Thursday, January 20, 2022

Minoa & Euclid - On the Cover of Railroad Model Craftsman!

The Onondaga Cutoff is known for is Conrail operations, and now it will also be known for one of the roads that interchange with Conrail - the Minoa & Euclid, a Morristown & Erie-owned shortline on former DL&W track.  And, it's now featured on the cover of Railroad Model Craftsman!

This is a thrill, and a surreal honor to see M&E Alcos at CP 282, crossing the Conrail main line enroute to interchange at Onondaga Yard on the cover of an international model railroad magazine!  I am grateful to RMC editor Otto Vondrak for his vision to feature this part of the Onondaga Cutoff in Railroad Model Craftsman.  The story behind the cover photo is a first-hand account of fans chasing the M&E's day job, ME-1, while they work at Euclid Yard to switch the Peter Doelger Brewery and then make their interchange run to Conrail and return.  You'll meet the crew and follow the train over the route all the way to Onondaga Yard and back.  

Also interesting Central New York State content in this month's RMC is the article on kitbashing an interlocking tower - this one labeled for East Syracuse, SY Tower, which is up at Dewitt Yard on the prototype not far at all from the Onondaga Cutoff main line.  

It is an exciting time for the Onondaga Cutoff - thanks for all the support!

Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Modeling Season is Back!

 Modelers of various subjects joke about the months of the dead of winter as being 'modeling season' - a part of the calendar when it's cold outside, there are less commitments, and longer nights.  All of that combines to allow more time to focus on the hobby.  Even with a family and full-time work, it holds true that the Onondaga Cutoff makes some major progress in most winters!  

I finally was able to make time to open and explore the latest release of Rapido Trains B36-7's.  Given the two new paint jobs available, I added a final two of the model to the fleet, which will really help set the era.  Gorgeous models!  Also in the background is a gift from Joe Binish, who supplied the Onondaga Cutoff roster with one of his 'Central of Minnesota' all-door boxcars - a good fit for the layout.  All of these will be in service soon!

Extra time on nights and weekends after the holidays is also a great opportunity to pitch in on other's projects.  I was able to spend time with Tom Schmieder on his growing DL&W layout, where he is pictured hard at work installing feeders in the massive staging yards.  Once we finish the feeders here and wire everything up, it will be buried beneath a near-scale model of the Lackawanna's Port Morris Yard - lots to be excited about here!

Finally, it's always nice to have time for state-of-good-repair projects on the Onondaga Cutoff, like this scene.  The lights had not been working, and needed some troubleshooting.  Turns out after investigation that a cold solder joint was to blame.  I repaired the joint and once again, we have a scene that adds some depth to our operations and that at night really becomes a striking visual:

Little here, little there.  And plenty to come.  This hobby makes even the longest nights of the year feel short!