Garden Railroads

Apparently there is a thriving garden railroad hobby in the Portland area. The garden railroad is modelled in “G Gauge” which is larger than the old Lionel O gauge. Standard HO gauge is half the size of O which is how HO got its name.

The local hobbyists get their garden railroads spruced up for public display a couple of weekends in June. Herb’s Rotary friend Hal Beighley has a nice set up and Herb was headed out to take pictures for a slideshow and invited me to tag along. I grabbed my camera and headed out with him.

Hal’s layout is in the side strip between his house and his neighbor’s. He had to scramble Saturday morning because his neighbor’s roof gutters were blocked and lots of water dumped on his layout. But you couldn’t tell he had any problems when we got there around 10:30 in the morning.

I hear that train a comin’; headed ’round the bend.

A couple hanging out on the porch watching trains go by.
Hal is plugged into what’s going on in this hobby and directed us to another layout about 5 minutes away from his house. So we headed over there. This layout is much bigger with a large classification yard and track that runs all around the back fence. The owner, Bill Neville, has worked on his layout for years. He was part of a family business, Portland General Tool & Supply which was sold a year or so ago. He stayed around long enough to make sure the new folks would be successful and then gave his notice; he will retire at the end of the summer and devote even more time to his layout. 
In the fall and winter Bill works on structures in his workshop then gets his layout in shape for spring and summer. He is building a 7 bay roundhouse. He told me each window in the building has 37 individual pieces. That is dedicated. Too bad it wasn’t ready for display yet.

The classification yard; the foundation for the  roundhouse in the back right has 800 pounds of concrete

Pennsylvania RR heading through a mountain pass.

Bill Neville, the owner of the layout.

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