I could hold them off no longer. It was time for the posse to descend on my own basement, which has been in renovation for over a year. When I invited them, I had grand hopes of being in a place where they could actually help me with benchwork construction, but as the date loomed, it became clearer and clearer that this would not be the case.
So, they arrived to find the basement clean, but the walls still unfinished, and the floor still bare plywood. There was no electrictricity, save for the old lights and an extension chord from far away.
However, I had cut out the shape for the top of the baseboard that will go in the corner. This will provide a home for the engine facilities and Pembroke Manufacturing. I was most curious to see if the engine house will fit on the baseboard, and so, we set out with a large compass and pencils, some paper and various boxes and blocks of wood and mocked it up.
The result can be seen in the photo. The container to the left will be the engine house. The coffee cup and jar of screws on the right will be the water tower, which will mark the end of the scenicked portion of the layout. Staging is out of bounds on the window sill to the right. In behind, the pieces of wood represent Pembroke Manufacturing, which I have moved from its original location north of the engine facilities because, well, I don’t have room to represent the whole line!
Pembroke Manufacturing will be the only trailing-point spur as a train is inbound to Pembroke, and thus makes an important operational element. In fact, the more I run through operations in my head, the more excited I become to get to operations. I had originally thought it would be a one-horse layout, but further study of the timetable shows that, with the operation of a special, I may be able to keep two trains busy. The sequence would go something like this:
- Operator 1 takes Train 51, the daily direct train to Ottawa (staging)
- Operator 2 takes Mixed Train 45, to Golden Lake (staging)
- Operator 1 brings the baseball special from Ottawa
- Operator 2 returns from Golden Lake with Passenger Train 44
- Operator 1 takes the baseball special to, say, Barry’s Bay (staging). These were quite common along the CA, although I’m not as certain about the Pembroke Branch
- Operator 2 takes passenger Train 43 to Golden Lake
- Operator 2 returns from Golden Lake with mixed Train 46
- Operator 1 brings the baseball special back from Barry’s Bay, and returns it to Ottawa
- Operator 1 takes the baseball special returns to Ottawa
- Operator 1 returns from Ottawa with Train 52
Will it keep two operators sufficiently engaged for an evening’s fun? I don’t know, but I’m excited to find out. Of course, we’re years away from having enough stock! Two more engines need to be built, as well as the layout, and the first engine took me four years. However, we model railroaders are great at imagining things that have yet to be built.
Meanwhile, the drywall goes up next Tuesday and the room needs to be ready to serve as a guest room for our Christmas guest. It’s been a full-court press for months, and there is no sign of abating. There is a long list of tasks to complete before the drywallers arrive, and I guess I’d better get to it!