There are 16 layouts (all scales, home and club) that will be open for self-guided tours during the 2018 convention. The Convention Layout Tour Guidebook (in your convention package at the registration table) will provide details on each, directions, and maps to each one. We have tried to group them by area on each day so that you can see as many as possible. There will also be some layouts open on Sunday that you can see on the way home.  

Layout Tour Descriptions
  East County
The Cascade Line
Ryan DiFede

Ryan Di Fede’s n-scale layout depicts the Springfield Sub-division in Oregon in 1954.  The “Cascade Line” was part the passenger timetable of Shasta Route and extended from Eugene beyond Klamath Falls. The modeled railroad supports passenger service, through freights, and locals.
It is a point-to-point railroad around the walls on two levels, with staging east (Eugene) & west (Klamath Falls) at each point. The lower level includes industry in the town of Springfield, and a helper yard with a saw mill at Oakridge. The upper level of the layout represents climbing “The Hill” in the Cascades ending with the division point at Crescent Lake, just past the Summit and before entering staging.
Bench work is complete. The layout is fully operational with all track installed and trains DCC controlled with a NCE PowerCab. Additional throttles are NCE Radio or Wi-Fi mobile phone apps. There is a mix of manual and DCC operated turnouts. Scenery is in the beginning stages; there is good progress on the backdrop, some foam has been cut to the general topography, a few structures have been built, and lots of plans in place…
 All crammed into a dedicated 6’ X 12’ “Tuff Shed” out building in the back yard.

 On the day of the event please enter via the gate to the left of the garage door.

N 2
The Nevada County Railroad
Dick Roberts

Dick Roberts’ HO scale standard gauge layout is based on the Nevada County Narrow Gauge Railroad. The layout follows the NCNGRR mainline from the interchange with the Southern Pacific at Colfax, California, through Grass Valley to Nevada City. It is set in the 1920’s era. This layout is a mushroom design in a 21 x 24-foot room that takes advantage of almost every cubic foot of space. The aisles climb to follow the 165 feet of mainline and as you follow your train with the DCC controller you pass the scratch built structures and excellent scenery. The most unique feature of the layout is the elevator that carries the train vertically from one level to another. The layout was featured in the Sep/Oct 2006 issue of Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette

HO 2
Don Fowler

Southern Pacific’s Mojave Subdivision (N scale)
This 20’ x 22’ double decked N scale layout depicts segments between S.P.’s Intermodal Container Transfer Facility (Los Angeles) and Bakersfield from 1975 – 1995.  This two year old project is completely operational with partial scenery in place.  Features include S.P.’s West Colton’s Classification Yard, complete with diesel service facility and an arrival/departure yard.   Atlas code 55 is used throughout with a Digitrax DCC wireless system.

Southern Pacific’s Lizard Gulch Subdivision (G scale)
This G scale railroad design has a 400’ mainline in a folded dog bone around the perimeter of the back yard.  Features include water falls, streams, tunnels and bridges.  The route runs from Hot Springs to Dos Perros and includes an on line diesel storage facility and a five track yard.  Power is by Airwire wireless DCC with battery powered locomotives.

Tour N
San Diego 'S' Gaugers
Club Layout

The San Diego S-Gaugers modular layout is currently a 21’ X 41’ oval.  It is an S-Scale layout with two mainlines. One side features a siding with visitor operated AC Gilbert / American Flyer accessories from the 50’s and 60’s. The opposite side features a rail yard with 8 tracks and 16 turnouts. Both ends have mountains and valleys with bridges spanning each valley. The layout is modeled in the mid-1950's transition era when one could spot both steam and early diesel locomotives. The bench work is open grid, with 3/8" plywood covered with ¼” foam core. The legs fold up for travel. Homasote is used for the roadbed. Most of the turnouts are hand laid. The track is code 131 flex track from S Helper Service, now MTH, for both main line and sidings. This track supports properly gauged AF, High Rail, and scale wheel sets. The scenery is 90% complete. Many of the structures are scratch built or kit bashed.
The layout is fully operational so you can watch trains pass through a cattle ranch, an orange grove, tunnels, a Military air museum and a switching yard. With two mainlines we can elect to operate multiple trains on AC/DCC/TMCC/LEGACY control. Because the layout is located in commercial space, the San Diego S-Gaugers have built three visitor activated window layouts at a kid-friendly height. The 6’ by 11’ window layout is laid in a folded over figure eight using code 148 flex track from American Models.  The second window layout is a all 1950’s Gilbert American Flyer layout.  This layout is swapped out with seasonal layouts.  The third layout is a 4 X 5 Lego layout, which currently has a Ninjago theme

Tour S 2
  North County - Coastal

North County Model Railroad Society


NCMRS is a free-lanced late transition era California themed layout with a 350-foot single track main line designed for continuous running on public exhibition and point-to-point bridge line running for formal operating sessions. The layout occupies 1,800 square feet consisting of four peninsulas extending out from one wall. The setting is western mountains and foothills. The era is generally 1940-1960. The main line is 380 feet long and is designed for continuous running on public exhibition and point-to-point bridge line running for formal operating sessions based on train orders, with engineer and conductor teams. There are another 550 feet of staging yards, passing sidings and spurs. The railroad services many industries including a small container terminal, a port area, a large oil refinery, a logging camp and saw mill, a mine, a quarry and a large number of small industries. Some of these industries are still under construction. The layout uses NCE DCC for control and verbal dispatching with switch list / train orders for train movement. 

Tour HO 9
Santa Fe - Needles Division
Mike Komo

This 'N' scale version of the Needles Division of the AT&SF is set to June 30, 1981. Why this year? Because: Trains still had cabooses, cars didn't have grafitti, and there was lots of TOFC and COFC. And, most importantly, the Santa Fe was shortly to begin a locomotive rebuilding program which adversly affected their appearance!
The roster inlcuded every Santa Fe locomotive running through Cajon Pass, and then into Needles Division. The layout represents the Barstow 'B' yard, the Mojave Desert and Needles, CA. The layout was built on the concept of watching long trains from the Santa Fe and the Union Pacific hit the double track mainline. 20 different trains can be run without repetition in an hour of operations. The layout is in one bay of a 3-car garage, and was featured in the September, 2002 issue of Model Railroader.

Tour N 9
IN-KO-PAH Railroad
Ray Dunakin
The In-ko-pah Railroad is a 1/24th scale outdoor narrow gauge model railroad built into a steep hillside. It occupies a space measuring 50’ x 20’. From the pathway at the base to the top of the mountain at the rear of the layout is about 12-14 feet. The basic track plan is a long dog-bone loop folded into an overlapping “Z” with roughly 250 to 300 ft. of mainline track. There are three sidings with one still under construction. The layout features many tunnels, bridges, and trestles, each scratch-built to fit the terrain. The scenery is inspired by the famed Corrizo Gorge on the San Diego & Arizona Railroad. Tour G 9
  North County - Inland
The Short Track Railroad Club

Two 'N' scale layouts are housed in a 3500 square foot structure at the Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum. The NTRAK layout is composed of 34 'N' scale modules using both DC and DCC control. The club is also constructing a large permanent N scale layout that depicts the Southern Pacific route from Roseville over the Donner Pass to Sparks, Nevada, in the 1955-1975 era. The layout features full DCC operation, computer driven turnout control, code 55 track, and hand-laid turnouts. A special computer controlled system automatically matches the speed of various DCC locomotives operating on the layout. The Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum actively collects, preserves, and displays examples of mechanical ingenuity of the early American farm and rural community.

Ops Tour

N 11
Rio Grande Southern
Steve Harris
Steve Harris has created HOn3 version of the RGS from Ridgeway to Durango. The layout has been featured in Model Railroader magazine and Narrow Gauge and Short Line Gazette. Steve completely finishes one scene before laying track in the next area. It is a 9' x 24', double-deck layout where the upper level has already been completed, as described in the July/August, 2006 issue of NGSLG, and the bottom is nearly finished. Located in a 10x33 office trailer, the area is divided into a 8x10 workshop and 10x25 layout room. At one time the two levels were connected by a helix, but it has been converted to an elevator mechanism. The scenes reflect the famous line with authenticity and accuracy. Although remote in the back country, it's a must see layout.


MoPac Gurdon Sub-Division The Gurdon Subdivision is a part of the Arkansas Division of the MP. The Arkansas Division is the MP mainline from North Little Rock, AR to Texarkana, and the MP mainline from Gurdon, AR down to El Dorado and Monroe, LA. The Gurdon Subdivision is that part from Gurdon to Texarkana and the part down into Louisiana. The MP is a North – South railroad, and in the modeled period (1960) is one of the largest railroads in the country in terms of route miles. The operations of the layout include Red Ball freights, mail express and passenger, local switching and other traffic that was common at this point in time. The layout is located in the garage, occupying a 14x17 space in a "W" format, and is largely a “switching” layout, with some mail express, passenger and Red Ball freight mixed with locals. It is point to point and interchanges with several other railroads both at intermediate towns and in the ending yards.  All staging is off-layout, in shelving above the Texarkana (south) yard. Movement to and from staging is via “fiddle” actions (mole). Operations is by tab-on-car (TOC), providing crews with lots of action without having to deal with paperwork, and the trains are run using Lenz DCC. All engines have sound.


N 11
  San Diego City
Olive and Homer RR
Bruce Deck

The Olive and Homer RR (O,H, no pun) is a freelance, HO scale, railroad based loosely on a Southern Pacific theme. Occupying an area of approximately 20 by 20 feet the nearly 160 feet of main line is supported with hidden storage yards, feeding an on-line yard. This allows nearly 10 min. of non repeated running, and/or point to point running. Six towns along the mainline provide numerous industries to be serviced, with a wide variety of cars and products. All track work is complete and the industries and towns in place, but the scenery is only 15% finished. Operations are under DCC with a North Coast system. A computer gen-erated train order/car card system is used for train movement, the use of which is still being tested. A liberal amount of humor on the layout and short passing sid-ings provides a challenge and moderate insanity when running. This layout is up-stairs and there is no handicap access.

Tour HO 4

Eclectic RR

Frank Tepedino

Frank has an HO layout designed for long trains in continuous runs. He loves to “see long strings of cars pulling through wide curves and long straight tracks.” His railroad is built in a special 25x25 foot room built above his garage and the benchwork supports two separate roads. The wiring is DC block control and the time frame is 1930 to 1950 running a lot of heavy steam including Big Boys and Challengers with some Diesels. Many lines are on the roster including UP, SP, SF, and PENNSY. Almost all of the hundreds of pieces of rolling stock are weathered along with the many fine structures. There is an upper 4 track line for more interest and more running trains. This layout is always a hit with visitors, with a lot of detail, lots of running trains, and excitement. A must see.

Tour HO 4
Pacific Desert Lines


Housed in the San Diego Model Railroad Museum, the San Diego Society of N Scale has constructed one of the largest permanent 'N' Scale layouts in the world, offering sweeping vistas, large yards, and detailed cityscapes. Operations on the layout are conducted under the supervision of a dispatcher using JMRI software to generate manifests for the trains.

Tour N 18
Tehachapi Pass
La Mesa MRRC


Housed in the San Diego Model Railroad Museum, this layout is one of the largest operating HO layouts in the country. The scenery is scaled to the prototype Southern Pacific route over the Tehachapi Loop, and features Timetable and Train Order operations. Trains are dispatched from Bakersfield to Mojave (and return) with numerous operating positions available. Visiting operators will be guided and assisted by club members to help them assimilate this large layout

HO 18

San Diego Model Railroad

Housed in the San Diego Model Railroad Museum, this two-layout club includes the 2700 square foot Cabrillo & Southwestern O Scale Exhibit and the 4500 square foot San Diego & Arizona Eastern HO Scale Exhibit. Both have narrow gauge branches.


San Diego 3-Railers

Housed in the San Diego Model Railroad Museum, the toy train section of the museum features operating Lionel 3-Rail O gauge on a 42 x 44-foot permanent layout with four separate main lines, and numerous operating accessories. Train control uses both Lionel TMCC and DCS by MTH. An adjoining gallery features a collection of rare Lionel and American Flyer cars as well as modern toy trains from Lionel, MTH, K-line, and Atlas-O.

Tour O

The Donner Summit

Duncan McRee

The Donner Summit is an HO/HOn3 layout modeling the western slope of the Southern Pacific line over Donner and the Nevada County Narrow Gauge out of Colfax as if it had lasted in to 1953. The layout is built on two decks in its own small building in the back garden. All the locomotives have sound, are powered by battery and controlled by wireless DCC using the Tam Valley Dead Rail System 1 (of which I am the owner). The track is never cleaned, never shorts and locomotives never stall on turnouts - assuming I remembered to charge the batteries. Come watch Cab-forwards and Black-widow F-units thunder past tiny narrow-gauge Consolidations. The layout is about 85% sceniced featuring rugged cliffs, tunnels and numerous “Perfect Pines”. There are about 10 steps down to reach the layout and it unfortunately is not wheelchair accessible.

  South Bay

Sweetwater and Rohr Park Railroad


Chula Vista Live Steamers, established in January 1974, is a group of people interested in building and operating scale models of real (live steam) machinery. Their engines and associated equipment are usually built and operated by the owner and are maintained by them at their considerable expense of time and money. We are a group of ordinary people interested in building, operating and maintaining trains. But "Live Steam" is more than just trains. Just to name a few, "Live Steam" also includes steam powered tractors; stationary mill engines; steam driven pumps, hammers, calliopes, pile drivers, cranes, boats, cars and whatever the imagination can invent. Presently, the largest interest of CVLS live steam activity is heavily oriented toward trains.

Tour 1-1/2 5