Worlds Smallest GO Train & The Railway Village

A couple of weeks back I wrote about the Tiny 3D printed GO F59PH and Via LRC locomotives I was working on.  I’ve now finished them, and have the GO train placed on the model of “The Railway Village” in Roundhouse Park Toronto which is part of the Toronto Railway Museum.  I’m not sure where the VIA train is going to go, as the model was getting overcrowded with mini trains.  The railway village model includes several 3D printed structures, some scenery and a stretch of full-scale track, along with some 7.5″ gauge miniature railway.

imgp3981rawconvWorlds Smallest GO Train at the platform at Don Station in HO Scale.  A maybe someday future train for the Toronto Railway Museum.

The worlds smallest GO Train is a bit of a speculation.  One thing that happens at railway museums when you get a bunch of people together who love trains and are into preserving and restoring them, is they start talking about what they’d like to acquire.  Top of the list in Toronto is almost always a GO Transit F59ph locomotive.  These workhorses formed the entire GO locomotive fleet from shortly after their introduction in 1988 untill their replacements started arriving in 2007.  There are still a handful in GO Transit service, but most have been retired and sold on.  Whenever the talk turns to what the museum volunteers would like to have, GO Transit equipment comes up as it is how most people in Toronto for the past 50 years have ridden the rails, and it’s what most kids see when they see trains around Toronto, and the TRM doesn’t have any.  Personally, I want one of the original bi-level cab cars, but an F59PH is cool too!  With that in mind, the miniature F59 and GO painted riding cars above are a bit of speculative fiction, as while the museum may not be able to get a 1:1 scale GO Train, building a miniature one would be a close second, and probably more likely in the short-term!

As for the model of the railway village, it’s a project that’s been going for a couple of years.  I talked about it here in a post on making the hobby work in apartment sized spaces.

imgp3983rawconvView of Cabin D, Cabin D’s toolshed, and the John Street Crossing Shanty on The Railway Village model.

The structures are all at least partly 3D printed.  Having access to the buildings made it “easy” for me to physically measure them and prepare the 3D models.  They don’t however, come fully finished, they come as the bones, and need to have flat roofs, shingles, paint and detailing done.  As I’ve said before, 3D printing is a tool, it gets you some of the way there, but you still need to know how to build a model to get it across the finish line.

18264468985_83d1c7f9f4_oWhat a 3D printed Don Station looks like before you prime, paint, add details and complete it.

Outside the 3D printed buildings, everything else about the model is pretty traditional model railroader stuff.  Plaster, strip wood, ballast, ground cover, styrofoam to create the hill, all normal things that almost every model railroader will have used if they’ve built a layout, module or diorama.

imgp3980rawconvOverview of the Railway Village model nearing completion.  The miniature trains have now been fixed in place.

As you can see from the pictures, I still have some work to do.  I need to add some more people standing around, taking pictures, and animate the scene.  I also, most glaringly have some very dead looking birch tree models.  The armatures are my own, produced to the techniques discussed in Gordon Gravett’s “Modelling Trees” and taught to me by Trevor Marshall, but I haven’t managed to get around to doing the canopy and making them look like trees.  I don’t think there’s any specific reason other than I keep looking at it as something new, and putting it to the side as I feel I want a long uninterrupted block of time to work on them, and 2016 hasn’t been the year for that.  I want to have this model closer to done by early 2017 for some shows, so I really need to work myself up to the trees!  For now though, after a productive day working on the diorama, its got to go back beneath its protective box to keep the cat off of it.

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