Brain Dump

I know I haven’t posted in a long time, so I’m just going to do a brain dump and list some things that I’ve been picking away at.


  1. I added fascia to the majority of my layout! I’m pretty pleased by how it looks. Photos to come soon.
  2. I bought a bunch of “inexpensive” freight cars, some of which I have refurbished for my layout, and some that I resold on the excellent CANADA HO/N Yard Sale group on Facebook.
  3. I started doing some weathering with PanPastel artists’ pastels. So far I weathered one Bachmann grain car and sealed it with Dullcote. I’m pleased.

The Fleet

These are the DCC-equipped locomotives / RDCs I have. Only CN 3665 (third from left) has sound.

Current Fleet

New Acquisition

I bought another locomotive and I hope to receive it by the end of next week.

It’s a Kato/Atlas GP38 custom painted by Scott Holmes in a fantasy CN/VIA scheme.

I’m not sure if I will repaint it… I’ll have to see it and operate with it for a while first to see how I feel about it.

I’m excited!

Time For DCC

Speaking of exciting, I bought a trio of TCS T1 decoders to go into my two VIA “blue box” locomotives and an old Bachmann “RS18”.

Ready for DCC
Ready for DCC

These VIA units have some extra detail on them – handrails, grilles, etc. – so they are definitely a step above your normal Athearn “blue box” quality. I believe Craig Takahashi did the detail work.

I’ll be following these instructions for DCC installation. It’s definitely not my first decoder installation – see my RDC installation – but I don’t do it often enough to be able to do it without glancing at instructions.


I haven’t done any formal operations sessions in a while. I have run trains a few times when my nephew came by – he does love the trains but I think he likes driving my toy trucks more.

I am getting the itch to run trains so I think I’ll be doing that soon.


Next Steps

These are the next things I plan to do on my layout / trains:

  • Install the three decoders
  • Run an operations session
  • Weather a few more cars