Matt's First Garden Railway

Gavin Sowry

Garden Railroader and Raconteur
27 Oct 2009
Hutt Valley, NZ
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Good advice on that tool, thanks! That will definitely be useful for trouble shooting, I'll try to track one down.

One of the first things I learned after buying this train was REA=Aristrocraft, and shortly afterwards Aristocraft=out of business. Bit of a bummer. On that note, I think it may be challenging to standardize everything I buy to Aristocraft couplers since they'll eventually get hard to find. What's a good alternative for an operating knuckle coupler? Bachmann perhaps? I know Kadee is popular, but honestly I'm not a huge fan; I like the operating knuckle like you find on a Lionel train.
I haven't studied the newer Bachmann offerings of ex Aristo gear in fine detail, sneaky suspicion that they are still using the Aristo coupler, well at least they show in the advertising photos.
Mr Lehmann (LGB) to his credit, left his coupler mount system to the public domain, and is basically industry standard. When you get to go to running days, often the early activity is swapping an end coupler from one brand to another, so that you can join up with others. In reality, I actually have a few spare trucks/bogies with different couplers, as the trucks are faster to change over, one larger screw, rather than the smaller one that you will drop on the ground, and not find again.
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Model Railroading, boats and oil painting,
6 Jul 2013
Northampton UK
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Welcome Matt,great to see the younger modelers coming on board,:clap::clap::clap::clap:


19 Jun 2021
Michigan, USA
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It's been a while since my last update, but that's because finishing the trackwork was delayed due to summer college courses. With those finally out of the way I got things finished. In the meantime I've also acquired an Aristo B&O bobber caboose to compliment my little consist. I'll be preparing a running video once I've got a few little cosmetic things repaired on the engine. For now, here's some pics of the finished trackage. Despite some concerns, this gravel seems to have locked in the ties very solidly. Also, everything seems to have settled nicely after a few major thunderstorms last week.