Gary Hoover

Inspiration and Techniques on the Missouri, Kansas & Quincy

Gary Hoover
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Duration:   5  mins

Gary Hoover has a very different approach to designing a layout. The Missouri, Kansas and Quincy runs from Chicago to California, but his model only shows parts of the journey using selected scenes. Hoover really liked to build scenery, so when he was designing the layout in 1985, he couldn’t really decide which type of scenery he wanted to build – mountains or plains. This is why he decided to build all types. He modeled from Chicago to the West Coast, doing plains, mountains, oceans, and deserts. This diversity also makes the trains seem like they are covering vast areas of land. Scenery is something he finds the most important on a railroad, having good realistic and varied scenery. Hoover didn’t want a railroad that was all mountain or desert, he wanted to mix it up a bit.

The different types of scenery are challenging in their own unique ways. His scenes are very much like independent modules. Each particular scene is almost a view block in itself. Hoover tries to seperate the scenes from the previous scenes, so nothing runs into each other. Walls or breaks are used to space them out by feet, creating a separation between geographical areas. On top of his love for scenery, he loves photography. Hoover has become famous for the photographs he has taken for model railroad magazines throughout the years. Hoover goes on to show some of his scenery techniques to get the look he has achieved.

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