Gary Hoover’s second layout, the Santa Fe is in the basement. The old Missouri, Kansas, and Quincy layout ran from Chicago to California. Allen Keller asks him what the route of the new backdated Santa Fe layout follows. It is still pretty much the same route as the old layout, starting in Chicago and ending in San Bernardino California, in between running through Cajon, Mexico.
Everything on the current layout compared with the old layout is prototypical. His old layout was basically complete, so Allen Keller wonders why he would tear out a beautiful layout to start another. The old layout didn’t have very much operational potential to it, while the current is designed to be more of an operating layout. There is still plenty of scenery but he wanted to be able to get in more operating.
Allen Keller wonders why he decided to backdate his new layout. Gary had done some backdating on this first layout and found modeling and photographs of the time a lot more interesting, especially as there was steam and first generation diesel. He thought at one point to keep main benchwork up and backdate the layout from there, but he then became interested in modeling a specific prototype which wouldn’t have worked with the original railroad.
He picked a specific day to model, August 29, 1951. When he was researching what he wanted to build, he went through various magazines and picked out some of the aspects that were important for him to have in his layout. He goes on to discuss what these goals were. For more Allen Keller videos, visit the Model Railroad Academy archives.