Librarian E-Mail:

Great Model Railroads By Allen Keller Vol. # 20


Volume 20 - Norm Stenzel's Brandywine & Benedictine Railroad
Norm Stenzel's Brandywine & Benedictine Railroad serves the coal region between Clearbrook, VA and Ballard WVA in the 1950's. Although the B&B is free-lanced, Norm has given it a prototype feel by building a layout based on the topography of the area, and the railroads (the B&O,WM,N&W, and Clinchfield) that actually served the area. Norm has even written a "history" of the railroad to better fix the layout in time and place.

The HO scale B&B is a blended railroad where operation, scenery and details focus attention on the trains not the individual layout elements. The layout is built for operation with 22 trains running during a typical session.

The 30x24 foot double-decked B&B uses a 100 foot long helix to make the transition between levels. Yet even the lower level is continually rising to meet the top of the helix. So that means real grades are a prominent part of mountain railroading on this layout.

Norm will show you how to lay a turnout, and install a Digitrax decoder in a steam engine. You'll also learn about the paperwork Norm uses for an operating session.

Norm has created a Great Model Railroad by focusing on the common elements of a coal-hauling railroad rather than the exceptional. He has refined the appeal of mountain railroading into a layout that represents one of his favorite railfanning regions.

Review a video

vcr tapesWe are looking for volunteers to submit written reviews of the videos in the Division Library. No special qualifications are needed. Just check out a video, watch it, give us your written opinion - good, bad or indifferent - and you're an author! We'll publish the reviews in the Call Board as they're submitted, and post them in the on-line database of the library! Contact the Librarian or any BOG member for more information.