The Loewy Division of the Pennsylvania Railroad
HO by Charles PageThe Loewy division of the Pennsylvania Railroad is a HO layout that is positioned in the transition era. The layout has a double track mainline with a minimum of 48" curves and operates with DCC and sound. All points on the mainline and anywhere the bigger locos are likely to go are no.8's, all points are Tortoise operated. The layout isn't intended to be a fanatically accurate model of the Pennsy in all respects; I'm trying to capture the character of it while simply enjoying the layout.
The steam locos are predominately brass, some dating back to the late 60's but all have been mechanically and aesthetically 'tuned' and fitted with Tsunami decoders. The diesels are mainly contemporary models mostly from Proto 2000, however I have rebuilt a set of brass passenger Sharks so that they are up to contemporary operating standards. Although there is a broad representation of Pennsy motive power, in order to reflect the standardisation and the large numbers of certain designs, I've tried to acquire multiple locos of the more common PRR types: I1s 2-10-0 (3), J1 2-10-4 (3), T1 4-4-4-4 (3), L1 2-8-2 (2) and K4s 4-6-2 (5), M1a 4-8-2 (2), there is also an ex N&W Y3 2-8-8-2 and a Santa Fe 2-10-4 as the Pennsy leased some towards the end of steam.
I've been a model railroader since I saw a layout that the father of one of my primary school friends had built, that was quite a while ago so I have seen a lot of evolution in the hobby. However changing over to DCC and sound has taken the layout to a far more realistic operating level, independent loco control, simplified double heading and especially banking has been brilliant, however I did retain the blocks as they make finding faults so much easier. However for me it's the sound that has been the greatest transformation, instead of watching the trains and imagining their sound, I can now hear the 'real thing'.
Charles J. Page.