give a presentation about his work as a CN signals engineer. He will also be promoting the Assiniboine Valley Railway dinner train, which will running on September 15 and 16.

Then WMRC program director Dave Downie will present "Rebirth of a model railroad", showcasing his progress rebuilding his layout in the past months, including his venture into creating scenery.

 We'll also be having a 50/50 draw, our monthly model display, and the canteen will be open!  The fun starts on Friday, September 14 at  7:30 P.M. in the Tank Room at the Charleswood Legion, 6003 Robin Boulevard. Not a member? Not a problem! Guests are always warmly welcomed! Hope to see you all there! 

Tuesday, September 04, 2018

Take a ride on the Assiniboine Valley Railway this September weekend

The Assiniboine Valley Railway is holding their fourth public open house of the year this weekend. Celebrate the coming of fall by taking a train ride through the beautiful forested canopy of the AVR!

They're open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, September 8, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, September 9. A ride costs two bucks and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Kids two years of age and under ride for free. All minors must be accompanied by an adult. The AVR is located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Rail fanning in Melville with Felix Lesiuk

By Felix Lesiuk

On Monday, August 20,  I took a group of people on behalf of Rail Travel Tours to Manitou Springs Spa resort, which is just north of Watrous, Saskatchewan on VIA's Canadian.  It was kind of neat seeing all the spots I usually take pictures of the train but from the "inside" perspective.
    
We stopped in Melville for a crew change and a chance to stretch the legs. Nice to see that they are fixing the old station. Last time I saw it was boarded up and smelled like pigeon crap.  We were making fairly good time until we got stuck for about three hours near Uno, Manitoba. A CN freight had mechanical issues and had to be rescued by another train.


Monday, August 20, 2018

See this video about Canada's oldest railway tunnel in Brockville, Ontario

 A.J. Benoit from Brockville, Ontario sent us a link to a new video about Canada’s Oldest Railway Tunnel. This two minute and 39 second long video was created to help promote the tunnel. The tunnel was reopened in August 2017 after extensive refurbishing effort cost over 2 million dollars.

The tunnel was of particular interest to Mr. Benoit as it was the railroad that brought his family to Brockville over 87 years ago. His grandfather  relocated here from St. Jean Sur Richelieu in Quebec and worked for the CNR for over 40 years. His father George followed his footsteps and also worked for the CNR for 25 years before retiring. You can view this video by going to:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVFLfnBtfeY

Monday, August 13, 2018

Felix Lesiuk spots twin VIA 40th anniversary units

 
By Felix Lesiuk

Louis Lenz and I headed out on Thursday, August 2. The weather started off with some rain and the rest of the day was spent with the sun darting in and out of the clouds. Not too hot, not too cool and a slight breeze to keep the bugs away. A perfect rail fanning day.  We bumped in to Cliff Davidson, who was also heading west and rail fanning. He informed us that VIA had tweaked its schedule and was running a bit earlier now. That would explain our surprise of seeing VIA's No 1 heading west at Harte around one o'clock. Super early!

That surprise was complimented by the fact that the westbound had a pair of wrapped 40th anniversary units on the lead. Awesome! The chase was now on. Thankfully VIA was following a freight and CN was fairly congested with traffic. We beat it to Moffat and caught it in Rivers coming into town and leaving. Nice! CN traffic was steady and we even caught sight of some elk near Moffat.  The new VIA schedule might make it possible to catch both at Rivers more easily (I hope).
 

Thursday, August 09, 2018

Assiniboine Valley Railway to hold open house on August 11 and 12

The Assiniboine Valley Railway is holding their third public open house of the year this weekend. Escape the heat by taking a train ride through the cool shade of their beautiful forested canopy!

They're open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, August 11, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, August 12. A ride costs two bucks and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Kids two years of age and under ride for free. All minors must be accompanied by an adult. The AVR is located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park.

Saturday, August 04, 2018

Rapido's Jason Shron will be at the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club on August 8

Jason Shron of Rapido Trains is making a very special visit to the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club on Wednesday, August 8. This event is open to all model railroaders in the Winnipeg area, whether you're a WMRC member or not.

Jason will provide an overview of Rapido Trains and take you behind the scenes at the company. You'll see how Rapido products are made, how the company decides what to make and the challenges involved in manufacturing model trains. 


Jason will stay following his presentation and answer any questions that you might have about his company and the model railroad industry – past, present and future.



Rapido Trains is one of the premier manufacturers of model railroad products in the world. This is a great opportunity to meet Jason and learn about his company.



This special presentation takes place at 7:00 PM in the Tank Room at the Charleswood Legion, 6003 Roblin Boulevard. Hope to see you all there!

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Summer rail fanning with Felix Lesiuk



Our roving correspondent and long time WMRC member Felix Lesiuk went out rail fanning with his good buddy Louis Lenz. They headed out west to catch Via's Canadian at Grant's Cut in Rivers, and stopped by at the Harte grain elevator along the way. CN was fairly steady but not too busy. They saw some vintage cowl units on CN and lots of USA motive power, such as UP and CSX. Felix also reports that there have been very few mosquitoes, which is always good to hear. 



Monday, July 23, 2018

Winnipeg Model Railroad Club presents and evening with Jason Shron of Rapido Trains

You better watch out, you better not cry! You better not pout, I'm telling you why! Jason Shron is coming to town!

Yes, that's right! Jason Shron of Rapido Trains is making a special visit to the Winnipeg Model Railroad Club, and you're all invited, even if you do pout or cry (but we'd prefer if you didn't). This event is open to all model railroaders in the Winnipeg area, or anyone who wants to be a model railroader.


Jason will provide an overview of Rapido Trains and take you behind the scenes at the company. You'll see how Rapido products are made, how the company decides what to make and the challenges involved in manufacturing model trains.
 

Jason has graciously agreed to stay following his presentation and take any questions that you might have about his company and the model railroad industry – past, present and future.

Rapido Trains is one of the premier manufacturers of model railroad products in the world. He is an engaging and humorous speaker, well known in the model railroad community for his videos, including one featuring WMRC Secretary Marvin Fetch. This is a great opportunity to meet Jason, learn about his company and ask him any relevant questions that you might have.


This special presentation takes place on Wednesday, August 8, at 7:00 PM in the Tank Room at the Charleswood Legion, 6003 Roblin Boulevard. Hope to see you all there!


Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Dave Downie makes a forest


WMRC Program Chair Dave Downie has been very busy landscaping his layout this summer! First he landscaped a mountain, and now he’s forested it with thousands of home made trees!

For fir trees, Dave used reusable washable furnace filters from Lowes and Canadian Tire. The filter is plastic and is blue in colour. He pulled the material apart, spray painted it green and applied it over  skewers and toothpicks that he had painted brown.

Dave made deciduous trees using a polyester fill material used in pillows and quilts, which he painted. For the trunks he used dead twigs from a Scotch pine in his front yard. He stretched the polyester fill over the trunk and used a hot glue gun to attach the material.
 
Once the tree was shaped, he applied a coat of  hairspray, followed by a dusting of Woodland Scenics Fine Turf. A final spray with hair-spray secured the flock to the tree.  In a few weeks Dave made almost 1,200 trees!


Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Assiniboone Valley Railway holds another open house this weekend

The Assiniboine Valley Railway is holding their second public open house of the year this weekend, and it looks like it will be great weather for a train ride!

They're open from 11:00AM to 5:00PM on Saturday, July 14, and from 1:00PM to 5:00PM on Sunday, July 15. A ride costs two bucks and you can buy a 12 ride pass for only $20! Kids two years of age and under ride for free. All minors must be accompanied by an adult. The AVR is located at 3001 Roblin Boulevard, just west of Assiniboine Park.

Thursday, July 05, 2018

Memories of CP Rail's Marconi Spur


The dog days of summer provide very few things for your faithful WMRC blog editor to post. But our good friend and longtime WMRC member “Long” John Longhurst unexpectedly came to the rescue and provided us with two links from his own Manitoba and Minnesota Subdivision blog about CP Rail’s Marconi spur. The spur, also known as the Molson cutoff, connected the Rat Portage Division to Winnipeg, was torn down this year.

You can read about the history of this spur by going to:
http://cprailmmsub.blogspot.com/2018/06/the-railway-line-that-made-winnipeg.html
http://cprailmmsub.blogspot.com/2018/06/more-memories-of-marconi-spur.html

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Dave Downie builds a mountain


Long time WMRC member and current program director Dave Downie has been very busy creating scenery on his layout. A good friend of his, who was a year into constructing a large two level layout, challenged him to start scenery.

Dave his a highly skilled model railroader. His benchwork is superb (you should see his helix) and he knows his way around wiring and modern electronics. But his layout was void of scenery. He accepted the challenge and jumped in with both feet.

Using plaster impregnated cloth, molding plaster, Sculptamold, home made ground foam with commercial ballast, he now has hard shell over his entire upper level, and he will be making all of his own trees.

He started building Mount Waverley on the second level, which is almost 20 feet in length.  More detailed work still needs to be done but Dave is quite pleased with the results. The mountain is very imposing and provides an excellent view block between areas of the layout. Keep up the good work, Dave!




Monday, June 18, 2018

MS victim uses model railroading as therapy

Long time WMRC member and noted model railroad philosopher John Longhurst sent us this very moving story about a man with multiple sclerosis who has built a massive O gauge 3 rail Lionel layout in his basement.

David MacKinnon of Whitney Pier in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia is unable to work because of his MS, and building this layout was his way of coping with the disease.  He has been working on the layout for 20 years.

This news story was broadcast on CTV News and published online on May 23. You can view the video (which has some great model railroad action scenes) by clicking here.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Portage Model Railroad Club hosts Train Days on June 16

Portage Heritage Inc. & Portage Model Railroad Club will host the 2018 Train Day & Open House at the CP Station in Portage la Prairie on June 16th, from 10:00am to 4:00pm. There will be model train displays, souvenir & railway items for sale, and BBQ burgers & hotdogs available for lunch from 11am to 2pm.

There will also be a raffle to wina  ride in the caboose at the Prairie Dog Central Railway! Raffle tickets are $2.00 each. All proceeds from the event go toward the finishing touches of the station renovations. Admission is free!