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Please excuse our mess, we are still unpacking!

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It is starting to look like a workshop now.

Greetings once again loyal train fans! Thanks for stopping by and seeing the latest developments in my corner of cyberspace. Well as you can see, I have most of the new JTW shop up and unpacked, if not organized. I spent the better part of Saturday getting everything unpacked and put away. It is still a long way from being as organized as my post "A place for everything and everything in its place." Time will slowly force me to organize evrything, as well as painting locos! With Galesburg RR Days just a few weeks away, it is time to start thinking about what to paint for this years RR Days display.

It's DeJiVu all over again! This same configuration has been constant since I first set it up in Mahomet IL in 1999.

The 2nd picture is of the workbench, looks like Winnebago at first glance huh? This set up, from location within the room to how I organize my parts on the pegboard has been a configuration I have used since I lived in Mahomet in 1999. It works well and helps with the flow of work. I have natural light behind me and more of it then I did in Winnebago. Winnebago had a window in roughly the same area, but the light was good only during the morning and afternoon. After 3:00, the light started to fade. This was really bad in the winter. Fortunately, this window gives me light from sun up to sun set!

The research center. I love my books. Check out the vintage Model Railroader books from the late 1940's.

What paint room would be complete without books? Honestly, you really want to paint that BNSF SD60M from your memory? I don't. Each year at Galesburg and other shows, I invest in a sizeable amount of money in books alone. Believe it or not, many times a book has settled an argument between two enthusiasts. On the bottom shelf you'll see my collection of Model Railroader magazines from 1947 to 1953. These magazines are bound by year in a hard cover. What makes these special is that each cover is signed by Al Kalmbach to Nils Testor, two founders of the hobby industry! I found these books at the old Testor Building when new management decided to move. New management also thought it was wise to throw these books in a dumpster, history be darned. Fortunately, someone notified me of the disposition of the books. Long story short, I now have a great resource to look through. N scale was not even thought of when these articles were written, but many of the concepts can be translated over.

The B&M layout has a new home in the JTW workshop. No painting is really done in here so it will be safe from paint dust.

Even my B&M layout is at home now. This layout took a ride in my friends minivan and survived well. I have yet to operate a train on it yet as my MRC power pack is packed away, still missing in action. No worries though, I'm saving up for a Digitrax system to purchase at Galesburg. Once things settle down a bit, I'll pick up where I left off. Finish the benchwork with storage in mind, curtains, fascia, then scenery and bridges. The track needs to be airbrushed, good thing I picked up the Floquil Wheathering markers befor Testor discontinued them!

It sure is nice to have a walk in storage area for the JTW room.

The physical size of the JTW room is about the same as the room I had in Winnebago. The difference is in the closet. The closet up north was a standard size, however this one is a walk in closet that can store all the JTW inventory, customers models and even my supplies for my own endeavors. It helps however to use storage shelves and plastic bins to help organize and maximize your space! Remember, organization is your friend!

Even Tina's Westfield O layout is up and running again.

Ok, raise your hand if you have ever had the following discusion with your wife. Tina: "Put the O scale layout on this wall in the livingroom." Jim: "Well I think it would look better in the spare bedroom." Tina: "No it won't fit" Jim: "how about our bedroom?" Tina: "No it will not clear the door." Jim: "Well do we really want this layout anymore, we need room for other things." Tina: "NO! The layout stays, it goes on that wall, period." "When you get that done, hang these railroad pictures on that wall, our theme here is railroad." As you can see Tina won this "Discussion" hands down. Last Sunday, Tina took the two layout tables to the garage and filled in some scenery. I guess grass in full scale yards is bad, but it sure looks good on her layout. Most of the wireing is done, we still are looking for some items to help fill out the town of Westfield. Tina is saving up for some items at Galesburg too. In March of 2006, she invested in the MTH DCS system and eventually a Proto Two locomotive, the Chicago Central GP30 is mine. The track has been the snap track from K-Line and is not only discontinued but it's track record, no pun intended, with the MTH system has been poor. While the track looks great and the turnouts have performed flawlessly, the fact that the track is tubular versus solid rail, makes it perform poorly with the system. Tina and I have elected to go with the MTH Rail King track. We already have a bunch of it, it has the roadbed in it, its solid rail and its compatible with 75% of what we already own. I guess look for future E-Bay listings if you need MDK snap track and switches.

As I write this, it is Mothers Day. The day that our Mothers, or Mums as I call them, get a well deserved recognition for all they have done. If you can, put down the airbrush or the controller and spend some time with Mum on the phone, or better yet if at all possiable, take her out for a fine breakfast or dinner. Let her know how special she is, and yes don't forget your Mum-In-Laws too, they have to put up with you too! Until next time,

High Greens!

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