I think adding the model railroad is a good thing for the museum. There are many that enjoy model railroading and I would think it would bring additional visitors and volunteers. The museum has added a wide variety of specialties ( now including diesel buses) so I think a model railroad fits in to the transportation theme well. I look forward to seeing it.
I think this will be a great addition. Realize that there are people who are not mechanically inclined that want to volunteer their time to the museum. There will be plenty to do just to move and set up that will need the involvement of several volunteers.
I'd jump on this if I lived closer to IRM.
Acquiring this imense layout is just as important as any locomotive, train car, electric car or trolley coach at the museum.
Just becuase you may not be into model railroading, doesn't mean that thousands and even millions of other people aren't.
I fully support this project and am contributing some of my own time to work on this project.
I am happy that the Museum is going to make this work! In talking with Lavone (the owner of the layout) months ago, before this was all put into motion, her concern and her wish was that it would go to someone, or someplace that would get to enjoy it as much as her husband Stan did with all of their friends. He would be VERY proud that we (as a Museum) are going to host his display. Think of the kids, the people that it will benefit, and let's not ever lose track of that.. it will add so much to our museum. I am excited that it will continue to move forward, and I can't wait to see the final production of it. I think we ought to invite Lavone and her family down to the Museum when it is done, and have a Grand Opening! Maybe this could be something we could tie in with our 60th Anniversary that we are having in 2013??! Wouldn't that be pretty cool!
Is the layout DC, or DCC? What was the previous owners "home road?" I think it's great that IRM will now have a model layout too. May pose a problem as some of our members may NEVER leave now.
The layout is wired for DCC. We are also getting the power supplies, boosters, power district hardware and throttles. I believe the throttles are plugged into the fascia, and so provide for walkaround control to follow your train.
For the visitors who are not railroad historians this will be a great introduction to what railroading was. Then when they wander the grounds, the preserved equipment will suddenly make sense of what it did, instead of just feeling like big cold steel and wood something or others. Also, it will be an attraction for those not able to walk the entire grounds, who otherwise may feel left out of the IRM experience. In theme park business terms, it will be another easily acessible inter active experience for guests, who pay for the privilege of visiting the attraction.
The layout looks very well done. Lets hope in comes apart easily for movement. Also I hope the move isn't too rough on it. It will be a very welcome exhibit. There used to be a club with a large HO layout in the Green Bay, Wisconsin museum. The then director of the museum kicked the club and layout off the grounds and many visitors missed seeing the layout, even if it wasn't running. This layout should be a win-win for IRM.
Jim, The Layout has been dismantled and moved to an Ilinois location for storage. The layout was cut into transportable size modules. It was a difficult thing to do, dismantling a layout that took so many years of hard work to build. I was a member of the dismantling group. I am an IRM member and former Trolley Bus Department volunteer. My "volunteership" is limbo at the present time, so who ever can use my services as an IRM volunteer, let me know.
I'm an IRM member who lives up in Minnesota. I have an HO Guage Digitrax DCC powered layout at home. My interests are primarily the railroads which operated between Minneapolis and Chicago, i.e., CB&Q, C&NW and the Milwaukee Road. If I can be of any assistance on the model railroad project, please contact me. I'd really enjoy helping out!