Taking freelance too far?

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by 2-8-2, Jan 12, 2006.

  1. 2-8-2

    2-8-2 Member

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    The NKP once ran through my backyard, and the former Lima Locomotive Works isn't far from my home either. I've chosen to use the NKP as the prototype for my railroad, though I've opted to go the freelance route. I want to model the early 1950's, when diesel was starting to replace steam. This way, I can have both of my favorite engines on my layout and still maintain realism.

    This is my first layout, and I don't really care for being "prototypical" and have opted to make a freelance road. I think it would be fun to have my own railroad company, and I even have started designing stock certificates, stationary, and waybills. For me, it's all part of the fun. However, I'm wondering if I'm being too unrealistic with what I'm hoping to accomplish.

    NKP engines and rolling stock aren't readily available, which is the main reason this will be a freelanced project. I will run some NKP equipment on my rails, and others will have my own roadname on them. I'm thinking that the NKP could've sold off some trackage, allowing my railroad to be born. Is that taking things too far?
  2. jetrock

    jetrock Member

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    Freelancing is a very common practice. Take a look and find out if Microscale or some other company makes decals for NKP if you're interested in repainting appropriate equipment to Nickel Plate schemes. But if the idea for a freelance railroad strikes your fancy, go for it! People do it all the time--the main concern is that you'll also get the fun of making up your own decals and color scheme and apply it to your motive power and cars!
  3. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

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    There's no such thing in freelancing as "going to far".
    Its your road. Run what equipment you like, the way you like... And don't worry about the rivet counters.
    Here's an article that should get the freelance blood a pumping. http://www.gaugemag.parkdaleyard.com/cab.html
  4. 2-8-2

    2-8-2 Member

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    Thanks for the morale boost!

    I know what I like, and I know (mostly) what I want, and I agree...this is a hobby and it should be fun. The modeling itself is detail oriented enough for me, and while I do enjoy reading up on fallen flag history and things like that, I just don't have it in me to be that accurate.

    On a side note, what happened to the Gauge e-mag? I only saw links to a couple issues.
  5. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

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    Well, runnin' a 4-4-0 woodburner in a consist with a couple of SD70MACs might be pushin' it a tad... :thumb:

    I have two Athearn DD40s that I run in consist together. As far as freelancing goes, the Espee never ran these monsters and the DD40 was a prototype that never was built as a follow-up to the Union Pacific's DD35. However, the Espee was a road big enough to justify the idea that they could've purchased the beasties had they desired to do so. Also, when I found that the UP ran these in consist with a GP35 because the DD35s were too big to go into a yard to pick up assigned cars, I simply added a GP9 that I had to the consist for a more prototypical scenario. While no slave to rivet counting, I do try to retain an element of plausibility hence, the Basic and Mostly Credible Railroad moniker.
  6. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

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    The E-Mag is on the back burner right now. It will be resurected in the next couple of months.
  7. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

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    I've heard of a wood-burner, a coal-burner, and an oil-burner, but a back-burner? :confused: :D Nah! not on this site! :p :rolleyes: :D
  8. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

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    The S.P. had three dd35 units. All three were cabless boosters. If I modeled S.P. in the appropriate era, I would be tempted to try a bash from the Athearn dd40 into a dd35b.
  9. jetrock

    jetrock Member

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    Freelancing, like anything else, has degrees in several directions. Some modelers who follow a specific prototype don't mind having some equipment that doesn't have an analogue in "reality" because it's fun or it's easier. I model the Sacramento Northern, and there is virtually nothing painted in SN schemes, but Athearn makes a 40' steel boxcar painted for SN. The only problem is that SN never ran 40' steel boxcars--but it doesn't stop me from owning one, because, hey, it's painted for the road I model and I didn't have to do the painting!

    Anyone interested in freelancing a line should look into the classic Gorre & Daphetid--an entirely freelanced line, but one with incredible detail and a feel for authenticity. One DOWN side of freelancing is that you now have to make up the various rules of your railroad, rather than just being able to copy the prototype practice!
  10. HPRL

    HPRL Member

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    Hey! Nothing wrong with Freelancing. After all, I am Owner/Operator/CEO/CFO/Engineer/ of the "Hokie Pokie Railway Line" HPRL. We operate P42's, Superliners PhIV, 2-6-0 Moguls, SW1200 Switchers, Trolley's, Blah - Blah - Blah. One of mine main attractions is the Winter Run through the Hokie Pokie Mountains with Fiber Optic Trees', Santa Flying over houses, etc. Freelance -- Yes. Fantasy – more likely.:)
  11. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

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    The "alternate history" railroad is quite respectable. Choose one or two points where something different happened and you can follow from there. It may take more effort than actual historical modelling to be convincing.
    Modelling Lima would give you justification for running locomotives for all sorts of foreign roads -- you just couldn't run the same one twice!
  12. eightyeightfan1

    eightyeightfan1 Now I'm AMP'd

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    Hmmm..Good point....How about CNJ's Camelbacks......Wouldn't they be considered"Backburners"?
  13. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

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    ...two of those cabless Bs had salvaged GP35 snoots applied to them in late 1967 right here in the B&MC shops when they were wrecked near B&MC trackage. To this day, local LPBs wonder how Espee equipment wandered so far east. Coupled to another local tourist line's "Black Widow" painted GP9 normally used to pull dinner trains, they've since become a local novelty as the Espee has repeatedly refused to pay repair charges and salvage fees.... :thumb:
  14. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

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    i think shaybetz hit the nail on the head when he used the word plausibilty in freelancing though my road in entirely fictional it's based on three real mining towns in colorado it is a once prospers bridge line that lost one of the class one conection thus leaving a road struggling to stay in business thus running the cheepest power they can lay there hands on.
  15. mhdishere

    mhdishere Member

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    First off, your layout, you built it, you pay for it, do whatever you enjoy. Seriously, if you want to run nothing but Thomas trains have fun. You want to MU a SD70MAC with a Dewitt Clinton have at it.

    That said, if what you're after is a plausible model railroad, keep in mind things like eras and how real railroads operate. Lots of model railroaders have ficticious railroads, or ficticious parts of real railroads, that are still plausible.

    Oh, did I mention that it's your railroad and you should do what you want? For me, sometimes the hardest part is deciding what I want.
  16. sumpter250

    sumpter250 multiscale modelbuilder

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    I run an FT A+B, F7 lashup with modern freight. When the rivet counters question the practice, I have them check out the loco's trucks.....most of then recognize the fact that FTs usually had friction bearing Blomburgs, the "rebuild" has roller bearing trucks, among other newer refinements.
    Some of the steam power is actually new, built mostly by the shipyard's workers. Boiler work, casting, and machining, are all part of the normal job at the yard, which
    Plausible, or "plausible deniability", is the basis of freelancing.
  17. shaygetz

    shaygetz Active Member

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    Snapped this pic as I was waiting at the grade crossing in Selbyville. Seemed to be holdin' her own pretty good against those CSX C44 9Ws... :D

    Attached Files:

  18. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

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    I was going to post about modeling an old steam engine in railfan service with modern diesels, but a pic of the DeWitt Clinton mu'ed with the Sd70mac's trumps anything I could post! I will mention that I have an old Rivarossi Santa Fe Blue Goose that I am going to run with a mixed train of "private varnish." My story is that the Blue Goose got saved and restored for railfan trips instead of being scrapped.
  19. brakie

    brakie Active Member

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    2-8-2,As you know R.J.Corman operates part of the exNKP track from Lima to Portland ,Indiana with a branch to Minster,Oh..Why not create your own short line and use the track that R.J.Corman operates.This is exactly what I did with my C&HV except my C&HV operates the track that I&OC operates..I did add 2 extra sub divisions and relaid the track to Athens plus invent 2 other short lines so I could get to Jackson and Newark.These 2 short lines was bought and merged into the C&HV.
  20. 2-8-2

    2-8-2 Member

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    brakie -

    I thought about doing something similar to what you mention. Some ideas have been forming, which is good, but the biggest roadblock I'm having right now is coming up with a name for my shortline.