John Pryke

Overview of the New York, New Haven & Hartford

John Pryke
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Duration:   2  mins

In this video, Allen Keller will give an overview of the New York, New Haven & Hartford model railroad layout of John Pryke. The New Haven model railroad follows the line from New York to Boston in 1948. This HO scale railroad features three yards with short running distances between them. Passenger trains play a major role in the operation of the layout. Research is part of the fun for John as he works to create the feel of a class 1 operation with heavy running and lots of motive power. The line boasts many brass steam engines that John has scratch built. One of them is almost 40 years old and is still running. Everything is nicely weathered to reflect the post-war railroad.

Allen Keller asks John why he decided to create the New Haven model railroad. The New Haven was the first class 1 steam diesel railroad that John remembers. Being born in New York City, everything was electrified, but electric could never compete with the roaring of a steam engine. The New Haven model railroad is built on L girder benchwork with a minimum radius of 36 inches. All track is hand laid with super elevating curves. This island-style HO layout takes up 20 by 30 feet in John’s basement. The railroad gains running distance with a track plan that doubles back on itself, so, scenes that are visibly close may represent scenes that are actually many miles apart. The trip begins in South Boston. To watch more Allen Keller Videos or info on how to start planning your layout, visit the Model Railroad Academy archives.

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