Eddie Aycock’s Layout

Last Sunday, June 27, 2010, Amy and I visited Eddie Aycock’s layout, which is on Town Creek Drive, not Towncreek Drive as listed in the club roster.  This doesn’t matter unless you are trying to find it with Google Earth.  Operation is the name of the game as far as Eddie is concerned, which explains why he is so anxious to finish the upper track work on the club layout.  His layout is a point to point run from Houston to Dallas with reverse loops at each end.  According to the large printed signs identifying each town, trains leaving Houston pass through Spring, Magnolia, Navasota, Hearne with its large freight yard, Mexia, Corsicana, Rice, and Ennis on their way to Dallas.  Part of the sign for Magnolia can be seen in the next figure.

Although none of the scenery is finished on this fine open benchwork layout, industries are identified by printed signs like the sign for Oliver Oil and Gas in the upper right-hand side of the picture below.  Some of the cars in the Houston yard (below) have been the object of Eddie’s special attention with respect to weathering and appropriate loads. Notice the flatcar loads in particular. 

 

 

The two finely detailed Caterpillar machines that Eddie purchased earlier this week at the Sugarland N scale convention make an especially interesting flatcar load.

 

At first sight, the most remarkable feature of Eddie’s layout is the helix below made from structural foam at a very low cost.  Eddie has used foam throughout the layout and is a great believer in its usefulness.  If I am not mistaken, the foam risers in the helix come from Woodland Scenics.

 

The well-known computer program Rail Ops is used at operating sessions.  The small blue plastic pieces lying on the outer edge of the Hearne yard platform are used to identify which cars are to be moved in the next freight consist made up by the yard engineer at operating sessions.

The trackwork is exclusively by Kato, which has the very attractive feature of automatic switch machines concealed in the base of each turnout.  Anyone who has experienced as much trouble as I have with Peco switch machines will appreciate the convenience and the boon to operations provided by Kato.  The trackwork covers two levels in each of two rooms with staging tracks below the lower level.  Eddie is planning scenery for everything but the staging tracks.  The photo below shows more fine examples of Eddie Aycock’s large collection of N scale engines and cars. 

 

 

 

Tom Wayburn
Houston, Texas
July 1, 2010

Photos by Amy Wayburn