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Playing with trains is fun, playing with bigger and bigger trains gets increasingly more fun. Take the hobby of Live Steam and Live Diesels. It doesn't get much better unless you own a real railroad.
One of the best examples of the hobby is Russ Eldridge's White Creek Railroad just north of Grand Rapids Michigan, where he has approximately seven miles of track. What makes Russ' track interesting is that he has track going all over the place, and it's not just a big loop, thereby providing engineers with multiple opportunities to maximize their fun..... Just watch out for those crossovers!..... :-) The picture at the top of the page was taken there in 2007.
One other railroad that stands out from the others is Train Mountain in Oregon. They hold the record for the largest "model" railroad in the Guinness Book of Records, with 70,000 feet of mainline (13 1/4 miles), and a total of 133,250 feet (25 1/4 miles).
Anyone have pictures to share? Please send em on in, my email is here
Below are some of the places I have had a chance to visit. I've also been to the Los Angeles Live Steamers and the live steam group in Roanoke, many, many years ago before they moved, someday I will scan the slides.
Signal Aspects for Train Mountain in Oregon
Building a 1/8 scale New York City R-33 Subway Car
Note: The pages for Junction Valley and the Traverse Steam Train are part of my railfan guide series. While the Junction Valley/Bridgeport page is 100% JV, the Traverse Steam Train part of that page is just a small part of the guide to the area.
Links and Additional Information
The Live Steam hobby is a great hobby, regardless of the scale you decide to involve yourself in. Here are some more links of places you can go for more information and inspiration:
I don't know why, but it seems to me that guys in the UK have more "iron" or something in their blood, cause they sure do have some great railroading over there, and the Live Steam scene is no exception. For a good place to start, check out Peter's website: http://www.miniaturerailwayworld.co.uk/
A page of links by the Friends of Train Mountain: http://www.friendstm.org/Clubs/AllClubsUSA.shtml
Good all around source of info, and great sales page: http://www.discoverlivesteam.com/
A page of links by RailServe, including manufacturers of supplies and equipment: http://www.railserve.com/Models/Live_Steam/Suppliers/
Here are just a few, as there are many:
http://mountaincar.intuitwebsites.com/ One of the premier gas/hydraulic locomotive manufacturers of 1/8 scale stuff, located in Salem VA
http://www.mdmlocomotiveworks.com/ Large offering of 1/8 scale gas/hydraulic locos
http://ridetrains.net/p1.htm Inexpensive way to start in the hobby!
http://www.plumcovestudios.com/index2.html Another easy way to break into the 1/8 scale hobby
http://www.discoverlivesteam.com/forsale/1_braun/index.htm A Hobby Foundry, all sorts of castings
http://www.surpluscenter.com/Hydraulic.htm Want to roll your own hydraulic system, here is a source for formulas
http://www.easyhandlingcompany.com/OutdoorTrains/OutdoorTrains.html Another source for 1/8 scale gas/hydraulic locos
http://thetrainworks.com/ 1/8 scale locos available in either gas/hydraulic or electric
http://www.epstores.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=2 Ties, rails n stuff to build your railroad with
http://www.herringengineer.com/ Custom designed equipment
http://www.mr-motion.net/ Mr Motion, another inexpensive way to enter the hobby
http://www.precisionsteelcar.com/ Cast detail parts
http://www.cocolamuscreektrolleyco.com/Welcome.html Handcrafted 1/8 scale trolleys
http://discoverlivesteam.com/forsale/MorrisRR/index.htm Morris RR
supply, famous for their 1/8 scale gas powered SW-1500's!
Last Modified: 05-Dec-2016