- February 1
Ed Drozd continued his work in the Coca-Bubblie area by building a stone
retaining wall that will protect Bubblie workers' cars from errant TNP
trains passing by at Mach 2 in their effort to reach Gifford City on time.
Andy Miller added further touches of elegance to the Hotel Bassex by making
some awnings. The awnings are hollow quarter spheres with "Hotel Bassex"
along the bottom edge. Due to their purple color, they resemble portions of
a purple onion, a possible name for the hotel's restaurant. John McNamara
did some more work on sections of the roundhouse roof. Three of the nine
stalls now have their roofs nearly finished. James Knight fueled the
money/Coke machine and did some more work on the "TMRC Store" web page,
coming soon to a computer near you. John Purbrick worked on a New Haven
prototype concrete signal tower that is rapidly becoming quite detailed. He
also mounted a KaDee coupler on the nifty Japanese caboose that Hidetoshi
Katsuma gave us on his recent visit.
- February 5
The day began at 7:30am for several TMRCies that made the trip
to The Springfield Show. They had a very productive morning
there. The day continued later on, as John P. began to work on
the foundation of the signal tower that he built last week. He also
did work on the siding after 105th street, since the tower sits
right next to that siding. John McNamara continued his work on the
roundhouse roof, putting together another third of the roof, which now
only needs painting. He will have to buy a couple extra parts in order
to finish the the roof, since part of it has been missing for years.
Justin did operational work and then began to refurbish MIRTA's only
Alvar talked with other members about his current work on CadRail, and
later, with James's help, modified the design into a much simpler plan
with the same functionality. It is a possibility that before March we
will start construction of the new layout!
And S&P did its work late at night: James, John, Jeff and Alvar continued
to design System 3. John P reported he had a new shell for the PIC
processors we chose, so that they can be easily loaded via a serial port.
James and Jeff began to search for communication IC's that will simplify
the way the 20 or so PICs communicate with the PC.
- February 8
John Purbrick added some scenery in the areas around the signal towers that
he has been working on. John McNamara did some more work on the roundhouse
roof and began some discussion with John P about plans for the door area on
the front of the roundhouse.
Alvar Saenz-Otero recently sent an email reporting that Ms. Pickering, the
MIT Museum Director, had volunteered to make a nice sign for our display
window. John and John spend some time composing a possible sign.
- February 15
Ed Drozd completed the second side of the retaining wall that he is
building between the CocaBubblie plant parking lot and the mainline. He
also did some work on a piece of abandoned siding in the parking lot,
making sure it is in proper gauge. He also started adding a loading door, a
project that requires careful surgery removing a piece of highly visable
John Purbrick added scenic touches to the siding that serves the
as-yet-unnamed industrial building next to the Whattahack River. He and
Stefano Curtarolo also did some spiking on that siding.
Andy Miller continued his work on the continual upgrading of the Bassex
House. It now features a full set of fancy awnings on the ground floor.
Further, there are ornamental potted bushes on either side of the front
door, and elegant chains to support the front door's canopy.
John McNamara continued his work on the roundhouse roof, which is nearly
finished. Ed Drozd donated some 50-gallon drums that he bought at the
Springfield show, and some have been installed as trash barrels inside the
roundhouse. Turning attention to the front of the roundhouse, there was
considerable discussion about adding doors, possibly operable and automated
- February 22
Ed Drozd continued his work adding loading doors to the Coca-Bubblie
building. By good fortune, they are the same width as the windows
immediately overhead, making them look like they were part of the original
building. He also painted a personal locomotive (the complicated New Haven
/ McGinnis scheme) and a set of doors for the roundhouse.
Speaking of the roundhouse, John McNamara continued his work thereon,
completing (with Ed's painting aid) two roll-up doors (non-functional)
based on the EBT roundhouse prototype. The EBT roundhouse, like TMRC's, has
arched doors with roll-up doors added in front. The doors in both the EBT
and TMRC cases are brick red / Tuscan.
John Purbrick did some additional work on the siding to the nameless
river-side warehouse and also began construction of stone top pieces for
the retaining wall next to his produce warehouse.
Andy Miller has just completed a very nice set of railings for the
sidewalks on both lanes of Paulsen Boulevard, the main approach to the
Gifford City station. This evening, he started work on the REA / Amtrak
Express building that will be at one end of the Gifford City passenger
yard. In addition to its scenic merits, it will hide part of the ping-pong
track that runs in front of the hallway viewing window.
Alvar Saenz-Otero stopped by to continue discussion on Phase II, after
comming up with an agresive schedule that asks for the staging yard to
be a reality before the end of the term! The current topic under
discussion is the entrance to Tuckerton, which needs to rise about 16"
- February 26
Saturday was another busy day at TMRC! Bill worked on the details of the
A/C units and ducts on the roof of the vegetable oil facility. John
Purbric continued work on the siding into the 'nameless warehouse' next to the
river, getting half way there. He also continued work on the corner of the
105th street bridge. Andy acquired several figures to place along Paulson
Boulevard in order to start populating the area. He also worked on the
retention wall next to the Railway Express Agency area, which he has began
to work in. Alvar brought in printouts of the railings for the Gifford
City station... only to realize they were the wrong ones, oops! So Andy will
work on the last details of Gifford Station next week. John McNamara continued
to build the doors for the Round House, and has 4 more ready to be painted,
plus another 3 almost ready (which gives the total of 9 needed!). Ed
finished the holes where he is going to add two loading doors for the Coca
Bubblie building and painted many details for others and some locomotives
of his own.
Alvar guided the 'Phase II' design session with input from everybody
around! We all came to a great design that uses 21 standard switches, with
only one special 'three way switch'. Plus, the overall design is quite simple,
which should make construction much faster. James, seeing the progress on the
design took charge of the room organization and between him, Ed, and Alvar,
moved over half the things in the way of Phase II. The only large
remaining item in the way is the lumber pile / Sawmill section, which is
likely to take all of next Saturday to re-arrange. James also worked on
System 3, now that JP has a finished prototype of an 8-block card using the
PIC processors, which we can program via a PC serial port!
- February 29
John McNamara finished the last of the roll-up doors for the roundhouse
(ala EBT), and Ed Drozd painted and weathered them. They will get installed
next week. Andy Miller built some walls for the Railway Express Agency /
Amtrak Package Service building, and Ed painted them. Ed also painted some
personal locomotives. One result of all his painting was noticably red
filters in his respirator, suggesting that the rest of us are getting
Floquil-colored lungs when we paint, even with the fan.
John Purbrick built a very nice little railing to put on top of a retaining
wall that is near his produce warehouse. The railing, like Andy's on
Paulsen Boulevard, is made from N-scale "estate fencing", which scales to 7
or 8 feet in N and about 4 feet in HO. Interestingly enough, it greatly
resembles the railings along Memorial Drive.
On the subject of railings, Alvar Saenz-Otero continued his computer work
producing very fancy railings for the stairs that will connect to the
Gifford City passenger station platforms. His file transfer efforts
produced some colorful language about the nature of Microsoft products :-)
Changing topics, more work went into the development of Phase II.
Today the topic was 'mainline' and how it connects with staging, since
we noticed that we had been very good at ignoring this important
interconnection. It results that the 'final' version of the staging
from last weekend must be modified in order to permit for a better helix.
This improved helix should provide interconnection between Tuckerton,
Berkmanville (in mainline) and the staging yard in some way TBD.
In addition to the above projects, Ed provided key tags for all of the
storage space keys and an Excel spreadsheet to document the storage. Andy
Miller refilled the Coke machine. John McNamara took home a power supply
and cable from Ma Roto and stripped most of a set of 66-blocks associated
with Ma Roto. He intends to take Ma Roto home and store her/it in his
garage, BUT IF ANYONE ELSE WOULD LIKE IT, PLEASE REPLY!