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2024 Father’s Day Train Sale

2024 Fathers Day train sale

The 2024 Father’s Day Train Sale at Factory Direct Hobbies continued until June 19th as far as I can tell. However, a new sale called the SunShine sale appeared to start on June 20th. You can still save a lot of money on train items they are interested in buying.

I have recently returned from vacation and didn’t get a chance to prepare for a Father’s Day Train Sale. There have been a lot of visitors to the site this month. In fact, we exceeded the site’s bandwidth limit earlier in the month. I am not sure when it went offline as I haven’t found a notice of it going offline yet. Nonetheless, I have acquired more bandwidth to get the site functioning again. On Thursday, June 20th, I received a warning that by sometime tomorrow at the rate visitors are visiting the site, the site will have used more than 125% of the NEWLY added space. So, I will have to remedy that today to keep the site online. According to the notice the site is consuming almost a half a terabyte of data per day which would be close to 15 terabytes a month. Imagine what your cellphone provider would charge you if used 15 terabytes of mobile data per month. And, just FYI, unlimited plans have a finite number and its smaller than you think.

I appreciate the visits people. Thank you very much. However, please find something you like and buy it. The site doesn’t run for free, and bandwidth is expensive. If you are interested in something and don’t see it, use my contact us page and tell me what you are looking for. Keep in mind that the majority of the items I provide are items that have been placed on consignment. Yes, there are several hundred items that have not been placed on the website yet. If you visited a train show in North Carolina within the past 2 years and saw something on my tables that you are not interested in, then you would be the best person to contact me and ask me if I still have those items. I am unable to fill requests as I have no idea what or when someone will consign an item or their hobby collections. If you see something online currently and wish to make an offer on it, tell me what the item is and what your offer is and will let you know if we can make that happen or if I must provide a counteroffer for you to consider. I don’t have auctions turned on right now nor am I using eBay for their auctions right now either.

If you are a train modeler or collector, whether you are a male or not, you can no longer take advantage of model train sales for this year’s Father’s Day. However, Factory Direct Hobbies has a new sale going on and they have sales often, so keep checking back here to use my referral link so that you can get $10 off your next order with them. I am promoting model train sales at Factory Direct Hobbies because if you use the following link, you can save an additional $10 off any order you place if this is the first time you have used a referral link from me to buy something from Factory Direct Hobbies. You can find some really good deals over there right now.

Get $10 off your purchase.

You can receive a $10 discount when you shop at Factory Direct Hobbies.

Just click the following link …

Click for $10 off at

While writing this page, I also checked to see if TrainWorld‘s 2024 Father’s Day sale is still going on as well. It did last until late night Monday, but as of June 18th, their Father’s Day sales has ended and the discount code no longer works.

You do not need a discount code at Factory Direct Hobbies, but to get $10 off on top of their great 2024 Father’s Day train sale, you would need to click the above referral link. FDH will compensate me should you buy something from their site after following the link. TrainWorld doesn’t provide me with any compensation for referring customers to them. (Shame on them.) Nonetheless, you can still get a good deal at TrainWorld as well.

I am a model train modeler and collector. I do my best to take advantage of sales when I can, and I suggest that other’s do the same. I like a good deal and over at FDH, they have some items marked down more than 40% off during this sale. It’s huge. Now is a good time to get a good deal. Many thanks to you from me if you find something you are able to add to your collection from Factory Direct Hobbies using my referral link above during their 2024 Father’s Day Train Sales event.

You can also purchase train items here at, purchase a GIFT card for someone else to use on my site, or send any amount as a donation to continue supporting

If you happen to be a father, Happy Belated Father’s Day to you!

Enjoy the Greatest Hobby in the World — Model Railroading!

-Henry is BACK ONLINE and Back in Business. THEY HAVE EXTENDED their 2024 Father’s Day Train Sale as well!  I left for vacation during the last week of May 2024, so I am not sure WHEN they re-opened.  They are under new ownership by Joe Grubba at Factory Direct Hobbies.  Their Rewards program is back up and running too.  However, I do not yet know the status of their referral program.  The referral link below will still get you over to their site.  I don’t know if I will receive anything by referring you to them or not.

Get REWARDED for your purchases at

Use this referral link to open a New Customer account with

Apply for membership at YouTube Channel (Live)

April 1st, 2024, ShowMyHobby will now provide the Live YouTube Channel. Within the past week, I have been experimenting with making Live stream videos. The number 1 reason for this is because of the amount of time it takes for me to make normal videos with my cell phone, download those videos, and then re-upload the videos to YouTube. I have well over a hundred videos where this process has not yet occurred. The number of hours represented by those videos a probably very close to if not over 150 hours. To give you a more accurate elapsed time figure, I would have to go through all the videos and the issue with doing that is my lack of “TIME” to do so. The YouTube Channel, based on the 3 live streams I have already recorded, may workout better FOR ME to be able to present you with videos of what I am doing.

Although LIVE streaming videos are there to allow people to see in real-time exactly what is going on, my YouTube Channel Live Streams will simply be used as a much easier, less time-consuming way for me to get recorded videos into the channel. Thus far, I do not know if I can EDIT those videos once I have produced them. I am going to attempt to edit video #3 right have creating this page announcing the channel. Either it works or it doesn’t.

My plan is to create a post here on the website for every Episode on the channel (except for possible PRODUCT videos that are specific to 1 product mostly verifying that product’s current condition). Those post should therefore appear in chronological order below, starting with the very first one which is me actually testing whether or not a live stream video will be saved and where in my channel I can find it.

Bear with me as I begin this process and try to figure out a way to make the videos more entertaining while still providing you with some decent information and content. Unfortunately, I have learned that I cannot PAUSE a live stream video and occasion have already occurred and will occur when I will need to walk away from the recording process meaning I will not be in front of or behind the camera.

The YouTube channel has been online for quite some time now already. The Live streams are the new thing. This past year, I discovered that it is very easy to pull-up and watch the videos in the SHM YT channel on my large screen TV’s, all of which are smart TVs with Amazon Firesticks attached to them. I mention this to you because basically you can view the channel on practically every type of Eletronic, computerized, video equipped device you have including cellphones, tablets, chrome books, laptops, iPads, and Televisions. And I hope you will view the channel and videos on the largest screened devices you have.

I am going to apologize NOW for my poor camera recording skills. I promise to work on these to try to keep the items that I am talking about in the focus frames. I also apologize for state of my living room where the majority of the videos have and are currently being recorded. It is a MESS. I have overrun my home with trains. IT NEEDS SOME SERIOUS HELP — which is why I am doing the videos and part of the reason for selling consigned hobby related items. The trains need a building of their own. YOU CAN HELP ME BUILD ONE MUCH FASTER than I will be able to do so on my own by donating to the cause, watching my online videos, promoting them by sharing them with others, and buying some of the items for sale on the website.

As much as I want and need the money that SHOULD BE generated by the videos, I DO NOT LIKE ADVERTISEMENTS. Personally, I absolutely detest advertising that interrupts me. So, if I had my way, no advertising would INTERRUPT you! I am going to try to hold out as long as I possibly can and try to PREVENT YouTube from injecting ads into my videos. However, they offer the platform for free. To offset the costs and profit from their endeavors, they make money by displaying paid ads around all videos to the viewers on the site. Guess what? I have no choice in the matter. They will always inject some advertisements in or around the videos I place on their platform. I must eventually agree to allow them to insert ads into my videos if I am going to make any money from doing so. To date, I have not received 1 penny from Google / YouTube for anything that I have posted there. And I currently couldn’t tell you if any video posted there caused a sale of an item on or eBay (when I was listing items on eBay). I hope the future is much brighter than the past.

Previously, I have not really been concerned about subscribers to the channel. However, I have set a couple milestones and a subscriber goal. As I reach the milestones, I will reveal what they are and an action that I would like for the subscribers to consider taking as those milestones are reached. So, if you like the content presented, please click on the channel subscribe button. Also, Like this page and pages where individual episodes appear.

I will probably not have a set day and time when I make the live videos. Most of them will probably be made very late at night and in the early hours of the morning. I do not expect the majority of my channel viewers to be able to catch me actually making a live recording. Even if you do, I currently do not imagine that I would be able to interact with any viewers while I am live streaming. I mostly plan to be behind the camera with the focus on what you are looking at and not me. Currently, I’m recording video using a Chrome book and its built-in webcam. I have a surveillance camera that I hope to start trying soon. And I also hope to try the GoPro Hero 8 camera as a webcam source. There is a train show in Hickory coming up this next weekend and I am trying to get as much done to get prepared for that as I can including promoting the event and getting more items online. I am working very hard on the HJR Lonsway Pike layout project too and am ambitiously trying to get a lot of the wiring, lighting, scenery, and town finished. I have things I have wanted to work on and record of the Easter weekend and didn’t get to all of it. Two nights ago I came up with a name for the town and wish to talk about that as well as get it done. Today, I have to put up some ads for the Train Show, see if I can edit the 2:45 live stream #3 video, and publish all 3 YouTube Channel Livestreams.

Thank you very much for checking out this page, showing and interest in, watching the channel and the videos, and providing your support. YouTube Channel Live Playlist

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Hickory NC Train Show 2024 – 4/5 … 4/6

Date: Friday, April 5th thru Saturday, April 6th, 2024
Location(s): Hickory Metro Center
Address: 1960 13th Ave Dr SE #5186, Hickory, NC 28602

Hours: Friday, April 5, 2024, Noon to 7 PM
Saturday, April 6, 2023, 9 AM to 3 PM

Admission: Adults $7.00, ($10 for both days).  Attendees under 12 years old get in FREE. Free Parking.

Features: There will be hundreds of tables featuring model trains in all scales, railroadiana, railroad artifacts and antiques, and several operating model railroad layouts. Admission is $7 for adults, $10 for adult 2-day passes, and free for all under the age of 12. All proceeds from the event will go to the railroad history preservation efforts at the Southeastern Narrow Gauge & Shortline Museum at 1123 N. Main Ave. in Newton, NC, and the Museum will be open regular hours during the show! 

Hickory’s 22nd Annual Train Show will be occupying 3 of the train tables at the Hickory Train Show. Once you arrive, you will have to find me among the other vendors and attractions. I have lots of great trains in very good condition or better. This year, I still have some S scale trains available, almost all of them are in their original boxes in very good condition. The collection includes mostly steam era trains but also includes a couple diesel locomotives. I have A.C. Gilbert American Flyer by Lionel and many trains by American Models. If you are an S scaler, this will be a great opportunity for you to pick up some additions for your layout or collection. However, please visit my website and view the S-Scale trains available and pre-order them, if you can. Although I will have a lot of the S scale items with me and some O scale items, I will probably have them underneath the tables since they take up so much space. So, unless you ask about them, you may not see them or be aware that they are there. If you are interested in starting your own S scale layout, you might be the first lucky person to pick-up the very realistic American Models’ tracks that I have which happen to be enough track to create a double mainline layout. I have 2 different radius curves available for 2 circles. If you cannot make this event, it’s okay, you’ll find a few of the items for sale on my website.

If you are coming to the train show and wish to pre-purchase items from my website, use one 1 of the following coupon codes indicating which day you plan to pick-up the items. Purchase before Wednesday at midnight, April 3rd, 2024 using the appropriate coupon code and no shipping charges will be charged online. After midnight Wednesday, items sold online will begin shipping on Monday after the show.

I also have lots of great vintage HO scale items, many of them are simply NEW items in their original boxes that are 10, 15, 20 or more years old. Some items are factory-built kits and others are kits that someone put together, but rarely, if ever, ran on a layout. I also have USED trains. The majority of all trains I have for sale are in good to very good condition. I also have lots of BUILDINGS and STRUCTURES. The buildings and structures take up a lot of table space at shows so sometimes it is hard to put those out on the tables. I have a lot of HO Bachmann Plasticville snap-together buildings that can be assembled in less than a minute. So, if you are interested in HO Scale buildings, please ASK me as many of them many not be out on the tables. A manual HO scale Atlas turntable is also available.

Athearn, Tyco, Bachmann, AHM, Lionel, American Models, S-Helper Service, Life-Like, Atlas, Roundhouse, Model Power, Midwest Products, Shinohara, Campbell, Con-Cor, Faller, MRC, Train-Miniature, and Walthers are just some of the manufacturers that I have from. Road names include everyone from Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe to Western Pacific railroad. So come on out, bring the family, see some model trains, and buy a train or train related item either for yourself, a loved one or as a gift for someone. Incidentally, electronic gift cards are available online on my website so if you need to, buy someone a pre-paid gift card and then send them to the show to pick something out. Obviously, the gift cards only work at my tables or for online purchases on my website (with the latter being the best way to use them.)

I am going to have a raffle registration on the table at the show. Fill-out the entry form if you wish to be on my direct emailing list and place your entry in the box. After the show, I will randomly pull one of the entries and email the winner. The prize will be the following display model trains that are currently up for sale on my website as 2 HO-like Classic Trolley Street & Cable Cars. One is the streetcar named Desire and the other is the Powell & Mason streetcar. I will email the winner and ask them to provide their shipping address. Once received, I will ship the prize to them on Monday. Because these are display models, they can easily be used by everyone regardless of whether or not you have an operational HO scale train layout. View the prize items on my website at this link address:

The following pictures and videos are from previous Train Shows and represent a walk around of the tables I had there. Many of the items are still for sale now. sells trains, train related items, and other collectible items at train shows and online via my website as well as on eBay. Most of the items offered for sale are consigned items. If you have a collection of trains you would like to get rid of, you can consign your trains by visiting the following link: I will be attending other train shows throughout the rest of year which provides a great opportunity for your items to be sold. Many of the items currently available have been consigned by model railroaders getting out of the hobby and by recipients who inherited items from the estates of modelers and collectors. I can help your trains find new homes if you want me to. I prefer HO and N scale trains but can eventually sell most trains. I have a large collection of German and European trains that will be featured at future train shows.

If you are looking for electric model trains and accessories in HO scale, N scale, O scale, S scale and G scale, then attend the train show and stop by tables and check-out the model railroad related items I have for sale. I accept CASH and ALL Plastic Credit or Debit cards. I have Ready-To-Run items and kit items that require assembly. You will find a multitude of great items to choose from at this train show. Whether you are just getting started in model railroading or have been involved in it for a long time, you’ll find something that interest you at the train show and hopefully you’ll find something on my tables that you’ll want to take home and add to your collection or purchase as a gift for someone you know that loves trains.

If you only prefer to buy NEW train stuff from the internet and have it delivered to your home, visit If you do not see what you like or want among my inventory, use the Factory Direct Hobbies link on website and get a discount off your next Factory Direct Hobbies purchase. The owner of Factory Direct Hobbies used to participate at local NC train shows. Now he has really taken his business to the next level and his success has recently allowed him to save Although MTS is not back-up and running yet, when they do become operational again and get their rewards programming functioning, there is a link on my site to them as well that previously saved you money on your purchases.

Hope to see you at the Hickory NC Train Show!

Happy Model Railroading and Train Rail Fanning …


Review the latest update to the list of consigned items. You may see something listed that you like and want to make sure you get it. You can actually BUY ITEMS BEFORE THE TRAIN SHOW and then Visit the Train Show and pick them up without paying for shipping. Follow the instructions and use the coupon code mentioned below.

Although I haven’t taken pictures of Most of the items in the Consignment List, I am going to import the majority of the listed items into the website early Tuesday morning the 26th of September. You will easily identify these items on my website because they won’t have a picture that matches the item or there will be a note in the description of a pictured item that the item shouldn’t be ordered for shipping purposes because the packaging information is incorrect.

Instructions for Buying Train Related Items prior to the Train Show and Picking them up:

  1. While viewing items in the SHOP on my website, add items you want to the shopping cart.
  2. When you have everything you want in the cart, apply the coupon code that corresponds to the Day of the Show that you will be picking up your items: HTSPKUPFRI or HTSPKUPSAT. These coupon codes will remove the shipping charges from the total amount due.
  3. Buy the items prior to midnight on Wednesday, April 3rd.
  4. Print-out or write down your order including the order number.
  5. Arrive at the Train Show Friday or Saturday. (Admission cost to get into this Train Show is $7 per adult. Children under 12 get in free.)
  6. Locate my tables by asking any Show Vendor or Representative (as I do not know exactly where my tables will be located yet).
  7. Tell me your order number or show me your printed order receipt and I will hand you your web-ordered item(s).

Additional information that you should be aware of:

Remember, all sales via ShowMyHobby are final. All items are sold “As Is”. No items are returnable. And No Refunds are provided for any items sold. These policies apply to ALL items and ALL sales whether made online, in person, or at a Train Show.

If you buy items using the Train Show Pickup Coupon Code, you must show-up during the published show hours and pick-up your items directly from me / No other vendor is responsible for the items you purchased, nor may any other vendor supply you with the items that you purchased from It is a good idea to show up at least 2 hours prior to the published end of show time. I am often not completely set-up during the first 1 to 2 hours of the first show day. Arriving between 12 PM and 2 PM is the best time to pick-up your online orders during a Train Show.

I’m not certain exactly where my tables will be at the Train Show. Ask around and someone should be able to direct you to my area. The coupon code will EXPIRE at midnight on Wednesday the 3rd. However, any order placed after 11 PM may not make it into my car so make sure you purchase your order prior to 11 PM. Also, be aware that I leave Thursday morning the 4th for this particular train show, so your order must be placed by 11 pm Wednesday night. Any order placed after 11 PM could get the items sold again without me being aware that they were sold on the website. I will print the items sold inventory pick list at 11 PM. I would end the coupon earlier if I could, but the system doesn’t allow me to change the time of day on which the coupon ends. Coupons end at midnight.

If you fail to show-up and pick up your order, next week I will package your items, weigh the box, and email you an invoice for the actual shipping costs plus payment processing fees. You will need to pay that invoice and then your items will be shipped to you. Be aware: the shipping fees will most likely differ significantly from any shipping charges my website may show you before you enter the coupon code. This will happen because in order for me to import items into my website, I must SPECIFY a PACKAGED WEIGHT and SIZE for every item. Since I haven’t taken a picture of several hundred of the items, it means that I also haven’t yet WEIGHED those same items or measured them to know what size shipping box will be required to ship them. To import the items, I am going to assign the same fictitious weight and box dimensions to all the imported items. This weight may not be anywhere close to the real size and weight of any particular item. My website automatically calculates the shipping box(es) size and total combined weight for multiple items based on whatever these figures are associated with each item. During the days prior to this upcoming Train Show, it is not a good idea to purchase items without pictures online if you do not plan to pick them up at the train show. Shipping charges for those items may be grossly incorrect.

To avoid unpleasant circumstances and inconveniences, try your best to pick-up any online ordered items at the Train Show. If you fail to pick-up items and further fail to promptly pay the invoice to ship items to you, you forfeit any monies you paid for the items or the right to receive the items. No refunds will be issued! Additionally, you subject your yourself to possible collection actions that might also include additional charges such as restocking fees. Please be certain to PICK-UP items at the Show or promptly pay shipping invoices if you are unable to make the train show.

The Prize Sweepstakes may be available if there is space to present the Sweepstakes Reception Box. (Follow this link for the prize available for this show)

I look forward to seeing you at the Hickory NC Train Show on April 5th or 6th, 2024.

The photos are from past train shows and may show items that are no longer available for purchase.

The updated listed of All Consigned Items as of 9/13/2023. You can also use the Shop Via List for a better interactive list.

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N Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400 DCCS Locomotive with factory installed LokSound Review

Kato UP5400 ES44AC Diesel Locomotive N scale

March 15, 2024 (early AM). This is a review of a locomotive purchased from MB Klein’s website. I purchased it just before they shut down under Hattons acquisition management. However, during the shutdown, I received a couple notices from requesting that I write a review of the locomotive. I don’t think I even tried to do so because previous attempts to reach their website resulted in a message that they were temporarily closed and uncertain when they would be operational again. Over time, the message actually changed from the first time I saw it. As you may be aware, as of the date of this writing, Model Train Stuff is definitely going to be returning under new ownership as a result of a fellow North Carolina Hobby Business Reseller Joe Grubba, who owns and operates Factory Direct Hobbies. Several days ago, via a comment on a Facebook notice in a group that I am a member of, I stated that I would go ahead and do this train review but that it would most likely have to appear on my website since the website is still currently inaccessible.

The Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400 locomotive was ordered on November 27th, 2023, and received on December 11th, 2023. I mention this because as you can see, it took about 14 days (2 weeks) to arrive which is a little long for a shipment from Cockeysville, Maryland to reach Belmont, North Carolina. There is a video (that I am certain hasn’t been posted yet) where I mention the uncomfortable delay experienced regarding this shipment and the odd tracking information I received. Anyway, I opened this locomotive off camera the day it was received. I examined it and test ran it on the 11th of December 2023. However, as mentioned, I didn’t make a video or take any still photos of the locomotive the first day it was received.

The N scale Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400 DCCS Locomotive is a DCC Sound Equipped locomotive. It comes with a pre-installed LokSound decoder. For me, this is a first! All of my other N scale Kato locomotives started out as either DC only or DCC Ready. There was a time when Kato USA had their Kobo Shop install decoders on certain units either by request or on special runs. I do not see any notices on their website today discussing or offering Kobo upgrades. However, a couple of forums suggest that there was a Kobo series of trains made. I do not remember it being a “series” but as I said, there was an American service provided via that offered DCC installs. All I know is that the locomotive was actually listed on Model Train Stuff and is listed at as having a LokSound decoder pre-installed in it.

I purchased this locomotive for several specific reasons. And those reasons have already been talked about in videos (that have not been posted yet, unfortunately). So, I will go ahead and mention the reasons now. {However, when the “Project” that this locomotive was purchased for appears on the site I will replace this sentence with a link to it.}

I have good size collection of N scale Union Pacific passenger cars. Even though I have other UP Diesel locomotives, I have a 7-piece Union Pacific Passenger Excursion set that I decided to also operate as part of a President Bush Funeral Train. I previously added the Bush #4141 locomotive to the collection. Research and videos of the train consist that made up the Bush funeral train show that the second locomotive that appeared right after the Bush #4141 engine was a Union Pacific SD70ACe Diesel Engine #8008. I looked extensively across practically every N scale provider for a UP #8008 SD70ACe locomotive in N scale. However, I did not find one. So, I settled for a locomotive that was on sale, has sound in it, and looks similar to the UP8008. The UP #5400 is what I chose to be the second locomotive in my Bush funeral train model. Plus, the locomotive can easily be used to pull any of my other UP fleet of both passenger and freight cars.

I do not remember the exact details of my initial test of the N Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400. I just glanced at my catalog spreadsheet where I keep all the information about my train collection and there are no notes entered for the 11th of December. This doesn’t mean I didn’t take some notes. I typically try to do my best to make notes and there exist a slew of handwritten notes clipped to a clipboard that is about 1.5″ thick of notes and purchases that have not yet been entered into my spreadsheet. There may be handwritten notes for the 11th of December among the stack of papers clipped to the clipboard just waiting for me to get the time to enter them. Only time will tell. For now, all I remember is that the locomotive ran very well (otherwise, I would have remembered that it didn’t, for sure).

On December the 12th, Day 2 of ownership, I took the first video presented below. Unfortunately, this video is NOT very impressive. In fact, I didn’t get the locomotive to function well at all on that particular day. Here, you will see the mishaps that occurred.

Since Day 2, I have operated the locomotive successfully on several occasions and have taken videos of the successful runs. However, one of those videos is 98 minutes long and the other video might be 2.5 hours long. In both cases, those videos are SIDEWAYS currently. Although I did not intend to do so, those videos start out with the camera oriented vertically and shortly after the start-up the camera is rotated horizontally. However, the videos have come out oriented vertically. It will take quite some time to rotate those videos {if the software I use will even let me do it. I’m thinking there is a 10-minute limitation built into the software and therefore it might not even load either of those videos up to allow them to be rotated. I will have to look, see, and update you on this later}.

It is 4:26 AM as I write this line. The photos that I have taken thus far need to be made ready for the website and although the video has been uploaded to YouTube, I need to finish its write-up. I need to get up earlier than usual in a few hours for a busy day today, so I will have to come back and finish this later. Because of that I will attempt to pull the locomotive out again, take a few close-up photos so you can see the details of the locomotive and one more video of just the locomotive running by itself. Hopefully it will prove to be a short video. And if I can get that done before bed tonight and posted on YouTube, then by Saturday, this REVIEW will be updated and if all goes well, you will get a better take on the LOCOMOTIVE itself. You’ve already been presented with some of drama. Trust me, it’s not over with yet. Trains in my collection have personalities and this newcomer is no different. In fact, it has become a CHARACTER already, establishing its behavior, making me ADAPT to deal with its idiosyncrasies. It is intertwined with a lot of projects that I have been working on since before Christmas and while it may take a couple years before I get the website updated with what just took place over the past 3 to 4 months, just know that I am working very hard, investing numerous hours, working on train projects.

Day 2 Video involving the Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400.

N Kato Union Pacific ES44AC #5400 with LokSound Day 2 test run
Day 2 testing of N scale Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400 with LokSound.

March 15, 2024 @ 10:06 PM. I just finished taking some more close-up photos of the N scale Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400 DCCS GEVO locomotive. I followed the photos by recording a video that last a little over 20 minutes. It would take nearly 3 hours 15 minutes to prepare the photos and videos for inclusion in this page. @ 1:12 AM I settled on how I wanted things to look and put together the following presentation:

I worked on putting together an N scale Train for Christmas 2023. The presentation for that is yet to be posted on the website. However, one of the tests that I conducted with the passenger cars of the Christmas train set was conducted with the Kato UP5400 Diesel pulling those Christmas passenger cars. Those tests are the first photos I took of the Kato UP5400 from Thus, the following picture gallery shows those photos and the video above was made during that testing time as well.

The pictures and video that I took on March 15th, 2024, show the N scale Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400 Locomotive by itself with some close-up photos. The video below the gallery was made to highlight my opinions and review of the Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400 Locomotive.

N Kato Union Pacific GEVO ES44AC Diesel Engine 5400 DCCS Locomotive train review video 2024-03-15

March 18, 2024 @ 1:00 PM. I finally clicked on the email from Model Train Stuff whereby they requested that I leave a review of the N Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400. I filled in the review and hit submit to publish it. I do not know if that worked or not because what I received was a Blank page after hitting submit. I think this is as I suspected meaning I don’t think it is possible to get a review to publish on right now since the day they temporarily shut down their website. Nonetheless, I gave the review 4 stars. The following is exactly what I submitted via the email response:

Title Name: Kato N 1768954-S GE ES44AC Union Pacific #5400 Diesel Locomotive Review

Review: I made a very detailed full review of this locomotive on my website at the following URL: complete with close-up photos and operational videos.

In summary, the locomotive is very nice. It has moderate, molded-in details that won’t break, get smashed, or fall off. Everything looks very close to scale. The sound is rich and louder than MRC drop-in sound decoders but not as loud as BLI Paragon3 & 4 models. The locomotive comes without a printed function list. In fact, I don’t even remember seeing the standard Exploded Diagram paper. It might be underneath the foam inside the jewel case though. The locomotive runs very well, sounds good, and looks great. However, I had some issues operating it on my Atlas Code 55 tracks. It probably runs best on 11″ and greater radius curves.

It can run on 9 3/4″ radius curves but at low speeds. This is the first and only Kato locomotive that I have in my collection that came with a Decoder Pre-Installed by Kato. It’s good to see that they have caught up with what has become a normal and standard feature provided by most model train manufacturers. I give this locomotive 4 out of 5 stars with the 1 unearned star being because the locomotive will not run at all available speeds in all directions all over my Atlas Code 55 layout. It probably runs perfectly on Code 80 track. I recommend this locomotive to N scale fans and modelers of Union Pacific.

Note: After I updated this post with today’s attempt to submit the review to MTS, I clicked the BACK button on the blank page and returned to my filled-in email review. I decided to click publish again just to see what would happen. This time, I received an MTS logo and a Thank you for my review mentioning my name. So, the second time a website did accept the submission. The site named in the URL on the thank you page though was “” and not This could be normal. I do not remember submitting a previous review to MTS via email before. I may have been logged into the website the last time I did a review which was probably years ago. Well, regardless, the N Kato Union Pacific ES44AC Diesel Engine #5400 DCCS Locomotive has now definitely been thoroughly reviewed so anyone looking for a review of this locomotive should be able to search and find one located somewhere…

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HO Lionel North Pole Central Passenger Train

February 2, 2024. Currently, an HO scale Lionel North Pole Central Passenger Train set does not exist! I’m on a mission. Care to help me out? Can WE WILL this model train set into existence?

I already wrote a letter to Lionel. I am going to include that letter here. I am also going to put up a survey form. Please cast your VOTE for or against an HO Lionel North Pole Central Passenger Train set. I mentioned to Lionel that I would re-message them again on February 1st, 2023, about possibly creating this train set. It might take them a year or two to make it, but I would really like to have one with all the features I detailed in my letter. If you cast your vote, I will make it a point to send the results to Lionel periodically to let them know that I am NOT ALONE in wanting such a train set to be created. Thank you very much for your support and assistance. Let’s get this one done…

Keep in the mind that the images displayed here either come from Trainworld or Lionel. They were sent to me by Trainworld via one of their email updates on Christmas 2023 train releases. The models displayed are O scale. WE HO scale modelers need one of these. What do you think?

I have emailed Trainworld too asking for them to encourage Lionel to produce this train in HO scale. Wouldn’t it be great if Trainworld helped distribute them as well as drum up support and interest in the idea?

The letter and pictures have been posted. I had to modify the original photos in order to create the photos displayed on this page.

March 18, 2024. Today, I am just now getting to publish the emailed letter that I wrote and sent to Lionel and Trainworld on December 13, 2023. February was a very busy month for me and March has been just a busy. I did not yet re-mail this letter to them. I will try again on the 2nd of April, in hopes that I will have some Survey responses to include with my re-mailing to them at that time.


I just received the flyer email from Trainworld that is at the bottom of this message.  I am forwarding this to Lionel, back to Trainworld, as well as to members of the Charlotte, NC based Metrolina Model Railroaders Club.

LIONEL, would you consider producing in HO scale for an upcoming seasonal release (2024 or 2025), the following:

1)  A North Pole Central E8 AA Set with Dual-Mode DCC & Sound, both locomotives powered and addressable separately, speed-matched, good heavy weight (die cast metal if you can make it happen affordably), with lots of details, and road numbers OTHER than #1225.

2) A Lighted North Pole Central 85′ Coach Passenger Car with detailed interior.

3) A Lighted North Pole Central 85′ Vista Dome Passenger Car with detailed interior.

4) A Lighted North Pole Central 85′ Dinner Passenger Car with detailed interior.

5) A Lighted North Pole Central 85′ Observation Passenger Car with detailed interior and lighted drumhead on the end that acts like a FRED (End of Train Device).

ALL OF THE ABOVE ITEMS should have Kadee Metal Knuckle Couplers, RP25 Contoured, low profile (code 70 compatible) Metal Wheels (of course) (with Kato N scale type power pick-ups on the wheels or some method that is low friction so that the cars roll exceptionally well), LED lighted interior (similar to Bachmann’s HO scale most recently released smooth side passenger cars), with actual people figures in all passenger cars, engineer and brakeman in Diesel locomotives, and be 18″ Radius Compatible right out of the box.

Could you offer all of that as a Train Set (cars and locomotives only)?

You could easily offer everything separately as well, plus offer it all packaged as a complete starter set too.

If you want to add some more bells and whistles or features, that would great, such as possibly putting a lighted & decorated Christmas Tree and other Christmas decorations inside the dining car; and adding a sound option to that car that plays a Christmas carol sung by the passengers with ambient dining noises in the background.  Or, how about a family or two in the Vista Dome car, with one or two kids looking up into the sky, again with a sound option that has them excitedly screaming “Wow!!!  There goes Santa in his sleigh with reindeers…”  You get the idea, right?  Cool!!!

I love the paint scheme of the O scale North Pole Central that Trainworld informed me they are selling for Lionel with the flyer they sent me below.  It’s great.  I just DO NOT COLLECT O scale trains personally anymore and I have tried my best to get rid of all of the ones that I have and that have been consigned to  I have enough HO and N scale Steam locomotives.  I told myself I wasn’t going to buy any more, but I have ordered BLI’s latest N scale Merry Christmas 4-8-4 Steam locomotive that I am praying arrives before Christmas 2023, along with Con-Cor’s N scale Christmas Train by Micro-Trains.  I have considered buying the Lionel Polar Express HO scale train set in the past and just about picked up a set from the new Berkshire Station train store when I was there in October.  But I didn’t.  However, in November, our train club, the Metrolina Model Railroaders, presented a version of our club’s layout at the 56th annual Southern Christmas Show, and one of our members brought their HO Lionel Polar Express.  It WOULD NOT WORK!  It took me forever to reset it to factory defaults.  I tried to make it work using the LionChief throttle that came with it.  That didn’t work.  I tried our Digitrax DT500 throttles and that didn’t work.  I used my phone and the LionChief app, and was able to get it to move, but it wouldn’t go more than 5 tracks without losing signal and stopping.  I was within 3 feet of the locomotive.  At first, I thought the set belonged to the club.  So, after I was done trying to make it work, I wrote a note and left it with the set, suggesting that it be returned to Lionel for replacement.  I later discovered that it belongs to a club member, and he recently posted a video on Facebook of his polar express cars being pulled by an MTH Diesel Christmas locomotive on another one of the club’s layouts set up at the Daniel Stowe Botanical Gardens.  I say all of this to suggest that if you do MAKE the trains I suggested above that you NOT include LionChief in them and that you adhere to NMRA DCC standards.  You can make a LionChief compatible model, if you wish, but I’m NOT GOING TO BUY THAT.  Make one that WORKS consistently using NMRA DCC standards, and I’ll put my PRE-ORDER IN THE MOMENT I RECEIVE NOTICE THAT YOU INTEND TO MAKE THEM.

That brings me to WHY I included Trainworld in this notice and our train club.  Little lowly old me asking you alone to create a model may not inspire you.  But hopefully, Trainworld gets this and likes the idea too.  And if so, perhaps they will contact you and say they would be happy to handle pre-orders for these models if you will produce them.  I’m sending this to our train club in hopes that there are a couple members that would like to see something other than the Polar Express train on our tracks next Christmas or the Christmas thereafter.  And if so, that they too will request that you look into creating the trains that I suggested above.

I know that this is the Christmas Season, and everyone is super busy trying to fulfill orders right now.  So, I am also putting a reminder on my NMRA Calendar for February 1st, 2024.  I will RESEND this request again on that date just to reinforce my interest in seeing the lovely North Pole Central Christmas Diesel Train Set in an HO scale version that I can use and operate on my train layout as well as take it to an upcoming Southern Christmas Show event and run it on the club’s layout.   And to be quite honest with you, that would be a wonderful place to launch a presentation of your new train.  Bring a film crew in, catch the crowd’s reaction, as that beautiful train goes around our French, Broad and Catawba layout.  (The local Lionel representatives should know what I’m talking about.)

More than likely, I have sent this email to mailboxes at Lionel and Trainworld, where the receiver isn’t the right person to get this message.  Please route this message to the appropriate person in your organization that handles new product development and marketing.  I apologize that I do not remember the name of the Lionel representative whom I met at Dreams Come True Railroad in Cassett, SC on June 17th, 2023.  We road on 7.5″-gauge trains and either his wife or his daughter had a wonderful time driving the trains.  I think they road on trains for longer than I did.  I also do not have Ken Bianco, Jr’s personal email address because when we met, he was scolding me for being behind the Trainworld tables at the Amherst Train Show.  Apparently, he felt I should not have been there, although I was invited to be there by Jeff of Motrak Models, and I was simply sitting out of the way waiting for Jeff to finish talking to a prospective customer.  Who knows if Ken remembers that or not.  Anyway, please route this email to someone who can seriously consider making the production of the suggested HO scale North Pole Central Christmas Trains a reality.  It would be really nice to have a set with the features that I mentioned above.  And while I don’t think there is a movie out behind such locomotives or trains, HO scale needs a new, modern era, Christmas Train that is eye-catching, runs reliably and exceptionally well, consistently, on the most available tracks around, using the most popular train standards so that everyone who has some form of HO scale train tracks can operate the trains (at Christmas time or year-round). [And yes, this is a stab at Walthers for producing models that require 24″ radius curves or larger — shame on them…]

Many thanks for the consideration.

March 26, 2024. Yesterday, March 25th, 2024, Trainworld sent me a Lionel HO New Products Announcement. In that announcement, for the first time ever, it appears that Lionel is offering 3 different HO scale North Pole Central passenger cars. However, guess what? The cars are nothing like their O scale North Pole Central passenger cars and they are missing MANY of the features that I suggested and requested they include in their HO North Pole Central passenger cars. Trainworld is taking PRE-ORDERS for these passenger cars. I am a little bit on the fence over them and almost put my pre-order in. Then, I checked the features, and apparently, these new-to-be-released passenger cars are simply North Pole Central paint scheme applications to their existing Polar Express passenger cars. I specifically mentioned in my letter to them that I would not be buying their TOY-LIKE productions with Frosted Windows in them. I’m looking for a realistic, fine detail, high-quality Christmas Themed passenger car in HO scale. Go back and take a look at what I would like to see in those passenger cars and/or look further down as I expand on exactly what I would like to see in them (pulled from the Survey questions I made a couple weeks ago). Also, because I have not yet seen a notice that the E8 North Pole Central HO scale passenger locomotives that I really want will be produced, there is no need for me to pre-order the passenger cars without a locomotive to pull it. I know. There is a Lionel HO scale North Pole Central steam Train Set that offers a steam locomotive. I do not want any more old steam era locomotives in my collection. I have enough of them. Although I do not have a UP Big-Boy, I’m oaky unless and until a great manufacturer has one for a steal of a price that runs on my 18″ Radius curves (not likely to happen again even though I sold a consignor’s AHM Big-Boy that ran successfully around my 18″ radius curves a couple years ago. It was manufactured a long time ago though and was DC only. Sound could probably be placed in the tender, but I just wasn’t interested in it at all.)

To date, the only email I have received from Lionel is their automated Talk To Us response message when I sent them my Product Suggestion request on December 13th, 2023.

Below is a listing of the features that are on these 3 HO Lionel North Pole Central passenger cares compared to my list of features as well as HO-Like features from their O scale version. As you can see, these cars are nothing like the passenger cars I am looking for.

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Christmas 2023-24 Trains

Once upon a time in December, 2023, I was looking through a Factory Direct Hobbies‘ emailed advertisement of some Broadway Limited Trains being released for the Christmas 2023 season. In that flyer was a very cool and interesting looking N scale Paragon4 with smoke Christmas Wrapping theme painted Reading Railroad T-1 4-8-4 Steam Locomotive with “Merry Christmas” written on the side of it. Some of my viewers know that I have “stopped” collecting Steam Engines. But that locomotive looked great. And the smoke feature is something that I do not know for certain that I have on any of my other N scale items. I might have it on another one because I have found an N scale sized funnel that might be used on such a locomotive on my N scale HJR Lonsway Pike, but I do not remember to which locomotive it belongs.. Anyway, over the past 5 years, I have been getting rid of the majority of my HO & N scale steam locomotives. I still have a fair number left that I intend to keep but I didn’t feel that I would be buying any more. Well, FDH got me. They hit me up at the right time and the BLI Reading T1 lust looks incredible. And, because it has “Merry Christmas” written on it, I said to myself, “If I could find a Caboose with similar paint scheme that has ‘Happy New Year’ written on it, then I could see myself buying those 2 items as my Christmas gift to myself this year.” So, I set out to find a caboose.

I invested several days searching for a caboose that I thought would match the locomotive. I found a Merry Christmas around the World N scale Diesel train set made by MicroTrains and distributed by Con-Cor. I only found the caboose I wanted in a 5-piece set available only on Con-Cor’s website at the time. As I browsed around Con-Cor’s website hoping to find just the caboose by itself, I ran across a lot of N scale Christmas trains promoted by Con-Cor or made by them. I put over 11 different items in my cart. However, Con-Cor doesn’t keep his website well maintained. The tracks on the HJR Lonsway Pike where I would be operating these trains mostly are Atlas code 55 tracks requiring low-flange wheelsets on any rolling stock that is used on them. High flange wheels will roll but they the will hit every railroad tie they encounter. So, because of this and a lot of other unknowns about the 11 different items in my Con-Cor shopping cart, I created a long list of questions for Con-Cor. Con-Cor also has a very high restocking fee if one returns an item to them and I didn’t want to buy something uncertain of what I would get. I sent them the email. Well, long story short, the response I received was unfavorable. We went back and forth a couple times and basically, they just didn’t have the time to address ANY OF MY CONCERNS or QUESTIONS I presented them in my long and specific email. So, at whit’s end and because the number of Reading T1’s available via FDH had dwindled to 2 and I had the last 2 in my cart on their site, I needed to hurry up and make a decision on whether or not I was or I wasn’t going to get any of these items for Christmas. I settled on the 5-car Christmas Around the World set JUST to get the Caboose out of it, and 3 passenger cars from Con-Cor. I ordered the FDH/BLI T1 Merry Christmas train. My troubles were just beginning apparently.

Con-Cor managed to get their order to me before Christmas. However, the train set was supposed to have a Diesel engine with a DCC chip in it. It does not have a chip in it. It is DC only. I had to complain. Con-Cor said they would make it right by sending me a chip. THAT has not happened yet (as of 2/2/2024) and now their parts guy quit and they cannot being to find me a chip until after they hire a new parts guy.

Factory Direct Hobbies tried their best, but someone how my purchase of 1 of the last 2 “available” Merry Christmas T=1’s ended up being delayed at the Custom’s docks and there was no way I would be receiving the locomotive before Christmas. So, I would have to wait. It arrived on the 2nd of January. But, on Christmas Day, I decided to TRY to work diligently to finish most of the HJR Lonsway Pike layout by wiring up all of my Tortoise controlled turnouts and all the lighting on the layout. Well, a month later, and I’m much further along than I was over the past 5 years, but I still don’t have the turnouts actually working. I have a very beautiful Control Panel made though and every house and building has been outfitted with lights and the lights leads dropped through the benchwork. I will put a lot of the renovations made in another Photo Album at a later time. It would be around the 20th of January before I opened the T1 locomotive.

I tested the Christmas Around the World train set. The train cars are very well done and the scenes painted on them are exquisite. They look a little weird size-wise because of them being Hi-Cube box cars. I’m not sure how close to scale these are. And, since I’m certain that the paint scheme never existed on any real trains, one could say that their is no prototype for them to be accurate with. Other than the short, stubby look, these cars are beautiful. They would have been BETTER if MicroTrains had installed metal wheels, but they didn’t. They roll nicely though. The DC diesel engine does okay. It tends to run a little rough and a little noisy, but it’s okay. I will like it better when it has a DCC chip in it.

The 3 passenger cars are very well done too. You know me. They could be better. The only disappointing thing about these are the cellophane jewel cases they arrived in. I really don’t see those cases lasing very long, in fact, there are some imperfections in them already. I have a lot of Con-Cor N scale trains, most of which arrived in much sturdier jewel cases or boxes. I told Con-Cor about this and made mention of it on a video in this album. One thing that would make them better would be seated people inside of the cars and interior led lighting with Kato style power pick-ups. But hey! Con-Cor didn’t make any of their trains to suit me yet.

I rain the Christmas trains from Con-Cor in different configurations and there is a video showing both trains running at the same time. There are some still shots of the 2 train consists as well.

Since I video-taped the opening of the Con-Cor trains when they arrived, I decided to do the same thing with the T1. It came out of the jewel case broken. The drawbar was broke and at least 2 pieces fell out. I suspect that a 3rd piece fell into the inside of the locomotive but if it ever came out, I haven’t seen it yet. It couldn’t be fixed by me, plus, the T1 is perhaps the second or third most expensive individual locomotive that I have in my collection. For what I paid for it, it was going to have to go back and be replaced with a new one in perfect working condition. I made arrangements through FDH for BLI to send me a replacement in exchange for me sending back the broken one. Although the drawbar was broken and a piece that I still cannot identify where it came from or where it belongs fell out, it still operated on my tracks and did so very well. I was able to find a route that the locomotive could run around on consistently with the least number of issues. Then, one-by-one, I added all the trains that I bought from Con-Cor for Christmas. This included 4 of the Christmas Around the World trains (excluding only the locomotive) and the 3 passenger cars.

When the replacement T1 came, I double-headed a consist of all the Christmas trains and ran them around the tracks. The 2 T1’s look good together and sound very good. They ran together pretty well too. The newest one is always in front in all of the pictures and videos. However, it derails a lot in one particular spot on the layout. Even running solo it does that so something is slightly different between it and the first T1 which rarely derails in the same sport or elsewhere.

Although I glanced at the paperwork for the T-1 and saw that BLI suggested light-weight Marklin smoke oil, I know I don’t have any such oil. I was hoping that oil made by BLI would work and so when a tube of it came that I ordered before the trains came, I put some of the smoke oil in the new T1 locomotive only. It never produced any smoke. Later, I read that BLI smoke oil is too high in viscosity to use in the N scale T1. I found some lightweight oil by Tyco that is probably 30 years old on more, but was previously never opened. It says it is Lightweight oil, but it too would not produce any smoke, at least not after having put the BLI oil into the locomotive. So, I have sent back the first T1 as promised. Thus far, I have seen absolutely NO SMOKE from the T-1 that I am most likely going to keep. I will try to find some Marklin smoke oil and order it to try it the next time I get a chance.

I really want to finish all the lighting and get all the turnouts and signals working on the HJR Lonsway Pike. I am trying my best to do so. I need a few more parts though and I cannot order them from a particular Chinese supplier until after he returns to work from celebrating the Chinese New Year. He is supposed to be back on the 16th of February. My time will become more limited though as a need to work on other home improvement projects becomes very pressing and takes the highest priority and getting ready for upcoming train shows at the end of February too. Plus, I have another layout referred to as the Uhaul layout which needs to be readied to a state to make it sellable the last weekend of February. I’m starting to doubt that I will get anything at all done on it before then. Plus, I have to work and there are tons of jobs to be complete and the workflow usually increases during this time of the year. I also have a lot of other challenges going on and need to put serious effort towards improving my health which means getting back on a healthier time schedule, eating regimen, and workout plan, all of which take many hours in a day, something I am running very short on as it is.

Anyway, this is the Christmas 2023 N scale trains that I added to my collection this year. I included 2024 because the T1 didn’t really get here until some time in January. When Con-Cor gets me a DCC chip and I get it installed and running good, I may attempt to obtain a few more of the Christmas Around the World box cars if it looks like the diesel will pull them well in DCC mode.

I hope you enjoy the Christmas Trains. You may be able to comment or Like this Album or the page on my website where I may appear eventually. May 2024 be a wonderful year for us all, ALL AROUND THE WORLD!!!

Currently, there are over 50 photos and several hours of videos related to the Christmas 2023-24 Trains. For now, to view them, open this Google Photos link. You may comment on the items in the photo album. As long as your comments remain on topic, mostly positive, and true, I will leave commenting turn on. But abuse this commenting opportunity and I will turn off that capability. I hope to return later and insert a couple photos on this page to break-up the writing. I will also turn on Sheena so that you can listen to her read this page to you. Just be aware, some words and phrases are harder for her to read than others.

Posted: 02-02-2024.

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Outstanding Model Railroaders, Hobbyists, Collectors, Owners, and Enthusiasts including World Famous People that love TRAINS!!!

A couple days ago around the 21st of July, 2023, I decided to perform an online search. I knew Rod Stewart has a model train collection. I also knew that Corneilus Vanderbilt made a fortune owning real trains in the mid 1800’s. And, I also knew that Walt Disney was obsessed with model trains — the size people can ride on (7-1/4″ Gauge trains). My search revealed a slew of other celebrities and wealthy people who own, have, collect, or model trains. It was fascinating to discover the myriad of people that LOVE or Appreciate TRAINS.

A lot of other websites have really done a great job of identifying train loving people. I decided to publish a list of people that love model trains and own real trains on my website. And, I have decided to ask viewers of this list to contribute names and links to other websites or sources of information about train lovers and their model trains.

List of Famous People that Love Trains

Generated by wpDataTables

I will add a few more people to this list a little bit at a time. I have about 40 people to add right now, but doing so takes time. Keep checking back about once a week to see who else has been added to the list. There are lot of great stories about people and their trains. I encourage you to read the articles that the links refer to.

Eventually, you will be able to fill out a form and add names and links to sources. For now, I am going to allow comments on this post. If you would, please try to provide the 4 pieces of information that I have provided when you mention People that are model railroaders, hobbyists, collectors, owners, or enthusiasts. Feel free to mention yourself if you fit one of these categories and currently have a link to articles or postings about your trains. If you do not, don’t fret. I’m getting very close to signing up subscribers so that you can upload your owner train pictures, videos, etc. You can speed this process along by providing monetary donations via my Donations page.

Many thanks in advance for any and all contributions you make.