Trying to get a Chicago-area O scale Traction Modular group started.
Seems strange that with so many O scale traction modelers in and around the Chicago area that there isn't one, and really no permanent club that has an extensive traction presence. Certainly there is traction interest, and the HO scale guys seem to have a good thing going.
I'm reliably informed that this idea was floated a number of years ago by the late, great Rich Bosak. From what I understand the group started with some questionable quality on the modules themselves and everything sort of fell apart from there.
I'm thinking using the East Penn Traction Club's standards as a base point, and go from there. So many things to consider, 2 rail versus 3 rail, track power and/or live overhead, single track, dual track, module size and height, analog versus DCC, the list is seeminly endless.
My initial thoughts are 2 rail, a combination of track power and live overhead, a mix of both single and dual mainline running. Modules, 4 feet long at a minimum, 6 at a max. I've seen any number of modules in varying scales at different shows, people always seem to start with the idea of something for kids to see, yet parents seem to have figured out that you bring a little step stool for Junior to step up and see. I prefer a higher layout, chest high to your typical adult, easier to work on, less stress getting under, etc. All open for discussion of course.
Ideally I see this again as the East Penn guys do it, a way to show off traction modeling, on many skill levels, share the hobby with a bunch of people, draw some inspiration and/or friendly competition from each other, etc. I can see doing two shows a year, HighWheeler in the spring and Trainfest in the fall, maybe make our presence known at IRM during the July 4th Trolley Pageant (piggybacking onto the large scale trolley modelers mini-meet). Just depends on the number of people, level of interest and commitment.
If you're reading this and interested, drop me a line at FoxValley2001@yahoo.com
Hoping to get enough interested parties together that we could have an initial face-to-face sit-down and start to decide the who/how/why/what of it all, sometime within Feb 2010.