The Bad Junction Layout
At present, to work out my painful incompetence as a railroad modeller, I've started work on "Bad Junction" (that's a joke ... it's really a spur .... the junction actually is off the layout. I'm such a kidder.) ... a small layout (about 0.7m by 1m) in N scale (North American N, 1:160 scale) set in a fictional part of Ontario near Hamilton/Burlington. Here's an overview of the layout as it stood on the following dates:

Dec. 4/05
Oct. 11/05
Oct. 4/05
Oct. 2/05

Layout news ...
Dec. 5 2005: As promised, a real status update. De-Siberianization continues (see Dec. 4 link above and you'll see a little less white and a bit of brown, plus some new buildings ... a monastery is being added (oh irony, ME putting a monastery on my layout)). The monastary has an interesting story to it, but that's for later. You'll also see in that image the recent addition to my fleet, TH&B #55 (an SW9, model by LifeLike (I think)) passing the monastery on the Monk's Loop. Also, here's a detail of Toronto, Hamilton & Burlington GP7 #76 (model by Atlas) taking the curve past Fixner's Fine Furniture at Bad Junction (crappy photo eh? If you have a crappy camera, you end up taking crappy photos). And, I shall say again, fake life RULES! Rela life should be avoided at all costs.

Nov. 6 2005: A real status update will come soon. Suffice it to say, de-Siberianization continues and more is being added to this little world. I'd compare it to real life, but it and music have distracted me so I don't have a real life .... at least when I'm not at work. Fake life RULES!

Oct. 26 2005: Bad Junction still somewhat reflects life in general. Track is working ok, and has been tested with my entire locomotive fleet (even ones that will rarely be seen at Bad Junction). A new locomotive (a GP7, Toronto, Hamilton & Burlington #76, model by Atlas, seen here taking the curve past Fixner's Fine Furniture at Bad Junction (an aside, TH&B #76, in reality, was built in July 1953, survived the end of the TH&B in 1987, and is still in service (after a rebuild/modification) as CP Rail 1686)) was added to the roster and is now serving Bad Junction faithfully, hauling traffic from the industries at this increasingly busy siding along the TH&B's main line. The Siberian feel is slowly starting to disappear, but only very slowly. Watch for new photos soon, as well as the "true" story of Bad Junction.

Oct. 18 2005: Finally. Got a little train (MDT Plymouth, Burlington Route #9280, model by Bachmann (note ... this little beast runs a little rough, particularly over switches)) to go around and around without problems. Then tried another train (a GP40, GO Transit #720, model by Atlas), which didn't make it. After knocking off the plough at the front on a piece of poorly laid track, repairing the damage, and doing some further work, the GP40 made it too. To bad one of the switches failed and needs replacing, or I'd be claiming success on the track. Sadly, we're not in Ontario yet ... Siberia is cold and bleak.

Oct 17 2005: My notes on the layout status from Oct. 11 LIED! At that point, like several other aspects of my existence, the track was not working properly. About two hours of fiddling around on Oct. 16 cleared up some problems, but getting smooth train operations is still an elusive goal. I'll be retesting and troubleshooting the track until it's all good, then the fleshing out of the scenery will move forward. For now, it's still Siberia... and that's the way it will stay until the little trains go round and round, or even perform switching operations, smoothly.

Oct. 11 2005: Unlike some other aspects of my life, the track appears to be working. More testing will be done though, and then the fleshing out of the scenery will move forward. For now, with all the white styrafoam , it looks like Siberia, not southern Ontario.