Clinics

Clinics

Clinics Chair
PCR – Dave SilverStreak Bayless
FRRS – Eugene Vicknair
drf2019clinics@pcrnmra.org

This page last updated: April 23, 2019

Diamond Rails Forever PCR/FRRS Joint 2019 clinic program will feature presentations by talented modelers, authors, and experts in every field of model railroading. The clinics will vary in presentation style and some will include hands-on learning. We’re lining up presenters from all over the PCR and FRRS and even a few from beyond. Whatever your interest, we’ll have the clinic for you.

Diamond Rails Forever 2019 clinics will be presented Thursday through Saturday from morning to evening.
Photo by John Sing

Clinics and Presenters

This list is is now pretty close to final though there is always the possibility of last minute changes. The following is the schedule of dates and locations. The FRRS Track list and schedule are provided below.

PCR Track

Thursday, May 2, 2019

  • Jim Collins – Using AnyRail to Design a Module Track Plan – The Basics
    (Thurs. 8:30–9:30am) Red Room
    This clinic will consist of a discussion/demonstration on using the layout design program, AnyRail, using a modular layout already completed. One of two modules will be brought/used to show how the plan was finally laid out.
  • Paul Hobbs – Business Cars, Private Cars
    (Thurs. 8:30–9:30am) Madison Room
    Railroad business cars have been in service from near the beginning of steam railroading, known to be on the roster of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad in 1855, before the Civil War. In 1863 the United States Military Railroads built a 4-truck car for their CEO – President Lincoln. He felt it was too ornate and did not use it, but his body was carried home in 1865 aboard the car. Business cars were at their most numerous in the 1920s, about 900 cars, representing less than 1.5% of the passenger car fleet. The role of business cars has evolved, several among the fleets of present day railroads as exquisitely maintained sales tools and inspection vehicles. There were specialist cars for instruction, pay, display, religious evangelism and circus transportation. Private cars were the corporate jets of earlier times. Often configured similar to business cars, they were the transports of the rich and famous. Today’s private cars are restored members of the heavyweight and streamlined fleets, many available for charter. Modeling these cars can be an interesting kitbash project, or a brass model purchase. We will explore all these elements and more.
  • Neil Fernbaugh – Hands On Weathering Clinic
    (Thurs. 8:30–9:30am) Mess Hall
    Bring your own rolling stock or structure and try out a real variety of weathering techniques. We provide the tools, brushes, powders and make-up. We will even have a few extra cars lying around if you’ve forgotten to bring your own. Prior application of a coat of Dull-coat is suggested but not required. Come and share your own techniques and try a few of ours.
  • Phil Gulley – 3D Printing for Model Railroaders
    (Thurs. 10:00–11:00am) Red Room
    This clinic will explore the fabulous tool of 3D printing for Model Railroaders. I will talk about different types of 3D printers available, making 3D models and how it is done as well as what have I learned along the way. I will have some examples of my 3D prints for attendees to see up close and conduct an open discussion, Q&A session at the end.
  • Earl Girbovan – Fences for Your Layout (Part 1 – Wood Fences)
    (Thurs. 10:00–11:00am) Madison Room
    Fences are an often overlooked detail. This clinic will demonstrate ways of adding wire, horizontal rail and vertical board fences and similar details easily and inexpensively. Various commercial products and their cost and trade-offs will be discussed. Next we’ll talk briefly about various web sites for prototype reference. Then we’ll do a live demonstration of making and installing the various types of fencing. This will focus on methods of work to make the process fast and easy. Additional topics that will be touched on include weathering wood, peeling paint, details and integration into scenery. You’ll leave the clinic with ideas and techniques that can be immediately applied to your layout.
  • Randy Pfeiffer – Layout Design with 3rd Planit CAD, Part I
    (Thurs. 11:30am–12:30pm) Red Room
    I have been writing and supporting 3rd PlanIt layout design CAD software since 1997. LDSIG attendees have an opportunity to learn about its general use in layout design and advanced features of particular interest to the Special Interest Group. A unique one-time discount will be offered to new purchasers.
  • Earl Girbovan – Fences for Your Layout (Part 2 – Metal Fences)
    (Thurs. 11:30am–12:30pm) Madison Room
    Chain link fences were a common sight from the early 1900’s up to today. This clinic will cover basic chain link fence construction, barbed wire, razor wire, construction screening and slat fences. We’ll start by reviewing some of the commercially available products, and then move onto scratchbuilt fencing. This will be a hands-on demonstration of methods of work. Jig construction, soldering techniques, attaching the mesh, integrating into the layout and details will be covered. Gates for these fences have been made operational and we’ll present techniques for doing so. You’ll leave the clinic with ideas and techniques that can be immediately applied to your layout.
  • Klaus Keil – Inexpensive Inter-modal Container Models
    (Thurs. 2:00–3:00pm) Red Room
    In this clinic, Klaus will acquaint you with the history of containers, their types and dimensions, domestic and European transporter stock, off-rail uses, construction drawings and methods and required tools and materials. Your cost per model most likely will be about 15% less compared to “over the counter” purchases.
  • Robert Pethoud – Cheap and Easy Trees
    (Thurs. 2:00–3:00pm) Madison Room
    Nearly all model railroads would benefit from having more trees. This clinic will present two inexpensive and simple methods for building them from scratch. Furnace filter and bamboo skewers will be combined to make conifers, while florist wire will be used to create deciduous types.
  • Jesse Walden – An Operating System for Smaller Layouts
    (Thurs. 3:30–4:30pm) Red Room
    I do not have a 300 foot mainline layout that is prototypically accurate but enjoy the logic and disciple of an operating system to move cars and trains around. This clinic will explore the setting up and layout operation using a modified waybill system. In addition it will introduce the concepts of train cards and the incorporation of operator instructions and customized speed limits without the need for a separate set of documents.
  • Denis Drury – Cheap and Easy ABS Signaling For Your Railroad
    (Thurs. 3:30–4:30pm) Madison Room
    In this clinic you’ll learn just how easy it is to have a prototypical Automatic Block Signaling (ABS) system for your model railroad. You’ll learn about both hardware and software implementations. Best of all, there is no computer or programming involved. I will walk you through step by step how to configure and install the system, from detection to signal logic to the signals themselves, it will all be covered. We’ll talk about 3 and 4 aspect systems as well as approach lighting. Oh, and did I mention no computer needed?
  • Paul Deis – Tuning Up Your Rolling Stock for Reliable Operation
    (Thurs. 5:00–6:00pm) Red Room
    Are you plagued with derailments? Do you have trouble with couplers? Does your rolling stock wobble down the track? What steps can you take to improve the reliability of your rolling stock? Come spend some time with me as we discuss easy steps you can take. I will describe methods I use and the tools I have found helpful.
  • Irwin Nathanson – Miniature Wunderland versus Gulliver’s Gate
    (Thurs. 5:00–6:00pm) Madison Room
    Miniatur Wunderland is the largest model train layout in the world located in Hamburg, Germany. Gulliver’s Gate recently opened in New York City. This clinic compares the two with a focus on Wunderland. This presentation has been well- received at recent Northeastern Region conventions. Note to attendees: time required is 90 minutes.
  • Steve Moore – 2019 National NMRA Convention Preview
    (Thurs. 7:30–8:30pm) Red Room
    Steve is the Co-Chairman for the 2019 NMRA National Convention in Salt Lake City
    We will preview some of the great things at the 2019 National NMRA Convention in Salt Lake City. We have so much to offer. It’s the 150th Anniversary of the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad at Promontory, Utah. Great prototype tours, world class layout tours, more than 150 clinics, special guests of the world famous Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square, the world’s largest family history library, and non-rail / general interest tours and activities the whole family will enjoy.
  • Al Turnbull – Trees, Trees, and Stuff
    (Thurs. 7:30–8:30pm) Madison Room
    This clinic will attempt to show the different types of foliage and trees with examples of some of the techniques with and emphasis on “bottle brush” pines and how to make them.
  • Thomas Blinn – Wiring Your Layout for JMRI – Do’s and Don’ts
    (Thurs. 9:00–10:00pm) Red Room
    I will look at wiring your layout for JMRI control system from converting over from an existing layout and from one that has not been started. I will address the installation of detectors, linking switch machines to JMRI, panel(s) development, configuring the tables (sensors, turnouts, etc.), developing data files and how to keep track of things.
    I will have Power Point slides of the best way and location to mount equipment, running wire, troubleshooting, and designing where to put what. My experiences in doing thing incorrectly hopefully will allow viewers to not make the same mistakes. My data is drawn from converting a 9 year old, 20×20 foot layout with 250 feet of mainline track and 100 turnouts into a JMRI controlled layout with a dispatcher’s desk and video displays (TVs, IPads, and smart phones).
  • Al Turnbull – Basic Scenery Tips and Techniques
    (Thurs. 9:00–10:00pm) Madison Room
    A beginner type class that shows how to achieve the ‘magic’ of making a railroad. Will show examples of different methods of constructing, painting and adding the elements that make the scene come to life.

Friday, May 3, 2019

  • David Clemens – Mainline to Shortline: Creating the Camas Prairie Railroad
    (Fri. 8:30–9:30am) Sacramento Room (301)
    In preparation for the NMRA 2011 National Convention here in Sacramento I built the Idaho-Montana Railway & Navigation Company representing the Union Pacific and Milwaukee Road in the Spokane Washington Area. This joint UP/MILW railroad compressed 40-miles of trackage rights railroading into 200-feet of mainline on 2-1/2 decks in a 14-1/2 by 18-1/2 foot space. The Convention experience highlighted the lack of “people space” for visitors and operators. After mulling solutions I tore down a three deck peninsula, opening a 10 by 10-foot people space. With the peninsula gone, the design effort began on my third iteration of the Camas Prairie Railroad, a northern Idaho shortline jointly owned by the UP and Northern Pacific. This clinic will discuss the decision-making process, design, and layout reconstruction.
  • Paul Hobbs – TTX – An Unnoticed Giant
    (Fri. 8:30–9:30am) Placer Room (302)
    Trailer Train was formed in 1955, with three railroad owners, to provide a pool of flat cars for the growing Trailer on Flat Car (TOFC) business. Within a few years emerging Autorack and Container traffic also needed flat cars. Owning railroads reached 38 (mergers have reduced that to 9 today). Business grew and equipment evolved. Today TTX, now a billion dollar per year business, owns the largest fleet in North America at near 200,000 cars. A number of cars are for specialized loadings, from aircraft fuselages, agricultural and military equipment, to centerbeams for lumber and finger racks for rebar.
    We will review the history and show examples of the varied fleet.
  • Robert Pethoud – Building and Operating a Shelf Layout
    (Fri. 10:00–11:00am) Sacramento Room (301)
    Many of us begin model railroading on a 4×8 sheet of plywood before graduating to something more expansive. What if, instead, we go smaller? Experiences designing, building, and operating Fall Creek Branch reveal how much fun can be shoehorned into an area less than half of that plywood sheet.
  • Bob Chaparro – Citrus Industry Operations
    (Fri. 10:00–11:00am) Placer Room (302)
    This clinic covers railroad perishable operations with an emphasis on the Southern California citrus industry, including refrigerator car preparation, loading, in-transit servicing, routing, and delivery. We also will touch on packing houses, how a perishable train is assembled, support facilities, mechanical vs. ice bunker cars, what is done with returning refrigerator cars and railroad traffic and operations which support citrus traffic. The presentation will focus on the years 1910 to 1971.
  • Gary Ray – Prototype Model Railroad Planning, Design, and Operation
    (Fri. 11:30am–12:30pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    Prototype research techniques and tools used to plan a layout, then using CAD software for design. Steps taken to print out full size plans and build my 1400 sq. ft. mushroom style layout depicting the 1926 SP Gerber Sub designed for operations.
    Topics include planning for people, yard planning, staging design, LDE’s, construction techniques, controls and how they enhance operation, comfort and info for operators, using JMRI Ops and Manifest Creator for generating switchlists. Also concerns as layout started regular operations and how they were solved. This clinic will appeal to a wide audience whether planning, building, or operating a layout.
  • Chris Palermo – Mid-Century Modern Structures for the Transition-Era Layout
    (Fri. 11:30am–12:30pm) Placer Room (302)
    Updated for 2019, this clinic presents the vocabulary of mid-Century Modern architecture (hint: it’s not Streamlined Moderne) in the US in the transition era, for buildings with connections to industry or railroads, and then surveys currently available kits in HO, N and O scales. A kitbashing project based on a 2018 structure release will be shown. While many layouts are set in the transition era, few feature mid-century architecture, though this style was widespread, especially in the West.
  • Randy Pfeiffer – Layout Design with 3rd PlanIt CAD, Part II
    (Fri. 2:00–3:00pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    I have been writing and supporting 3rd PlanIt layout design CAD software since 1997. LDSIG attendees have an opportunity to learn about its general use in layout design and advanced features of particular interest to the Special Interest Group. A unique one-time discount will be offered to new purchasers.
  • Walt Schedler – Backdrops for the Colusa Shasta Division
    (Fri. 2:00–3:00pm) Placer Room (302)
    This clinic will cover how I make Backdrop Scenery: Choices, Techniques and materials for the Colusa SP Shasta DIv. circa 1955.
    Painting with the “Mighty Brush” might surprise you.
  • Paul Weiss – Blood, Sweat, Tears, and Lumber.
    (Fri. 3:30–4:30pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    One man’s bucket list journey from a 120 sq. ft. bedroom layout to over 1200 sq. ft. Approximately 2.5 years ago we acquired a stand-alone building in which we wanted to build an authentic TT&TO based operating HO scale railroad based on (of course) a prototype. We chose the Central Vermont. Here is the story of the journey to a large layout and lessons learned for designers and operators.
  • Frank Markovich, MMR – Using A Prototype As Inspiration For A Private Road Name
    (Fri. 3:30–4:30pm) Placer Room (302)
    I model a fictional RR based off of the West Side Lumber Company. I will cover what I did and how I used West Side Lumber as my main inspiration. Parallels will be covered. Also I will talk about construction techniques, what I learned and what I would do differently.
  • Jon Schmidt – Car Movement on the Central Vermont Using JMRI
    (Fri. 5:00–6:00pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    The Central Vermont in Novato is a large model railroad depicting the Southern Division of the CV in 1956. With 13 towns, multiple yards, interchanges, staging, almost 100 industrial spurs and around 600 cars, there is a lot to keep track of. To add to the challenge, the team wants prototypical car flow based on the prototype’s train schedules. This clinic will discuss how we are attempting to make that happen with JMRI Operations. It will talk about techniques and tricks used, and lessons learned.
  • Jim Zeek – Box Factories
    (Fri. 5:00–6:00pm) Placer Room (302)
    For centuries wood was preferred among two principal materials for transporting goods, including agricultural products. The wooden box allowed fragile and perishable products to reach a market place in saleable condition. It was also a boon to loggers and wood product manufacturers as it provided a market for lumber that was unsuitable or unsaleable for more esthetic or demanding purposes. This clinic focuses on the S.G. Beach company, a modest size box factory which not only supplied a very large local packing house’ entire shipping container needs, it sent railcar and truck loads throughout California’s agricultural regions. This clinic uses photographs from the presenter’s collection and experience as a machine operator in the plant for illustration.
  • David Parks – LCC Essentials for the Beginner
    (Fri. 7:30–8:30pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    A basic description of the NMRA’s new Layout Command Control standard. The fundamentals of LCC networking from a user perspective. Topics include the purpose of LCC, user benefits, event and state concepts, and how to construct elementary applications.
  • Jim Zeek – Modeling Sawmills for Operations
    (Fri. 7:30–8:30pm) Placer Room (302)
    Clover Valley Lumber Co., Loyalton, CA was a typically vertically integrated wood products manufacturer from 1904 to the early 21st century during which time it bore several different names under its owners and is representative of all those similar firms nationwide in their operations with respect to rail operations, both internal and external. The clinic covers the most relevant topics in logging, physical plant layout, lumber manufacturing, other wood products, shipping and destinations for products. In addition, typical materials and supplies received and their origins will be noted throughout the presentation. Illustrations are from your clinician’s collection and draws on his being the last of four generations in forest products industry, education at Oregon State University College of Forestry and experience as a laborer at Feather River Lumber Co. (AKA Clover Valley) and machine operator at Michigan-California/Sierra Pacific Industries Camino, CA.
  • Gregory Madsen – A More Prototypical Approach to Car Forwarding Software
    (Fri. 9:00–10:00pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    Traditional computer- based approaches to car forwarding on a model railroad can easily generate lots of activity, however the car movements are often random rather than being along a specific route to fulfill a prototypical shipment. These unrealistic car movements are a common criticism of such programs. Individual Car Cards and Way Bills (CC WB) on the other hand, can easily represent the richness of prototype shipments, but they require a lot of manual work to create, modify, use, and set up between operating sessions. This clinic will discuss the progress on a new computer program I have written to overcome both of these limitations. The goal was to maintain the richness of the prototypical shipment- based CC/WB system while eliminating all of its manual set up work between sessions. By simulating multiple days, it is easy to compare different operating scenarios as it is all just data inside a computer program. This is very useful for tuning car traffic on an existing layout and can even influence new or expanded layout design by simulating a layout before it is even built.
  • Al Turnbull – DC/DCC Wiring
    (Fri. 9:00–10:00pm) Placer Room (302)
    An explanation of DC and DCC electronics with methods of wiring a layout or converting from DC to DCC.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

  • Bob Chaparro – Right of Way and Trackside Details
    (Sat. 8:30–9:30am) Sacramento Room (301)
    Exploring the use of details as a means to make your layout a more complete, interesting and unique model railroad environment. Details add realism, completeness and atmosphere beyond the trains and structures, convey to visitors this is a miniature transportation system, reinforce prototype or freelance railroad practice, andare simple and sometimes subtle. Many photographic examples of prototype details will be presented.
  • Michael Eldridge – Laser Cut Building and Kit Development – from Concept to Finished Model
    (Sat. 8:30–9:30am) Placer Room (302)
    This clinic will describe the steps involved in getting from the idea to a finished model, including choosing a project that the laser will do well, software choices, materials, choosing a laser cutter or service, and the business aspects of producing a kit for sale.
  • Ed Hall, MMR 242 – Basic Airbrushing
    (Sat. 10:00–11:00am) Sacramento Room (301)
    Ed will discuss where the airbrush originated, different types of brushes, taping techniques, and the difference between paints. It will be a good learning experience for novice and expert alike.
  • Chip Meriam – Forms, Signs, and More
    (Sat. 10:00–11:00am) Placer Room (302)
    Using an electronic spreadsheet to create and print timetables, train orders, waybills, signs, logos, and more.
  • Randy Pfeiffer – Layout Design with 3rd PlanIt CAD, Part III
    (Sat. 11:30am–12:30pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    I have been writing and supporting 3rd PlanIt layout design CAD software since 1997. LDSIG attendees have an opportunity to learn about its general use in layout design and advanced features of particular interest to the Special Interest Group. A unique one-time discount will be offered to new purchasers.
  • Ed Merrin – Layout Photography: Seeking the Look of the Prototype
    (Sat. 11:30am–12:30pm) Placer Room (302)
    In previous clinics Ed has discussed issues of composition, depth of field, and lighting as well as choice of equipment for taking photographs of model railroad layouts. Using cell phone cameras with focus stacking to mimic the look of photos of actual prototype subjects was introduced, and this technique will be explored in more depth. Comparisons with results from using more traditional cameras are included in order to help determine which type of camera is best for specific types of scenes. All of this will be tied in to the basic photographic principles introduced in the earlier clinics.
  • Chris Palermo – Modeling Roads – Three Techniques Demonstrated
    (Sat. 2:00–3:00pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    Every layout needs at least one road and effective road modeling
    will both delight visitors and improve your score in the Master Builder – Scenery component of NMRA’s Achievement Program. This clinic will demonstrate three different techniques for building a rutted rural road, an asphalt road, and a concrete city road. Complete materials lists will be provided and detailing (roads are structure models too!) will be discussed, including detail sources.
  • Gary Ray – The Butte County Railroad
    (Sat. 2:00–3:00pm) Placer Room (302)
    A presentation about the early production of lumber in Butte County (100 miles north of Sacramento) at the turn of the 20th century. Much of the clinic tells the 1902 history of the Butte County Railroad which ran from Barber (Chico), CA, thirty-two miles to Stirling City climbing over 3300′. The clinic will discuss the railroad’s relationship with Diamond Match Company and the match making process. Both match making and railroad equipment are featured including the last passenger train that ran on what eventually became a Southern Pacific branch line.
  • David Fryman – Remotely-Controlled Electromagnetic Uncoupler
    (Sat. 3:30–4:30pm) Sacramento Room (301)
    Presenting a design for a remotely operated electromagnetic uncoupler. This design does not involve a large coil generating a magnetic field, but instead uses a small 12 volt, 1 amp solenoid to raise and lower a horizontal stack of neodymium magnets. It involves a few stock parts (mostly from eBay) and a few easily-fabricated parts (bits of wood and plastic cut from stock materials). This is an electric uncoupler, (as opposed to electronic), and is DCC compatible with the addition of a stationary decoder to drive it; however, the cost is less than $5.00, very inexpensive.
  • Jeff Allen – A Model Railroad in a Math Classroom
    (Sat. 3:30–4:30pm) Placer Room (302)
    The Park Day Railway uses the design, construction, and operation of a large around-the-walls model railroad as a vehicle for making middle school math vivid, fun, and engaging. There are so many facets to capture the attention of young minds: engineering, commerce, logistics, history, geology, electronics, animation, architecture, and on and on. Each year students expand the layout: this year we’re adding a branch line to serve a produce packing district featuring reefer icing operations, and a car float to bring interchange traffic.

FRRS Track

Thursday, May 2, 2019

  • Kerry Cochran – Modeling WP MoW Equipment
    (Thurs. 10:00–11:00am) Mess Hall
    How to model Western Pacific Maintenance of Way cars in HO scale.
  • Greg Elems – Tidewater Southern’s Last Years Under WP
    (Thurs. 11:30am–12:30pm) Mess Hall
    Starting with some pictures of 746 and 747, Greg looks at the progression of WP power used on subsidiary Tidewater Southern, as well as the variety of power and rare visitors that made the TS so interesting. The TS was almost like a model railroad with an unlimited variety of units used for day to day work.
  • Zephyrettes – Meet and Greet
    (Thurs. 1:00–2:00pm) Overlook (Upstairs)
    Daily session where convention attendees can meet with the women who worked the California Zephyr.
  • Eugene Vicknair – Sierra Survivor: The Quincy Railroad
    (Thurs. 2:00–3:00pm) Mess Hall
    A look at the history of the Quincy Railroad and its relationship with the Western Pacific.
  • Ted Benson & Tom Taylor – Feather River Roots – Discovering the WP, 1965-70
    (Thurs. 3:30–4:30pm) Mess Hall
    During the summer of 1964, two teenagers from Modesto, California with a common interest in railroads and photography discovered they weren’t “the only wierdos around.” Becoming fast friends, they improved their skills, upgraded their cameras and transportation, and set out to explore the regional railroad scene, with a strong focus on the Western Pacific. Their travels took them across much of the WP system in northern California before real life intervened after college. This is a story of discovery and adventures shared in the process of learning about life and the lasting value of friendship.
  • Ken Rattenne – The West in Western Pacific
    (Thurs. 5:00–6:00pm) Mess Hall
    A tour of WP’s First Subdivision from San Francisco to Stockton through the auspices of the photography of Ken Rattenne and over a dozen other lensmen of the day.
  • Jeff Moore – McCloud River Railway
    (Thurs. 7:30–8:30pm) Mess Hall
    The history of the McCloud River and related railroad operations.
  • FRRS Archives – Virgil Staff Films
    (Thurs. 9:00–10:00pm) Mess Hall
    Films of the California Zephyr from the FRRS Archives – presented by Eugene Vicknair

Friday, May 3, 2019

  • Eugene Vicknair – Sierra Survivor: The Quincy Railroad
    (Fri. 8:30–9:30am) McClellan Room (307)
    A look at the history of the Quincy Railroad and its relationship with the Western Pacific.
  • Jeff Asay – How To Make A Small Fortune – George J. Gould and the Western Pacific
    (Fri. 10:00–11:00am) McClellan Room (307)
    The subject is about how Gould lost a lot of money and control of his railroad empire in the attempt to build and operate the Western Pacific Railway. I’ll talk about the mistakes he made and what he might have done to avoid loss of the railroad.
  • Kerry Cochran – Modeling WP MoW Equipment
    (Fri. 11:30am–12:30pm) McClellan Room (307)
    How to model Western Pacific Maintenance of Way cars in HO scale.
  • Zephyrettes Meet and Greet
    (Fri. 1:00–2:00pm) Cordova Room
    Daily session where convention attendees can meet with the women who worked the California Zephyr.
  • Jeff Asay – Book Signing
    (Fri. 1:30–2:30pm) WPRM Vendor Table
    Jeff is the author of several books about the UP,  the WP, and the Sacramento Northern and will be available for discussion and book signing.
  • Loren Dunlap – Last Call to Dinner – WP’s Dining Car Serviceware
    (Fri. 2:00–3:00pm) McClellan Room (307)
    A brief history of the known patterns and serviceware used on the Western Pacific passenger trains starting in 1910 and ending in 1970.
  • Warren Haack – Zephyr Films
    (Fri. 3:30–4:30pm) McClellan Room (307)
    Filmmaker Warren Haack of Catenary Video Productions presents a 35-minute video documenting the train running over the WP in the halcyon days of her life, featuring interviews with three former employees who worked aboard (Jack Starr, Ernie and Cathy von Ibsch). This video documents the reasons behind the cause that motivated the railroad to come up with a new class of rail transportation, and the results which are intercut with footage aboard the trains.
    Mark Williams – The “Zephyrette” RDCs
    (Fri. 5:00–6:00pm) McClellan Room (307)
    Budd’s Rail Diesel Cars were a very successful answer to several problems the nation’s railroads faced after the end of WWII. We’ll look at the history of the RDCs and focus particularly on Western Pacific’s special version of them, called the “Zephyrettes.” WP’s Zephyrettes ran the longest distance RDC service, 924 miles between Salt Lake City, UT and Oakland, CA in addition to excursion duties.
  • Ken Rattenne – The West in Western Pacific
    (Fri. 7:30–8:30pm) McClellan Room (307)
    A tour of WP’s First Subdivision from San Francisco to Stockton through the auspices of the photography of Ken Rattenne and over a dozen other lensmen of the day.
  • Greg Elems – Tidewater Southern’s Last Years Under WP
    (Thurs. 9:00–10:00pm) Mess Hall
    Starting with some pictures of 746 and 747, Greg looks at the progression of WP power used on subsidiary Tidewater Southern, as well as the variety of power and rare visitors that made the TS so interesting. The TS was almost like a model railroad with an unlimited variety of units used for day to day work.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

  • FRRS Archives – Virgil Staff Films
    (Sat. 8:30-9:30am) McClellan Room (307)
    Films of the California Zephyr from the FRRS Archives – presented by Eugene Vicknair
  • Mark Williams – History of the California Zephyr
    (Sat. 10:00–11:00am) McClellan Room (307)
    We’ll trace the history of the California Zephyr, CB&Q’s final great named passenger train, from its birth in the post-war boom years to its demise exactly twenty years later at the end of the classic passenger train era. We’ll delve into the background of the co-operation between the CB&Q, the DRGW, and the WP; along with the design of the cars, financing, and the publicity that surrounded “The Most Talked About Train In The Country”.
  • Janet Dawson – California Zephyr Murder Mysteries
    (Sat. 11:30am–12:30pm) McClellan Room (307)
    A discussion by the author on writing mystery books set onboard the California Zephyr.
  • Janet DawsonBook Signing
    (Sat. 12:45–1:45pm) WPRM Vendor Table
    Janet is the author of several CA Zephyr Murder Mysteries and will be available for discussion and book signing.
  • Catherine Moran von Ibsch – Zephyrettes on the Silver Lady – California Zephyr 1949–1970
    (Sat. 2:00–3:00pm) McClellan Room (307)
    “Familiar to all who rode the California Zephyr were the Zephyrettes. According to remarks of many passengers one of the nicest things about the famous train was the hostess, that ever-smiling and efficient young lady who rode the streamliner on its transcontinental run between Oakland and Chicago.” (Western Pacific Milepost 1950). Come learn what a life of a Zephyrette was all about.
  • FRRS Enthusiasts – California Zephyr Roundtable
    (Sat. 3:30–4:30pm) McClellan Room (307)
    A brief history of the California Zephyr followed by a question and answer session with former crew members including the Zephyrettes.

PCR – Dave SilverStreak Bayless
FRRS – Eugene Vicknair

Steve Moore – Title
(Thurs. time) Location