End of the Line for the Galesburg City Job?

Jim Wiggin Feb 22, 2019


End of the line? What to do with the Galesburg City Job

  1. Repair what is there, display at shows in the New England area

  2. Start new with improved track plan and new modules, display at shows in the New England area

  3. Time to move on, build the HO Free-Mo modules and enjoy HO

  1. Jim Wiggin

    Jim Wiggin Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Sometimes hard decisions are hard to make and getting feedback from a range of opinions is a big help, which is why I threw this poll up. A bit of a back story.

    In 2013, I designed a trackplan that was scale length with in a scale foot or two, based on the former industrial district of Galesburg Illinois. This was going to be a team project as I did not have the room to display the whole layout. The way I designed the layout, I had designed it to both run as a complete set and as separate entities as my friend ran Santa Fe and I ran the CB&Q. From 2013 to 2018, we ran this layout at Galesburg, The Ohio N Scale Weekend and Trainfest as well as other regional shows within Illinois. Like any group project, there were good time and not so good times. The logistics involved sometimes were interesting at best where my friend lived in Michigan and I in Central Illinois.

    Flash forward to 2018 and like I say on here a lot, “Life comes at you fast.” I suddenly had to move back to my native home in New Hampshire to take care of family and leave Angela, the pups and almost everything behind. At this time the layout was showing its age as well as some glaring inaccuracies regarding the track plan. I was frustrated by this as well as the availability of seemingly standard stock items in N scale. The last “blow” was Trainfest. Even though I had moved the layout with me to NH, I had planned on taking the layout back to Trainfest, at least one last time. Though I tried to communicate this with my friend, I didn’t really get a response. I had the time all worked out and was ready but never received any information. I figured he was too busy to go and left it at that. Imagine my surprise this past December when I read a thread on the Railwire about how he not only went to Trainfest but ended up wining Best of Show. That hurt. It also affirmed to me to never do another group project again. All the work on the layout, research, late nights was suddenly awarded to someone else. Suddenly the layout was an object of ridicule and failure on my part. His response, or lack of regarding the show had set the tone.

    Part of me wants to forge on and build all the modules and try to do it better then before but it’s been done.
    So enters the poll. I like to to hear opinions. The last year, I’ve been very tempted by the dark side in HO. I can’t detail N like I did in years past, HO is simply better at realistic operations and there is a ton of stuff always available. Lastly my friend was the face of the layout, he is simply more approachable. I had a guy stop by the layout once and say, Bill is nice to talk to, Jim....we’ll not so much. I realize I’ve had my share of flare ups here to. I could go on and say it’s due to my passion but that sounds like a cop out.

    So here we are. Do I take what I have, fix it and try to do this solo, or do I start over with new modules, updated trackplan and hit the road next year, or finally say to hell with the whole ball of wax and send it to the curb and start the new year off with a new scale, new railroad and I enjoy operations at home and at shows by myself. Let me know your thoughts.

    P.S. I just found out that Bill has no intention of setting up with my end again so I guess I don’t have to worry about going to Galesburg this year.

  2. bremner

    bremner Staff Member

    Jim, I am sorry. The only thing that I can recommend is to do what will make you happy, and if that is switching to HO, then so be it.
  3. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Ouch. :( Bummer situation. And it sure would be sad to see all of your work trashed....
  4. chandlerusm

    chandlerusm TrainBoard Member

    True story... The Dalai Llama is visiting the states, and will talk to ANYBODY. Doesn't matter if you're the governor or the janitor. He will stop to chat. He also likes American food, so he asks to stop at a roadside diner. The whole entourage piles in, and a waitress asks him the most obvious question.

    "What is the meaning of life?"

    You coulda heard a pin drop. Seems like the kind of question everyone wants to ask, but somehow never does. Conventional wisdom says there is no true answer.

    The DL never misses a beat. He responds without hesitation "The meaning of life is happiness."

    "But you have asked the wrong question. The meaning of life is an easy question. You should be asking 'What is happiness?' because that is different for every person, even different at different times for the same person. Maybe happiness is enough money, or a loving relationship, or music or books or a satisfying job. Find what makes you happy. That is the meaning of happiness."

    OK, I admit I paraphrased his words. I wasn't there. Find what makes you happy. Hopefully that also doesn't make anyone else unhappy.

    All the best.
    mrhedley likes this.
  5. DCESharkman

    DCESharkman TrainBoard Member

    As everyone says above, do what puts the biggest smile on your face, and lightens up your soul!
    mtntrainman likes this.

    BNSF FAN TrainBoard Supporter

    Jim, hate that you had that experience. Sadly, that is just the type of situation that makes so many of us lone wolf modelers. I voted for one of the options but in the end, it has to be what you have a passion to do. Like has basically been said above, if you won't be happy doing it, then it's just not worth it. Best of luck with whatever direction you decide to go and hopefully we will continue to see you around here on the N board.
  7. mtntrainman

    mtntrainman TrainBoard Supporter

    I voted. BUT...I voted by what I would do ! As others have said...do what makes you happy ! (y):D
  8. nscalestation

    nscalestation TrainBoard Supporter

    It is a time to reflect on what you have enjoyed the most and the least about the current layout and the hobby in general. Then going forward to concentrate on those parts that you enjoy the most.
  9. WM183

    WM183 TrainBoard Member

    Regardless of scale chosen, were it me facing the same choice, I'd definitely build a new layout to truly be yours. You said the old one had flaws anyway. I'd probably do N for show layouts also, though HO modules work too!!
    Rip Track likes this.
  10. trainman-ho

    trainman-ho TrainBoard Member

    Yeah I know what you mean...being abandoned by a supposed friend means that he was not a friend!!....which is his problem....not yours!!

    Sometimes it is good to get feedback from friends and acquaintances, but just 3 choices will limit the possibilities.

    I think that you should take a look at what you have done, what you want to do and where you want to go, and then make the choice for you. Be greedy and self centered. Choose the Campaign over the Apple Cider. Reward your self!

    After everything is said and done, YOU are the most important person in your life, and life is short.

    Hope that whatever you do turns out to the best for you.
  11. vince p

    vince p TrainBoard Member

    Had the same kinda thing happen to me it ended a 25 year friendship .

    Might be time to start anew put the past and it's connections behind you and go a different direction like others have stated whether it be n or ho only you can decide that.

    Whatever decision you make, do it for you as your the only one that can decide on this.

    Yes I voted on this but that's my input/opinion and as you know everyone has one.

    Good luck with whatever you decide and will wait to see the future plans you have.
  12. Run8Racing

    Run8Racing TrainBoard Member

    I say stay with us N scale weirdos. Never change because of someone else, but never expect them to follow your path either. As Sheryl Crow says, "If it makes you happy, it can't be that bad". Hope you stay with us !!!
  13. vince p

    vince p TrainBoard Member

    Not n scale weirdo's just N-ormal scale modeling.

    Then when yer eyes and hands can't handle it anymore then you can Ho around lol.

    Me I had to switch because of a tractor trailer accident when I was run off the road by a driver under the influence.

    Rolled the truck trailer and 44,000 pounds of apples and pears.

    Otherwise i'd still be in N-ormal scale
  14. Jim Wiggin

    Jim Wiggin Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Thank you for all that are weighing in, your feedback is appreciated. One note I do want to bring up, is that Bill has acknowledged my design work on the Railwire on his thread. Softens the blow somewhat but still not sure why he felt the move East was the end of the City Job or more importantly, our friendship.

    With that said, the move to HO is looking better. I’m continually impressed with the operational abilities and availability of product that simply does not exist in N scale. My biggest problem with HO is space. As a wise man (or band) once said, You can’t always get what you want, but if try sometimes, you just might find you get what you need.”

    Thanks for the input fellas!
    Kurt Moose likes this.
  15. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    Aha. A Rolling Stones fan....
    Jim Wiggin and Kurt Moose like this.
  16. Keith Ledbetter

    Keith Ledbetter TrainBoard Member

    As others have said 100% do what makes you happy. I will say if it's accolades and credit that make you happy then you definitely need to go solo. Much like being in the band the lead singer gets all the credit. Again not to say you shouldn't have the credit etc but honestly if you're doing this hobby for the glory then good luck :) Having said that while I'm an adamant N scaler I fully agree with you on the good aspects of HO. The only 2 downsides are more expense and room. For me those are deal breakers but all the positives are there. I have worked on HO and G scale stuff with others and it really is exponentially easier the higher up the scale you go to get detailed do automation, DCC install, etc.

    The reason I stay honestly is I like the challenge and I also like having a bunch of locos. I could probably afford half of the fleet I have if I was in HO scale.
  17. Mike C

    Mike C TrainBoard Member

    Vince , I switched from N to HO last summer . It really doesn't have to take much more area . I had a 96" x 38" layout in N , HO came out to be just 2" wider . Of course it helps that I'm doing Colorado narrow gauge , But any small steamer or diseasel and a small train fits nicely .....Mike
  18. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

    HOn30. A lot of HO in an N scale sized space. :p:D
  19. randgust

    randgust TrainBoard Member

    I had my own Dalai Llama - about a decade ago - in John Coots (Scale Structures Ltd., N Scale of Nevada).

    I reviewed my entire plan for N scale kit making, advertising, everything to him before I ever started - he had been doing this stuff for many years.

    And he asked me the ultimate question - are you doing this to actually make money, or to see your name in Model Railroader as an advertiser and an personal name manufacturer? Because it's pretty darn difficult to do both. Are you making money doing what you're doing now, or do you feel like you need that name in print to be happy? Wow, that cut to the chase, and it's not that different between modeling for shows and modeling for yourself, either.

    And I had my own answer, but that was so insightful. There's definitely part of this hobby that feeds off of the approval of others, rather than self-satisfaction, and it impacts at many levels. It's not easily answered, but it's central to the issue here as well, and the right answer is only there for you. My own modeling goals have changed significantly over the years, but that doesn't help you. Just dig deep and try to answer that one honestly.
    Keith Ledbetter likes this.
  20. Inkaneer

    Inkaneer TrainBoard Member

    Well, since practically everyone is coming up with famous or not so famous quotes. Allow me to add a poignant one by that old sage, Yogi Berra, "When you come to a fork in the road, take it." Humor aside, it appears that you have arrived at a point where a new beginning maybe warranted. Most of us have those in our lives. Its akin to retirement from the workforce. It opens up a whole new horizon for you to experience and explore. I wish you the best in whatever you decide.

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