Jason Shron Visits the Maritimes

Jason (Rapido Trains Inc.) with David (the organizer of the 2013 MFMR Convention – Jitney Special)

Jason Shron of Rapido Trains Inc. visited the Maritimes this past summer.  He recently made a blog post about his trip and some of the local modelers he visited. He includes photos of his visits with Duane Porter at the Halifax and Southwestern Railway Museum, his layout visits with Andrew Castle and Dave Gunn, his stay at the Train Station Inn in Tatamagouche, and the New Brunswick Railway Museum with Ian Dryden and Art Clowes.

He even put in a plug for our Convention this spring.  His post is definitely worth a read!

Click the image at the right or click here to read his post.

“The Pacific” was in Halifax

The owners of Mother Parkers Tea & Coffee inc. are bringing The Pacific to Halifax on November 10 – 16th. This was the rail car used by King George VI and Queen Elizabeth I (later more popularly known as the Queen Mother)or the 1939 Royal Tour. No public tour unfortunately, it is a fund raiser for Alzheimer’s and to celebrate our 100th year in business.

Have a look at this article in the Toronto Star about the car and a short video of a ride in it.

More from John Murphy (Mother Parkers)…

We only got confirmation late last Thursday that Via had capacity to bring it out so we are working on those details now and I will keep you posted as best as I can. The Pacific has run from Montreal to Windsor so far and what has struck Paul and Michael Higgins (the owners of Mother Parker’s) the most was the huge interest and knowledge from railway buffs coming out to see it at stations and at railway crossings with those huge telephoto lenses etc. I wanted to at least make sure people that would appreciate such a grand car would get a chance to see it. I have a photographer lined up to get some shots at the NB / NS crossing which should be very cool.

I am hoping it will be on an accessible track where people could walk to the end of it to get photos and I have been talking to Butler scaffolding hoping they would build a podium at the level of the window for the dining room and lounge so photos could be taken. The Pacific was the prized possession of Paul Higgins Sr., who had a great affinity for rail travel, the monarchy, and Canada’s military. So I was told when he got wind of this car about to be dismantled, he showed up a day or two after with a certified cheque for $1 million dollars, which is quite a story. The Higgins brothers are very proud of the rail car but the stick in the ointment was insurance surrounding a public viewing as all the silverware and china from the Royal Tour is still on it, in addition to other artifacts from The Tour.


MFMR Clinic Day in Truro, 2012 Wrap Up

If you weren’t there you missed out on a great day!

First, Dave Gunn presented some great information about how he goes about constructing his amazing structures.  Some of the information he presented was a repeat of his presentation at the Convention in Halifax but the extra time allotted for these clinics allowed him to go into much greater detail.  It is surprising how easy it is to make great scratch built structures if you take your time and plan all the elements you need to have in the building.

Then it was Scott Jay’s turn to share some of his trade secrets for making great looking foreground trees.  Each participant got to make both a hardwood and a softwood, tree.  He talked about other materials you can use to make various types of trees and enhance their look.  I think everyone realized by the end of the session that it’s hard to make a mistake when making trees since there is so much variety in nature.  Thank you to Don’s HO and Your Digital Coach for donating supplies.

We had a great lunch of pizza, and there was lots of it.  No one left hungry!

Dave Gunn was back after lunch with a hands on clinic of applying both decals and dry transfers.  He noted the pros and cons of each and then gave each of us a box car, decals, and dry transfers to experiment with.  Thanks to Maritime Hobby for donating these items.

As a bit of an afternoon learning break Barry Wile lead a discussion about the proposed Model Railroad Course.  The Truro Club has been approached to put on such a course and Barry wanted some input on their plan to make sure they were on the right track (pardon the pun) and not missing anything important.

To close out the afternoon Dave McMahon showed us all that it is not that difficult to paint generic hill and tree scenes on our backdrops.  We all got a piece of backdrop material to practice on.  It was a great exercise that really helped to boost our confidence.

All in all it was a very good day – and a great day to be indoors working on model railroad stuff (due to the heavy rain coming down outside).  I think everyone is looking forward to the next MFMR Clinic Day.

Thank you to Jeff Skaling for providing these photos…

MFMR Convention 2012 Update

Hi Folks,

We’ve had our challenges arranging a first class convention at reasonable rates in the Halifax area but we’ve done great.

“Ocean Unlimited !” MFMR convention will be held June 1,2,3 2012.

The main venue will be the Halifax Forum Multipurpose Room. This is a great facility with good parking, and oodles of space so any layout configuration is possible. It includes a large glassed-in room which will be excellent for the contests and clinics. For set-up , there is drive in capability by way of a large roll-up door..

The public show will be Saturday only from 9am to 4:30pm Vendors can arrange for sales tables at $20 each. As usual, display tables are no charge. You must bring your own covers for the 6′ by 3′ tables. Set-up is on Friday from noon to 10pm but arrangements can be made to get in as early as 10am if necessary. Let us know if your table needs power.

The banquet will be at King’s College dining hall. This facility has the highest quality food. The meal will feature “Hip of Beef” with roast potatoes & vegetables and Yorkshire pudding. Any special dietary requirements can be handled if mentioned on the registration form.

Recommended accommodation is at the highly-rated Comfort Inn on the Bedford Highway. This is a clean and comfortable facility with free Hi-Speed and Wi-Fi in the rooms. It is located near Mile 7.9 on the Bedford Sub for you railfans..
It is a fairly straight 7 km (10min) drive in to the show venue. In addition, many of the major shopping malls and the Bayers Lake shopping district are easy to get to from there. Rooms are $107 and $114 per night depending on needs.
One great advantage is that the price covers breakfast that includes eggs and sausage. I would suggest booking early due to the pressure on hotels and motels in the Halifax regional municipality at that time of year. Call (902) 443-0303 to make arrangements. Mention the model railroad convention for the reduced rate.

The delegate fee is set at $15 per head. NOTE ! that to get access to the Model/Photo Contest room or to enter a model/photo in the contest you must be a delegate. The same applies to the clinics. We’re trying hard to not go in the hole !

We would love to have lots of representation from the model railroad groups and clubs. As there is no problem with space we can accommodate nearly any layout shape. Let us know your requirements.

Sorry we couldn’t include the particulars in the recent Branchline. A package will follow with registration forms and further details.

Marc 240-8024 (Cell)
E-Mail: capcitymrcatnsdotsympaticodotca

Video from the MFMR Convention – 2011

Here is a video from the 2011 MFMR Annual Convention held in Lunenburg, NS. It is a great promotional piece for the Federation.

MFMR Convention 2011 – Day 3

Sunday was a bit more relaxing.  Duane gave us a personal tour of the museum, including showing us some of the items that have not been put on display yet.  Duane is building a very impression recreation of the railroad on the south shore of Nova Scotia in “S” scale.  If you are ever in the area the museum should be a definite stop on your itinerary.

After lunch we stopped in to Chester, Nova Scotia to visit David Miller’s very impressive HO layout.  Duane has been helping David with some of the scenery and detail work on this layout.  It was impossible to see every detail in the hour or so that we were there.  Duane was continually pointing out tiny details that most people would overlook but were very important pieces of the scene.  Things like a scratch built circular saw on a sheet of plywood near a building being constructed (plus all the other usual items you would find near a building being constructed, tiny birds “flying” over the tree tops and sitting on things were some of the items.  See if you can spot more of these tiny details in the photos (below)

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David Miller in Canadian Railway Modeler

David-MillerAnother “Maritimer in the Magazines” was brought to light over the weekend of the 2011 MFMR Convention.  David Miller of Chester, Nova Scotia, was kind enough to open his layout for viewing by MFMR members during the Convention.  Mr Miller, with the assistance of Duane Porter,  has built a beautiful and very nicely detailed layout in the basement of his home.  During the visit Mr. Miller made a comment about kitbashing an I-Series Sleeper car.  He also mentioned that he had written an article that was published in Canadian Railway Modeler.  Not having a great memory I wasn’t sure if this information had made it’s way to the MFMR web site.  A quick check showed that it had not – so…

The article appeared in Canadian Railway Modeler in Train 16, Track 5 (Volume 16, Issue 5 in CRM speak, or Jan/Feb. 2009)

Back issues of Canadian Railway Modeler can be ordered from their web site.

MFMR Convention 2011 – Day 2

Here are a bunch of unsorted photos from Saturday at the Convention.  Please excuse the poor ones.  I’ll sort through them and add captions tomorrow on the drive home.

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MFMR Convention 2011 – Day 1

Here are some photos from the Meet & Greet on Friday evening sponsored by Don’s HO in Moncton. Sorry, forgot my camera in the car so only had my phone to “capture the moment”.

I’ll apologize in advance for the pictures of Derwin. It really was a great get together. Great conversation and great food (the chowder was amazing!). I’ll say his expression was due to his early (3:00am) wake-up call to drive Shelley and Ashton to catch a bus to Monteal.

Ronald Grandmaison in Canadian Railway Modeller

Article-Cover-CRM-compressRonald had a 3 page article in Canadian Railway Modeller in the July-August, 2009 issue. To top it off, one of his photos was selected for the cover of that issue!

Congratulations Ronald!