The Woodstock Model Railroad Club invites you to come along with as together we build an empire. Stay tuned for progress updates, tips and techniques. All comments are welcome. Email

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Breaking News

                                     The Pity Train has just derailed
                                             At the intersection of
                                            Suck it up and move on
                                                  And crashed into
                                             We All Have Problems
                                Before coming to a complete stop at
                                              Get the Heck Over It
                                                  Any complaints
                                              About how we operate
                                                Can be forwarded to
                                           This is Dr. Sniffle reporting
                                          Live from The Huff and Puff

                                               Now quit your whinin'

                                                   HAPPY NEW YEAR!

                                      Oh that reminds me its wine time.

Paraphrased from Facebook author unknown.

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Another year has passed at the Huff and Puff

The year in review. First our largest project, reworking the Elsewhere yard was completed. I think everyone is happy with the new double ended yards we now have. The programming track was moved to the office at the same time. Together this has reduced the congestion in the main aisle.

In other projects we also created a team track in Springbank and removed a hill under 2 turnouts in Miller, which greatly improved switching there.

To help reduce erratic DCC behavior a whole wack of under size feeders were replaced, but there are still more to do. RF filters were also added at the end of every bus to reduce voltage spikes.

 Installing over center springs in many turnouts has improved there reliably and where there was no other option, some turnouts were replaced.

Our rolling stock has seen continuous improvements through the work of 1 or 2 of our members. This mostly unnoticed work has improved there reliably and our overall enjoyment during running sessions.

Battery power has been shown to work by 1 of or members, and cell phone operations was introduced to us by another.

We even produced a video of the layout, it can be seen on you tube by searching for the Woodstock Model Railroad.

All in all a great year, thanks to everyone and have a merry Christmas and a happy New Year.

Friday, December 7, 2018

More Friday Fun and Fellowship

After talking at Tuesday night's meeting about increased action on Friday afternoon to decrease the pressure of too many trains trying to run on Tuesday nights, we certainly saw some increased action this afternoon. As usual, Tom was patiently waiting when I arrived just a tad late after lunch. With him were Jan and Jim Post and their grandson. Jan had heard my spiel at Learning Unlimited and had suggested she would like to bring her grandson up when he was next in town. Garner is into N scale and has a small layout at home. I gave him a quick lesson about my Digitrax controller, linked him to Mike Lafond's 2-8-0 and to a staged train in Wellington when Don Pearce arrived. So I delegated him to supervise Garner as he set off to switch [Thanks, Don]. Then I gave the Post grand parents  a tour of the layout. As that concluded, Eileen Hammerton arrived with Murray, her son [and a former student] who is undergoing a bone marrow transplant which involves significant pain. Eileen phoned me some time ago about bringing Murray up as she thought it would interest him and take his mind off his condition. She is 90, by the way, and navigates our stairs better than most of us. They both enjoyed their tour immensely. Jim Long came along and had locomotive frustrations which kept him from running. By this time, Tom had Garner running his train [thanks Tom] while Don restaged his train in Elsewhere. [Don says your locomotive operated very well, Mike, which is why I was planning to try it since I did a bit of CV shuffling on it recently]. It turned out Tom and Jim Post worked together at Fisher Control so they had a good jaw over that. Jan Post and Eileen Hammerton know each other so it was like old home week. Tom presented Garner with a thick hard cover ailroad book and he departed with a huge smile and great memories. Eventually, everybody departed except Don Pearce and I when Mayor Trevor Birtch happened along so he got a quick tour and said he'd be back with his kids on a future Friday afternoon.

Now who needs publicity!!!  

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Meeting night at the Huff and Puff

After some discussion, which included theft risks, and maximum number of members we can handle,the group decided to hold off on any advertising at this time.

Jim Long is still researching a programming add on to the programming track.

We also floated the idea that if more members attended the Friday session it would easy the congestion on Tuesday night. Although we do not want to see the group divided into two groups. It is important that all members attend meeting night, to keep up to date and have their voice heard.

Dues should be paid as soon as possible so we can pay our  ongoing expenses.

It was also decided, because of the trip hazard caused by kids using crates to stand on, that any new members need to be able to operate the layout without using the crates to see, in other words, they need to be able to see the upper level turnouts.

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Friday Fun and Fellowship

Friday afternoons are usually pretty quiet with only one or two members showing up to run on the layout versus the usual Tuesday night sessions where multiple trains are running from both Wellington and Elsewhere yards requiring numerous train crew breaks in order to access various yards. 
When train locomotives do not respond as expected to DCC controllers, the first gremlin suspected is usually the 9V battery. You've probably replaced multiple batteries over the past month, resulting in a large collection of such batteries that continues to grow on the left side of the sink area. Tom Smith wondered if those batteries really were the problem so last Friday afternoon he used his multimeter to check them all and, indeed, found many that, according to Digitrax are still useable, ie have more than 7 volts indicated


As well, last Friday afternoon, we had a visitor, no stranger to our layout, when John Wright came through the door shortly after 1 pm and stayed the whole afternoon. As most of the club old-timers know, John is a long distance trucker with a local firm who is currently off with some health concerns. He has a great sense of humour, an easy laugh and a pack of stories that kept Tom, Jim Long and I well entertained. His trucking job has kept him from continuing with our club.