When all else fails, hold the directions with one hand...
and start pushing buttons with the other!
Had a nice visit and lunch with Paul Dolkos over in Alexandria. The occasion was delivery of one of the new (at least to me) Easy DCC T5000E throttles. A mutual friend, Fred Scheer was ordering an Easy DCC system and several of us piggybacked on his order to get some of these new throttles. The visit to Paul's was to pick up the throttle, and was also an excuse to inspect progress on his HO Baltimore Harbor District. I also made a separate trade with Paul… more on that shortly.
Paul has been making great progress on the layout. The theme couldn't be more different than Paul's former world class B&M White Mountain Division, but the execution and modeling are top-notch. Paul is, simply put, one of the most precise modelers I've ever encountered. Every model on the railroad is beautiful - there's no hastily hidden misaligned joints, patchy ballast or ground cover, or anything of the sort. He also has the neatest layout rooms I've ever seen. There isn't a single box, random pile of stuff, or household junk hidden on or under the layout. He doesn't have curtains below the fascia because, well, frankly, he doesn't need them.
Paul's been a great friend for more than two decades and I appreciate any and every opportunity to visit with him - like most model railroaders I know he likes to talk about a wide variety of subjects, although modeling and photography are perhaps his two favorites.
Here's a few snapshots I took of the layout -
|Bernie admiring the layout - that's the WM car float in the foreground. See Bernie's blog HERE for his take on our visit.|
|This fertilizer plant - also visible overall photo above, is a combination of scratch built components and Walthers kits. There will be an article on this section of the layout in an upcoming issue of Model Railroader.|
|Wouldn't be Baltimore without swing bridges and oysters!|
|This was the first section of the layout Paul completed.|
I mentioned Paul and I did a little additional horse trading before the other guests arrived. I had a couple of Walthers kits that he wants to use for his "Fells Point" inspired scene - and he still feels he had too many "New Englandy" cars on his roster - so we made a trade. A couple of Walthers kits for a nicely detailed, painted and weathered Accurail CN boxcar and a Westerfield New York Central car - both built by Tom Underwood for Paul.
They're already in service on the Roxbury Sub…