Allen Keller

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Riding Amtrak on the Coast Starlight

When it’s time to leave Portland, we depart from the beautiful Union Station. There are even palm trees planted in front of this hundred plus year old building. The Coast Starlight will take us to Sacramento where we plan to catch the train back to Chicago. Inside the well-maintained station are some really great neon…

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Choo Choo Cityrails Southeastern Region Convention

The 2019 convention of the Southeastern Region National Model Railroad Association was held in Chattanooga, Tennessee in late May at the downtown DoubleTree Hotel. About 280 people attended the convention sponsored by the Region’s Cherokee Division. As usual there were many clinics on model railroading including this one presented by Pelle Seeborg from Denmark on…

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Circus Passenger Cars

After building all my circus flatcars and wagons, I needed some way for the performers and workers to travel, so I decided to construct two passenger cars for my Keljan Circus. I began with two AHM 10-6 sleepers and painted them red with a silver roof. I added wire grab irons and railings. I also…

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Adding the Dwarf Signals to Bridge Junction

Here is the diagram for Bridge Junction on Allen’s Bluff City Southern. In earlier blogs Kevin Kizer and I installed the approach signals and the train order signal inside the wye. Kevin, a retired signal maintainer, determined that we needed dwarf signals at the 3 locations marked 1,2 and 3. Location 1 is the lead to Bluff City yard. Location 2 is the lead to the coach yard and location 3 is the lead to the engine service facility inside the wye itself. Kevin said the signals will tell the engineer if the switch is aligned properly to exit the location.

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10-Minute Diesel Weathering

This is a new HO scale E-7 diesel. It’s well detailed and runs well with sound, but it looks too toy-like to me. There are as many ways to weather a locomotive as there are model railroad track plans! I want to show you a quick way to make your engines look less toy-like. It’s…

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