Building the Pacific & Eastern:
The Permanent HO Model Railroad
of the
Rogue Valley Model Railroad Club

For a dozen years the Rogue Valley Model Railroad Club in Medford, Oregon has been operating a modular layout in the clubhouse at the Medford Railroad Park.  It has long been our goal to create a permanent layout.  In the Winter of 2002/2003 progress began on our dream model railroad.

Building on our hypothetical scenario of the Pacific and Eastern as if it had been completed from Medford to Klamath Falls our new layout begins in Medford and winds eastward through White City, Eagle Point and Butte Falls.


Click on images below for larger pictures

Drawing of the P & E The Plan  Dave Spakousky's drawing of the lower level of the permanent layout.  The area in the yellow rectangle is currently under construction.  A loop of modules occupies the space along the south wall of the clubhouse.  (Note:  The top of this drawing is north; left is west, and so forth.)   After the area in the rectangle is up and running, the modules will be stored and the bottom third of the layout will be built. 
The start - clearing the construction area. February 3, 2003  In preparation for construction of the new layout, the modular layout has been downsized to just a loop and moved up against the South wall creating a rather large empty area.  Other modules and items that were under the modules temporarily have been shoved up against the modules.  These will be moved out before the first April open house.  This will be the last time this much empty floor space will be seen!.
BCI framing from west end February 8, 2003  This may be the first model railroad to use BCI's for benchwork.  BCI's or engineered wood I beams offer superior strength, easy of assembly and stability.  The Boise Corporation (formerly Boise-Cascade) donated a lot of mis-cut BCI's which got our layout off to a flying start.  We consider this method of construction as "Next Generation L Girder".  The work shown here and in the next picture below was accomplished in a single day. 
BCI framing from east end This view from the north east corner of the layout shows the 10' spacing of the legs.  Yet, design load for this layout is forty pounds per square foot -- the same as for residential construction. 
West end joists and backdrop February 22, 2003  The progress of two more Saturdays plus a couple evenings is substantial.  Most of the 1 x 4 joists and much of the backdrop have been installed.  The Medford Corporation (Medco) saw mill complex will be modeled on the lower level at the left.  on a level just above the shorter backdrop wall, dead center in the picture, will be Cascade Summit, the highest point of the P&E main line. 
Center joists and backdrop A look up the walkway between the north section and the middle peninsula.  The taller backdrop will hide access to a pair of hidden return tracks as well as a wiring gutter.  Crater (Medford) yard will be built on the lower level along the straight section of the north section (middle of the picture). 
Peninsula benchwork The middle peninsula takes shape with joists fanning out from curvature centers. 
View from northeast corner An updated view from the northeast corner.  Crater yard will be on the straight section beyond the light blue foam board.  The short joist extensions on the back side of the backdrop will support the Siskiyou Line -- one of the two hidden lines. 
Curving backdrop looking west March 1, 2003   Aerial view of the curved and straight backdrops which divide the center peninsula.  The joists jutting out from the backdrop on the right will support the main line as it climbs to Cascade Summit (center, near the top of this picture).
Through the backdrop from the northeast corner Yet another shot from the northeast corner looking through the curved backdrop.  The Siskiyou Line will branch out into a staging yard built on the back side of this backdrop.
Center peninsula viewed from the modular layout Taken from the east end of the modular layout and looking at the south side of the backdrop of the center peninsula. Trains can still be run on the modules.  Our goal is to have at least a loop of track in operation on the permanent layout in time for the first Public Run Day at the Medford Railroad Park on April 13, 2003. 
Photos by Larry Tuttle and Dave Hall.

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All photos and text © 2003 by the Rogue Valley Model Railroad Club