The Little River Rail Road in Doc Tom's Back Yard

Discussion in 'Logging, Mining and Industrial Railroads' started by Doctor G, Nov 19, 2009.

  1. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    1,202
    Likes Received:
    98
    Hi Tyler,

    I am glad you are getting all these posts. It is a nice way to keep up.

    Bill and I are looking forward to this project. I just purchased some scale rulers and will be scouring the internet for some O scale rail to put on the logging flat's decks. Bill has already figured out a way to make it roll on the rails.....now we need an operating G scale boiler, steam piping and machinery to make it hoist. Just kidding about the steam, some modelers use hand cranks to make there models do some of the tricks the real ones did.

    I am glad things are quiet for you in Afghanistan. Please be careful and stay warm....I suspect it is mighty cold there now.

    Doc Tom
  2. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,485
    Likes Received:
    175
    After getting off from work @ 8:00 yesterday morning, I stopped by Tom's to drop off some material for the log loader project . I'm thinking this log loader project is going to be fun.


    I got a chance to Run Tom's big shay , which ran flawlessly and sounded good. Tom has enough track is so I can almost visualize what he is up to. It is a cool project, lots of fun seeing it go up. It reinforces the concept I had about how much time and effort outdoor RRs took, which I why I did not start one with all of the surplus stuff that I had from my Dad.


    Bill Nelson
  3. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    1,202
    Likes Received:
    98
    Thanks for all the help Bill. Bill's dad's stuff really has helped getting this big project going. Bill is right.....it is slow go. Moving tons of rock and dirt does eat up the time. Plus as Boss Crumb found out in the following picture it is hard to get the Tennessee boys motivated to lay track and track bed. Doc Tom

    Attached Files:

  4. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    1,705
    Likes Received:
    0
    I strongly suspect that the perceived lack of interest in large scale railroading has to do with the relatively huge expense involved, and the fact that outdoor railroads are not suitable for all climates and locations.
  5. gbwdude

    gbwdude Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Messages:
    374
    Likes Received:
    15
    Guys,

    I figured out where I saw the loader before, turns out I had a picture of it on my computer. Although for some reason I could have sworn that I've seen it in person before, maybe one of the RR museums up in WI had one. Wisconsin had six museums and now is down to five, the Kettle Moraine Railway went under due to lack of funding. They had a couple of little logging lokies including either a Shay or Heisler. I've never been to that one though so I couldn't tell you what they had. It could have either been at the Mid Continent Railway Museum down in North Freedom or maybe even at the National Railroad Museum in Green Bay since those were the ones I've been to the most, but not sure.

    Tyler
  6. macwatch

    macwatch New Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Tom,
    Let me know how much rail you need for the decks and what size- I should have code 100, 125, and 148 here, yours for postage...

    Mack
  7. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    1,202
    Likes Received:
    98
    Hi Mountain Man,

    Yes, Garden RR's are a challenge. I have been fortunate that Bill Nelson donated tons of track after his father passed away ( his dad had a GR in Mississippi) which has saved me a small fortune on brass track and turnouts. Also you can get bargains scouring the internet and eBay. Also scratch building using the local Lowes for construction material can help save on costs.

    My biggest outlay has been on the B.mann three truck Shay ( bought at discount) with RC/Battery modifications and sound (unfortunately no discounts there) and I will be limited to a one locomotive pike for quite a while.

    I do like the challenge this whole new scale and approach brings.

    The weather so far has not been too rough as I am still outside today "working on the RR" here in Tennessee.

    Thanks for the interest. Doc Tom
  8. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    1,202
    Likes Received:
    98
    Hi Tyler,

    Good to hear from you in far off AFGANNYSTAN. Thanks again for what you are doing for us so far away from home.

    Do you still have that picture of the loader on your "puter." Do you want to send it our way or post it here. I am collecting every picture of AH&D loaders I can find for a file we will use in the construction of the model.

    Have you thrown together any ideas on paper for you planned rail road?

    Look forward to hearing from you again soon.
    Doc Tom
  9. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    1,202
    Likes Received:
    98
    Hey Mack,

    It is good to hear from you!!! Yes, Bill and I have this crazed idea to build a AH&D loader in 1:20.3 scale. Thanks for the offer of support and rail.

    I did order 3 pieces of code 125 from Caboose Hobbies, yesterday, for testing purposes. It was relatively cheap $12 including S&H.

    If this works out OK I will probably hit you up for more 125 track. If it does "not look right" Bill may suggest a try of the 148.

    I will try to keep the story line going here and on the Large Scale Central site.

    Doc Tom
  10. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,485
    Likes Received:
    175

    I hear you on the not suitable for all climates, but much of the other statements are just plain wrong. The Time concerns would not be an issue if I wasn't thoroughly committed to building and maintaining a large very elaborate Ho railroad, and if I did not have a 130 year old farmhouse and 21 acres to maintain, I might have time for a small outdoor RR, in addition to my HO outfit.


    We look at cost, and we compare the cost of a switch in HO to a switch in large scale, and are freaked out, but we shouldn't be: because we are comparing apples and oranges.

    A well thought out outdoor RR will have relatively few switches. Most modelers tend to end up with too much motive power. In any scale it is better to have fewer , better locomotives, and with large scale (or any well designed short line) one will do. Also any very good locomotive is likely going to cost out the *** Bachman has some very nice large scale offerings that are not so bad, considering the detail involved which is outstanding.


    With cars, it is pretty much the same story, most of are used to Ho, where if the railroad is not very small, we need a boat load of cars; well my friends, the days when we could put together an acceptable HO car for $4.00 are long gone, it is closer to $20.00 now, those large scale cars are way bigger, you won't need as many, all in all the costs aren't that bad.

    There are different skill sets, as one does less carpentry and more surveying.

    My Dad abandoned his outdoor efforts due to the limitations of track power in the piney woods, Pine pollen is acidic, and it played hell with the rails. Dad started to play with R?C but he was adapting equipment made for other uses, and did not have the skill or patience to pull it off. I loved seeing Tom's efforts this weekend, and could not help but think that that is what Dad was trying to do 30 years ago. When the whistle blows on Tom's big shay, somewhere, an old Forester is smiling.


    Bill Nelson
  11. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2007
    Messages:
    1,705
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hmmm...let's see -

    I didn''t say anything at all about "time". :confused:

    Most outdoor railroaders spend quite a bit on landscaping, drainage, etc. in order to get started.

    Then there are turnouts, which IIRC require air pressure instead of electrical power.

    As for expense, I frequent the Caboose and other places regularly and I'm well aware of the huge cost of a single car or locomotive. I can build an entire layout with a fleet of rolling stock for the cost of a single such train.

    Beyond that, there are a number of other problems that render it undesirable for me:

    1. Severe winter weather. Not so bad in Rockvale as it was up at Palmer Lake, but still something to consider. Freeze/thaw cycles play hell with outdoor railroads. Just ask the railroad club at the museum in Golden - their outdoor RR hasn't run for ages, even in the summer.

    2. High winds. 'Nuff said - grit, grime and @#$%&! flying all over the place, and not loco friendly, either.

    3. Wild life - especially deer, not to mention fox, coyote, quail and neighborhood bobcat, plus all four of our own outdoor cats.

    I admire the detail work possible with larger scales, but then, I admire Ferrari's, too - Ill just never own one. :cool:
  12. gbwdude

    gbwdude Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Messages:
    374
    Likes Received:
    15
    Doc Tom,

    I have it on my puter yet, if time and space allowed me to work on projects the WRRy has requested one instead of the maintenace crews using my old hand crank derrick car. All I have to do is ask one of my buddies who has internet in their rooms. I conduct most of my business (yes, choo choos are important business for me) off my government computer and they're strict about putting thumb drives and other removable storage devices into them due to viruses. That's one big way to cut down on living expenses here, I swear that the locals charge what they do for internet because they know we're making more money here than back home.

    Thanks again for the support!
    Tyler
  13. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,485
    Likes Received:
    175
    Mack,

    Good to hear from you on this forum (Mack Has been associated with the DG, CC, & W RR for longer than I like to think about).



    Lack of time was the main deterrent that kept me out of an outdoor operation, I had a boatload of track and equipment from my Dad. I had just learned from his efforts, that once you build it, there is a lot more maintenance time needed, and that is what drove dad inside and to his Standard gauge tinplate layout. I have trouble finding the time to do maintenance on my HO empire.


    Bill Nelson


    Bill Nelson
  14. pgandw

    pgandw Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2005
    Messages:
    1,113
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was up in Golden at the museum in September. The outdoor G line was running quite nicely. I learned a lot about various small shrubs suitable for altitude in Colorado talking to the operators.
  15. gbwdude

    gbwdude Member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    Messages:
    374
    Likes Received:
    15
    The loader pic

    I tried uploading the pic from my buddies computer but it didn't work, so 45 min later I got a connection at the USO and now here I am finally on the internet on my own computer (for FREE!!!). Where I got this from, where it is and when it was taken is all beyond me. I just kept it because I thought it was a neat loader/crane.

    Tyler

    Attached Files:

  16. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,485
    Likes Received:
    175
    If this an A H & D unit it is a later model. the ones I'm used to have similar rollers, but the cab is different, note the little window on the near side and the larger window on the far side. also the A H & D units I have seen have booms made up to two opposed triangular sections for strength. (note the bent boom in the picture). This unit apears to be a infernal combustion model, may steam units were later converted, although steam had an edge with loaders, as internal combustion could never match the speed and power of steam , so gains in efficiency had to be enough to cover significant loss in productivity.


    Here is a photo of my Ho A H & D ditcher, just as the Barnhart was a modified Marion steam shovel the A H & D loader was a Modified A H & D ditcher.


    Bill Nelson

    Attached Files:

  17. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,485
    Likes Received:
    175
    Last weeks snow is mostly melted , and this weeks isn't here yet. this allows the rocks I have been collecting for Tom's RR when I'm out in the woods cutting firewood to be visible in the back of my farm truck


    Bill Nelson

    Attached Files:

  18. Doctor G

    Doctor G Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2008
    Messages:
    1,202
    Likes Received:
    98
    Those are good looking rocks. I can certainly use them as I move the line closer to the Little River in anticipation of building the first abutment for the large wooden bridge across the Little River at the "sinks."

    Thanks for all the help Bill!!! Hopefully you can get a Large Scale goose or lokie running on battery power that you can let loose in the Smoky Mountains.

    Also hope to have operating sessions within 1 year.
    Doc Tom
  19. macwatch

    macwatch New Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2010
    Messages:
    4
    Likes Received:
    0
    Prototype loader photo

    Meant to comment on Tyler's prototype loader pic earlier, but have had internet problems and then just didn't get around to it- pretty sure that pic was taken up at Cass WV, on Cass Scenic, hence CSR lettering, and yes, if it's the one they have that will run, it's a diesel, and I've seen it running in a log loading demonstration with Artie Barkley at the helm...

    Mack
  20. Bill Nelson

    Bill Nelson Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2,485
    Likes Received:
    175
    Glad to hear from you, we will have to check our sources and see if the Cass unit has that distinctive bend to the boom.


    Bill Nelson