a ModelersLife

Everybody needs a video guy in today’s new world of social media, video plays a major role attracting customers and keeping everyone up to date on all the comings and goings of your favorite train manufacturer.

Rapido Trains has a guy and we here at the ole’ AML decided to get all the behind-the-scenes scoop on what it takes to create great videos, unfortunately we couldn’t find that guy, but we did find Rapido Jeremy.

So grab yourself a big bowl of shredded videotape, a tall glass of lens cleaning fluid and enjoy !!

Direct download: Episode_171__Jeremy_Fleming.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

Can’t get enough of ViewerMail, still trying to recover from last week’s flight. You’ve wanted to discover the deeper meaning of life and always wondered what “Uncle” Dave thinks. Still trying to figure out if Neil Erickson is Erik Neilson’s long-lost brother. Thinking about sneaking past  Michelle Kempema into the museum. Dreaming of spending a day trackside with Rodger Coleman. Hoping you’re on Ken Zieska’s Christmas list. Waiting for James Henry to give you a ride to Deshler, Nebraska??

We’ll talk to management but won’t make any promises until Andy Ambrose promises to write shorter posts with smaller words but in the meantime here’s a special episode of ViewerMail just for you. So grab yourself a big bowl of shredded manila envelopes, a tall glass of washer fluid and enjoy !!

Direct download: ViewerMail_Flight_-_82.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

In the words of Ed Sullivan, in the heart of Manhattan, on any Sunday night half a century ago, it’s time for a “really big shoe.” This week we talk with one of the AML Nation’s favorite artists who’d just released a new print.

Check out Bob’s latest work here: https://www.olddepotgallery.com 

Plus we chat with our old friend “Mr. Fitness,” as we criss-cross the nation looking for the latest news that’s only a few months old.

So grab yourself a big bowl of shredded artist canvas, a tall cool glass of burnt umber and enjoy!!

Direct download: All-Star_Variety_Hour_30.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

Model railroading has a strong presence in New England along with seafood, the once mighty Patriots, ghosts of the Hartford Whalers, Springfield Train Show, Steaming Pile restaurant and a couple of guys named Mark and Don, although one of them left because the snow was getting too deep.

These two guys are a great example of how this hobby creates lasting friendships and utilizing today’s technology to enjoy the hobby together, plus what the NMRA can do for you by simply making the effort to get involved.

So grab yourself a big bowl of week-old chowder, a tall glass of warm lobster tank water and enjoy!!  

Direct download: Episode_170__Herrick__Irace.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

Not many things in life are more gratifying I life than achieving a goal or finishing a big project that’s well received by the intended audience and this couldn’t be truer for one of the AML Nation’s favorite sons. Our very own “Uncle” Dave has written what some are already calling the definitive book on railroad signalling and how it pertains to the hobby of model railroading. Dave’s excitement is infectious so we thought it would be fun to chat with Dave on the very day he received his first actual copies of “Guide to Signals and Interlockings.” It’s a great discussion, so get comfortable in your favorite easy chair with a big mug of cocoa, some of grandma’s world-famous apple pie and enjoy !!!

Direct download: _Uncle__Dave_Wrote_a_Book_.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

What happens when a well-worn railroader crosses paths with a rookie… Lots of stern looks, shaking of the head, rolling eyes and gnashing of the teeth. The Mayor of Hornepayne has found himself a nice place to live, some heritage units to shove freight cars over the hump using a belt pack, while “the Spoon” tries to explain how to protect the spare board.

So find a comfortable chair, bring a big bowl of freshly buttered popcorn and enjoy the show!!

Direct download: Georges_Journal_Part_5.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

They say it’s not the destination but the journey and this thirty-seven-part trilogy was one interesting journey, it took a while but we finally heard the story of Babbi and the O-Gauge layout. Jack’s lonely summer plus the memories of times he and trusty side kick Dave Abeles spent together, reads as well as any good romantic comedy. Jack’s story didn’t disappoint, so grab yourself a stale commuter station Danish, a soggy paper cup full of lukewarm coffee and enjoy !!

Direct download: Episode_169__Jack_Trabachino_Part_3.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

There are so many facets and skills to learn in this great hobby of model railroading, it's impossible to master all of them and for many of us the best we can hope for is to be really good at one or two things such as trackwork, structures, DCC programming, painting, weathering and capable of handling some others. Creating the scenery for our railroads to run through can be almost an insurmountable task for some while others look forward to this aspect of the hobby with great delight.

On this podcast we handle a late-night  AML emergency  with our buddy Chris Adams a.k.a. Mr. Fitness as he struggles to convince himself that he has any of the skills required to create great scenery. So grab yourself a big bowl of freshly mixed plaster, a tall cool glass of matte medium and enjoy.

Direct download: Scenery_Emergency_with_Chris_Adams.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

When we last left our heroes, the scares of being separated after grade five were still freshly etched into their memories. The tragedy of the Pattenburg Tunnel “incident” still lingered on through a haze of ding-dongs, train tracks and coffee trucks. This story truly reflects what life was like at the end of the last century as our intrepid travellers leapt into the twenty-first century with the intention of helping the world understand the benefits and excitement that can only be understood with a properly run commuter rail service.

Grab yourself a big plate of shredded elementary school math tests, a steaming hot mug of week-old commuter station coffee and enjoy!!

We here at the AML Nation are always look for the sunny side of the street, the positives in life, turning that frown upside down, the sun behind every dark cloud, in other words the silver linings of life. Once again, the “Nation” will pull together and keep each other’s spirits up as we patiently wait for the model railroading event of the century. Lawn-tractor pulls, hot tub activities, baseball games, barbeques and bus trips are going to make TomStock 2020 well worth “Twice the Wait for Twice the Fun.” It’ll be the “Nation’s” greatest moment bringing together AMLer’s from across the globe to meet and rejoice and most importantly…

Third time’s a charm !!!

Direct download: TomStock_Cancelled_-_Again.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 11:34am EDT

Fifty years is a long time, especially if you’re a railroad passenger service that most critics thought of as nothing more than a stop gap measure likely to meet its demise sooner rather than later. Amtrak began with one painted locomotive a bunch of borrowed equipment a few full-time employees and a whole lot of anxiety on May 1st, 1971. It’s now time to celebrate a railroad that’s become a fixture on the American rail scene and of course where better to do it than right here on the AML Network.

So jump on board, grab yourself a window seat in coach, a steaming hot mug of gusto and enjoy!!

Direct download: Amtraks_50th_with_Matt_Donnelly.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

And so begins an epic journey into the life of our next guest, we were first introduced to this gentleman by our very own “Uncle Dave” Abeles and true to his word Jack has turned out to be a very interesting study. In part one, we travel through the early years when Dave and Jack begin a lifelong friendship in grade five, it's a heart wrenching story with many twists and turns throughout that will surely bring a tear to your eye.

Grab a big box of Kleenex, some popcorn, your favorite soda and getting ready to listen to a romance of the ages.

Every podcast on the AML Network is like a bag of Cracker Jacks, you’re just never sure of what’s in the bag and this week is no different. First up is a visit with AML’s official videographer, Ron Marsh he’s been making some major changes to his railroad and this week talks about his plans to build a helix. Then after a quick visit with Bernard Hellen, the creator of MiniPrints we check in with “the Teaspoon” for another chapter of “George’s Journal.”

So grab that bag of week-old chips that’s been left on the counter, a steaming hot mug of leftover soda and enjoy !!

Direct download: All-Star_Variety_Hour_29.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

This is a great episode about a young modeler, designer and businessman named Aaron Piotraschke. His love of interurban equipment and small industrial locomotives led him to 3-D printing and an opportunity to fill a void in the hobby. Aaron started producing quality HO scale shell kits for rare and unique prototypes like boxcab diesels, standard gauge traction motors and fireless locomotives used around industrial areas where explosives and other dangerous goods were manufactured.

It’s a great story of a creative mind and a desire to conquer the world, so get comfortable by the Victrola with a warm cup of cocoa and enjoy !!

It’s often been said the best path to a balanced diet is to hold a cupcake in each hand. Here at the ole’ AML Nation we strive to offer a fair and balanced diet of model railroad podcasting.

In this episode we explore everything from what the July 4th is like in Lebanon, New Jersey, getting notes ready for an appearance on the “Dudes” show in St. Louis, Missouri and then finally discovering what life is like outback in Western Australia.

So grab yourself a big bowl of last summer’s left-over potato salad, some month old Jagerbombs and enjoy !!

Direct download: All-Star_Variety_Hour_28.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

This is it, we’ve arrived at our final destination, the last stop on the road to discovering who can best replicate the look of stunned surprise on Martyn Jenkins face as he sets off on another model railroading adventure. With almost a hundred entries we picked the best of the best that the AML Nation has to offer in order to help Martyn pick the best photo.

It’s an exciting episode with plenty of paparazzi, red carpet interviews and a cast of thousands, so grab yourself a big bowl of shredded confetti, a tall glass outback pond water and enjoy !!

Direct download: Jenkins_Photo_Contest_Winner.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 1:31am EDT

This episode features two fantastic young men who found each other through the wonders of social media. Cam models the BNSF’s line over Crawford Hill and Marias Pass while John, who’s layout was planned by Bob Sprague, models the Union Pacific Mainline across the Cascade Subdivision in Oregon. These two young men typify what the next wave of model railroader will look like.

We were so excited to interview these two youthful modelers we couldn't hardly think straight, so bear with us as we talk remote operations, manned helpers, YouTubing and what the next generation of model railroader might look like in the years and decades to come. Enjoy!!

Well we finally did it, two hundred patrons and it didn't take that long at all. There's lots of excitement around the old AML headquarters here in Busted Knuckle, Kentucky with so many folks willing to plunk down their hard-earned cash just for a chance to tune in one more time each week. Bill Sampson from Minnesota wanted to do something special to recognize this momentous event with a special gift and we here at HQ decided to kick in a couple of T-shirts.

So grab yourself a big bowl of shredded raffle tickets, a tall glass of freshly squeezed coleslaw juice and find out who the lucky winner is.

Direct download: 200th_Patron.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

Founded in 2003 the small family business of Otter Valley Railroad served local customers and travelled the circuit of train shows throughout Southern Ontario. In the summer of 2011 a brand new 1,200 square foot retail store was built and packed from the ceiling to the floor with model train products.

Over the years Otter Valley has worked with such manufacturing giants as Bowser and Rapido Trains becoming an important source for individual items as they continue to grow and expand.

Surrounded by a great group of employees, Lorne and his capable staff continues to grow the product line while the future looks more promising with each passing day. This is a great episode as the Evel Overlord reveals his alter-ego Captain Grumblebum, so grab yourself a big bowl of shredded Canadian bacon, a tall glass of Maple syrup and enjoy.

The next generation of hobbyist is here with YouTube videos, Facebook pages and any other kind of social media you can think of this episode is a perfect example of why the argument of “the hobby is dying” needs to be put to rest once and for all. This is a great discussion with an enthusiastic young man who's all about enjoying this great hobby of model railroading.

There's plenty of other fun as Tony Cook and Ron Marsh talk about collaborating on some exciting new projects for model railroad news. Plus we hear from our very own “Mr. Intros” David Start along with the proprietor of everybody's favorite model railroad shop, Midwest Model Railroad.

So grab yourself a big bowl I've shredded videotape, a steaming hot mug of film developer and enjoy !!

Direct download: MRN_News__Drew_Warrington.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

More and more we’re finding full-time railroaders just as interested and excited about model railroading as they are with their day jobs. This month's guest is a long time BNSF employee who enjoys spending time at the workbench as much he does behind the controls of an SD40-2.

It's a great story of a dedicated railroader from his early days in the Seattle, Washington area to his present assignment in Temple, Texas and all his adventures in between. So grab yourself a big bowl of shredded air hoses, a tall cool glass of spent diesel fuel and enjoy !!

Direct download: Episode_163__Emory_Van_Lehman_III.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

It's time for another exciting round of the Kelly Questions with one of Conrail's biggest fans, we've all got to know him up and personal from his fabulous Facebook live podcasts featuring operations in upstate New York and now it’s our chance to find out how he holds up under pressure.

It’s our very own “Uncle” Dave, as he dons the tin foil helmet and gets ready to answer some of the most toughest questions in the hobby today. So grab yourself a big bowl of shredded timetables, a tall cool glass of melted aerosol cheese and enjoy!!

Direct download: Kelly_Questions__Dave_Abeles.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

What do you get when combine a lifelong model railroader with a doctor and an ex-navy guy?? A great layout built by a dedicated member of the NMRA and someone who has squeezed as much out of the hobby as possible. This is a great episode that follows the journey of a lifelong model railroader that travelled the world while serving his country.

When he finally settled down, he decided to preserve the memory the Susquehanna & New York Railroad in HO scale. Mike has also created a great website at: snyrr.com

So sit back and get comfortable for a story that we’re sure won’t disappoint !!

Direct download: Episode_162__Mike_Hauk.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

It's election time at the NMRA again and we’ve offered this podcast to anyone running for office in order for them to express their positions and answer questions about the future of this hobby and the organization. John Doehring who’s running for Eastern Director and Gordy Robinson who’s put his name on the ballot for president of the NMRA agreed to answer some questions and tell what they think is store for the future of this hobby.

These two gentlemen were more than to make time to answer our questions covering many areas of concern about where the hobby is headed. Hopefully this episode will help you decide one way or another who to vote for in this critical upcoming election. Enjoy !!

Direct download: NMRA_Elections__Doehring-Robinson.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

What happens when a guy with lots of enthusiasm for the hobby with a personality as big as Manhattan itself, twelve hundred freight cars, a wobbly car float finally decides to build an operating layout?? You get a place where friendships come first and operating a model railroad in a realistic fashion is a close second.

Welcome to the New York Harbor Railroad on the west of Manhattan set in the year 1947. Serving the Erie Railroad, Lehigh Valley Railroad and the New York Central all jammed into one basement primarily for the pleasure of other modelers to operate. Dave is a fun guy to talk with and this is an episode we’re sure you’ll enjoy !!

Direct download: Episode_161__Dave_Ramos.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

Starting a new career can be as exciting as anything you’ll ever do and getting to share the adventure with others might be the next best thing. When we found out our very own George “the Boy Wonder” Taylor (a.k.a. “Teaspoon”) had been hired on by the Canadian National Railway, we jumped at the chance to ride along.

These are the first two installments in a journal of life as we tag along on what we hope will be a long, exciting journey for our intrepid hero as he begins a new chapter in his life. So grab your book of operating rules, radio, some warm boots and hop onboard this train bound for the future.


Direct download: Georges_Journal_Begins.mp3
Category:Model Railroading, Model Railway Transport -- posted at: 2:30am EDT

Backdrops are as important to scenery as any other aspect in the overall appearance of a finished model railroad scene. This month Scott shows us how he created the Rock River on his Milan Branch of the Iowa Interstate Railroad layout. Through a series of experiments, mistakes and successes the finished product turned out beautifully. Ron Marsh is the co-host for this episode and does an excellent job of keeping the conversation on “track.”

So grab yourself a big bowl of course medium green ground foam, a tall cool glass of unfiltered river water and enjoy !!