Running Bear's September 2020 Coffee Shop is a free Model Railroad Discussion Forum and photo gallery. We cover all scales and sizes of model railroads. Whether you're a master model railroader or just getting started, you'll find something of interest here.

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Well-Known Member
Well since on the frog subject this guy helps keeps the cricket population down in my garage. This summer I’ve never had crickets so bad then one day I see him in there helping me kill them off. I just had to get a pic of him one day.


Lazy Daydreamer
Good evening Shop Dwellers. It's 57*F with a 10mph NW breeze and light but steady rain. Apparently those torrential downpours predicted earlier bypassed us (ok by me!).

Even though today [Tuesday] was a short work day for me, I didn't have much time for mrr-related activity. Since it rained most of this past weekend and Monday was taken up by other commitments, this afternoon was my only opportunity to get my lawn mowed before the next onslaught of rain - which started within 10 minutes after I had finished and parked the mower back in the shed. Tomorrow I'll be visiting my local CVS drugstore to get a drive-thru Covid-19 test swab. I decided to do this because of the large number of millennial guests at my daughter's baby shower who didn't feel the need to wear masks since Covid "only harms old people." It will take another 2-3 days before I get the test results.

Justin - your loco roster seems to be growing steadily, looking good! It has taken me nearly 20 years to accumulate my collection.

Lee - I feel your pain regarding the crickets. My garage/trainroom is currently infested with the little black pests, and their chirping just about drives me nuts while I'm sitting at my workbench. I've gone ahead and ordered some cricket traps from Amazon; since my wife has a Prime account they will get shipped here for free by Thursday. Hopefully they'll work as well as the ones we used a few years ago when they invaded our laundry room.

I've started writing up the text for my planned thread about the conversion of two Atlas GP40-2 models into plain GP40's. It's taking longer than I expected, probably won't have it done until maybe Thursday. In the meantime, here is some red blue "meat" for you photo lovers to feast on - the GP38 that I finished on Sunday:


Photo from Gary Overfield collection, Chicago, IL, November 1967



Broke... just like early railroads.
Morning all,

Currently clear and 51* with high today of 86*. Tomorrow reverse the numbers (68*).

I did go to bed early last night as I had a bad headache. Based on the news, I didn't miss much in the political realm. Besides I think my mind is made up at this time.

I've got 4 weeks of time off I have to take between now and the first of May. Between the pandemic and family members in the high risk arena to being busy at work (projects delayed as equipment was 120 days late), I don't know when I'm going to take some time off. I don't like staying home during time off, especially if the wife can't take time off. Getting up at 4:15a during vacation isn't a vacation.


Well-Known Member
Greetings and salutations

Just coffee this morning, Flo. I earned myself another yummy Amish donut this morning. Managed to write 4,500+ words (2 chapters) yesterday. Normal daily output is half that. If I do so again today, I might finish the book. Though I suspect I'll need a wrap-up chapter as well.

Didn't do much yesterday on the layout. Pulled the soda cans cases off, and remembered to pull the foam nails out. It gets tricky trying to do that once I start gluing the second run of risers next to the first.

Had a glass of fermented grape in anticipation of the political spectacle last night. Fell asleep in my chair before it began. Stumbled to bed and considered myself lucky to have missed it, from the reports this morning, yep. And that's all I've got to say about that. <insert Forrest Gump icon>


Ol' School
Good Morning! Happy Hump Day from the smoky side of the map!
So Willie has frogs now! Huge spiders, huge frogs, it looks like it really is true, things are bigger in Texas! ;)
I believe that that particular loco was built this year
Willie, Garry...yes the hoghead told me it was built in March. (More than three months ago 🥴 )
But, how does one modifiy a plastic tank car to make it look like a metal one imploded?
Troy...I saw a guy take a heavy soldering iron and heat a car weight on the inside of a gon. to soften it up to give it a beat up look. A round tank car would pose some problems. I didn't see the Mythbusters episode so don't know what part of the car implodes. The oven would heat the whole car, a pan of hot water seems like you might be able to control were the heat goes a little better.......I dun know,.... interesting!
your least favorite politician.
I know I know, no political stuff here, just saying, any use of the words favorite and politician in the same sentence no matter what the context is a contradiction of words! 🤬
Thank you all for the comments & likes.....Ken...Tom...Tom (the other Tom)...Lee...Flip...Justin...Karl...Sherrell...Jerome...Patrick...James...Chad...Mcleod...Willie...Curt



Same Ol' Buzzard
Good Morning Everyone. Clear and 57° on the SFW estate. Headed for a high of 90° today with our roller coaster fall weather. Managed to get the "back 40" part of the yard mowed yesterday; really don't consider that as part of the yard, it's more of an untamed expanse between the yard/garden and my hayfield. Then I started winter prep with the firewood stack. Removed the stray weeds around it, removed many of the cobwebs that have found a home there, and in general tidied the big one up. There is a secondary one yet to go, wood that I cut later in March. Speaking of the hayfield, neighbor's son mowed it Saturday and started baling it yesterday. It's a lucky year in which we are getting a second cutting.

How about something a little more hearty for breakfast today Flo. Chicken fried steak, cream gravy and French fries should give the heart a workout this morning. Give me the low-cal ketchup as a nod toward healthy living.

Thank you to all who liked or commented on yesterday's update; Lee, Chad, Patrick, Jerome, Sherrel, Guy, Joe, Karl, Justin, Phil, Curt, Tom O, Tom, Ken, Gary, Jerry.

Out in the train shed yesterday, I got some minor work done on several tasks. Did some more painting of the lintels and sills on the DPM structure, three walls now done.
09-28-20 005.JPG

Added a center stripe to the roadway that I installed Monday.
09-30-20 002.JPG

Did some more assorted ground cover and made the fence posts and fence for the storage yard at the body shop.
09-30-20 003.JPG

Here it is with the shop in place.
09-30-20 004.JPG

Troy -
But, how does one modifiy a plastic tank car to make it look like a metal one imploded?
Perhaps fabricating the tank out of an aluminum pie plate or roasting pan, crushing it like you want and fitting it to a tank car frame. Since it will be crushed, it doesn't have to be real accurate, especially in N scale. I never saw the show so I don't know what it should look like.
I'll try to remember to post a disclaimer if I post any more pictures of the slithery cohabitants from the estate. " Paranormal Cozy Mysteries " don't particularly hold my interest, but it is an interesting job. I always thought that I would do more reading once I retired, but found that I just don't have the time or attention span for it. I do like writing and composing though.
Garry - That's the type of loco that I normally saw on work trains. Don't see too many any more as they have shifted most maintenance to nights around here. While they still use RR owned locos, all other equipment is usually Loram, Herzog or RJ Corman. Speaking of Herzog, my BIL is a commuter rail consultant who has worked on projects all across America. Herzog is one of his clients and they pay him a retainer of $70K a year NOT to do work for any of their competitors. He can still do work for clients that he had before the retainer, but hasn't done any major work for them (Herzog) in over three years! Nice gig.:) One other perk is that he can go to any of their worksites and ride along in their inspection trucks.
Curt - I have had that track flexing/derailing issue before, that I corrected just like you did. Quite a sigh of relief that it wasn't anything major!

Had a good laugh at some of the frog name suggestions. If I see it again, it will be Kermit in deference to Sesame Street.
Last day in September today. Guess we'll all move to the new place tomorrow. See you on the other side.

Everybody have a great day.


Well-Known Member
Good Morning all. 42. Degrees in the Ozark Foothills getting chilly and I like it. Flo. Coffee and oatmeal with Honey. Not much work on the layout or bench I did get some more done to the O scale Weaver RS3 still needs some tweaking. After running it for about 20min the socket on the motor kept slipping off later found out this was one of many faults with this older Weaver chain drive so I fixed that problem so for runs well try to get some pics of it and rolling stock.

Ken. I use those sticky traps for mice and rats to catch those crickets seems they are attracted to them.

Wille. Your buildings and layout is looking really nice lots of progress

Sherrel. Thanks for the complement on the Ballast job

Here’s some more pics of the O scale layout



Gomez Addams
Staff member
Good morning.
I already had an exciting morning. Somebody unloaded a six shooter out front of our house at 4:30 am. That’s the second time in three weeks. I’m guessing it has something to do with the house next door, it has a long history of similar problems.
There was no damage to our house or equipment, but after me enidng up on the floor after the second shot, I was not going back to sleep... funny how adrenaline works.


Well-Known Member
Good morning ..... Coffee and a pecan roll, please.

Terry: .... Wow! .... I would not like be wakened at 4:30 am like that!

Willie .... The DPM building looks excellent.

Lee ... Your O scale layout looks good.

Here is another view from the same bridge I was on when I took the picture yesterday. Nashville Union Station is now a hotel and restaurant .


Everybody .... Have a nice day.


Beach Bum
Good morning, y'all. 59°, and mostly sunny. We reached the day's high temperature of 71° at Midnight, and finally had some appreciable rain fall 0.83" overnight.

Damn Terry, Good thing y'all are ok...That's quite unnerving.

Lee: Nice photos. Amazing what can be done with "hi-rail" equipment. The access to cool highway vehicles is awesome.

Willie: The Linen building is coming along nicely, as is the rest of your project.

I consider myself lucky, I only watched 15 minutes of it

Karl: I did one better, i didn't watch any of it...

Spent the bulk of my evening working in the train room. I relocated the book shelves under the new staging module. I am deliberately leaving the top so that I can wire the feeders without crawling underneath. I sort of have a plan in mind, but I need to spread the track out and see if it works. While I'm at it , I'm going to fix a few "previous" mistakes. It's really hard to squeeze an actual two miles of track into 18' :rolleyes:

PRR RS11s pasing through Holmesburg Jct 9-20-1967 H. Smith.jpg

1967 photo by Hal Smith, of a consist of ARS18s passing through Holmesburg Jct. I have an Atlas RS11 painted in PRR as delivered scheme, that needs a decoder, and is just begging to be repainted/lettered in PRR 1966 "Keystone" scheme like the 7617.


Well-Known Member
Good morning from Wisconsin. Cool with a high maybe of 60, 30’s tonight. I did head to the train room last night where there is no TV and the IPad Pro was left in my office. My wife is a politico nut and relishes this stuff, she was shaken up pretty good last night. Also, she religiously watches GMA on ABC very morning, the TV was off when I woke this morning at 7. She is baking gluten free stuff for the SIL today.

Terry- it sounds like you are living in Madison, Wisconsin. Almost 3 times a week since Labor Day they are reporting shootings into houses or just gun fights on the Eastside of a college town. Glad you are ok but I image very unnerving.

Too cool and super windy this morning so the outside 2 mile walking was cancelled by the wife, however the treadmill is waiting.

Enjoy your day


Curse You, Red Baron!
Staff member
Good Mid Morning from the far SW!
Finally a decent night's sleep - and the pups didn't come alive until I started stirring; I had better check and see if they are ill?
OK, after a 101 high yesterday they are calling for a 105 today! All I can say is that I am glad to have a solar system hooked up to the electric grid. There is a local community/city website and this time of year people are complaining over the 400/700 dollar SCE power bills each month - yet many foo-foo the cost or lease payments of installing solar. I leased (should have bought) - my cost is $118 a month and that is a lot better than the tier 3 cost of $.33 KWH that those folks are stuck with. Tier 1 is a joke unless you don't have a/c and go to bed at sundown and get up at daybreak. Tier 2 is a 50% increase and then Tier 3 is another 50% higher ... I not sure but I think that is about twice as much as most everywhere in the rest of the country? I noticed that gasoline here is exactly twice what Mississippi is!

Thoroughly disgusted with the debate last evening ... The Spousal Unit was too, however she didn't want to not watch it.
I'm just FED UP with all the lying! I place a liar and a thief in the same pot and seems that politicians fit the bill no matter which team they are on.

OK, I am off my soapbox for a little bit.

I have to look up - I cannot remember what Union Station in K.C. has been made into? When I lived back there -- there was an 2-rail O club that was built up near the rook that ran all around the station - several hundred feet in each direction. When I was there, the track was just being spiked down - I wonder what happened to it?

CUBA, MO in 1957


Broke... just like early railroads.
Now this year they added a Aquarium go figure wish they would have done something more “Train” related but that’s just me

I haven't been in St. Louis in ten years, but knew they were working on in then. The aquarium is something I didn't remember seeing in the plans back then, but things always change. I believe Kansas City has a science museum in their Union Station, but again, haven't been there in a number of years either. I pass through on my way north to see the old people (parents).
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