The Lakeside Lines model railroad layout of Tom Harris runs between Chicago and Norfolk, Virginia in 1979. The model portion of this HO scale layout runs through only one Virginia town, North Franklin. Model railroading is a family affair. Outside the house, Tom’s wife Karen has built her own G scale railroad on the front lawn. Tom’s layout consists of a 2.5-mile yard and a 2-mile staging yard. He built this huge yard so he could have full size trains of 80 cars, big curbs and long sidings with no compromise.
Allen Keller is with Tom Harris and his Lakeside Line, standing in North Franklin Yard. When you go to watch trains, the yard is where the action is, so Tom wanted to have as much access as possible in North Franklin. North Franklin Yard is divided into two sub yards. The West yard classifies cars as the destination. The East yard blocks them in order of delivery, and contains both an arrival and departure track. The layout is 24 by 40 feet in a 28 by 44 foot basement. The oval shaped staging yard sits behind the backdrop and encircles the land. Train 103 is leaving the staging yard.
Watch more from Allen Keller’s Great Model Railroads series in the Model Railroad Academy archives.