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January '99
This page describes work accomplished on the new TMRC layout during the month of January 1999, as taken from the descriptions posted to the club mailing list.
January 6

Andy Miller continued work on a highway bridge that he is building near one end of P-yard. He added pavement (complete with double yellow line) and sidewalks (complete with cracks). A siding is being added in P-yard that will permit REA/Material-Handling cars (depending on your era) to be conveniently removed from, or added to, passenger trains. John Purbrick prepared the sub-roadbed, and Jeff Birkner added appropriate block wiring in The System. John McNamara painted window frames for use in the rear wall sections of the roundhouse.


January 12

Announcing TMRC's 1999 IAP Activity "Hacking a Model Railroad" which will take place from 1/20 to 1/23 at 7:00pm in the clubroom. Be sure to visit us and have lots of fun. Full information can be found in the TMRC IAP Page.

The main page was changed to reduce its loading time - and add those funky 'signals' when selecting the menu. All the 'section' pictures are still there, but they load in a random order.


January 13

John Purbrick brought in a set of 8 System 3 block cards and connected them to blocks of the upper loop. There are a few bugs in them, but the basic design is there. Alvar studied the layout for the cabinets that some day will hold these block cards.

James brought in the final version of the Time Capsule CD-ROM, which is now fully compatible with both PC's and MAC's. The CD-ROM is now back in the EECS Department, ready to go into the Time Capsule.


January 16

John Shriver continued to expand the trolley track, one of them is now in front of the Gifford City Station. Andy Miller worked on a new building that is to stand in the front of Gifford city, at the east end of the Passenger yard. He will also order a new Hotel building, that will rise next to the one he is building now. Bill worked on the street for the bridge he has been building on the east side of Gifford city. John P. layed down the final ties needed to complete the new spur on for the Railroad Express terminal. John McNamara worked on the windows for the roundhouse.

Alvar installed all the cabinets and wire track for the block cards for System 3... which are being designed by John P. Jeff continued some designing in order to incorporate the new track into System 2.

Alvar, Howard, Jeff, and Jason (a returning member) worked on organizing the old layout pieces in order to be able to exhibit them during the next Open House. Also, they create invaluable 'under the layout' space, even if that part of the layout is not operational :-)


January 20

Tonight marked the first evening of a 4-evening TMRC-sponsored model railroading course presented as part of IAP. Tonight's subject was "Planning, Building, and Laying Track." John Purbrick gave this course, with James help. This course attracted (and held the attention of) three undergraduates. Tomorrow the subject is "Building Buildings and Scenery". This will be followed by "Car&Loco" on Friday and "Control Systems" on Saturday. Speaking of control systems, John also did some work on the 8-block System3 prototype unit that he is testing in the clubroom, along with a new walk-around throttle based on a 900MHz cordless phone.

John McNamara continued his work on roundhouse windows, and Andy Miller continued his work on "Walker's Fine Dining", a moderate-size building for the main street of Gifford City.


January 23

Tonight was the last session of TMRC's IAP class. We had a couple of visitors attend the class, where we explained the past, present, and future of our System- the move from System 2 to System 3. Later on Jeff was able (after some learning from old documents) to fix the occupancy detection for Block 39, since it was acting in random manners. Meanwhile James & Alvar researched on components to obtain a new computer for TMRC which will connect TMRC directly to the internet!

Meanwhile, Andy put together the "Fine Walker's Dinning" structure, with the next step being interior and roof. Bill continued to work on the bridge in the far east side of Gifford City. And Jason continued his work on the Box Car he began to build Friday at the IAP session.


January 27

John McNamara performed color-matching experiments in an effort to match the color of the roundhouse walls. It appears that the best match uses Tuscan Red as a base and adds a wash of white acrylic and light grimy black weathering. Andy Miller continued his work on "Walker's Fine Dining", a combined restaurant and office building for downtown Gifford City. It is a moderate-size building of cubic proportion slightly less than a foot on a side. John Purbrick continued work on a new switch in P-yard that will serve the REA/Material-Handling siding. It is similar in design to a slip switch. John and Alvar also discussed the construction and features of the System3 block cards in some detail. John Shriver continued his work on the trolley system, adding another foot or so of curved girder-rail trackage in downtown Gifford City.



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Tech Model Railroad Club of MIT
MIT Room N52-118
265 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02139

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Email: tmrc-web@mit.edu