Allen McClelland’s Inspiration and Techniques

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Duration: 6:07

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When Allen McClelland built the new version of his Virginian and Ohio, Gauley Subdivision model railroad, Allen Keller wondered if he tried to duplicate anything from the older version. Allen McClelland pulled inspo from the western end of the original and began moving on west from there. He can run some of the same trains and use the same equipment in the same era of 1975.

The philosophy is the same between the layouts, but a lot of the materials have changed as well as the building and scenery techniques. The new layout features a more narrow shelf, with a more linear approach. Keeping the shelves narrower helped save Allen time for doing the scenery. Allen is very well known for his linear layout, though he does not think he was the first to model one. On top of less scenery, the benefit of a more linear layout is that it is easy to operate and follow your trains.

Although this is the end for the layout, there are a number of things on the layout that are incomplete, one being the scenery and the other is getting the motive power rebuilt. Several other people are modeling the V&O. In fact, a few are his friends and will use some of his equipment and have let Allen help on some portions of their layouts.

Otto Brauer is a V&O Historical Society member who has tried to model the V&O but in Ohio during the steam era, in June of 1950. He believes the V&O legacy will live on forever. Allen Keller goes on to ask Allen McClelland about his past in the hobby and the trains he had when he was younger.

Watch more from Allen Keller’s Great Model Railroads in the Model Railroad Academy archives.