PAGE 18 – OCTOBER 2003



This is a photo of an English micro layout being built in a box file in OO scale (16.5mm gauge)! It’s called Melbridge Box Co. and is under construction by Phil Parker of the Double O Gauge Association. The little line demonstrates the kinds of layouts that meet the challenge of building a OO layout in a box file. That’s the object of the competition sponsored by the Association and chaired by Phil. More details are available at the Association’s website.

Phil’s work in progress is shown in some more photos below, mostly taken from his web page. It’s not an entry in the challenge, but makes a wonderful demonstration layout. A box file, by the way, measures roughly 10x14x3 inches. The competition is open to worldwide entrants, who need not be present to win. Phil will take care of postal entries–make contact with him through his web site to learn more.


The photo above is one of those shots that is worth well over 1,000 words! The rules specify that buildings most fit within the box when the lid is closed. This photo show Phil’s solution — removable roofs and upper stories, all of which fit comfortably in the box when the lid is closed!



What does a model railroader give or get for Christmas? Here’s a delicious idea! This birthday cake was created for Kelly Ann Feller on her third birthday by her mother, Amy Dawn Feller. Amy’s the daughter of Dick “Traincrazy” Chapple, a long-time model railroader, who obviously raised her right. They all live in Hardin, Montana.

The layout measures 34×7 inches, and is built to Large Scale. The 0-6-0 loco is freelance, by Amy. What a good idea for a model railroader’s Christmas treat!


tintoy1While cleaning out some cupboards, Alexander Kells, who lives in England, found this delightful windup tin toy which he had almost forgotten about. It’s a Chinese copy of a Russian toy, and would make a marvelous railroading gift. The toy measures 9.5×4.5×2.75 inches (24×11.5×7 cm) — definitely a micro layout! Alexander even pointed out an online source of these toys — Hawkin’s Bazaar.









pulgas2Las Pulgas, a 4×4 foldup HO layout under construction by Jeff Hartmann, from Long Beach, California, fulfills an often-expressed need. The visible layout section is 2×4 feet and will be set in southern California in the 1890’s. The modeled part represents the end of a double track main line shared by both Santa Fe and Southern Pacific trains.

The folding section on the back is also 2×4 feet, and folds down when not in use (at right). It has no scenery and trackage includes the main lines and some additional tracks that will serve as part of the yard and as staging tracks. It will be possible using the various tracks to run three trains at once – each on its own loop of track.

Jeff comments, “The station on the layout is named after a siding on the Santa Fe (now the BNSF) that is just north of Oceanside. The siding is named ‘Las Pulgas.’ I looked up the word in a Spanish – English dictionary and found that it means ‘The Fleas’! I thought that this was a bit funny so I used the name on the layout.”

For more information on this delightful small layout — and to follow construction progress — check Jeff’s website.



Carl Arendt

Webmaster Carl Arendt died on March 4, 2011 in Olympia, Washington. Carl came to Pittsburgh to attend Carnegie Mellon where he graduated with a degree in physics and met Sheila, his wife of 49 years. Carl started work for Westinghouse Electric Corporation where he spent his entire career. During this time, he and Sheila raised their three sons. Following retirement from Westinghouse, Carl threw himself into the world of micro-railroading. In 2002 he started this web site, and authored three books on the subject. This web site attracted a large worldwide following, and Carl built up a collection of friends who came to know and respect him even though most had never met him in person. Such was his personality that it shone through across the ether. He and Sheila moved to Olympia in 2009 to be close to their son Giles and his family, where Carl enjoyed time with his three grandchildren. His wit, erudition, and creativity made this true gentleman a joy to be with, in both the real and the virtual world. This site is a trove of microlayout ideas and examples, and so long as it continues will keep Carl's memory alive and further the hobby he loved.

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1 Response

  1. gary hansberry says:

    I was stationed at Camp Pendleton from 1955 to 1957. ! was in the 7th Marine regiment which was at Camp Las Pulgas .

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